Phuket comes to Juhu
Take your taste buds on a delicious Thai adventure without having to board a flight
We have been relying on food to keep our travel cravings under check, especially around this time of the year. And to help us a bit, JW Marriott Mumbai Juhu has now transported a slice of Phuket with its food and stay experiences all month. On select dates, the menu has been curated in collaboration with Abhishek Basu, its executive chef and Seefah Ketchaiyo, Thai chef, to serve up authentic fare. For a taste of the fare, we head to Dashanzi. Sipping on tai chi, an iced tea with condensed milk, the mood is set.
"Thai food has three levels — first and foremost, the taste of the ingredients, secondly, the texture of the ingredients and finally, the seasoning," says Basu.
Bird's eye chilli rice
We joke that Juhu beach can be swapped for Patong, and dig into the yam yai, a butterfly pea rice cooked in a colourful, tangy salad that checks all the Thai notes. A new try is the southern-style kai thod Phuket, a deep-fried chicken dish.
"I marinate the chicken in fish sauce, oyster sauce and pepper and double fry it to ensure it is juicy," says Ketchaiyo. The Thai omelette is a fatter version of our desi omelettes with rice flour and fish sauce, and is fluffier. We savour it with the classic minced chicken and holy basil. Don't miss the smoky pak choi and the bird 's eye chilli rice. The holiday has just begun.
Yum woon sen goong (Glass noodle salad with shrimp and minced chicken)
- 40 gm dry glass noodles (bean threads)
- 3 pcs of fresh prawns
- 2 cloves garlic
- 10 sprigs cilantro, stems and leaves separated
- 1 tbsp jaggery, finely chopped mixed with 2.5 tbsp fish sauce
- 3 tbsp fresh lime juice
- 1 tomato, cut into wedges
- ¼ cup onion, julienned
- 1 stalk Chinese celery or 2 inner small stalks and leaves of regular celery
- ¼ cup roasted peanuts
- Thai chilies, to taste
Soak the glass noodles in room temperature water for 7-10 minutes until soft and pliable. Drain and cut the noodles into three parts. Boil water in a pot. Add salt and vinegar. Add the deveined prawns and blanch them for 3 minutes. Cut cilantro stems into small chunks and place in the mortar and pestle along with garlic and chilies; pound into a paste. Add palm sugar and pound until dissolved. Add 2 tbsp of the fish sauce and lime juice, and mix. Now, add seasoning and a little sugar to ready the dressing. Bring a pot of water to a boil, add glass noodles and cook for 2 minutes. Remove it with tongs (retain the water) and place into a strainer to drain excess water; set aside. Add the prawns in the mixing bowl. Next, add the blanched noodles into the same bowl; pour the dressing over and quickly toss to combine. Toss in cilantro leaves, and plate. Sprinkle with peanuts.
At JW Marriott Juhu. [The menu is available on Fridays (dinner) and weekends (lunch and dinner) at Dashanzi; cooking sessions and special counters at Lotus Café]
Thai at home
Blue pea salad
Five must-have ingredients: Stock coconut milk, Thai fish sauce, Kaffir lime leaves, fresh herbs such as lemongrass, Thai basil, cilantro, mint, and galangal and bird eye chilli.
No wok, no problem: Prep time to chop and ready ingredients takes time, but cooking time for Thai dishes is short. Meat and vegetables are cut into small pieces to meet the short stir-fry cooking style. A large frying pan or skillet can serve as a wok.
Condiment game: Condiments are king. The sauces include soya, oyster and fish sauce, along with shrimp paste. We use dry chillies and herbs to create the aromatic oil for the basic stir fry. Add dry chillies, lemongrass, kaffir lime leaves, garlic and galangal to the hot oil and leave it overnight. Some popular condiments include fish sauce with chopped chillies, Thai chilli powder, chilli vinegar and spicy sauce.
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