You know when you’ve had one of those weeks where everything just becomes a little too much? Yeah, I just had one of them. My list of things to do was impossibly long and never seemed to get any smaller as the week went on! Come Thursday, I was feeling restless and wanted some chill time with BW. Finally, the glorious weekend arrived; I chucked the laptop and phone aside, and took advantage of the great weather!
Having had such a lovely weekend, I was sad to see Sunday coming to an end so I dragged BW out for a walk. It was then that we came across Tukdin, a popular Malaysian restaurant just a few minutes away from all the tourist traps in Paddington. No harm in some comforting Malaysian staples before the week began!
The first thing I noticed was that Tukdin’s menu was relatively small (around five starters and no sign of roti anywhere!) but this was a good thing; I’m not a fan of restaurants with big menus as I believe the quality of each dish is sacrificed. The second thing BW picked up on was that the restaurant was packed with Malaysians meaning the food was both good and authentic. Satisfied with our restaurant choice, we placed our order:
Having tried this at Pak Awie (now closed!) and loved it, I decided to give Tukdin’s version a go. A simple drink made with rose syrup, milk, and delicious cubes of grass jelly that toned down the sweetness.
A long platter arrived with a heap of delicious chicken chunks, a bowl of peanut sauce, and cubes of white rice – a different but much easier to way to enjoy the traditional chicken satay. The chicken had been thoroughly marinated so that the lemongrass flavouring stood out, and were then fried so well that they were not greasy. But how could I forget that creamy yet slightly chunky peanut sauce with little chilli spikes! Absolutely perfect for dunking the chicken into and we managed to polish this dish off in record time!
Huge pieces of beef that had been slow-cooked in coconut milk and various spices. In every bite, you were greeted first with the tart lemongrass and ginger, followed by the strong spices, and then the subtle sweet, creaminess from the coconut milk. It had been cooked so that the meat just beautifully shredded away, however, I did feel like the meat could have been served as smaller pieces and done with a little spicy kick to give it that extra oomph; otherwise, it was great. The accompanying coconut rice tasted great with this dish.
A fillet of seabass that had been deep fried so that the skin was delicate and crispy. The white fish was then topped with a layer of chopped chilli and tomato-based paste that was not uncomfortably spicy but provided a discreet kick in the tastebuds.
As recommended by our waitress, this happened to be one of Tukdin’s popular dishes – “water spinach stir fried with chilli sauce” – however she warned that it is also cooked with shrimp paste so may not be to everyone’s liking. I may have missed that last part so when the water spinach arrived and I “tucked in” (ha ha), the underlying fishy tone instantly hit me. Sadly it was not to my liking however, BW enjoyed this dish so it really does depend on your taste palate!
The final bill amounted to approximately £40 for two people, including drinks and service, which is great for value considering the delicious food and location! The amount of food we had ordered was just about the right amount for two people; maybe a little more but we managed to eat the majority of the meal. The service was helpful and attentive plus the restaurant had a lovely, cosy atmosphere which is perfect for a casual date night.
Tukdin was a pleasant surprise and we really enjoyed our meal there. Considering more than half of our dishes were fried (my poor, pooooor diet), I didn’t feel heavy but in fact, left the restaurant as if I just had been given a big, warm, comforting hug. Tukdin had provided the perfect food for me to cheer up and be energised for the crazy, busy week ahead of me!
Hope you guys have a lovely week! 🙂
P.S. a few other recommended dishes to order if you do visit are the garlic fried chicken, the beef slices in spicy coconut sauce, the sea bass with sweet and sour sauce, and the aubergine with chilli sauce – I only became aware of these dishes after our meal but do let me know if they are any good!!