Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Entrepreneur creates ingredient packages for iconic Khmer dishes

Entrepreneur creates ingredient packages for iconic Khmer dishes

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Entrepreneur Vipassini pre-packages ingredients for Khmer dishes. PHOTO SUPPLIED

Entrepreneur creates ingredient packages for iconic Khmer dishes

Identity is important for every nation because it binds its citizens together and differentiates it from others through its unique mix of foods, traditions, cultures and languages.

Food, in particular, is the part of a nation’s identity that attracts quite a bit of attention from other parts of the world if it is delicious or unique.

The main Khmer dishes that are known to other nationalities are samlor korko (mixed vegetable soup), amok (steamed fish with lemongrass and coconut milk) and prahok (salted fish paste).

However, Khmer food in the international context is mostly unknown and therefore not very popular compared to the Chinese, Japanese or Thai cuisines in Asia, or to the famous cuisines of Europe such as French or Italian.

One woman with a mission to promote Khmer food initiated the idea of creating packages of the ingredients used to cook Khmer foods to promote the tastes of Cambodian culture.

Sambath Amarak Vipassini, founder of Sabara Food Handicrafts, which makes products under the brand name “Kreung Hloung Sabara”, said that she originally owned a hotel named Sabara in Siem Reap province with a restaurant that was praised by guests for its Khmer dishes.

However, during the Covid-19 pandemic, the number of guests declined and she was forced to try out new business ideas.

She said that she decided to make pre-packaged mixes of the non-meat and non-perishable ingredients of foods such as amok and red curry to sell to others who can then use them to complete the dishes and get an authentic Cambodian flavouring.

She said that her main ingredients are all extracted from fresh spices so that customers get a real Khmer taste from them.

“In the market, there are only products from neighbouring countries, but curry and amok is never available. So, I want to make those ready ingredients for the convenience of our people and also to expand the market abroad,” she said.

She has been in business now for six months and is selling her ready ingredients to four Khmer dishes in markets, supermarkets and shops and has seen a lot of support from customers.

The ingredient packages are sold at a retail price of 6,000 riel each to ensure they are a reasonable price for Cambodians. The products all comply with all hygiene standards, both national and international, which she received training on from the Ministry of Industry.

She said that because her products are new to market, she and her team could use some training on marketing to get the message about them out to the target demographic who need to know about her products.

They are currently selling in Phnom Penh and Siem Reap province and in the future, she intends to make them available nationwide. After that, she intends to expand sales abroad, especially to countries that have large populations of Cambodian immigrants living there.


  • Research key to Kanitha’s rep for expertise

    Sok Kanitha is used to weighing in on controversial issues using a confident approach that signals expertise and authority, and a recent video she made was no exception. Her “Episode 342: The History of NATO” video went live on January 16, 2023 and immediately shot to 30,000 likes and 3,500

  • Cambodia maintains 'Kun Khmer' stance despite Thailand’s boycott threat

    Cambodia has taken the position that it will use the term "Kun Khmer" to refer to the sport of kickboxing at the upcoming Southeast Asian (SEA) Games, and has removed the term Muay from all references to the sport. Despite strong reactions from the Thai

  • Knockout! Kun Khmer replaces ‘Muay’ for Phnom Penh Games

    Cambodia has decided to officially remove the word Muay from the programme of the 32nd Southeast Asian (SEA) Games 2023 in May. “Kun Khmer” will instead be used to represent the Southeast Asian sport of kickboxing, in accordance with the wishes of the Cambodian people. Vath

  • Artificial insemination takes herd from 7 to 700

    Some farms breed local cows or even import bulls from a broad for the purpose of breeding heavier livestock for meat production. One Tbong Khnum farmer has found a more efficient way. Hout Leang employs artificial insemination to fertilise local cows. Thanks to imported “straws”

  • New int’l airport nearly half complete as travel industry returns to life

    Construction of a new airport that is slated to serve the capital has passed the 43 per cent completion mark, raising prospects for a proper recovery in the civil aviation and tourism sectors as international travellers return to the Kingdom in increasingly large numbers. The figure

  • Chinese group tours return to Cambodia starting Feb 6

    Cambodia is among 20 countries selected by Beijing for a pilot programme allowing travel agencies to provide international group tours as well as flight and hotel packages to Chinese citizens, following a three-year ban. As the days tick down until the programme kicks off on February 6,