We are regulars at the Thai Plate Monday lunch buffet. Today (Friday)Thai Plate had a booking for a company Christmas lunch and so decided to make a buffet for their whole lunch. So I went with one of my construction trades, a Mexican immigrant of Iraqui descent and his Portuguese helper.
On the table was: Mango salad, taro fritters, spring rolls, deep fried chicken wontons(? name), shrimp chips, hot and sour soup, cucumber- chicken soup (cucumber sections stuffed with cucumber forcemeat), veg pad thai, ginger tofu, mango chicken, beef and broccoli in oyster sauce, seafood mix, green curry chicken, (I didn't get to the last two), watermelon, grapes, orange slices; rice and a number of sauces.
Everything I tried was fresh and refilled as needed in small quantities.
The cooking style I am told is "royal" or "palace". This seems to mean that the dishes have complex, balanced flavours which are full, yet are refined and gentle. A mininum of oil is used. One should taste e everything and fight nothing.
I have a bit of experience in what passes as Thai restaurants in Toronto but know very little about Thai cooking. It is hard to learn about Thai cooking from eating in Thai restaurants in Toronto. Very few are owned by Thais, most owners are Chinese who started a Thai restaurant because they thought that this style is popular and preferred the restaurant business to say running a garage. Some owners are Laotian -Cambodian. In any event there are different regional styles, and there is high and low in any cooking culture.
All I can say is that the chef-owners are Thai and everything was to my taste and delicious. I am told that the chef- owners cook at home with much more heat, balanced with stronger flavouring. I would think that the kitchen can intensify the flavouring on request.
They way I look at the cooking style and flavour level is this. If you like French cooking values you would like Thai Plate. If you associate Indian style pyrotechnics with Thai cooking you won't- but you can ask the kitchen to jazz up the dishes and see what happens.
My Iraqui-Mexican-Canadian companion kept saying how much he liked the food, and said that he would bring his wife next Monday. His Portuguese helper didn't say anything- he speaks no English- but ate a lot.
I would be happy to pay $30 dollars for the buffet at supper (if with a nicer dessert and tea); As it is lunch buffet at $8.95 is very pleasurable and a huge bargain.
The next buffet lunch is this Monday. On other weekdays there are daily specials with a very nice plate running $5.95 (veg) to $7.95 for the Thai style salmon steak with a Thai sauce which is delicious.
I noticed a recent addition, a "No MSG- Homemade Sauces" sign. I think that they are telling the truth and have never used MSG. The Ms. has a hair trigger and adverse reaction to MSG but has always left smiling.
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