During our time in Chiang Mai we sampled lots of different food. At every street corner was a vendor selling small snacks that tasted amazing.
We tried fresh quail eggs that had just been pan-fried – they were served with a splash of fish sauce and soy sauce. Quick and very tasty.
A few metres away was this lady, she prepared fresh fish balls with her hand and a spoon. The mixture was dropped into hot water and quickly boiled. Once they were ready you could eat them with fish sauce and soy sauce. We did not try them, we have had them in Hong Kong before – where they serve them with curry sauce. That’s nice too!
During daytime, we walked past this man, who had set up his stall at a busy street corner. He was frying banana fritters, ten pieces for less than a US dollar. His fritters were very popular, lots of cars and motorbikes stopped, and just bought a bag from him. If they had to wait, because the next batch was not ready yet, they circled the block and came back again. As we sat opposite in a cafe, we just waited until fresh banana fritters were ready and picked a bag up – they were fantastic. Light, fluffy and sweet.
My friend Monica loves banana roti – which are sold everywhere in Chiang Mai. They are based on roti canai, a typical Indian bread made out of fat, egg, flour and water. The form of fat used is usually ghee (clarified butter). Except that bananas, chocolate, marmalade or other ingredients are added to the plain roti canai.
The entire mixture is kneaded thoroughly, flattened, oiled and folded repeatedly. It is then allowed to proof and rise, and the process is repeated. The final round of preparation consists of flattening the dough ball, coating it with oil and then cooking on a flat iron skillet with a lot of oil. Lastly, sweetened condensed milk is poured onto the dough.
The ideal roti is flat, fluffy on the inside but crispy and flaky on the outside. The bananas are sweat, the condensed milk is sticky and it is very hot, you have to be careful not to burn your tongue.
Here is a video I found on YouTube that shows how banana rotis are made in Chiang Mai, yummy!