The portions are smallish, but many are potent. The green mango of tum mamuang ($8), for instance, is dressed with palm sugar, garlic, and dried chiles, whose various charms are conveyed throughout the heap by a sauce made from pickled fish. Underneath the mango is a bed of betel leaves, the same leaves employed in South and Southeast Asia to wrap paan.
Assembled by a paanwala, a quid of paan is gently massaged between cheek and gum for its flavors and, often, stimulative properties, after which the weary leaf and its contents are usually expelled rather than swallowed. By contrast, eating this tum mamuang is a do-it-yourself affair. Fold a betel leaf around a little mango, much as you'd wrap lettuce around kalbi, then take it in a two bites or pop it in your mouth whole. Both leaf and mango can be chewed and swallowed, but watch your spice levels — that chile-laced fish sauce insinuates itself into the bed of betel leaves, too. For more photos from this backyard dinner (call to confirm when the outdoor space is open), see the EIT page on Facebook.