My favorite part of our two days in Phnom Penh was definitely the Russian Market. We started there on our first morning, and had so much fun that we went back for lunch the next day. The market is a huge maze selling everything from auto parts, t-shirts, and live fish to tourist souvenirs and pirated DVDs. In the middle are the food stalls, serving up noodles and other quick, cheap meals on plastic tables and chairs. On day one, we had a pho-like dish with noodles and chicken, with some carrots and potatoes mixed in. I had it with a healthy serving of chili sauce so my mouth was on fire, and I washed it down with a Coke.
The meal we had on day two will go down as one of the most delicious meals I have ever had: a very simple cold noodle salad with a sweet yet vinegary broth, with fried vegetarian spring rolls mixed in. The flavors worked so well together, and our seats, perched at the edge of the busy stall in the middle of an aisle, made it even more enjoyable. The icing on the cake though, was getting the bill and seeing the total for lunch: $1.
For less than $10, I got a lunch of delicious noodles, two Cambodia t-shirts, a half kilo of rambutans, a pair of scissors to replace mine that wouldn't make it through security, and my new favorite accessory: a fluorescent pink Casio watch, an exact replica (except for the amazing neon color) of the one I wore circa 1994. We will definitely be going back to the Russian Market when we stop back in Phnom Penh next week.