After a successful stint in 2014, Michelin-starred Thai cuisine specialist chef Henrik Yde-Andersen will be back in Abu Dhabi with even more inventive and original dishes to tickle residents’ taste buds.
Your last residency at Eastern Mangroves was a sell-out success. Can diners expect more of the same or are you planning something different?
This time around I am adding a few new dishes to the menu including one of my new personal favourites, ‘Flowers of Thailand’, a true masterpiece based on Danish and Thai flowers composed of 29 individual ingredients including orchid, rose and tulip. People who dined at Pachaylen last year may notice the absence of my signature Kiin Kiin dish of Frozen Red Curry. It has certainly not been forgotten for Anantara Gourmet, and will in fact be featured on the menu at the closing Gala Masquerade Ball. It is my favourite dish, so I have decided to keep the best for last.
Denmark seems an unusual country to be a hotbed for Thai cuisine. Is it as unusual as it sounds?
Honestly it is quite unusual, however the latest population statistics show that there are currently 15,000 people of Thai origin living in Denmark – and now it is even possible to buy locally grown lemongrass and ginger in the country.
Thai food is a lot of people’s favourite cuisine, what do you think is its major appeal?
It offers a little bit of everything, the balance of salt and sugar, sour and spicy notes with an umami booster in the fish sauce. Personally I like the freshness of the cuisine, and also that a lot of dishes are easy to cook, but sadly also very easy to cook wrong, because balance is everything. Our former ambassador to Denmark said that all Thai restaurants should see themselves as small embassies of Thailand and when winter hits in Denmark, what’s better than being transported to somewhere nice and warm.
Twist on Thai: Dhs350. April 11-15, 7pm-11pm. Pachaylen; Thai Masterclass: Dhs250. April 13, 10am-2pm. Mangroves Ballroom.