under the coconut tree

Monday, October 08, 2007

Hot (and spicy) nights in Bangkok

KL and I spent 4 days and 3 nights in Bangkok recently for a short well-derserved break (well, for him anyway!). We booked ourselves into the hotel, Silom Serene I stayed in a few years ago when I was in Bangkok for work. I had fond memories there (long working hours aside, of course), bargain shopping in Pat Pong and the late night supper along Silom Road with my then colleagues.

The buffet breakfast was as I remembered it - really good. It had a huge variety and array of food that suited everyone - I was not disappointed!! KL, who is not usually a breakfast person (his first meal of the day is usually lunch) had a plate of Thai fried rice, followed by fried noodles and congee!! That's how good the food was!

Food aside though, the service was rather disappointing - most of the staff (with some exceptions) seemed to wear perpectual frowns on their faces. It was something I did not expect for Thai hospitality. The staff I remembered were extremely pleasant and very generous with their smiles and "Sawa-dee-kap"s. Oh well, maybe things do change over time. In fairness I was here more than 8 years ago.

We usually skip lunch after the heavy and filling breakfast. So we normally have a sumptous dinner to compensate. We headed to Chinatown for dinner after a recommendation from my aunt and uncle who were there recently. A seafood restaurant at the corner of the main street in Chinatown that goes by the name TK Seafood Restaurant. You'll smell the place as you get closer since the seafood gets BBQ-ed in the open charcoal grill outside. If that fails, look out for the illuminous, bright green t-shirts that the staff wears.
The charcoal grilled mama prawns! Thank goodness we went for our annual medical check before we left for Bangkok -our cholesterol levels would have hit the roof after this trip!
I am aware that there are many photos here. So, before you think "My god, these two can really eat !!", we actually went back to the place on two separate occasions. I really really (yummmmy) loved their tom-yum-kung, with its fresh seafood, creamy yet spicy soup and the taste of lemongrass which just balanced the whole dish perfectly. It has got to be the best I had ever tasted!
I absolutely love the fish dish below too. Fresh off-the-boat fish steamed with slices of garlic, bird's eye chili, lemon grass, onions and (I think) a squeeze of lime/lemon juice too. It's was soooo good but KL thought it was too spicy for his liking.
Crab fried rice. A rather plain but tasty dish cooked with a lot of shredded crab meat.
Pan fried omelette with oysters.
Kangkung belacan - KL's favourite dish.
I just couldn't resist - a plate of grilled cockles. Went down extremely well with a bowl of bird-eyes chillies in fish sauce.

To wash it all down, we went with the ever-trusted coconut juice - an excellent complement for the many spicy dishes we had.
Ok I have to go now. I am too hungry to continue............. :)

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