Restaurant: Chez Sovan
City: San Jose, CA
Chez Sovan is a hole-in-wall Cambodian restaurant, and is only open M-F, 11am to 1:45pm.
Chicken curry simmered with potatoes, carrot in yellow curry paste, Cambodian spices and coconut milk. The curry wasn’t spicy as most Thai or Indian curry dishes are, but the taste of coconut milk was there.
Cambodian cuisine shares many commonalities with the food of neighboring Thailand—although, less chilli, sugar and coconut cream are used for flavor—and of neighboring Vietnam, with which it shares and adopts many common dishes, as well as a colonial history, as both formed part of the French colonial empire in Southeast Asia. It has drawn upon influences from the cuisines of China and France, powerful players in Cambodian history. The Chinese began arriving in the 13th century, but Chinese migration accelerated during the French period. Curry dishes, known as kari (in Khmer, ការី) show a trace of cultural influence from India. The many variations of rice noodles show the influences from Chinese cuisine. Preserved lemons are another unusual ingredient not commonly found in the cooking of Cambodia’s neighbours; it is used in some Cambodian dishes to enhance the sourness. The Portuguese and Spanish also had considerable influence in Cambodian affairs in the 16th century, introducing chilli and peanuts into Asia from the New World. However, chilli never gained the same status or prominence as it did with the cuisines of neighboring Thailand, Laos, and Malaysia. Even today very few recipes include chilli. (Wikipedia)