Book review: Rosa's Thai Cafe: The Vegetarian Cookbook

27 July 2018 by
Book review: Rosa's Thai Cafe: The Vegetarian Cookbook

This is the second book by Rosa's Thai and Lao Café restaurateur Saiphin Moore, and it follows her 2015 book, Rosa's Thai Cafe: The Cookbook.

This latest cookbook has a veggie twist after the group trialled Rosa's Thai

Veggie for a few months earlier this year when its Soho site went meat-free.

Moore launched the brand as a street food stall at the Sunday market at London's Brick Lane and opened the first permanent site in nearby Spitalfields in 2008 with her husband, Alex. The site was previously a café called Rosa's and they couldn't afford to change the signage, so it stuck. They now have 11 sites in the capital along with a single Lao Café in Covent Garden.

With more than 100 recipes, the book is a collection of both traditional Thai recipes and veggie ‘reinventions' separated into small bites and soups; salads; stir-fries; curries; noodles and rice; and sauces, stocks and curry pastes.

The drunken flat noodles is a personal favourite, but the book also includes some more interesting concepts, such as stir-fried chickpeas with a curry base, pineapple-fried rice and butter bean Panang curry as well as the Rosa's favourites.

The book is not extensive, but Moore's personal anecdotes provide an insight into Thai culture and food. Reading it, you learn, for instance, of the prevalence of quails in Thailand and therefore the prevalence of quails' eggs in Thai cooking, among other little-known facts.

Cook the drunken flat noodles (Sen Yai Pad Khee Ma) from the book

Rosa's Thai Cafe: The Vegetarian Cookbook by Saiphin Moore.

Octopus Publishing Group, £20

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