Thip pramong means something like "heavenly fishing" and is the name one of several seafood restaurants in the Khao Saam Muk area of Chonburi, about an hour east of Bangkok. Friends of ours, Nat and Pao:
had been there recently and liked it. So they invited us to go back on Friday.
We began with clams stir-fried with bai horaphaa, Thai basil:
Mighty good, and some mighty meaty clams. This was followed by plaa meuk neung manao, squid "steamed" with lime:
which, as you can see is not really "steamed" but simmered in a sour, sweet and spicy broth.
When eating Thai seafood, you must order khao phat puu, fried rice with crab:
Despite being such a boring dish, I really love this one and have to have it every time. They did a good one here, with huge chunks of crab and egg. A squeeze of lime and some phrik naam plaa (sliced chilies in fish sauce), and I'm happy.
There were also grilled scallops:
which were VERY well done, but it didn't really matter, as the extremely spicy/sour dipping sauce they came with masked any scallop flavour. Made with a bit more care was deep-fried grouper with a mango-based sour dressing:
It's a bit hard to tell by the pic, but the entire fish has been butterfly-cut, splayed open, battered and deep-fried. The mango dressing is served on the side.
However the Dish of the Day, at least for me and Nat, was puu phat phong karii, crab fried in curry powder:
Two fat, meaty crabs fried with onions, scallions and a rich sauce made from curry powder. Here's Nat enjoying:
During dinner Pao asked me if this kind of food was expensive in the US. I told her it was, and that very few people could afford to eat like this, but couldn't really give her an accurate estimate. Any ideas? Our meal came to just short of 2,000 baht (about $50), which is rather expensive by Thai standards. Regardless, everything was good, and the seafood was truly fresh, as evidenced by the nearby pier where it was unloaded from boats and taken directly to the restaurants:
While we were eating a boat arrived and some truly frightening looking horseshoe crabs and several buckets of fish were brought it.
As an added bonus, along the way back from Khao Saam Muk there are several roadside shops selling granite mortar and pestle sets. After some careful inspection, Nat and Pao picked one up for their new house:
Khao Saam Muk, Chonburi