1. Sticky rice with barbecue/fried pork
An easy and delicious breakfast you can find in any street. If you’re not a fan of sweet barbecue pork, you might want to go for fried pork instead because ‘moo ping’ that is not sweet is pretty rare.
2. Sticky rice with grilled chicken (and Somtum)
The ultimate combination of an Isan meal. Sticky rice and grilled chicken alone is good, but it can be much better when you eat them alongside some spicy papaya salad.
3. Sticky rice with Larb
Larb is never meant to be eaten with ordinary steamed rice in the first place. Isan people eat it by dipping a chunk of sticky rice into a larb. This way, the sticky rice will pick up the meat and the sauce for them to eat all in one bite.
4. Sticky rice with curry pork sausages
Curry pork sausage, which belongs in the northern Thai cuisine, is best eaten with sticky rice because it doesn’t have any rice ingredient in it, unlike its Isan counterpart that can be a complete meal in itself.
5. Sticky rice with fermented fish paste
Fermented fish paste is deliciously spicy and salty, so a chunk of hot sticky rice can help reduce its strong flavors while offering a chewy texture. Dipping the sticky rice in the paste to pick it up also helps prevent the smell from sticking to your fingers.
6. Sticky rice with fried shredded pork
People of all ages love fried sweet shredded pork. It can be eaten as a snack, but it can also be a complete and easy meal if eaten with sticky rice. It’s crispy, sweet, salty, and highly addictive.
7. Sticky rice with spicy eggplant/bamboo shoot salad
Spicy eggplant and bamboo shoot salad are authentic and unique Isan dishes. You may be confused because Thais call them “soup”, but they are actually more like chili paste made of eggplants or bamboo shoots. So they’re best eaten with sticky rice.
8. Sticky rice with boiled eggs
This is a lifesaving dish when you’re broke or run out of ideas on what to eat. Thai people usually eat the eggs with soy sauce, or even fish sauce, because they’re not used to plain flavor. Eating them with sticky rice will fill up your stomach pretty quickly.
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