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Street vendor builds Yangon's top seafood chain

Rakhine migrant's fiery noodles triumph in Myanmar's business capital

Khin Khin San, who is widely known as May Cho (Sweet Mother), rose from selling rice noodles in Myanmar’s Rakhine State to founding one of Myanmar’s most beloved seafood chains. (Lorcan Lovett)

YANGON -- In 1987, when Khin Khin San was 13, she began selling bowls of mont ti fish soup under the shade of a tamarind tree in the western Myanmar state of Rakhine, where the rice noodle dish is fishier and fierier than elsewhere in the country.

Sometimes she would hawk mont ti with her grandmother and mother around Myebon, her hometown, which lies on a sliver of land between two rivers emptying into the Bay of Bengal. Usually, her stock would sell out by lunchtime, earning the equivalent of $1 on a good day.

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