Monday night, Calle de Alcalà 167. Welcome to the newest Tuk Tuk asian street food restaurant, or even better south east asian street food restaurant.
Not my first Tuk Tuk comida, but definitely the first relaxed one.
I’ve been previously in Calle Barquillo and ordered from Deliveroo several times, but I’ve never heard the history of the restaurants (more than one, and even more than the two mentioned), and had the chance to try so many different dishes sharing the bowls like if they were tapas, between spicy lovers and spicy kind of haters like me.
The first thing to take into consideration when ordering at Tuk Tuk restaurant is the spicy level of food that you can handle.
I am definitely not an harder spicy taster, but I am really into ginger, curry and chilly too, so I can dine with all the comidas with one and two peppers in Tuk Tuk without any problems, but this is a very personal choice.
I can state that if you are a spicy lover you’ll be challenged in Tuk Tuk, there will be a lot of great food for you, from the entrantes to the desserts, and the same story for the sweet flavour lovers, like me, you will desire the chili mango bowl as the ultimate favourite asian food.
Let’s start from the begin.
Why Tuk Tuk and why southeast asian street food?
The founder of Tuk Tuk restaurants is Ricardo Alexander, a british bollywood actor and entrepreneur that has lived a lot of years between the tuk tuk streets of Asia. Exploring different countries and food tradition of south east Asia he was able to live the spicy world of asian food cuisine. His travels and researches brought him to start experimenting with all the most common ingredients and recipes he had tasted around Bangkok, India, Philippines, and Vietnam.
If you have never been to Asia you can start understanding the real complexity of a pad thai or the hokkien, which might be less know but is to me a masterpiece of the Tuk Tuk menu.
I guess Ricardo should be both proud of teaching and letting newbies about the south east asian street food traditions and as well of the people that have already visited one of those countries. They can really appreciate all the details in the restaurant design and the in the food menu felling the same atmosphere they have already lived, every sip of Tom Ka Gai soup and every bite of the Ayam Sambal brochetas.
I’ve to admit that I’ve really appreciated both the design of the menu divided mainly into rice, soup, noodles, curry, and the very useful explanation of the Tuk Tuk master.
To be honest the sexy bao in Tuk Tuk asian street food is the only one I’ve really appreciated so far in Madrid, because of the softness of the dough and for the shape too. It is much easier to eat when the toppings are vertical and not horizontal. The taste is really great, soft and crispy with the these delicious red onion in escabeche.
And mint, lots mint and herbals, the sexy bao like many other dishes has a good portion of mint leaf on the top of it. I am really into mint and usually you find it cooked, but this is really fresh and gives a twist to the strong pork taste of the bao and same thing for the main courses.
Not sure if a spicy beginner like me can handle a whole portion of Malay Curry Laksa but have for sure need to try it, because this is really a special dish, a real asian gem brought in Madrid straight from the asian markets. Curry and coconut soup with prawns, chicken, tofu, eggs and noodles, and it’s so beautiful, look at this strong yellow colour, impressive.
My suggestion? Find 4-5 mates with different tastes in terms of spicy addiction and share with them one rice, one soup, at least a noodle meal and for sure half bao and some brochetas. You’ll end up with a more complete south asian street food experience as if the bowls were tapas, and be back to Tuk Tuk sharing or ordering your favourite, which in my case will be really hard between the chili mango chicken and the hokkien, really really hard.
Make sure also to find a sharing desserts mate because the match of white chocolate and ginger of the lemon cheesecake is massive, I mean, white chocolate and ginger, could you ask for more?
Not to mention the superb Dorayaki with banana ice cream and spicy chocolate sauce, unmissable.
You can find the full menu here.
The Tuk Tuk restaurants are actually 5 (+ street food festivals), and these are the locations:
Tuk Tuk C/ Cardenal Cisneros 6 (Metro: Bilbao)
Tuk Tuk C/ Barquillo 26 (Metro: Chueca)
Tuk Tuk Av. General Perón 16 (Metro: Santiago Bernabeu)
Tuk Tuk C/ Alcalá 167 (Metro: Goya)
Tuk Tuk Mercado Vallehermoso C/Vallehermoso 36 (Metro: Quevedo)