If you are in Hua Hin and are looking to start your day with an authentic Thai breakfast, there are plenty of delicious options to choose from. Thai cuisine is known for its bold flavors, and breakfast is no exception.
But when it comes to Thai cuisine, it’s important to note that many dishes are not restricted to a particular mealtime. Unlike Western food, where specific dishes are reserved for breakfast, lunch, or dinner, Thai food is known for its flexibility in terms of when it can be eaten.
This can make it difficult to differentiate between what is considered a traditional Thai breakfast dish versus a lunch or dinner dish.
With that being said, there are some dishes that are more commonly associated with breakfast in Thailand.
Unlike other Thai dishes that can be quite spicy, traditional breakfast dishes, while flavourful, tend to be lighter and less spicy, making them perfect for those who prefer a more gentle start to the day.
Hua Hin Today recently teamed up with local food tour operator Feast Thailand who showed us a number of Thai breakfast dishes in Hua Hin that are must-try for foodies looking to experience something authentic.
“Eating Thai breakfast is about texture and variety, carbs and proteins”, said Leigh Higgins from Feast Thailand.
“In some ways, the principles for a good breakfast in Thailand are just like anywhere – it’s about getting a good base for the day and you can even enjoy it alongside side coffee and tea”.
Auntie Miew’s Porridge: โจ้กป้าเหมี่ยว
First stop was Auntie Miew’s in Khao Takiab, which serves up a range of different breakfast dishes but is perhaps best known for its Jok.
“Jok is a rice porridge or the Thai version of the Chinese Congee”, Leigh explained.
“You can have it with or without an egg and each vendor will have their own flavourings but generally, you will get fresh ginger, crispy garlic, shallots and a protein, normally pork (Jok Muu in Thai). If you want a lighter version, you can order a Khao Tom, which is jasmine rice in a broth and some places will do both with fish and fish broth”.
Leigh also showed us Khai Luak, which are soft boiled eggs that you drink as if you were drinking a shot of something much stronger!
“Khai Luak translates to a soft egg and many breakfast places will give you two really softly boiled eggs in a drinking glass, where you add some white pepper, Maggi seasoning and “shoot it”. It is great to give you the protein hit in the mornings”, Leigh said.
When ordering a Jok, an order of crispy Thai donuts is needed and is a great textural addition.
These are called Pa Tong Ko. They are not necessarily sweet but you can buy a little container of condensed milk or pandan cream if you want that hit.
“Normally when you see a street vendor doing Pa Tong Ko you know that someone close by is cooking up Jok,” Leigh said.
“Grab some Muu Ping and Sala Bao – Chinese style dumplings – and you have an amazing breakfast,” Leigh added.
Next up was Jek Piek, which is a well known and popular restaurant located just off Phetkasem Road. If you are familiar with Hua Hin, it is the old wooden restaurant located behind Hua Hin temple. You might have seen people queuing for a table, particularly at the weekend.
Leigh said: “Jek Piek is a hive of activity with a range of vendors doing different types of breakfast dishes and drinks. It can sometimes feel like too much chaos for breakfast but the family and team run it like clockwork.”
“They will find you a table. You order at the table once you have seen what is on offer. It’s a little touch of Ole World Thai Chinatown in Hua Hin,” Leigh added.
“Whilst you can order Jok here, you can order a crispy pork belly or roast duck over rice and their Khao Mun Gai is great for those who do not like fatty chicken skin or broth as the chicken.
Leigh explained how ‘Cafe Boran’ – a traditional Thai coffee – is the perfect accompaniment to a Thai breakfast, and Jek Piek is a good spot to sample a traditional Thai cuppa.
“The Cafe Boran at Jai Pek is thick and has a deep in flavour. It is served with just a little bit of condensed milk at the bottom of the cup which you stir in order to get the desired sweetness, Leigh added.
“In traditional places like Jek Piek, it is served alongside hot jasmine tea, which acts as a palate cleanser.”
Tee Heng Dim Sum
The final stop of the belly busting breakfast tour involved Dim Sum.
While there are several Dim Sum restaurants open for breakfast until around 3pm in and around the main town area, we headed to Tee Heng Dim Sum.
Thai Dim Sum is very popular in areas that have a high Chinese heritage. In many towns in the south of Thailand, a Dim Sum breakfast with Pan Eggs, Khai Krata or Bak Kut Teh.
“Thai Dim Sum, in my opinion, is very different from Cantonese-style Dim Sum. To me, they are lighter, smaller and less spicy which is great for a breakfast dish,” Leigh said.
“Pan Eggs are easy to eat as the eggs, pork or sausage and shallots are cooked over high heat in little tin pans. It’s great for those who love well-cooked eggs. It’s an Asian-style bacon and eggs in one pan!,” added Leigh.
We also ordered the Bak Kut Teh – a herbal broth that is heated to a high temperature that has pork on the bone and lots of mushrooms. The broth is strong in flavour with garlic, star anise and cloves.
“Tee Heng Dim Sum puts a little jar of herbal liquid into the hot bowl just as it comes to the table. If you want it spicier you can add some chilies to zip it along.”
A big thanks to Feast Thailand – Hua Hin’s #1 Food Tour Company – for showing us some of the different Thai breakfast options in Hua Hin. For more information visit https://feastthailand.com/
All images: Feast Thailand