rice cake confessional

adventures in eating

secret garden, bangkok

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One thing that’s nice about where I work is that people are from all over Southeast Asia. The major perk of this, of course, is that when you travel to these awesome destinations you get firsthand tips and advice about where to go and what to do and, most importantly for this little piggie, where to eat. If you’re very very lucky you’ll even get to visit these destinations with these local experts in tow.

So it goes that when I was in Bangkok and told Pui and Muk to pick a place to eat, they picked one of their favorites – Secret Garden.

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Meatballs are always kinda scary because you’re never quite sure what you’re gonna get when you bite in. Thailand’s version is meaty but with the requisite lemongrass, basil, and chili flavors that are so common in Thai food. These were very nice – lightly browned on the outside (hell yes they are fried) and soft and tender on the inside.

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Every Thai dinner needs a salad. This one has tomatoes, green beans, peanuts, bean sprouts, and bamboo shoots. Pretty standard.

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Sliced beef with a sweet and sourish Thai dipping sauce. I found myself enjoying the bbqed charcoal-y bits (as per usual). For some reason, I don’t eat as much red meat these days but when I have it I remember how much I love it.

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This is a close up of a tasty veggie dish that included tons of garlic, hard boiled eggs, cabbage, and slivers of fried garlic. I still am not quite sure what vegetable it is but they also use it in tea rice. It tastes like a slightly more bitter green bean.

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I like it when they leave a little swirl of coconut milk like that. My first bite of this combo was not so stellar and I found the roti to be quite hard and tough to chew. The trick is to let the curry sit atop a roti slice for a few minutes. Once the roti soaks up the curry goodness the texture changes and the whole experience is quite enjoyable. It’s kinda like letting your Oreo get a little soggy when you’re dipping it in milk.

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Sambal rice. Snooze. Next.

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The fish didn’t win everyone over but I enjoyed it. Then again I like fried fish abot 80% of the time. This is slightly breaded with sour carrots and bean sprouts on top to eat as a kind of relish.

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I think these giant onion ring looking things are actually fried fish cakes. I found them quite oily and not interesting enough to gorge on.

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Do you recognize one of my personal faves? This is the same green omelette from First Thai diced up and put in a thick tamarind based sauce. It’s some of my favorite stuff all in one bowl – the slightly springy, very tasty green omelette, sour tamarind soup, and juicy shrimpies.

Now onward to the desserts!

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I ordered this under pressure and I picked it based purely on the Ben & Jerry’s reference – it’s called Chunky Monkey. Chocolate cake, bananas, chocolate mousse, with a little whipped cream on top. Cake was moist but the entire thing was too sweet for my taste.

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My favorite food picture of the trip. This is their mocha crepe cake – regular old crepes layered in between slatherings of mocha creme and then topped with chocolate. There is really some enjoyment out of feeling your fork dip into each layer as you get a bite for yourself.

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This is their signature dessert. Regular crepe cake with loads of strawberry syrup. This was my favorite of the 3 desserts. The syrup makes a big difference as otherwise things are a bit dry. Crepes dont have a ton of moisture or form so you’re left with lots of cream which needs the syrup as a pick me up. The cake is probably divine served hot and fresh.

To wash it all down with…

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a Thai tea smoothie. Yum.

Secret Garden Thai Restaurant: Sathorn Road, Bangkok, Thailand

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Written by joann

March 10, 2009 at 8:00 pm

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