Saturday, April 30, 2011

All Things Thai

Lately I've been absolutely obsessed with Thai food. I've been eating curry multiple times a week, both homemade and out at restaurants. I told my boyfriend the other day that I could eat Thai food every day and not get sick of it, and so far that has held true. If you are a Thai fan like I am, then get excited. I've got restaurants, products AND a recipe, all in one post!

If you are a regular reader, you know that I love Ginger Pop, a Thai restaurant that has been nothing but accommodating to my needs (not to mention that the food is out of this world). But I'm always trying new places, and I think I may have found a place that tops the ol' GP. Enter Siam Society. Located on Alberta, this restaurant has everything I want in a dining establishment. Think vegan, vegetarian, AND gluten free menus, a cocktail list that I promise will blow your mind (although more than two of those and you won't remember dinner), and an extremely friendly and knowledgeable wait staff that will make you feel right at home, even if you are the pickiest customer EVER.

I remember a while back my parents mentioned they ate at Siam Society...They said it was good, but they didn't mention it was Thai food. Basically, they've been holding out on me. Thankfully, Groupon seemed to have my best interests in mind when it offered a deal for the restaurant. After using one, Joe and I ended up buying three more, cause we know we'll be going back. So let me paint the picture for you. The restaurant was classy without being stuffy, and hey, it's Alberta street, so no one is going to be dressed to the nines anyway. Our waitress was super goofy and amicable, I liked her right away. She brought out both the vegan and gluten free menus, and when I asked if certain dishes could be made both vegan and gluten free she didn't even hesitate when telling me yes. She also knew off the top of her head that the curries don't have sugar in them, and offered to swap the potatoes in my yellow curry out for kombocha squash , which was way better. Joe had the Pad Kee Mow and loved it, he even mentioned it might be the best he's tried yet. As for my food, well, I ate all of it. And had two Hibiscus Mojitos. Moderation be damned.

It doesn't stop there...another place I'm growing to love is Vege Thai, a completely vegetarian thai restaurant that makes all its dishes without fish or oyster sauce, and has a bunch of different faux meats to add to your meal. You can view my whole review here.

Now if I ate out as often as I had thai food cravings, I'd be 300 pounds. I knew I was going to have to teach myself to make curry at home. And while you just can't replicate that perfect restaurant curry without being a chef, Thai, or both, I think I do a pretty decent job. Although I do have the help of a pretty awesome product: Thai and True curry pastes. Thai and True is a local company that makes vegan, non-GMO and gluten free curry pastes, as well as sarachee and peanut sauce. And they are so easy to use. Throw a tablespoon into a saucepan with about a cup of coconut milk, heat until blended, and voila, you have a blank canvas to create curry masterpieces of your own! My favorite concoction is below.

Easy Curry

Serves 2

1 c. brown or black rice
1 tbsp. Thai and True red curry paste
1 c. coconut milk
1/2 tsp. Thai and True hot chili oil
1/2 block of tofu, cubed
1/2 large onion, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
1/2 c. mushrooms
1 bunch kale, chopped.

Prepare rice according to directions. Heat curry paste in large saucepan with coconut milk over medium heat until blended. Add onions and peppers and cook until soft, or 3-5 minutes. Add remaining vegetables and cook about 5 more minutes or until ideal tenderness has been reached. Add chili oil and mix well. Serve over rice.

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