Khao moo daeng (ข้าวหมูแดง) is an extremely popular Thai Chinese dish.
You’ll find it at all food courts and abundantly at street food stalls throughout Bangkok. But the only problem is, there are a lot of bad versions of it.
Sometimes it kind of tastes just like slices of barely marinated pieces of pork over rice with some ketchup-y tasting sauce poured all over it.
But luckily, there are still some street food stalls and shops that make great versions of the dish, and one of them is Si Morakot Restaurant (ร้านข้าวหมูแดงสีมรกต), located on the edge of Chinatown, near Hua Lamphong.
Khao Moo Daeng Si Morakot (ร้านข้าวหมูแดงสีมรกต)
When it comes to eating khao moo daeng (ข้าวหมูแดง) in Bangkok Khao Moo Daeng Si Morakot (ร้านข้าวหมูแดงสีมรกต) is one of the legendary restaurants, having served the dish for well over 50 years now.
And it’s one of those shops that probably looks exactly the same as it did when it opened 50 years ago – I don’t think much has changed – and the wooden glass meat cabinet is a beautiful antique.
One of the things that makes Khao Moo Daeng Si Morakot (ร้านข้าวหมูแดงสีมรกต) so good is that they still make all the components of their khao moo daeng (ข้าวหมูแดง) themselves – the bbq pork, the pork belly, the Chinese sausage, and the sauce. And they still use charcoal to grill and roast all their meats – including the crispy pork belly which they actually grill, instead of fry.
The restaurant is located just a short walk from Hua Lamphong (MRT and train station), and sits on the edge of Yaowarat, Bangkok’s Chinatown.
The area is home to a lot of metal workshops and small industrial shops, and sitting between some metal welding shops is Khao Moo Daeng Si Morakot (ร้านข้าวหมูแดงสีมรกต).
Khao moo daeng moo krob pisayt puem kai (ข้าวหมูแดงหมูกรอบเพิ่มไข่)
I ordered a plate that came with red bbq pork, crispy pork belly, a hard boiled egg on the side, and the large size (special), all lathered in their famous red brown sauce.
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Price – 50 THB
After all the different slices of meat were placed on a plate of rice, it was then drowned in sauce – you can’t have a plate of khao moo daeng (ข้าวหมูแดง) without sauce.
Sometimes the sauce is very red in color, and really has no depth of flavor other than sweetness.
Their sauce was different, made with reduced broth of the boiled pork bones, a variety of secret Chinese herbs and spices (possibly some cinnamon and five star, among other spices), and with some kind of beans, I think soy beans, and sesame seeds.
The gravy sauce was slightly sticky and had the meaty flavor of a Western style brown gravy, with the tanginess of a bbq sauce – it was kind of a cross between the two.
The red bbq pork (the Thai version of char siu) was lean, and had a good texture to it – not too soft, and not dry either – but really good, especially covered in the sauce.
The pork belly was crispy on the edge and creamy soft on the inside, and retained a nice smoky flavor from being roasted.
I’m typically not a huge fan of Chinese sausage, but this Chinese sausage was not as sweet as other versions (but yes it’s still a sweet sausage), but again it was smoky and tasted very close to bacon.
Additionally, the hard boiled egg, which was orange around the edges, was creamy and rich. I was surprised to find that somehow I could barely tell the difference of the texture and taste from the yolk to the white, somehow they blended together.
I added a little bit of sweet dark soy sauce, similar to kecap manis, and some chili vinegar to my plate of khao moo daeng (ข้าวหมูแดง) to complete the flavors. I like it with a bit of vinegar to contrast the sweetness of the sauce.
I think this is one of the best plates of khao moo daeng (ข้าวหมูแดง) in Bangkok.
Bet toon manao dong (เป็ดตุ๋นมะนาวดอง)
Along with the khao moo daeng (ข้าวหมูแดง), just because they happen to have it steaming right at the front of the restaurant, we ordered a bowl of bet toon manao dong (เป็ดตุ๋นมะนาวดอง) – braised duck soup with pickled lime.
The soup had a very soothing taste to it, like pickle juice and duck broth, with tender chunks of wintermelon.
It went quite well with the rich sticky gravy of the khao moo daeng, and I’d recommend it if you go to Si Morakot (ร้านข้าวหมูแดงสีมรกต).
Price – 30 THB
Khao moo daeng (ข้าวหมูแดง) is a Thai Chinese dish that includes rice topped with red bbq pork, sometimes crispy pork belly, and topped in a thick sauce.
There are a lot of street food stalls that take shortcuts making this dish, and so it’s often (in my opinion), even though it’s a simple dish, it’s a dish that’s hard to get right.
There are a couple classic restaurants, like one of my favorites in southern Bangkok, and Khao Moo Daeng Si Morakot (ร้านข้าวหมูแดงสีมรกต), that still make all their own ingredients with care, and serve excellent khao moo daeng (ข้าวหมูแดง).
Si Morakot Restaurant (ร้านข้าวหมูแดงสีมรกต) is one of Bangkok’s legendary places to eat khao moo daeng (ข้าวหมูแดง), and it’s well worth seeking out – it goes on the list of best in Bangkok.
If you have a few minutes, click play to watch the full video:
(Or you can watch the video on YouTube here)
Si Morakot Restaurant (ร้านข้าวหมูแดงสีมรกต)
Address: 80-82 Soi Sukon 1, Bangkok, Thailand
Open hours: 11 am – 7 pm daily
Phone number: 081-567-9006
Prices: The special plate of khao moo daeng costs 50 THB
ที่อยู่ 80-82 ซอย สุกร 1 มิตรภาพไทย -จีน ตลาดน้อย สัมพันธวงศ์ กรุงเทพมหานคร 10100
เปิดบริการทุกวัน 11.00 – 19.00 น.
How to get there: Si Morakot Restaurant (ร้านข้าวหมูแดงสีมรกต) is located near Hua Lamphong MRT station, just up the road from Wat Traimit. Turn onto Sukon Alley 1 and the restaurant is along that small connecting road.