Sponsored by Westfield Sydney.
Those of you who follow my adventures know that I love Thailand. While it’s an incredible island hopping location for palm-fringed beaches, crystal-clear ocean and beautiful Buddhist temples, one of the best things about Thailand is the food. Last year I ate a bag of mini coconut pancakes at the floating markets that were so good, I’m still talking about them.
When it comes to Thai food at home in Sydney, there may not be floating markets, but there is Chat Thai – an authentic Thai restaurant that takes inspiration from the streets and markets of Thailand. I’ve been a local at their Haymarket restaurant for years and their original restaurant in Randwick has been operating since 1989. What I love about Chat Thai restaurants are that they are family-owned and operated, and their menu really does embrace the best of regional and rural cuisines.
Last week Westfield Sydney offered to transport me back to Thailand for a culinary experience at Chat Thai’s Westfield Sydney location which is just like my local one, only more intimate. So on a rainy night in Sydney I got a behind the scenes tour of the Chat Thai kitchen where I learnt how to create two Thai dishes from scratch.
We headed up to the restaurant precinct on level six, past the designer boutiques and arrived at the restaurant starving. With so many delicious dishes on the menu, I always take forever to order at Chat Thai, but luckily the guys in the kitchen had some great suggestions. I chose the Bpla Padt Prik Khing (stir fried ling fillets and wild ginger in red curry paste) and Grapao Gai Sub (stir-fried minced chicken, fresh chilli and holy basil). With the important decisions made, I grabbed my apron and set about cooking an authentic Thai meal.
Chai Thai only use the freshest ingredients that they source locally. There were fresh chillies, ginger and basil laid out in tiny dishes, along with fresh fish, minced chicken and an array of sauces, spices and stock. The team at Chat Thai showed me how to cook each dish from scratch and even through the kitchen was crazy busy and ridiculously hot, everyone was cool, calm and collected. There was plenty of laughter going on behind the scenes as I cooked up my Thai feast, which is a mandatory ingredient in my books.
Once I had cooked my two dishes and ordered a few more that included fresh spring rolls for entrée, and young coconut ice cream with sweet sticky rice, and sticky rice with mango for dessert, we sat down for one of the best Thai meals you’ll get in Sydney.
If you’re in the mood for an authentic Thai feast, head over to Chat Thai at Westfield Sydney:
Level 6, Shop 6002
Corner Pitt Street Mall and Market Street, Sydney
Enter via 77 Castlereagh Street (get the lift up to level six)
Tel: +61 (02) 9221 0600
Lunch daily 10am-5pm
Dinner daily 5pm-10pm
Photography by myself and Ashadi.