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Street Eats: An authentic Phuket breakfast

December 10, 2014

When you think of a good old Western breakfast, you imagine some crusty toast, ham, an omelette, pancakes, cereal or other similar tasty food, but here in Phuket a traditional local breakfast is quite the opposite.

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The culture in Phuket is a mix of Thai Buddhists and Muslims, with over half the locals a mix of Chinese. This is why Chinese-style food can be found among any of the island’s popular dishes, from breakfast to dinner or street food.

One of the most popular breakfasts for Phuketian’s is Siao Boi, otherwise known as Dim Sum, which has a unique spicy, yet sweet thick red sauce.

Yaowamal Woaranopakul is the owner of Juan Hiang restaurant and she is the oldest owner of a Siao Boi restaurant in Phuket. The menu has largely developed over the years but the unique sauce is something that no one can copy.

“There were around 10 different kinds of Siao Boi when my father was responsible. We have around 50 dishes, mixing authentic recipes with modern tastes and ingredients. However, we have kept the original recipe for the sauce, something you won’t find in other restaurants.

“We have five Siao Boi restaurants in total in the family: three Boonrat dim sum branches, the Juan Hiang branch and another one in the Samkong area,” she explained.

“The cooks put a lot of effort into the dim sum and the flavours are so fresh you can feel them through every mouthful. Their attention to detail and efforts in making the dim sum, is the key to our success.”

Ms Yaowamal said there are a number of Siao Boi restaurants around Phuket, but so few actually make their own food – they just head to the nearest convenience store and buy ready made food.

“We make our own homemade Siao Boi every evening, in preparation for the next morning. We care about the taste and freshness of the food, which is why I think the business has continued smoothly over the last century,” she said.

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