KHON KAEN — Queues of hungry students and locals were lining up at a shop that sells everything “moo krob” in the northeast of Thailand.
At Ajo Took Yaang Moo Krob or Ajo Everything Moo Krob, every dish features moo krob, or crispy pork at affordable prices, including Moo Krob Bingsu – a mountain of rice, pork, and sauce popular among hungry students.
“I love to eat moo krob myself, but as a Khon Kaen U student, there was no shop that I really liked that I could find,” fresh grad entrepreneur Jakkradoon Semornboon, 23, said.
Open just shy of three months, the shop has gained word-of-mouth popularity, to Jakkradoon’s surprise. Online reviews praise Ajo for its generous servings. The Moo Krob Bingsu (169 baht for a 1 kilogram, 309 baht for 2 kilograms), similar to the popular 2016 Korean dessert fad, is shaped in a cone but made of rice and pork instead.
“I think it’s a dish that creates closeness and intimacy, whether it’s between lovers, family or colleagues, because you have to share it with two to three people to be just the right amount of full,” Jakkradoon said.
Unlike other moo krob restaurants, Jakkradoon says he dries his pork in the sun before baking it and frying it.
“Other places just fry it without baking. My process makes the pork crunchy and fluffy on the outside, and soft on the inside,” he said.
The shop serves more than 30 dishes, all of which include moo krob – from the simple moo krob over rice for 45 baht to the Moo Krob Bingsu. The krapao or basil stir-fry moo krob is only 50 baht, the larb moo krob is 55 baht.
Various other dishes you can see Khon Kaen University students gobbling up – some of them farang exchange students, Jakkradoon says – are moo krob stir-fried with black pepper (55 baht), moo krob fried with Mala sauce (65 baht), tom yum moo krob (79 baht) and moo krob curry (75 baht).
Ajo Everything Moo Krob is located on U Plaza canteen next to Khon Kaen University. It opens from 10am to 9pm every day. It can be reached on song taew bus number 8.
This review is unsponsored and was based on a Khaosod reporter’s announced visit.