Tom Mu Chamuang : Trat’s exotic Herbal delicacy
The green and sour leaves of ton chamuang, the Garcinia cowa tree, is one of the well-known ingredients of traditional gastronomy in the east coast. Local people use the leaves for cooking many mouthwatering dishes like the famous kaeng mu chamuang (the sweet and sour pork stew with chamuang leaves), namphrik bai chamuang (chilli dip with chamuang leaves) and tom som pla bai chamuang (sour soup with fish and chamuang leaves).
If you travel to Trat, the must-try dish, which can help you recover from your travel fatigue, is mu tom chamuang (pork rib soup with chamuang leaves).
The dish is cooked with simple ingredients and recipe. Starting with boiling water until it reaches to the boiling point and add pork ribs. Let the ribs be cooked before sprinkling salt and adding sliced lemongrass, galangal and red onion. The herbs will add fragrance to the soup and simmer it until the pork ribs become tender. The last process is to add young chamuang leaves and let it boils for a while before tasting. The sour taste will come from the leaves.
The soup should have a taste like tom yam, but it is not spicy. Since the soup does not have chili, it can be enjoy by kids and the elderly as well. Mu tom chamuang also has health benefits because the chamuang leaves are high in vitamin C and antioxidants. The sour and salty clear soup will also make you feel refreshing. Lending a pleasant herbal smell and awesome texture of soft pork, mu tom chamuang is one of the signature dishes of Trat.