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Khmer cuisine mostly includes rice, freshwater fish, and soup. Rice is part of every meal as an accompaniment or used as an ingredient for a lot of dishes. With their neighbouring countries, they share some commonalities on food. Khmer has less sugar, chilli, and coconut cream milk used for flavour. They have also adopted some culture from the French colonial empire in Southeast Asia.
Aside from food, foreign visitors can enjoy places that offer casinos and gaming parlours with an array of poker games. Although it is illegal to gamble in Cambodia, foreigners or someone who is holding a foreign passport are exempted.
Cambodia has a very colourful variety with its cuisine. Just like some poker players turned foodies, they have their own stories to tell with their influences.
Tips from the Pro – Danieal Negreanu
Daniel Negreanu is a professional poker player who travels the world playing the game and earning extravagant sums. The Champion’s Cup, Gold Bracelets, and a long list of prizes for the game’s top pros. Professional poker players like Negreanu go from one casino to the next, manipulating buy-ins, swaps, and stakes, and even discovering a decent meal can be a difficult task while travelling the national and global tournament trips.
Eating the right meal can be a hard task for these pros. Their schedule can be so tight that their diet can be disoriented. They wake up late in the morning, and some of the players don’t have the luxury of getting three quality meals a day. Most multi-day tournaments that are televised via WSOP or WPT coverage can take 12 to 14 hours per day in three to five days.
The tournament pros are given a few 15-minute breaks inserted in the games. But the 60-minute break would not be enough to have a decent dinner. The sad part of the tournament is that everybody in the tournament takes their dinner break all at the same time, so it is a real struggle finding a restaurant that is not jam-packed. Many pros are spending their dinner breaks searching for a fast-food with open seating. While some players settle for food from room service delivered to them. Burgers, chicken fried rice, chicken fingers, and other card room staples are the usuals.
Pros who eat properly remain sharp the whole day of poker. Just like Negreanu, who turned vegan and left behind all the greasy card room grub some 20 years back. He proved that eating right will help you win tournaments.
According to Negreanu, poker players have changed. They were once obese, but now they’re fit. Players are now educated and more conscious about their health. Negreanu committed his passion for healthier food to guide his fellow players onto a healthier path. He is not picky when it comes to convincing others, he just wants the poker community to get past greasy finger foods that don’t do any good for the body. Negreanu always looks forward on how players would manage to eat right during the tournaments.
Some casinos are health-conscious. They give importance to balancing their menu and especially those who would prefer a vegan menu. Here is the list of the 10 healthiest casinos in Las Vegas:
- The Cosmopolitan
- Caesars Palace
- The Palms
- MGM Grand
Poker Players Turned Foodies
David Williams is one of the professional poker players who have impressive talents. He is known for winning second place in the 2004 World Series of Poker (WSOP) Main Event. Aside from being an abundant poker pro, he was the runner up on the MasterChef Season 7.
He won three Grand Prix championships when he travelled the world and competed at the wildly popular card game’s Pro Tour in the late 1990s. He reached the top eight of Pro Tour Tokyo 2001 but was later disqualified for having the cards marked despite making it at the top eight of Worlds in the same year. During his suspension, Williams turned to Texas Hold’em and became successful mainly online with winnings exceeding $7,900,000. His venture in poker has taken priority, but he still attends Magic: The Gathering Pro Tours and Grand Prix frequently.
David has a daughter, Liliana, who is an avid fan of MasterChef Junior. This inspired him to join and compete on the show. Liliana even captured on film, her daddy’s audition. Williams was known as a poker player turned foodie even before MasterChef.
Joining MasterChef in 2016, along with Brandi Mudd, he finished second place behind Shaun O’Neale from Las Vegas. Williams had a remarkable six challenge wins as an individual and with the team.
Williams made it into the finals despite facing some trouble late in the series. He met Tanorria Askew in a three-dish pork challenge, and he won taking him to the finals.
He is a successful poker player and an extraordinary cook at the same time, making him one of the poker players turned foodies. But most importantly, he is a loving father that would do anything for his daughter.
Nathan Kogel is a professional poker player who is an expert on the poker table and the kitchen as well. Kogel attended a culinary school, which is his passion, and his Italian grandfather thought him a few tricks around the kitchen. The classic and authentic Italian dishes are his favourite. His grandfather reminded him that ingredients are so important, and he must understand how much love goes around into cooking. He said that his mom and dad were so proud of him when he would cook things on his own at a young age. Nathan’s palate has become more varied over several years of cooking. He loves experimenting with new dishes like his favourite, salmon.
Nathan said that his girlfriend loves all the dishes that he makes. She even tests and critiques him on any adjustments he has to make. One of his goals is to have a small restaurant in Austin or a food truck.
He found success in the kitchen as well as at the poker table. He constantly works on refining his craft and credits those who have helped him become an improved player.
Jimmy Fricke dropped out of college in 2005 and became a full-time internet poker with a screen name “Gobboboy.” He started on the live poker scene when he was 19 years old and won two major events within eight days. He finished runner-up at the Aussie Millions in Melbourne, Australia and he took home $800,000. He lived in Las Vegas since 2008. He held the record for the youngest player ever to cash at a WSOP event and was broken by Annette Obrestad just a few days later. He is one of the poker players turned foodies and rightfully so!
Fricke manages his own website Jimmy Eats Vegas where he provides his own reviews on the food industry. He would practically give his opinions on where to eat, food ratings, quality, quantity, and nutrition details. He constantly updates his website and loves to hear comments from his followers.
Consider Nutrition in Poker
Consuming a heavy meal before taking a seat may result in vasodilation (when your blood gusts to your stomach to help in digestion, leaving not as much for your brain). Poker is a game that endures mental physique and requires only minimal movements to endeavour, so taking up a big meal is not necessary before a big game.
A Cup of Coffee
Caffeine can give people a little jolt to keep awake, but it is temporary. When it wears out, you will be more fatigued than before you sip that cup of coffee. You don’t have to give up easily, you can continue your supply of beverage with a more effective way of waking you up. A glass of water.
Drink 8 Glasses of Water a Day
About 60-70% of our body is made up of water, depending on age and gender. Roughly 70% of our brains are made up of water, and it is a common thing to say that keeping hydrated helps a lot for our brains to function correctly. Drinking 8 glasses of water every day will keep you hydrated and avoid mental blocks and fatigue.
Take into consideration also of the booze intake. Better save it after the big game if you really want to win. It dampens your senses leading to impaired judgement, dehydrates your brain, and leaving your body more fatigued.