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Old 20.12.2014, 12:06
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ready-meals are good

There are various articles about the Singularity when computers exceed humans in intelligence. But I think that I just had a ready-meal that went though the Ready-Meal Singularity (you cannot tell the difference from a decent quality restaurant meal).

I like Thai food, and almost always go for a Tod Mun appetizer when it's on the menu. I yesterday had Marks & Spencer Tod Mun (called 'Red Thai Fishcakes' on the label) plus a Thai chicken green curry, and I would say that the whole meal was not only delicious but as good as a decent restaurant.

I like Thai food and do know what to expect from real cooking in a Thai restaurant - White Elephant is my favorite restaurant in Zürich when I feel like I can afford it. But this new M&S range really is nice food. (Migros and Coop on the other hand are good shops generally but their ready meals - ummm no thanks.)
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Old 20.12.2014, 12:39
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Re: ready-meals are good (Thai restaurant suggestion)

Thai food shouldn't cost you an arm and a leg - if you want a great authentic meal and don't need fancy decor suggest you try Ah-Hua right near Helvetiaplatz in Zurich. Service can be slow and you might have to wait for a table (there's only around 15) but Thai food is best we've found Zurich.

As far as ready-made: Migros "Anna's Best" line has been upgraded but still falls far short of the "hmm, that looks good" mark
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Old 20.12.2014, 14:34
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Re: ready-meals are good

I bought some ready-made meals in the supermarkets here but they didn't fit into my taste
My cooking skill isn't that great either but I know what kind of taste that I'm looking for For Thai food, I usually make it myself. Also agree with the other poster on Ah Hua, their food is excellent and with fair price
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Old 20.12.2014, 15:42
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Re: ready-meals are good

Thanks for the Ah-Hua tip, Kaloid123, I have never been there. Some other Thai places I know in Zürich are

White Elephant - top-notch food

Ban Song - good food but I disagree with the whole paying-for-tapwater principle so I don't go

Blue Monkey - it's OK

Chiang Mai - very tasty. Part of a shop and there are only about 8 casual seats so it's better for takeout
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Old 27.01.2015, 16:06
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Re: ready-meals are good

Asia Moon is not a bad Thai/Chinese restaurant but generally I think there is a massive deficit of Chinese restaurants in Zurich, its really surprising that there isn't a single (and trust me I looked for them) really good Chinese in the city. Anyhow with regards to ready meals I think here you find above average by European standards ready meals and the good thing is that you can find Bio and Organic meals that are of v decent quality. My take on this is though that considering the overall high standard of raw materials on offer in Switzerland why go for the ready meal when you can enjoy the real deal...
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Old 27.01.2015, 16:14
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Re: ready-meals are good

M&S ready meals ARE good, every English person knows this.

Why can't Swiss kitchens produce equally good Asian food? The Swiss always laugh at British cuisine, but we overtook them with our Asian food about 30 years ago, and they still don't understand that spicy means more than a sprinkle of soy sauce.

I have never eaten a good ready mail in Switzerland. Lidl large Lasagne is just about edible.
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Old 27.01.2015, 16:17
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Re: ready-meals are good

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Thai food shouldn't cost you an arm and a leg - if you want a great authentic meal and don't need fancy decor suggest you try Ah-Hua right near Helvetiaplatz in Zurich. Service can be slow and you might have to wait for a table (there's only around 15) but Thai food is best we've found Zurich.

As far as ready-made: Migros "Anna's Best" line has been upgraded but still falls far short of the "hmm, that looks good" mark
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Asia Moon is not a bad Thai/Chinese restaurant but generally I think there is a massive deficit of Chinese restaurants in Zurich, its really surprising that there isn't a single (and trust me I looked for them) really good Chinese in the city. Anyhow with regards to ready meals I think here you find above average by European standards ready meals and the good thing is that you can find Bio and Organic meals that are of v decent quality. My take on this is though that considering the overall high standard of raw materials on offer in Switzerland why go for the ready meal when you can enjoy the real deal...
I thought we are discussing good ready meals, not restaurants. Above average ready meals? Really, where are these please? Yes but in Britain!
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Old 27.01.2015, 16:34
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Re: ready-meals are good

M&S ready meals are the thing I miss most from the UK. Seems like such a gap in the market over here.
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Old 27.01.2015, 16:44
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Re: ready-meals are good (Thai restaurant suggestion)

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Thai food shouldn't cost you an arm and a leg - if you want a great authentic meal and don't need fancy decor suggest you try Ah-Hua right near Helvetiaplatz in Zurich. Service can be slow and you might have to wait for a table (there's only around 15) but Thai food is best we've found Zurich.

As far as ready-made: Migros "Anna's Best" line has been upgraded but still falls far short of the "hmm, that looks good" mark
Ah-Hua is terribly expensive for what you get.
Chiang Mai is awesome, it is cheap and flavorful. The also have a powdery hot substance, which apparently you can only use if you're over 18. The folks standing at the counter tought I was crazy when I doused my food with it.

Basically, my main beef with Thai restaurants in Switzerland is that they are usually run by someone's mother in law and the food isn't all that great and above all very expensive.
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Old 27.01.2015, 16:45
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Re: ready-meals are good

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M&S ready meals are the thing I miss most from the UK. Seems like such a gap in the market over here.
I quite like the idea that people here still think it's quite normal to cook and eating a meal out of a plastic container isn't really progress.
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Old 27.01.2015, 16:55
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Re: ready-meals are good

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I quite like the idea that people here still think it's quite normal to cook and eating a meal out of a plastic container isn't really progress.
Indeed. And on a similar note I was just thinking that comparing a Thai 'ready meal' with a restaurant version is not really the yardstick one ought to be using.

Thai food is particularly easy to make at home anyway, can take as little as 30 mins from scratch, much less if you're doing veggie or have got left-over cooked chicken, for example.

It seems that some people have lost the plot somewhat wrt to eating out: with very few exceptions (e.g. michelin starred places) the reason that restaurants exist is simply for convenience or social reasons; home cooked food should be able to be much better for a fraction of the cost. The idea that an ordinary restaurant represents the pinnacle of gastronomy is misguided, to say the least.

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Ah-Hua is terribly expensive for what you get.
Chiang Mai is awesome, it is cheap and flavorful. The also have a powdery hot substance, which apparently you can only use if you're over 18. The folks standing at the counter tought I was crazy when I doused my food with it.

Basically, my main beef with Thai restaurants in Switzerland is that they are usually run by someone's mother in law and the food isn't all that great and above all very expensive.
I rest my case, m'lord.
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Old 27.01.2015, 17:01
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Re: ready-meals are good (Thai restaurant suggestion)

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Basically, my main beef with Thai restaurants in Switzerland is that they are usually run by someone's mother in law and the food isn't all that great and above all very expensive.
I think the problem is that when you start asking them about it the quickly admit they weren't actually chefs back home but did a totally different job. They only decided to become Thai chefs once in Switzerland and I guess this means they often stick to the simpler stuff or pander to local tastes.
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Old 27.01.2015, 17:11
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Re: ready-meals are good

Surely 'ready meals' as I understand come in packets. That is they are full of preservatives, colouring, flavour enhancers, salt and a host of other things you wouldn't get in a fresh meal??


So how can this be good?
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Old 27.01.2015, 17:19
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Re: ready-meals are good

good ready meals like the ones from M&S are very handy

when you're rushing back from work and its late and rainy sometimes its nice to be able to stick a ready meal into the microwave and save time and hassle
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Old 27.01.2015, 17:28
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Re: ready-meals are good

I quitle like some of the products of the "Karma" ready meal line of coop (mixture of Swiss, Italian and "asian" meals)...

offtopic: surprised nobody mentioned tiffins (Seefeldstrasse, Zürich). Not sure if authentic but tasty...
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Old 27.01.2015, 22:23
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Re: ready-meals are good

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Blue Monkey - it's OK
It's ok for Switzerland, but otherwise the usual blando euro-Thai found in the Germanic countries - pretty much all Thai restaurants I tried in the UK were significantly better.

I think that's basically down to timing - the UK got their first Thai, Indian, Chinese etc restaurants earlier than most other countries, and they've had time to develop and improve - for Switzerland, Germany etc see the UK 30-40 years ago.
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Old 28.01.2015, 02:55
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Re: ready-meals are good

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I have never eaten a good ready mail in Switzerland. Lidl large Lasagne is just about edible.

Why can't Swiss kitchens produce equally good Asian food?




A) Lasagne is NOT "Asian" food. And Italian Food in the UK is horrible


B) because there are not yet enough Indians in Switzerland
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Old 28.01.2015, 03:08
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Re: ready-meals are good

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It's ok for Switzerland, but otherwise the usual blando euro-Thai found in the Germanic countries - pretty much all Thai restaurants I tried in the UK were significantly better.

I think that's basically down to timing - the UK got their first Thai, Indian, Chinese etc restaurants earlier than most other countries, and they've had time to develop and improve - for Switzerland, Germany etc see the UK 30-40 years ago.

in 1972 there were lots of Indian Restaurants in London, but not a single one in Zürich. There was the Maharaja on Rue Mont Blanc in Paris, but the first in Zürich, the Raja Bongo opened up on the Bilchbuck in about 1978. The chap had to close down about two years later but could re-start in about 1983, A few years later the Maharaja moved from Geneva to the Lochergut area in Zürich ,,,, in the 1990ies several Indian Restaurants opened up, but it is still rather new here. Imagine that lots of Italian places started in the 1950ies and 60ies
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Old 28.01.2015, 11:33
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Re: ready-meals are good

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in 1972 there were lots of Indian Restaurants in London, but not a single one in Zürich. There was the Maharaja on Rue Mont Blanc in Paris, but the first in Zürich, the Raja Bongo opened up on the Bilchbuck in about 1978. The chap had to close down about two years later but could re-start in about 1983, A few years later the Maharaja moved from Geneva to the Lochergut area in Zürich ,,,, in the 1990ies several Indian Restaurants opened up, but it is still rather new here. Imagine that lots of Italian places started in the 1950ies and 60ies
I recall reading somewhere that the oldest Indian restaurant in London started up in the 1890s or thereabouts (there was already a small Indian community in London at the time). But of course Indian eating didn't really take off until mass immigration from the Indian subcontinent which didn't begin in earnest until the 1960s. Of course since then Indian cuisine in the UK has developed further and even created dishes and styles that you wouldn't find in India.
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Old 28.01.2015, 11:43
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Re: ready-meals are good

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A) Lasagne is NOT "Asian" food. And Italian Food in the UK is horrible

B) because there are not yet enough Indians in Switzerland
Asian food is NOT just Indian!

I don't know when you were last in the U.K. but there are some improvement in Italian food, surprising in the North of England.
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