Thursday, April 12, 2007

A most ingenious little device to bring to dinner

Native Minnesotans have furtively been sneaking into Asian and Mexican groceries around town—especially on Nicollet Avenue's "Eat Street"—and discovering loads of cheap canned goods (fried dace with black beans, awesome!), wacky produce, and uh... live seafood with an authentic aroma to set you back on your heels.

One of the most charming aspects of these shops is their willy-nilly thrown-together quality that shows a blatant disregard for modern retail planning. Your first clue is that the place is shoehorned into either an old day care center or a drug store.

But the upside is lots of unique items you can't find anywhere else, like this ingenious stainless steel Thai lunch pail. While it's probably best suited as a lunchpail if the lunch you are packing is cold rice and beans, these devices are being marketed in the US as to-go containers that you bring along to the restaurant for any leftovers, so you can cut down on the paper and styrofoam in your fridge and in your trash can.

And the thing is just so nifty that even when we're eating in, we keep it out on the kitchen counter where it never fails to inspire a smile. Clever Thai people! Clever little lunchpail!

We found ours at Shuang Hur, at 27th and Nicollet.