First Karen Traditional Restaurant Opens in Rangoon

A Karen restaurant has opened in Rangoon with the objective to introduce traditional dishes to the public. The owner, Sa Khwa Khwa said his restaurant, Non Tae Ya [The Flag], plans to introduce traditional Karen food to the market, and said it will be the first restaurant to do so.

Sa Khwa Khwa restaurant opened for business on Tuesday June 5th in Insein, Rangoon.

Sa Khwa Khwa, told Karen News that he is determined to make a success of serving Karen food and hopes to be open for a long time.

“Even though there are lots of Karen traditional dishes, people don’t really know them,” Sa Kwa Kwa said before adding, ” It is very sad for me to see that no one sells it. My dream has been that one day I will open a Karen restaurant serving traditional dishes to make Karen cuisine known to everyone.”

Sa Kwa Kwa said that he researched and learnt for more than six months about traditional Karen dishes from the Irrawaddy delta region and other places in Karen State before opening the Non Tae Ya restaurant.

Mahn Than Win Oo, secretary (1) of Karen literature and cultural committee based in Rangoon said. “This is something that Karen people should be proud of. We can all work together to display our traditional cuisines. Karen people can suggest and recommend their local cuisines and recipes.”

Mahn Than Win Oo also suggested that Karen community organizations and Karen activists should support the Non Tae Ya restaurant so that Karen traditional food will be loved by other all people.

Karen traditional dishes were well received when recently served during the International Women Day ceremony on March 8th in Yangon Public Square.

Karen activists also said that although there are many recipes cooked and made by different Karen people in different places, there are hardly any Karen traditional restaurants in Karen regions and Karen State.

The Non Tae Ya plans to serve around 50 Karen traditional dishes, including well-known dishes such as Talapaw, Karen Myaung Mya Mont Hin Kha, Turmeric leave wrapped grilled fish, Karen –chili-paste Da Hae Poe, Karen fish-paste, cucumber salad, rural cooking style curry, banana flower salad, and many other Karen style dishes.

The Non Tae Ya restaurant is open from 7am to 9pm, Maharthukhitar 7th Street East Gyogone section, Insein Township, Rangoon.

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