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Exploring, creating, & reflecting one day at a time

Even though there are seven days in a week, I think soup week is over. Despite failing to make soup every single day for seven days, I’d like to give myself a pat on the back for posting 5 times in one week. Okay, enough self congratulation, the real star of soup week was this khao soi.

I have a Laotian/Thai friend who started opening my eyes up to a larger range of southeast Asian food last year. He shared his mom’s homemade pho with me, complete with all the protein Asian people like (and I’m still trying to grow an affinity for), like tripe. I’ve also eaten countless spring rolls that his parents have dropped off for him. But, the best thing he’s done for me was introduce me to Laotian food. It’s amazing. If you haven’t had it before, do yourself a favor and go find a restaurant that serves it.

Laotian food is like the spicier, less sweet, and more robust cousin of Thai food. How can that not sound great? At Airlex’s urging last year, we took a trip to a less savory part of East Oakland. Tucked away in a residential area was Vientian restaurant. He ordered that kao poun and told me to get the khao soi. My tastebuds were forever changed.

Khao soi is a coconut curry soup filled with noodles and meat. In this recipe, which I took from Bon Appetit, I added pork, because we didn’t have chicken, and some baby bok choy because we needed veggies. I had also run out of bean sprouts at this point in the week, but I got over it.

Rachel and Eric came over to eat with me but they also ended up cleaning my kitchen out. Score! And Eric brought limes, which made this bowl of awesomeness even more awesome.

Pork Khao Soi

Adapted from Bon Appetit


For the curry paste

  • 3/4 tsp. curry powder
  • 3/4 tsp. tumeric
  • 2 bird chilies
  • handful cilantro stems
  • 1″ nub of ginger, peeled
  • 4 garlic cloves, chopped roughly
  • 1/2 onion, chopped roughly

For the soup

  • 1 can unsweetened coconut milk
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • dash of fish sauce
  • 3/4 pound pork, sliced
  • Egg noodles


  1. Place all of the curry paste ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend until a smooth paste forms. Add water as necessary.
  2. Heat up some oil in the bottom of a large pot. Add the curry paste and cook until the paste darkens a bit, a few minutes. Add the coconut milk and chicken broth and bring to a boil.
  3. Add the pork and reduce temperature to simmer. Simmer everything about 20 minutes.
  4. While the soup is simmering, boil another pot of water and cook the egg noodles. Drain them and rinse under cold water to remove the excess starch.
  5. Portion out the noodles into three or four bowls and ladle the soup over them. Serve with sriracha, bean sprouts, and lime wedges.

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