Typical Western meals in Cambodia cost an average of 5 to 8 American dollars per meal. This does not include a fancy drink or even a necessary bottle of water. Eating out is fun and all, especially when you can get anything from Mexican to Indian in a five-mile radius from your cozy abode. Sadly, Iris and Michelle are not made of money nor are their conscious’ willing to pay such a hefty price for every meal. This brings them to the beautiful story of how they creatively cook their every meal in Cambodia.
Iris spent her afternoon sitting at a nearby café getting her digital newsletter sent out while Michelle took advantage of Khmer culture by taking a short nap. Michelle later on joined Iris in some productivity by studying their Khmer phrases learned earlier that morning. Hunger strikes every eager mind – beginning the journey of Iris and Michelle finding their neighborhood supermarket.
A short mile and a half walk brought them to the closest Lucky Supermarket, which stocks a select number of Western cooking ingredients. Missing the torrential downpour by mere seconds, they moseyed around the supermarket in search of eatable goods. Michelle was conflicted about the many jarred-honey options (which were all very expensive for any American honey connoisseur). On the other hand, Iris was unable to pick between the abundant cracker options lining the supermarket shelves. Until they are able to navigate a Khmer outdoor market without paying foreigner prices, these petty decisions will forever plague their shopping minds.
Finally deciding on ingredients and taking a tuk tuk back home in the pouring rain, the cooking adventure began!
Michelle decided to create a Panini while Iris settled on a Chicken Wrap. Digging ingredients out of the fridge, they spent a good twenty-minutes waiting for the chicken to thaw. Like any seasoned cooks, Michelle used her innovative mind to create the more than perfect grill lines on her Panini by using a grill pan and big steel pot. While Iris opted for simplicity by merely nicely asking Michelle to grill her chicken as she smeared her tortilla with Dijon Mustard. Filling both the Panini and Wrap with orange cherry tomatoes, Michelle added basil and cheese while Iris included fresh cleaned lettuce.
Pictures say a million words, so let’s get to it!
Please do not worry; dishes were washed well after this cooking adventure. Despite their love for geckos, Iris and Michelle would never want friends related to ants or cockroaches to ever plague their living quarters.