SOUTHINGTON — A plane ticket isn’t needed to experience food from Thailand. Southington is becoming a destination for Thai restaurants, the most recent to open being Uncle Jack Thai Restaurant in Plantsville.
A decade ago, when Thai restaurants were not as common in the area, Southington resident Chanya Siboriboun was looking for a place that served her favorite stir-frys and noodle dishes.
“No one cooked what I wanted,” said Siboriboun, co-owner of Somewhere in Bangkok on Queen Street. “We started to cook and people started to come and eat and they loved my food.”
Her husband, Song Siboriboun, also a co-owner, cooked up the two most popular dishes at the restaurant Wednesday, pad thai and pad kee mao, known as “drunken noodles.”
Pad thai is popular in the U.S. as well as Thailand, where it originated from.
The dish typically consists of stir-fried rice noodles with eggs, scallions, and ground peanuts.
Somewhere in Bangkok adds its homemade pad thai sauce to the dish.
The sauce takes five hours to make and needs to be just thick enough to pour but thin enough to prevent it from burning.
Wild Orchid Thai and Japanese Restaurant on Center Street also has pad thai on its menu made with “eggs, ground peanuts, bean sprouts and scallions.”
The pad thai at Thai Kitchen Four on Main Street is listed as “sauteed rice noodles with eggs, ground peanuts, bean sprouts and scallions.”
“I think Thai food is tasty and I think it’s another choice for healthy food because the ingredients in Thai food doesn’t have cheese, it doesn’t have too much of anything heavy,” Siboriboun said of the increasing popularity. “It’s light.”
Pad kee mao is also a popular Thai dish at Somewhere in Bangkok.
The sweet and spicy food is made up of wok-tossed flat rice noodles with Thai hot chili, egg, onions, bell peppers, broccoli, and sweet basil leaves cooked with exotic Thai spices.
Coconut is used to make many dinners and desserts, Siboriboun said, including her coconut cake which is kept in a front case and can be purchased by the slice or ordered whole.
“Some people go to Thailand and come back and still want some Thai food, and where can they get that?” Siboriboun asked.
That would be Southington.