This weekend, neighbors brought me kanoms, sweet desserts wrapped in banana leaves. Not an unusual thing to do. At work this morning (Monday), along with my coffee and water, I was served more kanoms (as pi in the office, the oldest, I get served every morning). Again, nothing unusual. But then the Ron Balat (Assistant City Manager) brought me kanoms (very unusual) and I noticed anyone not in an officer’s uniform was in black and white (except for me who was clueless)! Turns out today was Wan Boon Khao Saak, the day to remember your dead ancestors. Everyone goes to the temple in the morning and brings small items of green food, usually kanoms, and hangs them from trees or places them along the walls. The ancestors are there waiting and you don’t want to make them wait or hurt their feelings, so you do this first thing in the morning.
You can find kanoms any day in the dalat, outdoor market, but it is unusual for everyone to make them on the same day.
The small pyramid shaped ones (one is open)are made from shredded coconut and peanuts and sugar. The small log is made with sticky rice and bananas. For both, the mixture is brought to a boil and simmered and then wrapped in a leaf and then steamed. Aroy mak!