COCONUTS HOT SPOT — Besides its vibrant nightlife, Ekkamai also has a pretty solid food scene all the way along its hip soi. People living in the area can tell you that it’s not just the fancy new restaurants that make up the scene; it’s also a bunch of older ones that have become local legacies.
Arunwan, also referred to by their signature dish and location as “Tue Huan Ekkamai,” is one of the renowned restaurants worth knowing about. As the name suggests, the place is famous for “Tue Huan” or pig’s intestine dishes. Yes, you heard me.
First thing you should know is that you will have to be an early bird to catch the worm here. Don’t worry; we’re not talking the crack of dawn — just get there sometime before noon, because after 1pm during the weekend, all goodies tend to sell out and you’ll have missed out on a good round of breakfast and lunch.
The second thing you need to know, is that you should be open and prepared to try something new — pig’s intestines. If this doesn’t appeal, then this place is not for you.
At Arunwan, pig’s intestines are served with either soup, dipping sauce, or noodles. All variations are great. You just have to decide what you are in the mood for.
“Tue Huan” in one of the Chinese dialects means “pig’s intestines”, which is what Arunwan uses as a base in most of their dishes. A bowl of their signature soup consists of this base, pickled lettuce and spare ribs that are cooked to perfection. It’s been proven by the crowds since the 60s that the this soup is one of the best recipes, but if you don’t like spare ribs, the choices are endless.
You can have any combinations of the following in your soup: Moo Krob (crispy pork belly), Kra-Paw (pork tripe), Podd (pig lung), Sai Aon (pig small intestine), Sai Yai (pig large intestine), Siang Jee (pig kidney), Tubb (pig liver). Yes, you can customize your soup as you would order a bowl or noodle from your favorite street noodle cart, and each bowl will only cost you between THB50 – 70 depending on what you choose.
If you come with friends who just won’t try anything exciting (shame on them!) just be nice and order them a bowl of simple noodles (THB50 – 60 depending on the topping) or crispy pork belly served with rice (THB55). They are great dishes too; but they’re just not the stars of the menu.
For sharing, just add some side dishes to the noodles and soups. The simple comfort food of boiled minced pork (THB40) served with a good sauce and condiments is delicious. If you’re more adventurous, then try my favorite pig offal or the kidneys (THB55).
This traditional Thai-Chinese cuisine is no stranger to most of us growing up with these ethnicities at home, or the large Thai-Chinese community in our neighborhood.
Tue Huan is simple, and once you get used to the adventurous dishes, you’ll find the taste of comfort, and perhaps the first thing you start craving on the day of a horrible hangover.
Arunwan (Tue Huan Ekkamai)
Hours: 9am – 3pm
Ekkamai soi 15, BTS Ekkamai
Subscribe to The Coconuts Podcast for top trending news and pop culture from Southeast Asia and Hong Kong every Friday!