Monday, September 13, 2010

A Great Deal (of Spice), Anna Thai Kitchen, Pulau Tikus

Apart from the ability to speak rapid-fire Hokkien and guerilla traffic dexterity, anyone Penang-born worthy of this unique birthmark must also possess the aptitude to sniff out a good deal in any condition.

A pretty good deal is what's been driving throngs of hungry, carb-starved locals to Anna Thai Kitchen in Pulau Tikus. We arrived slightly before noon and the place was packed to the brim, with a steady queue forming. I learned of this place first from CK Lam and I'd been counting down the days until my visit back to Penang to give it a go.

Anna Thai offers a decent selection of ready-cooked economy rice-style Thai dishes, as well as some staples ala carte. All very affordable, almost kopitiam prices! Warning: we found the spice factor in the dishes here tongue-numbing. Definitely not for chilli wimps!

I dove straight for the Thai Pork Leg Stew Rice (Khao Kha Moo) on the ala carte menu and it arrived a true picture of grace. The chilli sauce missing from the picture was startlingly, deliciously fiery. Much closer to the real thing sampled on the side streets of Bangkok than this inferior version on the other side of the island.

Dad and Mag both sampled the Chicken Rice (Khao Man Kai) with great enjoyment. The intrepid gourmand Ollie couldn't keep his chubby hands away and proclaimed it "Oishiiiii!!"

The Kerabu Rice was a deceptively delightful and kaleidoscopic mix of texture and taste. Shortly after the first swallow, the finely chopped bird's eye chilli and ground chilli powder sneak up on you with alarming speed. Make sure you have a tall icy glass or four handy!

The dishes from the fast disappearing trays outside, while unassuming, would appease even the stickiest tastebuds. The Thai Red Chicken Curry with Bamboo (Kaeng Phet) was creamy and robust, driving us mad for even more rice.

More spice in the Curry Chicken. We were sweating buckets at this point.

The Otak-Otak, a touch more moist than I like but flavour-wise, full marks.

The requisite plate of greens (featuring yet more chillies) rounded off a meal VERY heavy on the girth and our gastrointestinal system but VERY light on the pocket.

A Penang deal-maker? You bet you bottom ringgit it is!

Anna Thai Kitchen
26, Jalan Moulmein
Pulau Tikus
10350 Penang


Sean said...

I'm a chilli wimp! Spicy food turns my digestive system inside out, forcing me to avoid Thai and Indian food. Strangely though, i didn't always be this way. Age just took its toll on me. Pray that you never suffer the same fate! :D

yogahui said...

i'm salivating just looking at the kerabu rice. demanding that MS takes me there next week!

"Joe" who is constantly craving said...

makes me want to go eat thai..! i doubt they serve pork trotter though =(

minchow said...

Sean, oh I'll have you know we paid dearly after this meal... upset tummies, hours spent on the throne, the works! It appears that age curse is catching up with me too! :-S

Yogahui, yes you must! But watch the burn, so you don't expire before the voucher getaway! :-)

Joe, nope, no pork trotters here but with the array of spice, you'll hardly miss it!

Rebecca Saw said...

Now the Q is, where is the equivalent in KL??

Duckie said...

the sambal kangkung looks really nice! my all time favourite =)

ck lam said...

They have just revised their business hour - now they have included dinner too :)

Ciki said...


hehe.. wow! that otak2 look an interesting shade. i bet its.. oishiiiiiii :P hehe

minchow said...

TNG, I am dying to know too! You're the one scouring the streets, tell me please!!

Duckie, it's not kangkung though! It was paku, just as good too! :-)

CK Lam, oh awesome!!! More Anna Thai, yay!!

Ciki, hehe, not the most appetising shade, I gotta admit, but it tasted good ok!

baDboyzs said...

Hot exotic Thais never fail to delight, even if its in incomparable Penang, or anywhere else !

minchow said...

Badboyz, thanks for dropping by! Yup, I find that generally the Thai version in Penang beats anything else down south!

Penang Pete said...

I love Thai food and the pictures had me drooling - must take my Thai g/f there soon.

minchow said...

Penang Pete, the ultimate endorsement for Annathai would be the thumbs up from a native Thai!

Kenny Mah said...

I'm from Malacca, so consider me a chili maniac... We love it spicy! Now you got me salivating and missing Krabi... :(

J2Kfm said...

Yeahloh, very authentic lah.
Complete with the Thai names. Still rmbr how much we liked Thai's khao man gai.

PureGlutton said...

Thank goodness I'm reading this AFTER my lunch! All the dishes looked so darn yummy!

Anonymous said...

yes yes...this place is good :D

Lloyd said...

Wow! those recipes looks very delicious.
I loved it. I'm hungry now.
I want some.

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