by The Great Foodini

Pad Thai is easily by far in one of my top ten favorite dishes. It isn’t what most people around here would consider as “comfort food”, but on one particular day, September 18, 2012, just a couple weeks after Hurricane Isaac, I needed some comfort food and it turned out to be the perfect thing.

My wife had just given birth to my youngest son and I was stuck in the hospital while she was doped up and sleeping. I was hungry, but the options at the hospital didn’t strike me as the most appealing options at the time. I needed something hearty and rich.

Just a mile away from the hospital sat a restaurant called Thai Lotus. I didn’t know anything about it, but when I walked in, I saw that they were getting close to shutting down for the night.

I told the owner that I was hungry for something and I needed to sit and think about how my life had changed that day from being an adoptive parent to a biological one.

He sat me down, poured me some hot tea and brought out a steaming pile of Pad Thai as I poured out my soul and a bit of my tear ducts to him. He patted me on the shoulder and showed me a picture of his family and assured me that if he could do it, so could I. He pointed to my plate and instructed me to eat before it lost its steaminess.

For those of you who haven’t been acquainted with this dish straight from heaven, it can simply be explained as a stir-fired noodle dish commonly served as street food in Thailand.

It is quick, hearty, cheap and delicious. The stir-fried noodles are mixed with egg, tofu, green onion, a bunch of other spices and ingredients all topped with chopped peanuts. It pays to ask for extra peanuts.

As I sat in the booth near a neon sign depicting a steaming bowl of Pho soup, I realized that this gem is kinda hidden in plain sight right off the side of Highway 49. It doesn’t look like much of a place from the outside, or the inside either for that matter, but what counts is the service, the quality of the food and the price.

I got out of there that night for just a little over ten bucks with a to go box that I nibbled on into the next morning as I watched over my beautiful sleeping bride while she slept off the drugs in her system. I’ve never been so scared and happy at the same time…or full.