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Woo Café, not just for coffee and cake

BY Heather Allen
Three of us went to Woo Café, Art Gallery & Lifestyle Shop for coffee and ended up with a delicious late lunch topped off with cake. The owner, Chatcahi Jullatamara, greeted us as he does with all his customers, a seemingly endless stream of people while we were there for lunch. Set in a gorgeous old home, with a charming outside dining area and art filled interior, the restaurant has a lovely front garden and parking, a real must in the narrow Wat Ket area.
I decided on the Fettuccini with Chiang Mai sausage. I do not normally go for fusion food but I thoroughly enjoyed the dish. It is a tad on the spicy side so those who do not like their food spicy should mention this to the friendly wait staff who speak both Thai and English.
My friend ordered Fish and Chips. She was delighted by the freshness and crispiness of the fish. It was not overly greasy and was a generous dish.
There was a small range of delicious-looking cakes at the coffee counter for dessert. We ordered the recommended carrot cheesecake, which was moist and tasted heavenly. My friend was bowled over by her passion fruit soda served in a generous jar garnished with a cut of the actual fruit and syrup on the side to sweeten as needed.
We totally enjoyed the tasty and beautifully presented food in the light and relaxed stylish ambience with well-trained staff who were friendly and attentive. We will definitely be back.
The café opens daily from 80 Charoen Rat Road ,T. Wat Ket ,A.Muaung, Chiangmai 50000 Tel: 053 003 717.

RECIPES BY NOI: Kao Soi; the yellow egg noodle with yellow and coconut soup

Who doesn’t know Kao Soi? Who doesn’t like it? For expats, Thai people and anyone who ever visited Chiang Mai would have been heard or tried our famous yellow noodle dish at least once.
Here’s a very brief introduction; The most believable presumption is that Kao Soi first came from a Chinese-Muslim recipe which Chin Ho (Chinese from Yunnan province, South China) brought with them when they moved more south to northern Myanmar, Laos and Thailand. At first there was no coconut milk in the soup (I can’t imagine Kao Soi without coconut but I am really interested to try). And of course, Chinese-Muslims don’t eat pork and that’s why we mostly see Kao Soi with chicken or beef. Nowadays seafood, pork and meatball Kao Soi can be found as well but honestly, chicken and pork are really the best.
There is a very interesting fact about my city, Chiang Khong and Kao Soi and that is that we don’t have it there! We took it from Chiang Mai and of course you can eat yellow Kao Soi in Chiang Khong but when you say Kao Soi, then it will refer to Nam Ngiew, the previous recipe we cooked.
Let’s make it more complicated. Chiang Rai has the word Kao Soi but it’s Nam Ngiew with rice noodle/Sen Yai, when Nam Ngiew is served with Kanom Sen (or Kanom Jeen-fermented rice flour noodles) then we will call it Kanom Sen or Kanom Sen Nam Ngiew.
Ingredients for the yellow Kao Soi are quite different as the paste contains dried chili, salt, garlic, shallot, kaffir lime skin, krachai (fingerroot), Kamin (turmeric) lemongrass, shrimp paste and curry powder.
I always start by stir frying the past with a few spoonfuls of cooing oil and add beef. Then add soup and coconut milk. Beef will take a couple of hour to cook so make sure you have a lot of coconut milk. When the beef is tender we can add more sugar and salt.
The special add in the noodle are, deep fried egg noodles, shallots, coriander, pickled cabbage and a slice of lime.

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