On Sunday we went to an outdoor market in a park downtown where many fresh produce vendors gather. It’s an excellent place to find strange new (to me anyway) fruits and veggies, and sometimes even plants for our garden. This day proved to be no exception and we found a lady selling what looked like Japanese aojiru powder (green juice powder made from barley and other healthy crap) from a bucket. Upon closer inspection the granules were too large to be aojiru and were also quite damp. The old lady didn’t really explain what it was that well to Nam, so we had our nanny go ask. Nanny already knew what it was and said she could prepare a soup with it, so I of course bought some, about a pound, for 15 Baht (45 cents).
It turned out to be some kind of vegetation that grows on the surface of a pond, or as I like to call it, pond scum.
The soup she made was quite good; it smelled pleasant and tasted hearty with a hint of lemongrass, and the texture of the scum was like miniature flying fish roe, or soft grains of sand. Nanny said it would have been better if she’d had pork belly to add to it, but really, what food couldn’t benefit from some pork belly?
Pond Scum Soup
It doesn’t sound or look appetizing, but it was actually pretty good.