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Fridays are for Pad Thai

After academically strenuous weeks, there is nothing more enjoyable than treating yourself to irresistible take-out. Thai cuisine particularly awakens my taste buds, never failing to satisfy a (weekly) craving for spicy food. At the beginning of my freshman year, I explored the UberEats app and searched for a restaurant that delivered one of my favorite dishes: Pad Thai. After carefully reviewing my options, I decided to order the Blazing Pad Thai from Four Spoons Thai Inspired Cuisine & Bar in Newton, Mass.. Since then, I have been hooked on this culinary whirlwind of a dish, ordering it almost every Friday evening.

My routine on Friday night is to plan out my assignments for the weekend, lie down on my bed, pull up UberEats on my phone, and order the Blazing Pad Thai with shrimp from Four Spoons. I am then immediately notified that the delivery will take about 45 minutes and I wait, impatiently though excitedly, for my meal to arrive. Once the container of Pad Thai finally sits on my desk, I open it and steam rises, overcoming my dorm room with the smell of garlic and chiles. Twirling my fork into the rice noodles and taking the first bite always gives me a rush, as the delicate and starchy noodles absorb the Four Spoons special sauce so beautifully. Every component of this dish ties together perfectly, creating an array of flavor and texture. The noodles and tangy sauce are stir-fried with eggs, chives, and Thai basil. The scrambled eggs melt in your mouth, the chives establish a strong onion flavor, and the Thai basil incorporates a fragrant pop. Topped with fresh bean sprouts and salty crushed peanuts, the dish employs a multifaceted crunchiness that complements the noodles’ soft texture. The pieces of shrimp mixed with the other ingredients are tender and juicy. What makes the sauce one of Four Spoons’ specialties must be its pungently aromatic taste, since the chiles and paprika consistently create a wonderful explosion in my mouth.

When I sit down and peacefully dig into Four Spoons’ Blazing Pad Thai on Friday nights, I am reminded that crafting spicy dishes that are not overwhelmingly hot is difficult. At first, the chiles in the sauce might make you break a sweat, but the neutralizing bean sprouts and sponge-like shrimp pieces even out the heat. The peanuts, chives, and eggs complement the spiciness with rich, savory accents. Basil ties the whole dish together, with its strong flavor reflecting that of licorice in the best way possible.

At the end of each academic semester, I am usually ready to return home to Florida, however, I recognize that I will not be able to order the Blazing Pad Thai at the other end of the east coast. Although this reality saddens me, it emphasizes the uniqueness of this meal and reminds me that I love this dish because of its originality and specific execution. There are not many food establishments that I regularly order from via UberEats as a college student, yet Four Spoons has been a staple for about two years now. Whether I am digging into Blazing Pad Thai by myself or surrounded by friends, it is always an honor to encounter true culinary talent when my soul needs it most. Over holiday breaks, I miss Four Spoons’ Blazing Pad Thai, which contributes to the anticipation of returning once breaks are over.

Freshman year was a pivotal time in my life, away from the comforts of home, including the food I was used to. Discovering Blazing Pad Thai from Four Spoons prompted a new culinary tradition in my life, paving the way for years of appreciation for a dish that seldom fails to fulfill my longing for skillfully prepared spicy food.

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