Bangkok Cafe

I’ve been overdoing it a bit recently and feeling really tired and rundown as a result. Last night, after two days of near sloth-like behaviour, I knew it was time to leave the house. When my friend Naphtalia said she’d cross the river to Canton for our weekly catch up (no mean feat for dwellers of north Cardiff), I took her up on her offer.

Bangkok Cafe is a popular, family-run restaurant which serves authentic Thai food at reasonable prices and is always full. I like its diner-style booths, wall-to-wall mirrors and friendly staff plus the fact that it’s a ten-minute walk from where I live.

We spent so long putting the world to rights that I didn’t really pay much attention to what I was ordering. Big mistake.

In need of warmth and restoration, I chose the dom kar kapport as my starter. This is described on the menu as a delicate, mild soup with coconut cream, mushrooms and baby corn.  This is just lovely with just enough kick from the lemongrass and galangal, which is a member of the ginger family in case you didn’t know (I didn’t), but boy is it filling. I’d say this could definitely be eaten as a main meal and I’m known for my big appetite. I’m a dangerous combination of cavalier and greedy so obviously ate it all leaving barely any room for anything else.

coconut soup
This photo doesn’t do justice to this sumptuous soup

It’s not often that a meal arrives and I can’t face the prospect of eating it but yes, that actually happened. The gang massaman tofu is a southern style curry with a rich peanut sauce, tofu, potatoes and some peanuts thrown in for good measure. This is served with white rice and green vegetables with a coconut dressing. All very delicious but by this point I had a headache and a burnt tongue from gobbling down my soup too quickly. You can understand my predicament. I managed to eat about a quarter of the meal before admitting defeat and asking for a doggie bag.

tofu curry
The gang massaman tofu in all its glory

Less is definitely more when ordering at Bangkok Cafe – or just don’t be an idiot by ordering two really rich dishes. Having said that, the veggie and vegan options at Bangkok Café aren’t particularly friendly for the hips (just sayin’) so it would be nice to have some healthier dishes on the menu. I left feeling uncomfortably full and rather fat and went straight back to bed.

I feel great today though and those leftovers made a mighty fine lunch teamed with some vegetables. They do say that (chicken) soup is good for the soul – that, and a good friend so maybe, just maybe, Bangkok Café has a role to play in my recovery. And thanks for letting me vent, Naps. I’ll return the favour next time.

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