Thursday, January 23, 2014

Rice Noodle Village

We visited a village famous for making rice noodles, a cottage industry for sure. We watched them boil and grind the rice, squeeze out the water, knead the dough, put it into a canister with a ricer at the bottom, squeeze the canister between two huge boards to press out the noodles into a cauldron of boiling water below. Finally they scooped the noodles out of the boiling water in a wicker basket and plunged them into cold water. Then they fed them to us with a bit of mashed fish curry poured over it.

Conditions there were so unsanitary that, despite the boiling water, I declined. First thing I haven't wanted to try! There was dirt and grime everywhere. Chickens and ducks were running all around the work area pecking at the draining liquids and the bottom of the ricer at the end of the process. I thought about bird flu and I thought "no, even I have limits." We bought lots of trinkets from the village children, so we did contribute to the local economy!

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