Lao cuisine is the cuisineof Laos, which is distinct from other Southeast Asian cuisines. Laos shares borders with neighboring countries and as a result, Lao cuisine has strongly influenced the neighboring cuisine of Northeastern Thailand and some Lao culinary influences have also reached Cambodia and Northern Thailand.The staple food of Laotians is sticky rice eaten by hand. Galangal,lemongrass and padaek are important ingredients. The most famous Lao dish is Larb, a spicy mixture of marinated meat and/or fish that is sometimes raw with a variable combination of herbs, greens,and spices. Another Lao staple dish is a spicy green papaya salad dish known as tam mak hoong or tam som.
Lao cuisine has many regional variations, according in part to the fresh foods local to each region. A French legacy is also apparent in the capital city, Vientiane, such that baguettes are sold on the street, and French restaurants (often with a naturally Lao, Asian-fusion touch) are common and popular.
A Lao meal in Luang Prabang, Laos