Friday, October 28
Before our Mekong river cruise on the Laos Pandaw in early 2016, we stayed in the Lao capital Vientiane for a few days and checked out a food festival in Chao Anouvong Park beside the Mekong River.
The annual Lao Food Festival is a fascinating celebration of Lao cuisine,that takes place in late January in Vientiane.
This year the weather wasn't great but that didn't spoil the fun.
The organisers, the Women's Union and Businesswomen's Association, focussed on units run by Lao women, growing and selling agricultural products as well as cooking for restaurants and cafes.
One-hundred-and-sixty stalls were set up in Chao Anouvong Park beside the Mekong River.
Some sold fresh or preserved food as well as herbal medicines, silk and souvenirs while others cooked popular local Lao treats.
Lao people enjoy fresh vegetables and herbs, and these appear in almost every Lao meal.
Meat and fish are usually grilled or steamed, so the dishes are fresh and low in fat - healthy as well as tasting great.
Vientiane is full of western-style restaurants but for tourists it's well worth looking out for local ones such as Ban Vilaylac.
As well as the whiteboard specials this friendly place has a very large menu - makes choosing difficult! But the Lao version of fish amok was tasty as was my stir fry chicken with vegetables.
Good to get back to editing the holiday videos - brings it all back.