WHAT’S FOR LUNCH? CHICKEN WITH THAI BASIL

muang thaiThe wonderfully spicy Pad Kra Prow at Muang Thai in Red Bank. (Photo by Jim Willis. Click to enlarge)

By JIM WILLIS

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Authentic-tasting Thai with its liberal use of flavorful hot chili peppers, savory fish sauce and acidic lime can be difficult to come by. For years PieHole has had to make the trek into  Atlantic Highlands to Kunya Siam to get our fix of heat, acid and umami.

Fortunately, Muang Thai opened up on Front Street and now PieHole is within walking distance of a kitchen that is unafraid to churn out boldly flavored, authentic-tasting Thai food. We noticed that the restaurant’s expansion into the space formerly occupied by Flowers on Front is complete so we took the opportunity to explore their lunch menu and see how the new space shaped up.

muang thai (2)PieHole checked out the new, expanded space at Muang Thai when we picked up our lunch order.

The lunch menu features more than twenty dishes (many more if you figure that most can be made with your choice of pork, beef, chicken or tofu) that come with a side salad and soup for $10.95. We opted for the Pad Kra Prow (Americanized on Muang Thai’s menu as  Chicken, Beef, Pork, Tofu or Mixed Vegetables Basil ). Thai basil is a very fragrant herb that, should you order the dish extra-spicy (highly recommended), pairs excellently with the heat of Thai chili peppers.

PieHole typically prefers to order this dish with ground pork but we ended up with chicken.  We’ll chalk that up to a bad cell phone connection when we ordered. We like the way pork fat helps carry the heat but the chicken did not dissapoint.

We’re looking forward to trying it with pork and dining in the new space.

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