Friday, 15 May 2015

Thai Express, intu Lakeside

A small part of Thailand in the heart of Lakeside Shopping Centre

Thai Express

I had the pleasure of being invited to partake in intu Lakesides Big Treat event.  It is the first time that I have actually had a good look at the variety of food outlets in their food court on the third floor.  My goodness you are really spoilt for choice.  I had to pull David away from the Pie and Mash outlet, being the Eastender that he is.  It might be his heritage to eat jellied eels, there is no way I could stomach the thought of it.  Thai Express was on my radar, at least this is one cuisine that we both agree on.  Thai food is probably up there as one of favourites.

I have never eaten Thai food prepared like this before.  Thai Express has a new take on traditional Thai Cuisine.  And according to their website; “The global leading brand for fast casual Thai dining.”

The first thing that I always look for at any place I eat, is the hygiene rating; they have a five.  The manager served us and was extremely helpful, as this way of eating was all new to us.  We had no idea where to even start, so we asked her to suggest a variety of items for us to try.  The food is prepared in front of you and you can have you can have it as spicy as you like. Their food is tailored to your taste and prepared fresh when you order. They provide variety, quality and authenticity in a very modern looking outlet.

Ok now about the food, that is the whole reason why we went.  One downside was that the food hall was packed and at first it looked like we would not find a table, Danielle made a mad dash as someone vacated their table, did not realise she could move that fast.  We are not normally ones for large crowds, but once we started to eat, it was if no one else was near us.  We started off with one of the best soups we have ever eaten, family consensus on that.  In fact we all agreed that it was the best part of the whole meal.  Tom Yum Mini Tofu Soup @ £4.30.  There is no way that we would have said before that we liked tofu, in this soup it was delightful.  It consists of chicken broth spicy sweet and sour lemongrass broth with rice noodles, bean sprouts, onion, carrot, green onion, coriander and tomato and tofu.

We then moved onto trying the other three main dishes, it was a case of taste pass the plate on.  Until we had all had a taste and finally settled down to finish the one we each liked. Pad Thai Chicken @ £6.50, Danielle’s favourite.  Thin rice noodles stir-fried with sweet and sour sauce, eggs, bean sprouts, green onion, tofu and salted radish.  Must say it did not look as good as it tasted, it was very moreish.

Stir Fry Peanut Chicken @ £6.50, my favourite.  Fresh crispy vegetable with a choice of various flavours served on steamed rice. Each flavour have different vegetables.  We had the peanut flavour.  This was originally David’s choice but I really love peanuts and he funnily liked the Green Curry, even though he is not a big fan of coconut milk.

The third main was Green Curry Chicken @ £6.50.  A silky, creamy and spicy dish made with coconut milk, served on steamed rice, pepper, onion, eggplant and Thai basil.  Yummy is all I can say.

We also had a very refreshing Mango Salad @ £3.20. Mango, iceberg lettuce, coriander, shallot, red pepper and mint, served with sweet and sour fish sauce. Along with a few prawn crackers.  The whole meal with three 500ml Pepsi’s came to £32.97.  For what we had to eat I reckon reasonable value for money.  They have another two outlets, one in London and one in Guildford.  So if you ever find one on your travels we recommend you stop and have a bite to eat.

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