Kruang Tedd - Muslim-Thai Fun

Eh, what am I really going to say that the LA Weekly article, blown up and plastered in their window hasn’t already said?

I’ve been trying to go to the place forever, and finally made it in last night instead of Ruen Pair, despite all of the discussion surrounding the perennial favorite.

The khao mok gai is an awesome dish, the chicken not as technically flawless as the gai yang at Isaan Station, but resplendently tender and packed with flavor, where most chicken in Thai Town seems to be dry, and somewhat bland. The rice is pleasantly perfumed, and earthy at the same time, but hitting it with the green chile sauce on the side is like sprinkling the dish with crack. It seriously has that “addictive” quality to it, especially with the perfectly fried onions that are somehow missing at all other Thai restaurants in LA; you kind of feel a compulsion to eat the dish every day for the rest of your life when taking a spoonful of all of the simple components together.

But this was also the nighttime version, not made by the much-lauded head chef who only works in the day, so maybe it’s even better in the daytime? It was not plated as “elegantly” as in the LA Weekly photo, the leg of chicken was literally buried under a heap of rice haha

When the Weekly article was written they compared this to chicken and rice in NYC from the Halal Cart (indirectly), and said this was LA’s version. Funnily enough we have that in LA now, too, and I just randomly happened to eat at the HG’s the night before, and they were somewhat spot on. Just based on the rice alone, there are very similar things going on in the dishes, but the rice in the KT dish is more saffron-y, and better spiced. It’s flavorful by itself, and enjoyable, whereas the HG’s rice needs the rest of the components to come alive. Ultimately I wouldn’t really say the dishes are substitutes for each other though, but both have that kind of addictive quality to them I suppose.

Also had the oxtail soup, which seemed pleasant. Weekly again right in terms of huge chunks of oxtail in the soup. Very nice. Anyone looking for oxtail and onion (among other things) soup would most likely enjoy this quite a lot. The Weekly basically right again in saying it’s somewhere between oxtail pho at Than Lich, and a Tom Yum.

Had a mostly forgettable panag curry, not like the thick, pungent stuff at Ruen Pair, unusually clean, and pleasant with peas in it. shrugs Not terrible, but not necessarily worth discussing. Not really my choice of order, but a friend that just in general loves the stuff demanded it amongst all the saki and plum wine.

We also got their khao soi, because I always love to try a new version of that dish. Very artfully presented, a little sad not to see a whole chicken leg in it, but oh well. I am torn about it. The noodles in the dish tasted kind of instant-ramen-esque to me, but they didn’t necessarily put me off. The broth was fucking incredible. Fairly thick, and very rich and deep in flavor. I thought they perfectly captured those dark chili tones against a just slight sweetness; maybe I was just fueled by the alcohol of the night, but I mostly returned to the khao soi for some reason. It just had such an incredibly pleasant texture, and addictive flavor in the broth, it was like magic on a cold, rainy night.

Dishes are very large, somewhat more expensive than other places in the neighborhood (Feels like everything is like $10-$14, as opposed to the $7-$10 of other places). Did feel like the cooking was “cleaner” than at other places, and perhaps ingredients were of slightly better quality though. Still not really an expensive meal. I think we ended up spending about $60 on food, and $80 on alcohol for two of us, but the food we ordered could have fed 3-4 pretty easily I think.

Atmosphere-wise, btw, I will say that I greatly enjoy how dark and intimate it is inside. It’s the polar opposite of the brightly lit, gaudy room of Ruen Pair (which I adore, of course). The place in general has a way different feel to it than Ruen Pair. They really needed the LAW review honestly…because the place seems so kitschy (in terms of the food, not necessarily the thai decor, which every place has in Thai Town), I doubt most foodies would ever set foot in it. They give you a huge sushi menu with your thai menu that seems like a weird joke…but then there is a sushi banner and bar up front, and the place seems to focus on selling alcohol. The selection of which is much better than Ruen Pair or any other late night eatery in the area I think? Clearly the patrons drink a lot there as they were out of many of the things we kept trying to order though haha All part of the fun I suppose.

Awesome alternative to Ruen Pair I’d say, and seems quite unique amongst the usual Thai Town set.

Curious if anyone else has ever ventured over there?

Yes. good for before, and after, Jumbo’s. So says my friends. The leg being buried under the rice is the “right way” the dish is served, because the thigh is steamed in the rice, I was told. Green sauce > White Sauce + Red Sauce.

It’s fairly normal to find crunchy “instant ramen” topping in khao soi, but yes, Kraung Tedd kinda just dumps a pack of it in… I mean… Everybody’s drunk on Singha towers (and bad karaoke), might as well? I like to just drink the remaining soup as a side to the khao mook gai, though that’s probably highly not allowed by cardgiologists.

The night shift is pretty friggin serious about Issan food; ask your server.

[quote]The Weekly basically right again[/quote]. I’m just going to do quote that over and over.

Went there years ago following the rec of a knowledgeable hound, Tom Armistead (?), on CH. Can’t recall what I had, but it was decent. This was in a time when folks thought KT and Palms Thai were the best in Thai Town.

Any idea what Isaan dishes are best there?

The servers were not particularly helpful when I was there, not bad service exactly, but not “helpful”.

This reminds me of what a great Khoi Soi I had at Luv2Eat the night before Thanksgiving. It was a special but if you call a day or 2 ahead to check if they will have it, or ask them to make it, I think you will be quite pleased. Whole leg present.

What are the noodles and broth consistency like on their version?

I can’t even keep track of what to eat at that place… I really wish they were open late though. Most of my thai food is eaten past midnight haha

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It’s not that hard since everything is damn good
That said, my favorites are:
Crab curry
Fried chicken
Tumeric chicken soup
Jade Noodles with 3 kinds of pork

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Not everything is like “creative and crazy” on the menu though lol

Have you eaten the garbage papaya salad thing?

The fried chicken is pretty tasty, and that tumeric soup is wonderful. I didn’t know they had jade noodles though, damn! And they forgot our crab curry last time, so still haven’t tried it =(

I guess I’m still curious, how would you describe the noodles in their khao soi?

I have not been to Luv2Eat so I can’t fully judge, but I have a hard time believing that this place is churning out fantastic dishes from EVERY single region of Thailand. It just seems improbable that two chefs from Phuket are churning out great northern Thai dishes, or even Bangkok dishes for that matter. Just like I wouldn’t expect a chef from the Yucatan to be masterful in the art of Nayarit seafood.

I will try it in the next couple of weeks, but until then, consider me a skeptic.

Not sure the question here.
The egg noodles in the dish are boiled (I guess) not too mushy and there are some fried crispy ones on top.
Broth consistency? Not too thick, not to thin???Like Goldilocks, it’s just right???

Condiments - onion, pickly bits, lime.
Seemed very traditional. And tasty.

Is that our “job” here?

[quote=“set0312, post:9, topic:1923”]
I have a hard time believing that this place is churning out fantastic dishes from EVERY single region of Thailand
[/quote]tho Andy Ricker makes excellent Issan food. Who’s more Thai?

I would NOT fux w/ the khai mon gai at luv2eat but beyond that, there is literally no better Thai-ish food from non-tatted millenials in LA. zero.

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What dishes are you thinking of specifically there when you say that?

I like your qualifier tho lol

Yeah, idk either exactly, but there’s an obvious different in the noodles and broth consistency at like Night + Market, versus like Pailin, or Wat Dong Moon Lek… the curry base can be really viscous, or quite watery. The noodles can be like literally instant-ramen, and chewy or something more substantial, and soft like you would find in a pad se ew or something it seems like.

Eh idk, I guess the dish is too enigmatic lol

Ya nothing wrong with instant noodles though. A little pad mama never hurt nobody. But seriously, in Bangkok, Mama noodles (which I think are named after a popular brand of instant noodles) are ubiquitous because most stands don’t have the desire/space/time/whatever to make their own.

I did fux with the khao man gai and it was serviceavke at best. Probably their weakest dish but everything else Ive had was on point.

Espeically the khao,kha muu if you can order it, ive only had it once and the last two times Ive tried ordering it they said it wasnt available but its prob the best rendition Ive had at least in this country.

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Khao mok gai pretty much means buried chicken rice so thats the way it is served sometimes.

I went back to Kruang Tedd randomly last night with a late night khao soi craving. They are your only options oddly enough.

While I really wish they would put a whole drumstick in there or something, and the dish feels sort of skimpy on the chicken in general, the broth remains as addictive as ever. The instant noodles are still chewy and fun to eat as well. Actually might be one of the most enjoyable bowls of late night noodles you can get in LA.

I got some Isaan spareribs as well. Not sure what to think about them. They seemed to be unusually high-quality pork for Thai town standards (also cost like $12, when most places would probably charge closer to $7-8). The array of vegetables with them also seemed quite fresh, the cabbage was notably fresh and peppery where I sometimes feel like it is not thought about or maintained well for these types of plates. However, I didn’t get as much of a funk from them as from the fermented spareribs at Palin, so I don’t know if I would really order it again. It wasn’t terrible with some sake, but there must be better dishes.

I got the khao mok gai as well, but somehow forgot to take a picture it seems… damn… I forgot that I didn’t get photos the last time I went to KT, and now I am sad. It was still really good, although there seemed to be less crispy onions. Still, it is a grand dish of perfectly cooked chicken, and fragrant rice in a MASSIVE portion. Why can’t they get those perfect drumsticks in the khao soi?? =( Next time I need to ask them to do that…