Three Sweet Treats from The Secret Eater

One thing Chiang Mai has plenty of is great little spots for coffee and a ‘sweet fix.’
Especially on Nimmanheiminda Road, where a new coffee shop seems to pop up every few weeks. Here are three to try, a bit off the beaten track.
One hidden gem is Mo-Mo, tucked away in a tiny moo-baan just off Sirimangkalajan Road, behind Huay Kaew (between Kad Suan Kaew and Nimmanheimanda Road). To find it on foot from the main road, look for the 7-ELEVEN just before the traffic lights and turn into the alley. The sign is just a few doors past. Or turn left at the light and make an immediate left into the driveway. Mo-Mo is on the north end of a small block of shop- houses. It’s amazingly quiet back there, and with both an outside garden area and inside seating area for relaxing with a little treat, it’s a wonderful escape from the hectic traffic that surrounds it. The prices are reasonable. We had a refreshing iced mocha the other day for only 60 baht. And the goodies in the case are mighty tempting.
Another spot to try has been here awhile. It’s the Fern Forest Café on Soi 4 just off Singharat Road, inside the moat and opposite the front entrance to Siam TV. This is truly an oasis of peace in the midst of a busy road! Walk through the entrance and come into another world: cool, green and restful. The café offers a few sandwiches, quiches and German sausages, as well as fresh fruit juices. And of course, oh-so-tempting cakes, tortes, pies and coffee drinks. Prices are reasonable, and there’s no charge for relaxing beside the tinkling fountain and listening to the birds.
Finally, a new place…and a real find. This is five minutes further down Soi 4 from Fern Forest Café, on the opposite side of the street. It’s Cannella, the dream bakery created by Raffaela, an Italian who has brought her family recipes for great cakes, biscotti, and other European goodies with her and is teaching them to her Thai staff. Drop by for a coffee and a chat – you won’t be disappointed!


Pork chop with garlic-olive oil potato mashe

A hearty meal, an inexpensive meal and a very flavoursome meal. One of the secrets in this recipe is in the marinade process. This is best done in a ‘zip-lock’ plastic bag in the refrigerator and overnight is perfect. The original recipe does say at least four hours, but experience (the best teacher) says that up to 24 hours is even better. Remember that when grilling pork do not overcook as it is easy to make the meat very tough.

Cooking Method
Marinate the pork chops in a little olive oil with the chopped herbs for at least 4 hours up to 24 hours.
Grill the pork chops (or BBQ over charcoal), seasoning with salt and pepper.
To make mashed potatoes, boil till soft, then mash with fork or potato masher, folding in the olive oil, thickened cream, garlic puree and adjusting seasoning to taste.
To serve, place the mashed potato on the plate and putting the pork chop on top push it firmly into the potato.

Ingredients                                      Serves 2
Centre cut pork chops                                700 gm
Garlic puree                                             8 cloves
Olive oil                                                   4 tbspns
Potatoes peeled, large                                        2
Butter                                                     2 tbspns
Chopped herbs
(basil, rosemary, parsley and thyme)         2/3rd cup
Thickened cream                                      2 tbspns
Salt and pepper to taste