A writer keen to share knowledge of South East Asia and loves exploring and writing about the gems in the community, art and culture of Adelaide, as well as towns and cities further afield.
Published June 11th 2014
Noodle soup and stir fry Cambodia style
It's not often you come across a Cambodian Restaurant in Adelaide so when we were told about this family run restaurant in Mansfield Park north of Adelaide we thoughts we'd give it a try. Having lived for 14 years in Cambodia we were not only keen to see the menu and taste the food but also to see how the family run business was prospering.
Sokha Phnom Penh Noodle House is on Grand Junction Road at Mansfield Park so not so close to the city but in an areas where there are quite a few Asian Restaurants. I suspect this restaurant gets a lot of lunch trade given the number of factories and industrial blocks in the area.
We ordered fish cakes and meat on skewers for entree and they came out quickly from the kitchen. The fish cakes were the favourite. Cambodian fish cakes have more of a chewy texture as they are made from rice flower with the fish meat well and truly pummeled, and then fried.
For main we ordered both stir fried short noodles with meat and vegetables and noodle soup. The noodle soup comes with the meat of your choice. This is not really a vegetarians dish even if you ask for no meat as the broth is meat based.
Both dishes came steaming hot and quickly from the kitchen. The fried short noodles included the meat of choice, bean sprouts and spinach. The traditional fried egg was placed on top and perhaps as a twist of Cambodian food in Adelaide a slice of fried fritz was also included. I am sure this is optional if you are not a fan of fritz, which would be called 'pate' in Cambodia.
The noodle soup was again my favourite, we had a meat combination which included beef (could have been chicken or pork) liver and some tripe but again this is optional if you discuss what you do or do not want in the soup with the waitress.
Overall the restaurant is very simple with many tables and chairs within a large open space. They can cater for your basic drink request including beer and hot green tea. Fresh coconuts are available sometimes and you can get the Cambodian favourite of iced coffee made from freshly brewed coffee and condensed milk with ice. The young waitresses have good English so rely on them if you want something special.
I would say the food reflects the experience you would have eating in Cambodia at a market stall or simple family run restaurant and they are clearly set up to cater for a lot of people eating at one time. This is not a fancy restaurant in food or surroundings but a great place to go for a decent simple meal of authentic food at a great price.
The restaurant is open from Tuesday to Sunday 10am - 9pm.