Running Ahmohk

S.F.'s only Cambodian spot is still going strong in its 20th year

The hit entree of one meal is char toum plang, prawns sautéed in homemade chili sauce, with thin-sliced bamboo shoots, red bell peppers, embryonic corn, and sweet basil. The slightly smoky, spicy, minty flavors seem like they'd go even better with squid — and they do, with thick, al dente slices of big old guys, crosshatched with shallow cuts to make them easier to chew. The sauce is noticeably sweet but well balanced by the strong squid flavor, the funkiness of the tart and earthy bamboo, and the afterburn from the seriously spicy sauce.

The menu lists only two desserts, luckily both good. A mound of warm, nutty, aromatic black rice cooked with coconut milk and topped with half a firm, barely ripe, barely sweet mango is a seriously grown-up treat, like a wine that smells fruity but turns out to be dry and rustic — a superior rendition of this Asian-restaurant standby. At the other end of the kid-friendly spectrum is the fried banana with coconut ice cream from nearby Mitchell's. Seeing our enthusiasm, the owner asks if we'd like to try a not-on-the-menu dessert she made for some friends who'd been in earlier (she has some left over). She brings us a warm, souplike pudding of coconut milk and bananas, thickened with tapioca and flavored with toasted sesame seeds. This lagniappe makes a charming end to a delightful meal.

Edible Vacation: Angkor Borei's interior is filled with the appetizing smells of fish and spices.
James Sanders
Edible Vacation: Angkor Borei's interior is filled with the appetizing smells of fish and spices.

Location Info

Map

Angkor Borei

3471 Mission
San Francisco, CA 94110

Category: Restaurant > Asian

Region: Mission/ Bernal Heights

Details

Stewed ground pork (prahok) $8.50

Crispy rice chips $6.95

Fresh spinach leaves $6.95

Sour beef soup $8.25

Ahmohk (fish mousse) $9.50

Char toum plang with squid $8.95

Pan-fried fish fillet with garlic sauce $10.50

550-8417

www.cambodiankitchen.com

Open Monday through Saturday from 11:15 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. and 4 to 10 p.m., Sunday from 4 to 10 p.m.

Reservations accepted

Wheelchair accessible

Parking: easy

Muni: 14, 24, 49, 67

Noise level: quiet

3471 Mission (at Cortland)

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How much do regulars love this place? On my second visit, one of them stops by to pick up a to-go order, gives the owner a big hug, and apologizes for not having been in for a couple of weeks since she's been out of town. That's the kind of well-deserved loyalty that could see Angkor Borei through another 20 years.

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