Pan Asian Cuisine gets a Vegetarian Twist
With a slew of Pan Asian restaurants opening in the city lately, The Wok Box Co. at Thuraipakkam jumps on board with a takeaway outfit designed for the office-goers of OMR. And this time, the vegetarians won’t be complaining. Currently delivering at lunch and dinner timings from Perungudi to Sholinganallur on the OMR stretch, plans for expansion are definitely on the cards.
Chennai’s own Aakash Shah and Sankesh Mehta, co-owners and vegetarians themselves, aim to deliver an authentic Pan Asian experience while allowing you to choose which base, sauce, vegetables, proteins and garnish go into your box to form a complete meal. Also on the menu are scrumptious baos, and a selection of lemonades. “Since we opened on 15 May, people tell us they’re glad that there’s now a place that serves vegetarian Asian food,” says Aakash. “We recognized the gap in the market because we ourselves would order wok boxes four or five times a week while working in Mumbai,” he says.
If you aren’t besotted by the concept as a meat-lover, the house-special Shifu’s Secret Sauce will change your mind. Ample servings of vegetables are cooked separately to bring their independent tastes out, before being added to the base and doused in saucy goodness. Also a must-have is the Barbeque Mushroom Bao, which is good enough to put any chicken variant to shame. Wash it all down with a Watermelon Lemonade, and you’ll find yourself satisfied and refreshed.
Catering to the increasingly health-conscious foodie, they offer 21 vegetables to choose from, options in wheat noodles and brown rice bases, and a nutrient-rich kenkō sauce. “We had our doubts about the healthy options, but people love it!” says Sankesh, adding that preset boxes for calorie counters is a feature they look forward to introducing. “For example for someone who is looking to cut down on carbs, we’ll reduce the rice or noodles by 60% and increase the vegetables,” he adds.
You wouldn’t be to blame if the quirky packaging your food came in distracted you from the food itself; the owners have gone out of their way to create containers that deliver food to your doorstep as hot and fresh as it would be when served at the table. “The box is made of craft paper, and is laminated on the inside. So the steam in the box continues to cook the food until opened. For long-distance orders, we slightly undercook the food so it’s just right when it reaches you”, says Aakash. What’s more, all the materials used are eco-friendly, the highlight being a spoon made of cornstarch!