Great Ala Carte Dinner @ Tunglok Signature at Orchard Parade on 29Nov2013

fried mixed vegetables

fried mixed vegetables

went back to tunglok signature @ orchard parade on 29.11.2013. was raining so wanted car park with shelter & did not want to go far. 🙂

amex palate privileges 50% for 2pax only for ala carte on weekdays so we explored the menu.

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lamb rack S$10

lamb rack S$10

lobster noodles S$25

lobster noodles S$25

雪中情怀mango pomelo dessert with 2 scoops ice cream S$8

雪中情怀mango pomelo dessert with 2 scoops ice cream S$8

we decided to try the specials – a fish soup S$38. the soup was excellent! very smooth, sweet, tasty. 🙂 it was expensive though. the portion was similar to a 1/2 pot of lie tong (例汤) which cost S$14 – served 1.5 to 2 bowls each for 2pax. probably better off with the lie tong.

the lamb rack came with onion ring & tomato. it was very good too. lamb was very tender w/o strong taste, equal to the best among good western restaurants. the mildly sweet sauce was a nice change from the usual mint sauce too. 🙂

the mixed vegetable (top photo) was an excellent vegetarian dish. on this night it was a bit oily, but otherwise very good.

& the lobster ramen in superior sauce was heavenly. i had lobster noodles often at hua ting some years back when i had the alacarte card as it was very good. but this was even better! ramen was very nice too, especially the texture/bite. 🙂

& we rounded up with the really enjoyable  雪中情怀mango pomelo dessert with 2 scoops of ice cream. we asked to change the usual vanilla to coconut ice cream – very nice indeed! 🙂

the dinner was S$172 before discount. i wouldn’t do this at such prices. with 50% palate discount it was S$86 & a very good price for such fine dinner. the weekend lobster 6-course set though was even better as it included the 2 best dishes – lobster ramen & 雪中情怀 – plus other great dishes!

c.h.e.f andy

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Good Teochew Dinner @ Swa Garden on 28Nov2013

teochew cold crab

teochew cold crab

many friends were away. we had a smaller group of 9 for the monthly dinner at swa garden on 28.11.2013. i had wanted to come to this place the longest time but never got to it. had the impression it was expensive but looking at set menus (the one for S$268 looked ok & the more pricy ones included suckling pig), price looked ok.

the friend who organised for this evening pre-order 9 ala carte dishes. we started with the cold crab, it was good. 🙂 perhaps no difference from other teochew restaurants like chui huay lim, but good.

teochew braised duck

teochew braised duck

scallops with yellow chives

scallops with yellow chives

pig tendon & fish maw

pig tendon & fish maw

steamed mullet with salted vegetables

steamed mullet with salted vegetables

crayfish in XO sauce?

crayfish in XO sauce?

prawn balls & liver roll (or ngoh hiang)

prawn balls & liver roll (or ngoh hiang)

teochew char kuay teow

teochew char kuay teow

orh nee (芋泥)

orh nee (芋泥)

the braised duck was good too, “pang” ie flavourful & not tough or overcooked/fibrous. it said “goose”on paper but they readily admitted it was duck (a 半菜 duck). still my favourite braised duck remained the excellent 1/2 duck for S$28 @ imperial treasure.

the scallop with yellow chives was good, scallops plump & tasty.

& i liked the pot with pig tendon & fish maw, tasty & well done dish, though 1 friend thought the helping was not large enough for 9pax. i thought it was quite ok.

the mullet was a wet steamed version which i very seldom had..usually i took the air dried cold version at some bakuteh stalls like lao ah ti @ boon keng. i liked this version. the chye sim salted vegetables were nice & it was easier to pick up the fish meat c/w the dry version but both version had their own attractiveness. 🙂

the crayfish was a competent dish, tasty. i still preferred the ah orh style though as i felt the sauce masked the sweetness & flavour of the crayfish.

the prawn balls & ngoh hiang was another average, ok dish.

teochew plain char kuay teow was good, had wok hae, though not my favourite. i liked chui huay lim’s seafood beehoon better.

the orh nee was very average, not “pang”. the ones we had recently at much cheaper muliangzai liang kee was better.

S$268 10pax menu

S$268 10pax menu

overall we had 9 dishes for 9pax costing $297nett=S$33pax.  perhaps slightly more expensive c/w with the S$268 10pax set menu (above). price was ok, the food was average to above average. i was not overly impressed but it is a place i would come again for fairly good quality food at ok prices. 🙂

c.h.e.f. andy

Just Average Zi Char @ Two Chefs on 26Nov2013

blood cockles

blood cockles

4 of us continued on our zi char dinner quest at two chefs on 26.11.2013.

the zi char stall at a commonwealth crescent had good reviews, but honestly i was quite disappointed. while it was better than woh hup at hong lim (which was bad!), it was far, far from the very nice dishes we had at kok sen. in my opinion,it was not even comparable to the forture restaurant at the old holland road coffeeship.

we did not order their signature butter pork rib using milk powder as a few reviews & also a friend who dined there recently said it was too sweet. the only dish i really liked was the S$6 blood cockles – pickled raw cockles (腌血蚶) with lots of garlic. 🙂 but then i was about the only one eating them as my friends were not into this much & one felt that garlic was too much (though i liked). so it was not representative!

claypot fish head

claypot fish head

to me, the worst dish was the claypot fish head, gluey & not having the sweet, fresh, tender taste of fish, though the photo may look ok. its a dish i had not taken for perhaps >10years or longer. though i think most are now served cut up & deep-fried, i still prefer the one i had 30 years ago at whampoa where they served the head whole & not deep-fried. two chefs did have assam fish head & blackbean sauce song fish head. surely those would be ok – it’s like anyone can do a song fish head, i remember 1 news report said 1 hawker centre had 15 stalls selling it!

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golden mushrooms tofu

golden mushrooms tofu

3 egg heng chye

3 egg heng chye

the salted egg prawns were ok, tasty but oily, and really not my preferred preparation for prawns.

the golden mushrooms tofu was ok i guess, but quite poor in comparison with kok sen & muliangzai liang kee which were minced pork deep-fried tofu.

the 3-eggs heng chye was watery, taste ok.

overall, it was a very average meal can get at any coffeeshop (like 6th avenue coffeeshop). i guess correspondingly the price is cheap S$60nett for 4pax, but then kok sen was cheap too & very much better!

maybe still have to try the muliangzai type of zi char stalls.

c.h.e.f. andy

Good Wanton Mee @ Red Ring on 24Nov2013

red ring wanton mee

red ring wanton mee

my daughter & her friends were raving about this wanton mee stall at holland drive, where the “char siew was very nice but not like the usual ones , a bit western style?”.

red ring wanton mee

red ring wanton mee

we decided to try it on 24.11.2013. red ring is located at a coffeeshop at block 46 holland drive.

i had the S$3 serving, could not tell the difference except that i had 3 deep-fried wantons while the S$4 serving had 5 wantons.

red ring wanton mee

red ring wanton mee

red ring wanton mee

red ring wanton mee

the char siew was very good. it was quite anaemic w/o strong red colours & charred exterior but the taste was good – tender, moist, sweet, so maybe that’s why my daughter said a bit western. the noodles & sauce were good too. the deep-fried wantons were average & not what i preferred, would order boiled wantons next time.

overall it was good, not expensive, though i did not think it was better than the recent one i had at the wanton noodle stall @ first centre serangoon avenue 4. in fact i would prefer the latter. 🙂

i later read about roy chan the chemist who graduated from nus in 2012 & how he created this special char siew using a charcoal broiler while he was nus student & helped his family start a wanton mee stall. i was mightily impressed. read more about roy here = http://redringwantonmee.com/inspiration/

well done roy! i would certainly “bon chan” (frequent) his wanton mee stall! 🙂

roast chicken & roast pork

roast chicken & roast pork

roast chicken & roast pork

roast chicken & roast pork

i ordered also S$3 roast chicken drumstick plus S$1 siew yoke (roast pork) top-up from the chicken rice stall. & they were good. so not much incentive really for me to do my crackling belly pork & even white cut chicken. can get such nice ones outside anywhere basically…haha. 🙂

c.h.e.f. andy

Lovely Italian Food & Service @ Al Borgo on 22Nov2013

florentine steak

florentine t-bone steak

my 2 close buddies insisted on buying my wife birthday dinner on 22.11.2013, even though it was 2 weeks after due to various schedules. 🙂

we decided on al borgo, which another friend had introduced us at 1 of our earlier G8 dinners. i went there with my family many times afterwards and sometimes ordered the squid ink pasta & florentine steak takeout. i had not tried al borgo though for most of this year.

vini rosso feudi di san gregorio

vini rosso feudi di san gregorio

al borgo charges S$30 for corkage but if you buy a bottle then the second bottle is free corkage. 1 friend picked up a jacob creek moscato & he orderd an italian red feudi di san gregorio. another friend took the trouble to pick up a mille crepe from Lady M. she later had problem catching a cab to the restaurant. i would usually pick her up but this evening i was not sure of my wife’s timing & we made it to the restaurant just on time. 🙂

parma ham pizza

parma ham pizza

portobello mushrooms with crabmeat in pink sauce

portobello mushrooms with crabmeat in pink sauce

squid ink seafood tagliatele

squid ink seafood tagliatele

florentine t-bone steak

florentine t-bone steak

i ordered a few of our favourite dishes.

portobello mushrooms with crabmeat in pink sauce was an excellent starter. portobello was nicely grilled & flavourful & the crab meat pink sauce was excellent, pretty to look at & tasty. 🙂

parma ham pizza was good too. parma ham was a favourite for many of us (a friend commented it was not so dry when served on a warm pizza than as antipasti though personally i liked the latter more). it made for a fine combination of dishes for the evening though i had no special thing for pizza. 🙂

we ordered 2 servings of seafood squid ink tagliatele to share among 5pax. they were very good as usual, quite a bit of prawns & squid & the nice flavour of creamy squid ink went very well with the pasta. 🙂

next was the florentine steak (we waited quite a while for this item as the restaurant was quite full). this was a 700g t-bone steak (new york strip on 1 side & tenderloin on the other). it was S$60 before, now S$75, just as the squid ink was S$22 before & now S$25.

it came together with very nice grilled potatoes & mesclun salad & a dip of balsamic vinegar & olive oil (maybe with the grilled juices). it was still good though for this night, the meat was a bit tougher than what we had here many times before. being greedy, i ordered a second serving, and though we polished up everything, i thought afterwards i would have done better ordering the S$38 250g ribeye steak instead. 🙂

millecrepe cake

millecrepe cake

the mille crepe was the new hit in town. it was like kueh lapis, with many thin layers of pastry interleaved with cream & custard, very labour intensive to make & obviously very costly. it was not too sweet. we all liked it especially my 2 friends who had this recently at another birthday. 🙂 for my personal preference though i would prefer a ritz apple strudel which has apple in addition to cream custard & pastry.

the service at al borgo was super! nicola, the restaurant manager (he took over from luigi) was friendly, chatty & constantly at our table & mimmo (the chef) came many times & took several photos with us including with his “brother”,  my good friend who had the same hairdo as mimmo. he even recommended the wine. 🙂 they also arranged for parking redemption for my 2 friends (never knew they had that, so i parked my car along the road with single yellow line though as there were quite a bit of construction going on, i had to park my car a bit further up the road). & the servers, kumar & 2 ladies, were also very friendly, attentive fun & cheerful (an important trait in service business).  my wife was commenting on the generation change in the image of chefs. they used to be haughty & temperamental, scowling in their kitchen fiefdom, now they are reinventing to be like warm, gracious inviting hosts.

dinner was S$430 with wine, about S$338 w/o wine & just S$250 for 5pax if i had not ordered a second florentine steak. 🙂

the evening (& the whatsapp messages afterwards) was filled with conversation, laughter & fun. 🙂

c.h.e.f. andy

Meepok Tar @ Sunny Fishball 6th Avenue on 20Nov2013

meepok tar

meepok tar

running some errands & dropped by 6th avenue in the morning on 20.11.2013. good good coffeeshop where jalan tua kong bakchormee stall was located was closed for renovation, so i stopped by sunny fishball at the other corner coffeeshop. 🙂

sunny fishball noodles

sunny fishball noodles

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meepok tar

meepok tar

had not eaten here for a while. the meepok tar was good. everything from fishballs, meatball, minced prok, fishcake to qq noodles & garnishings were all good. the chilli was also good.if i have to make comparison with jalan tua kong bakchormee stall, perhaps that one was a little spicier & maybe that gave more kick. cannot tell! 🙂

there are so many good meepok tar stalls around (just like chicken rice stalls etc) so it was not difficult to find a good stall & the difference maybe quite marginal.

c.h.e.f. andy

Forgettable Meal @ Kilo at Pact on 21Nov2013

belly pork rice bowl

belly pork rice bowl

a quick post. 3 of us had dinner after movie at kilo at pact on 21.11.2013. 🙂

nothing much to be said about this place. its a place i would not go & would not go back. that’s just me & my choices. nothing wrong with the place. guess it is kind of hip. kilo is co-located with a boutique fashion? retail shop & a salon. no idea what is “pact” in the name? food i guess is jap-western?

3 of us were watching Thor The Dark World (2013) 4.30pm show at orchard cineleisure taking advantage of the S$4 ticket for “senior citizens”. well, i for one much preferred watching the late evening show using maybank 1 for 1. as i told my friend, it cost S$9.70 (S$2.40+S$1.40+S$1.40+S$4.50) to park at cineleisure & S$1 to get into cbd at 4pm+. completely made no sense to me but i figured my friend is thrilled by the thought of paying S$4 as senior citizen, not the $ (whether tickets or parking but just the thought) – i am shaking my head – & so be it! 🙂

kilo at pact

kilo at pact

belly pork over rice (like japanese don)

belly pork over rice (like japanese don)

kilo at pact

kilo at pact

the belly pork don was pretty good & tasty actually. it was very small portion – 1 friend said “jiak boy pa” (not filling) – & cost S$17++=S$20nett. 🙂

the belly pork was soft, just slightly sinewy (not the texture i like) unlike the smooth texture of dongporou or kongbakpao. the braising sauce which was also drizzled over the rice was slightly sweet (japanese style) & made it quite tasty. so it was good actually but a “nothing” kind of meal for me, like a foodcourt dish but good tasting & cost S$20. not something i would try myself & certainly not go back. however the place maybe hip or cool & people may like it. cannot tell. 🙂

c.h.e.f. andy

Relaxed Fine Dining at Friend’s House on 20Nov2013

slow-roast chuck tender (1hr) salad with fish sauce

slow-roast chuck tender (1hr) salad with fish sauce

a friend’s wife did a wonderful 6-course homegourmet dinner at their lovely home for a few of us last year, so my wife & i were really looking forward to the invitation to their home last evening on 20.11.2013. 🙂

their house sits on difficult terrain but is very well designed with good layout, quality finishes & furnishing. we had a relaxed pre-dinner wine chat (barolo red not that i knew what it was) at the sitting area before moving to dining, which had pool & water feature on 2 sides & LED downlights. 🙂

it was a very relaxed dinner, good food nicely paced, conversation, sharing & chill. 🙂

the first course was a delightful slow-roast chuck tender (1hr) with cabbage & tomatoes. the slight saltiness brought out the flavours of the tender beef (chuck is not an easy cut to make tender). i thought of “chimcharlo” but it was just fish sauce (which i use for my dry wok garlic prawns also with great results of a very “pang” dish). 🙂 the treatment to create a tender meat out of chuck is similar to my chuck pot roast.

cream of mushrooms with chicken dumplings

cream of mushrooms with chicken dumplings

the cream of mushroom was smooth with intended mushroom bits & not too creamy (health reasons?), and had the added treat of  tasty chicken dumplings.

slow-roast oven pork ribs (5hr at 100degC) with pasta

slow-roast oven pork ribs (5hr at 100degC) with pasta

next was a very tasty tomato sauce pasta dish with fork tender pork ribs (5hrs at 100degC). i tried number of times & my only decent dish was a pork rib arabiatta (spicy tomatoes) but had yet to do such tender ribs. will probably try again soon.

crackling belly pork with fresh apple compote

crackling belly pork with fresh apple compote

next was a crackling belly of pork with a lovely fresh apple compote, the slight sour sweet matched & enhanced the flavour of the tender belly pork. i had tried couple times gordon ramsay’s pressed belly of pork & loin of pork recipe. it was very difficult to get right (& i still didn’t & gave up trying, so i gravitated to my own miso belly pork recipe, and before that my japanese chashu recipe). my friend was talking about the touch & go situation with the crackling skin, this time a little less successful than what they had last. well, i am not fussy or specially enamoured with crackling skin (bonus if have) & that’s why i did not pursue the GR pressed pork belly & in fact my miso belly pork is done sans skin. 🙂

cake & strawberry mousse

cake & strawberry mousse

the cake with a sweet jam & the strawberry mousse was wonderful curtain closing to an excellent homegourmet dinner, the slight sour strawberry balancing the sweet cake. 🙂

these dinners are really fun for me, food, company, conversation, sharing of knowledge, views & perspectives. i will be doing one soon. 🙂

c.h.e.f andy

Great Lunch with Old Friend @ Reddot Brewhouse Dempsey on 19Nov2013

halibut fish fillet

halibut fish fillet

a very old friend was in town. we first met in 1994 so it was almost 20 years but felt like yesterday. he is dutch & 10 years older but he was in singapore 20 years & asia longer. he left singapore & returned to holland towards end 2012 and is working on the routine of retirement. anyway his son & many friends are here. i tried to get au jardin (super lunch deal!) but it was fully booked, so we went to reddot brewery @ dempsey instead on 19.11.2013. 🙂

reddot salad lots of parmesan

reddot salad lots of parmesan

prawn citrus salad

prawn citrus salad

chocolate melt cake with ice cream

chocolate melt cake with ice cream

chocolate melt cake

chocolate melt cake

i had been to reddot dempsey several times. they served a 2-course S$22pax & 3-course S$28pax lunch which i thought was already very good value. but it’s S$18pax & S$22pax now for 2-course & 3-course menu! if we exclude maybank’s 1 for 1 promotion at les amis restaurants, this would be a really super deal! 🙂

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the place was more of a drinking joint with a micro brewery. it was probably quite busy in the evenings but i had no interest in that. parking was free & the ambience was excellent, with airy high roof ceiling & water feature. we had a great lunch & catching up. 🙂

i had the prawn citrus salad & my friend had the reddot salad. they were good, refreshing & good portion. both of us had the halibut, which was very good, and even came with very sweet vine tomatoes! this dish alone was S$28++ on ala carte previously, and that was not expensive c/w many restaurants. there was also sirloin steak for mains choice, which i had before & it was pretty good too, if ordinary. these days i don’t order beef much when i dine out. 🙂

my dutch friend had the ice cream, and i had the chocolate melt cake, & this lava cake was good! we had coffee but you could choose beer etc as your free drink also. 🙂

nice airy ambience no customers

nice airy ambience no customers

we didn’t go dutch (pun intended!)..haha! it was a very satisfying & cheap meal anyway for the food & ambience & we had a jolly good time. there were only 2 other tables occupied, and we had the huge place mostly for ourselves. i not sure whether it made economic sense to keep it open for lunch & reduce the price but i am not complaining. 🙂

c.h.e.f. andy

Chuck Pot Roast

chuck pot roast

chuck pot roast

had a piece of chuck tender in the freezer for couple months. about 600g+ and cost S$8+ for giant.

i had a few attempts at slow roast previously which were not that great. revisited some internet recipes and found a few crockpot recipes including this one=melt in your mouth chuck roast & decided to try it.

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chuck pot roast

chuck pot roast

as chuck could be quite tough despite slow-cooking & i decided not to use bicarbonate tenderiser this time, i tried red wine vinegar + dijorn mustard instead. not exactly sure if it worked much, but anyway i only did for about 3hrs. will try overnight or 24hrs next time.

i added 1 tablespoon wine vinegar & 1 tablespoon dijorn mustard to the 600g+ chuck tender (after cleaning & removing some fat & surface connective tissues) & marinated in a ziplog bag, pressing out the air before sealing.

before cooking, i brought to room temperature, seasoned with sea salt & coarse black pepper & then charred on all sides over 2 tablespoon butter in a non-stick frypan over high heat. this produced the brown ring & maillard reaction which made the roast flavourful. i then placed the chuck roast in a crockpot.

to make the vegetable ratatouille sauce, i fryed 2 chopped shallots, 3 cloves minced garlic in 2 tablespoon olive oil in the frypan over medium heat, & added 1 yellow onion diced, 1 large carrot diced,1 large potato diced, 1 stalk of leek diced (didn’t have tomatoes) & added the sauce mix & cooked for 10mins on medium low heat, adding water where required.

i then emptied the content into the crockpot. it should cover fully the chuck roast. i stuck in a meat thermometer set to 145degF (for medium rare) to the middle, thickest part of the roast & covered & turned crockpot to low. for the 600g+ roast, it took only 1hr 15mins before the meat thermometer alarm alerted.

now i understood why the crockpot recipe. like slow oven roast, it is often necessary to keep the meat moist to retain the juices and avoid drying out. so for my miso belly pork, i had it covered by miso marinade while slow-cooking at 90degC in the oven before broiling to create the seared surface. here i browned the meat first then placed the roast in a bath of vegetable ratatouille for an excellent tasty sauce, and that helped produce a tender, moist chuck roast.

my daughter & i carved & ate about 1/2 the roast with ratatouille sauce the first evening &. over 2 days, i carved & ate the other 1/2 with my daughter w/o the sauce, just adding some sea salt on both sides. even eating for the 3rd time after 2 days in a tin foil in the fridge, the meat was moist, tender & tasty. it would certainly do well also as a roast beef salad or roast beef sandwich. 🙂

c.h.e.f. andy

Ingredients:

  • 600g+ chuck tender
  • 2 shallots chopped
  • 3 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 yellow onion diced
  • 1 large carrot diced
  • 1 large potato diced
  • 1 stalk celery or leek sliced
  • 1 large tomato cut to 8 slices

Sauce Mix

  • 1 tbsp worchester sauce
  • 2 tbsp light soy sauce
  • 4 tbsp ketchup
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 tbsp corn flour

Directions:

  1. prepare & tenderise meat – cleaning & remove fat & surface connective tissues. add 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar & 1 tablespoon dijorn mustard to chuck tender  & marinated in a ziplog bag, pressing out the air before sealing.
  2. cook vegetable ratatouille sauce – fry 2 chopped shallots, 3 cloves minced garlic in 2 tablespoon olive oil in the frypan over medium heat. add 1 yellow onion diced, 1 large carrot diced,1 large potato diced, 1 stalk of leek diced. add the sauce mix & cook for 10mins on medium low heat, adding water where required. set aside.
  3. cook the pot roast –  bring meat to room temperature, season with sea salt & coarse black pepper, charred on all sides over 2 tablespoon butter in a non-stick frypan over high heat. this produces the brown ring & maillard reaction which makes the roast flavourful. place the chuck roast in a crockpot.  empty the frypan content (vegetable ratatouille sauce) into the crockpot, and cover the chuck roast fully. stick a meat thermometer set to 145degF (for medium rare) to the middle, thickest part of the roast, cover & turn crockpot to low. for the 600g+ roast, it should take only 1hr 15mins before the meat thermometer alarm.

Very Cheap French Fare @ Bistro Du Vin on 18Nov2013

grilled ribeye

200g 200-day australian grain-fed char-grilled ribeye

3-course set lunch menu include coffee

3-course set lunch menu include coffee

update = wow, had even better deal at bistro du vin zion road on 20.12.2013!

our dining quartet decided to take advantage of maybank 1 for 1 set lunch promotion & dined at bistro du vin on 18.11.2013. the usual price for a 3-course set lunch including coffee was S$30pax.  the menu had quite wide choices. there were couple items like pan-seared foie gras & 200day grain fed ribeye that required supplement – quite reasonable unlike some places where 1 in 2 items required supplement, however the supplement were separately billed & not entitled to the 50% discount. 🙂

baked camembert with apples, bacon, sourdough

baked camembert with apples, bacon, sourdough

foie gras ravioli

foie gras ravioli

leek & potato soup with deep fried oysters

leek & potato soup with deep fried oysters

rabbit terrine

rabbit terrine

seafood bouillabaise

seafood bouillabaise

duck confit & lamb sausage

duck confit & lamb sausage

beef short ribs stewed in beer

beef short ribs stewed in beer

i love leek & potato soup (& especially this one came with 2 kaki furai – japanese breaded oysters). however i was distracted by the rabbit terrine & ordered that. it was good, tasty, competent. i was happy with it. 🙂

1 friend ordered the leek & potato soup which came with 2 deep-fried oysters & was good as expected.

1 friend ordered the foie gras ravioli (the pink sauce didn’t look great or very appetizing to me like the beautiful pumpkin ravioli at al borgo did, but i think it tasted fine). the other ordered the baked camembert with sour dough. it looked ok but my friend said it was not as good as the other bistro du vin outlet at great world city.

for the main course, i ordered the beef ribs stewed in beer. again it was competent & the mash too, though in comparison my own spanish beef ribs was better because i had a very sweet & tasty vegetable ratatouille to match/balance the fork tender beef ribs whereas this one was very beefy & robust.

1 friend had the duck confit. he thought the black sheep cafe’s was better. 1 had the seafood bouillabaise with fish, clams, mussels, prawns. she said the fish was not great. anyway, bouillabaise & duck confit not my favourite. the smartest among us ordered the 200g 200-day australian grain-fed char-grilled ribeye – a S$10 supplement with no discount.it was ok really for the quality meat. i could smell the steak when it was served, & i had a small piece & it was excellent. 🙂

petit pot chocolate with magdaleine

petit pot chocolate with magdaleine

creme brulee

creme brulee

caramelised apple crumble, roasted apple ice cream

caramelised apple crumble, roasted apple ice cream

for dessert, i & another friend had the caramelised apple & raisin crumble with roasted apple ice cream. it was good, though it would please the eye better served on a dessert plate or long dessert dish. 1 friend had creme brulee which was recommended by the waiter & which she obviously enjoyed. the other had chocolate madaleine. the madaleine texture looked dense. i was about to say the ones at esso station looked better but my friend beat me to it. so this dessert was not good. 🙂 i had cuppaccino & my other friends had coffee.

overall, at normal S$30pax for 3-course set lunch including coffee, the food was competent enough & i didn’t consider it expensive. with maybank 1 for 1 discounts, the lunch was S$15pax (excluding the supplement) with 2 free wine for 4pax, well you could not get that at a hawker centre or coffee shop. so it was very cheap & great value.

c/w au jardin which served a S$45pax 3-course set lunch include coffee (there was also a S$65pax menu), which was also having the maybank 1 for 1 promotion including wine, i would return to au jardin (which i was to happy to pay full price at other time) rather than bistro du vin. the latter was competent & average whereas au jardin was fine dining in both food & presentation (& of course quite different ambience). eg my lamb saddle was exquisite, even better than many good lamb racks i had before.

on the service, bistro du vin was ok. the young male server was quite knowledgeable & responsive & answered my several questions on menu items & selection. 1 of my dining companion had poor opinion of the service though because he did not offer the wine to us automatically but only when asked & he replied that most people did not take wine during lunch. the attitude i think was ok, but maybe the training on managing customers was lacking here. but overall, the service again was competent & in my opinion rather better than many similar places.

au jardin’s service was of course much better. the staff were much better trained & professional, but then it was a different class restaurant so not apt comparison. 1 younger au jardin male staff though appeared to be not so great in his service attitude.

c.h.e.f andy

Curry Miso Mulligatawny Soup

curry miso mulligatawny soup

curry miso mulligatawny soup

as part of a japan themed dinner for my friends, was contemplating adding a soup.  miso soup didn’t quite make it there. i made ok cream of mushrooms & cream of potato soup. the best soup i made was the basque seafood soup. it was very good if tedious boiling prawn shells for 2-3hrs. anyway they didn’t quite fit the theme.

so i was working on the miso theme with the seafood, and came up with a curry miso. i googled & found a few curry miso recipe & also looked at mulligatawny (an indian soup i love) recipe, and finally put together my own seafood curry miso mulligatawny soup. & very pleasing to say, it came out wonderful! 🙂

curry miso mulligatawny soup

curry miso mulligatawny soup

for the soup, i chopped 2 shallots and had ready 3 cloves minced garlic, sliced 1 yellow onion & diced 1 large carrot. as i did not have ready stock, i needed the onion & carrot to flavour the soup base. was deciding whether to add potatoes which would add both sweetness & bulk, but decided to add rice later for bulk & mulligatawny texture so drop the potato.

with 2 tablespoon olive oil in a saucepan on medium heat, i fried the shallots & minced garlic, added curry leaves & 2 teaspoon curry powder, and added the sliced onion & carrots & coated them with the curry powder & quickly added water. i also added 1/2 teaspoon tumeric for the added colour. i mixed in 2 tablespoon of miso paste & 1 teaspoon of sugar & let the saucepan content boiled over low heat for 1 hr, adding water as required, to get the vegetable sweetness into the soup.  decided to sieve the soup rather then blend the content (may try blending next time). i then added 1/4 cup rice & boiled for 20 more minutes. i added a little salt & found the right taste i liked.

for the seafood, i had 10 large frozen shelled mussels from QB Food, 1 large squid (removed red skin & cross-sliced the squid), and 5 large prawns. i heat 20g butter on a flat non-stick skillet on high heat, and added the prawns, and seared them on all sides. then i added the squid & stir-fried until the squid curled up. i turned heat to low & remove the nicely flavoured prawns & squid so they were not overcooked. i then added the mussels & stir-fried for very short time & then added some soup, simmered & quickly removed the mussels. these were then put aside till serving.  i de-glazed the skillet & returned the content to the saucepan.

(for this time, i did not add flour or heavy cream or coconut milk but may experiment with those next time).

when ready to serve, put the prawn, squid & mussels in each bowl & added the boiling soup over them. voila! 🙂 & bon appetit!

c.h.e.f. andy

Ingredients:

soup base

  • 2 shallots chopped
  • 3 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 yellow onion slice
  • 1 large carrot diced
  • 2 tsp curry powder
  • 1 stalk curry leaves (20)
  • 2 tbsp miso paste
  • 1/2 tsp salt (or to taste)
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1/4cup rice

seafood

  • 1 large squid (remove skin & cross-cut)
  • 10 mussels
  • 8 large prawns (de-veined)

Directions:

  1. for the soup – chop 2 shallots, 3 cloves minced garlic, slice 1 yellow onion & dice 1 large carrot. fry shallots & minced garlic in 2 tbsp olive oil in a saucepan & add curry leaves & 2 teaspoon curry powder. add the sliced onions & carrots & coat them with curry powder & quickly add water. add 1/2 teaspoon tumeric for colour.  mix in 2 tablespoon of miso paste & 1 teaspoon of sugar & let the saucepan content boiled over low heat for 1 hr, adding water as required, to get the vegetable sweetness into the soup.  sieve the soup. add 1/4 cup rice & boiled for 20 more minutes. add a little salt to taste.
  2. for the seafood – lightly season the prawn & squid (separately) with salt & pepper.  heat 20g butter on a flat non-stick skillet on high heat. add the prawns, and sear them on all sides. then add the squid & stir-fry until the squid curled up. turn heat to low & remove the nicely flavoured prawns & squid so they are not overcooked. add the mussels & stir-fry for very short time & then add some soup, simmered & quickly removed the mussels. put aside.  deglaze skillet (with the soup) & return content to the saucepan.
  3. when ready to serve, put the prawn, squid & mussels in each bowl & added the boiling soup over them.

Superb Lunch Kaiseki @ Kuriya Dining on 16Nov2013

tokusen (特选) sashimi moriawase

tokusen (特选) sashimi moriawase=chutoro, akaebi, mirugai, uni wrapped with tai

had a most enjoyable lunch kaiseki at kuriya dining @ great world city with my wife on saturday 16.11.2013. they served an excellent daily S$58 lunch kaiseki (there was also a S$48 option which has sushi instead of sashimi). 🙂

this lunch was even better than the S$138 kaiseki dinner on 4.6.2013 i had here! the only caveat is that as the menu changes monthly, some months’ menu maybe more attractive than others, so it makes sense to check the website menu. for this day everything was par excellence!

kuriya dining november lunch kaiseki menu

november lunch kaiseki menu

sensai (前菜)=fish liver, chestnut, pumpkin jelly, reef squid, mushroom

sensai (前菜)=fish liver, chestnut, pumpkin jelly, reef squid, mushroom

angler fish liver

angler fish liver

chutoro

chutoro,mirugai(geoduck) in foreground

sashimi =maguro, kampachi, sake

sashimi moriawase =maguro, kampachi, sake

akaebi (red prawn) head

akaebi (red prawn) head

grilled prawn & fish with superb truffle sauce

grilled prawn & fish with superb truffle sauce

simmered cod in plum sauce

simmered cod in plum sauce

the first course, sensai (前菜) consisted of angler fish liver, chestnut, pumpkin jelly, reef squid, mushroom. angler fish (ugliest in the world?) liver was such a fine sublime dish, simply delish! the other items – bigfin reef squid etc were all good too. 🙂

the sashimi moriawase (maguron, sake, kampachi) was very good, sweet & fresh. for 1 set we topped up S$20 for the sashimi & got an exquisite tokusen (特选) sashimi moriawase with chutoro, akaebi, mirugai, uni wrapped with tai (top photo). this was super good value upgrade. the akaebi was the size of botan ebi (or bigger for this one) but not as sweet. we asked for the head to be deepfried. it was excellent every time. perhaps next time we would ask for aburi (torched) chutoro. 🙂

the grilled prawn & fish were good if ordinary but the truffle sauce was super.

the simmered cod with plum sauce was another par excellence dish. sweet, firm cod with slight sour sauce, the best! 🙂

ikura sake chirashi don set

chirashi don set (ikura, sake, tai)

dessert=macaron,fruits & vanilla ice cream

dessert=macaron,fruits & vanilla ice cream

& after so many quality dishes we got a very nice chirashi don (with loads of ikura, sake & tai) to finish off. this lunch was so gooood!

i always wonder why japanese cuisine had such a wide menu & yet almost no dessert, like only fruits & ice cream & maybe jelly…my impression is all japanese dessert are tea dessert of the red bean kind, and the best dessert in tokyo, shinjuku etc are all the western dessert which the japanese do so well, maybe better than most western places.

anyhow we had a good combination of western dessert – a macaron with vanilla ice cream (instead of jam), fruits & 1 scoop of vanilla ice cream).

this an excellent lunch menu that i would return for everytime. c/w keyaki’s weekend S$60pax brunch mini kaiseki, i would consider both the S$58pax menu & the upgrade S$78pax menu at kuriya dining a much better offering. 🙂

c.h.e.f. andy

Nikujaga=Japanese Braised Beef with Potatoes

nikujaga = japanese braised beef brisket

nikujaga = japanese braised beef brisket

was planning for a japanese theme dinner next month for friends & looking up recipes. i do a good miso belly pork & nobu miso cod currently, and my pan-fried angus or wagyu steak is a crowd favourite. so was thinking to add a braised beef starter & reading up the nikujaga (japanese braised beef & potatoes) recipe which used brisket or beef ribs, and the equivalent korean galbi jim recipe. 🙂 another dish i thought of adding was karei no nitsuke (simmered flatfish). that would make it a good 5-course dinner.

nikujaga = japanese braised beef brisket

nikujaga = japanese braised beef brisket

i had a 350g beef brisket in the freezer which i had intended to try out hong kong styled clear beef brisket soup (清汤牛腩) but had not started. & i had the other ingredients in the kitchen so this was an easy dish to prepare & cook. 🙂

i cleaned & diced the brisket to 1in pieces, and diced the carrot,potato, sliced the yellow onions & cut the bunch of spring onions in 2in stalks + slices for garnishing. i also sliced a 1in ginger & had 2 teaspoon minced garlic ready. for the braising sauce, i mixed the mirin, sake, light soy sauce & white sugar in a bowl.

i added 1 tablespoon oil to a dutch oven & added ginger, garlic & the diced brisket to lightly brown over medium heat, then added the braising sauce + water (can use chicken or vege stock) to cover the beef, and brought to boil. i transferred to an induction heater & set to 200W (which was enough to simmer & not boil off the water too quickly). i braised for 1.5hrs & added the carrot, potato & spring onion stalks, and braised for a further 3/4hrs, so total time about21/4hrs. reduced the liquids to get a more intense flavour but enough not to dry up. when the potatoes broke when pressed against the wall of the dutch oven, the braise was ready. i garnished with sliced green onions & served.

c.h.e.f andy

Ingredients:

  • 350g beef brsikets
  • 1 large carrot (diced 1in pieces)
  • 1 large potato (diced 1 in pieces)
  • 1 large onion (sliced)
  • few stalks of spring onions (cut 2in pieces + sliced for garnishing)
  • 1in ginger (sliced)
  • 2 tsp minced garlic
  • 2 tbsp mirin
  • 2 tbsp cooking sake
  • 2 tbsp light soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp white sugar

Directions:

  1. prepare – clean & dice the brisket to 1in pieces, and dice the carrot,potato, slice the yellow onions & cut the bunch of spring onions in 2in stalks + slices for garnishing. slice a 1in ginger & have 2 teaspoon minced garlic ready. for the braising sauce, mix the mirin, sake, light soy sauce & white sugar in a bowl.
  2. cook – add 1 tablespoon oil to a dutch oven & add ginger, garlic & the diced brisket to lightly brown over medium heat, then add the braising sauce + water (can use chicken or vege stock) to cover the beef and bring to boil. transfer to an induction heater & set to 200W (enough to simmer & not boil off the water too quickly). keep braising for 1.5hrs & add carrot, potato & spring onion stalks, and braise for a further 3/4hrs, so total time about 2 & 1/4hrs. reduce the liquids to get a more intense flavour but maintain enough not to dry up. when the potatoes break when pressed against the wall of the dutch oven, the braise is ready to serve. garnish with sliced spring onion.

Best Value Top Quality Lunch @ Au Jardin on 14Nov2013

mud crab potato salad, caviar & truffle

mud crab potato salad, caviar & truffle

NB=i also had the maybank 1 for 1 set lunch at bistro du vin @ 1 scotts road a few day later. 🙂

had 1 of the best value lunch with top quality food & good servings at au jardin on 14.11.2013. 🙂

had a few degustation dinners at au jardin quite many years ago. they were the best. 🙂 the set lunches were more affordable, and though i didn’t go often, i enjoyed them at full prices when i did. so 50% discount would be a real steal! 🙂

menu decouverte

menu decouverte

grilled angus ribeye & gratin potatoes

grilled angus ribeye & gratin potatoes

macha with citrus mousse & ice cream

chocolate fondant

chocolate fondant

we decided to order 2 menu decouverte (discovery) & 2 menu tradition. i chose the latter as i do rather good beef myself at home so tried lamb saddle instead.

the mud crab truffle (top photo) looked fabulous with huge truffle servings & judging from my friends’ exclamations, jolly good! i tried a piece of truffle, but didn’t feel it had much flavour though.

winter truffle = the price of gold!

white winter truffle = the price of gold!

anyhow the server told us this white winter truffle was the best c/w other seasons, and it was actually white but oxidised & shrank in the fridge as time passed, so they had to use up quickly enough. this was supposedly the price of gold=priciest food in the world. sure didn’t feel like it for this serving size. 🙂

both my friends picked the grilled ribeye, medium & medium well. sure looked good!

the chocolate fondant (lava cake) & macha mousse & ice cream looked wonderful too.

menu tradition

menu tradition

braised escargot, quill eggs, chorizo, truffle

braised escargot, quill eggs, chorizo, truffle

panfried red snapper, tomberry tomatoes

panfried red snapper, tomberry tomatoes

grilled lamb saddle, olive puree

grilled lamb saddle, olive puree

frozen expresso bombe

frozen expresso bombe

popcorn caramelsauce ice crea

popcorn caramelsauce ice crea

petit four

petit four

for menu tradition, both of us took the braised escagot with chorizo. escagot was good but not my favourite, more gentle & fine c/w canned top shells. i not much into the herb esacarot style but like the gratin version at dozo, so thought i tried out the braised version. i loved the chorizo, very “pang”=fragrant.

for the mains, my friend’s panfried red snapper looked fabulous, beautifully pan seared to golden. my lamb saddle was par excellence, best i tried! 🙂 quite interesting the miniature tomberries!

dessert were great too. mine was caramel sauce & ice cream with popcorn, my friend had the bombe, which was frozen chocolate cake with curd drizzled over & milk froth.

the petit four (means little oven) macarons was not great, far too sweet, though the yellow ones with lemon flavour combined well in taste & moderated the sweetness. 🙂

the price of lunch with maybank 1 for 1 promo was S$22.50++pax for menu tradition & S$32.5++pax for menu decouverte, nothing less than a steal! 🙂

c.h.e.f andy

Good Teochew Zi Char @ Mu Liang Zai Liang Kee on 12Nov2013

braised duck & tau kua

braised duck & tau kua

6 of us had teochew zi char at muliang zai liang kee on 12.11.2013.  few of us started a hawker & zi char tour some months back. it was mostly touch & go. the zi char at kok sen @ keong siak street was very good. woh hup @ hong lim was quite poor it was not worth a post!

mu liang zai liang kee is located along the same row of shophouses along havelock road at the opposite end of g7 liangkee. it is owned by the 5th son of ng bak liang (so  木亮仔=son of bak liang).  you can read the story of the 3 liang kee here.

we had a very enjoyable dinner, true tecohew comfort food, mostly good standard & tasty & at very affordable prices, w/o service & gst. we had 8 dishes adding up to S$136, about S$22+pax nett. 🙂

ter kar tan - pork trotters jelly (猪脚冻)

ter kar tan – pork trotters jelly (猪脚冻)

hae chor (虾枣)& liver roll (肝花)

hae chor (虾枣)& liver roll (肝花)

deep-fried tofu with minced pork (金牌豆腐)

deep-fried tofu with minced pork (金牌豆腐)

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yellow chives with prawns

yellow chives with prawns

chilli crayfish

chilli crayfish

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orh nee (芋泥)

orh nee (芋泥)

the pork trotters jelly (猪脚冻) was just ok, competent. imperial treasure, crystal jade & chui huay lim versions were much better. it was cheap though, a large portion for S$10.

the hae chor (虾枣) & liver roll (肝花) were quite good, no much different from other teochew restaurants.

the braised sliced duck was surprisingly good. i did not expect much as many teochew restaurant like huat kee had very average (or poor) braised duck, and the braised goose we had recently at chui huay lim was poor c/w with this duck. still i very much prefer eating the style of braised duck like the 1/2 duck for S$28 at imperial treasure c/w this tiny plate of sliced duck for S$18. that was just my personal taste preference though.

the deep-fried tofu with minced pork (金牌豆腐) was excellent, equal to that at kok sen.

the orh nerng or oyster egg was an average & passable dish (passable in both senses – not failed OR can skip). like good teochews the few of us still preferred the sticky orh luar version with sweet potato flour at hawker centres.

the yellow chives with prawns (S$18) came with 7 large prawns. the prawns were large, fresh & springy, so it was not a bad prawn dish. it was though a bad yellow chives dish, no wok hae & swimming in sauce. it should be much dryer with strong wok hae flavour. 🙂

the crayfish (S$28) i did not consider a well done dish (though some of my diner friends were obviously relishing it).  i preferred the ah orh version of teochew crayfish with yellow onions & egg. the crayfish itself were plump, bouncy & tasty. not quite sure what chilli it was, not sambal & not really chilli crab chilli, though it did go well with the steamed buns.

the orh nee (芋泥) was good too – another pleasant surprise!

overall it was a good dinner for S$22nett. will be back again!

c.h.e.f andy

Meepok Tar @ Jalan Tua Kong Lau Lim at Bedok Simpang on 12Nov2013

jalan tua kong lau lim meepok tar

jalan tua kong lau lim meepok tar

was watching nadal vs djokovic ATP World Tour Finals at friend’s place at 4am. nadal lost in straight sets even with the support of 3 ardent fans. 🙂 anyway he had a good year after being out for 7 months from injury.

it was 6.30am early morning on 12.11.2013. we decided to go bedok simpang for breakfast. so it had to be meepok tar at jalan tua kong lau lim. according to my friend, this was from the original stall. 🙂

jalan tua kong lau lim meepok tar

jalan tua kong lau lim meepok tar

meepok tar

jalan tua kong lau lim meepok tar

meepok tar

meepok tar

on this day it was a bit salty. the guy must have added a bit more fish sauce & usual loads of chilli. love the chilli. still, for me overall, it did not disappoint. meepok was enough qq (al dente), fish balls were sweet, and there were lots of minced pork & quite fatty ones & 3 la pok (deepfried lard) which i took 2. the fish cake & lean pork added to the overall experience. no prawn. but chilli was still the most important.

was it better than the jalan tua kong stall at 6th avenue? in fact i thought the 6th avenue one was better overall though perhaps this fishball was better! 🙂

c.h.e.f andy

Excellent Omakase @ Hachi on 9Nov2013

excellent kobachi (小钵) -amuse bouche

excellent kobachi (小钵) -amuse bouche

we had an immensely satisfying omakase dinner for 3pax at hachi on 9.11.2013. 🙂

omakase is like a chef’s table. there is no menu & the chef dishes out the freshest ingredients of the day. generally it is done like a kaiseki course dinner. at hachi we were served a 12-course autumn-theme dinner. the restaurant asked whether we had diet restrictions, as was customary. we of course ate anything & everything..haha. 🙂

the first dish was an excellent kobachi like an amuse bouche. i can’t really remember what it was except for the slice of japanese persimon sticking out. 🙂

sensai (前菜) platter - tofu, ginko nuts, a momiji (maple) flour cake. chestnut etc

sensai (前菜) platter – tofu, ginko nuts, a momiji (maple) flour cake. chestnut etc

sashimi moriawase (shima aji, hirame, hotate, kampachi)

sashimi moriawase (shima aji, hirame, hotate, kampachi)

oyster

raw oyster

sensai (前菜) platter was lovely – tofu, ginko nuts, chestnut & a momiji (maple) flour cake etc befitting the occasion.

next was a dobin mushi (teapot soup) which was simple & nice. didn’t take a photo though!

the sashimi moriawase consisting of shima aji, hirame, hotate, kampachi was excellent, very fresh & sweet. 🙂

we also had a very large plump juicy oyster. very good indeed!

hamachi kama (fish cheeks)

hamachi kama (fish cheeks)

steamed crabmeat, tofu, seaweed, melon dish

simmered crabmeat, tofu, seaweed, melon dish

ohmi wagyu rare

ohmi wagyu rare

hokkaido tomatoes

hokkaido tomatoes

light noodles with tempura batter

light noodles with tempura batter

next up was the hamachi kama (fish cheeks). this was among the best for this evening. i don’t order kama at japanese restaurants because it is usually quite a large helping & not everyone likes it. for this evening though it was excellent, 1 of the best kama i had, very well marinated, sweet (not too sweet) & tasty. we all liked it. 🙂

next was a simmered dish of crabmeat, tofu, seaweed, melon etc, delicate & tasty.

following that we were served ohmi wagyu (ohmi is 1 of the top 3 kuroge wagyu after matsuzaka & kobe) – the highlight of the evening. it was very flavourful & a nice rare. after that we had hokkaido tomatoes. they were super, sweet & refreshing. these are now served in many restaurants in Hong Kong & Singapore & xiyan served them as a starter dish in their rather expensive course meals.

to round off the meal, we had, in place of the usual gohan set (rice & pickles), a light noodle with some tempura batter. it was very satisfying.  after that we had a nice macha ice cream. 🙂

the price of the omakase was S$118pax. it was very good in quality of cooking & ingredients & also quantity. it was certainly a much better deal c/w the S$138pax kaiseki at kuriya dining & the S$170pax kaiseki at keyaki. c/w mikuni at 50% FAR discounts and Andy’s kaiseki (in jest only la! haha), mikuni was still the better deal. still hachi was an excellent alternative for good japanese kaiseki. will certainly be back. 🙂

c.h.e.f andy

Second 55ers Homecooked 11-course Dinner Buffet on 7Nov2013

See privacy & perspectives.

this the second RI 55ers homecooked dinner before 2013 runs out. the first RI 55ers dinner was on 5.5.2013. 🙂

27pax attended. 2 had to leave earlier, so did not manage to get in the group photo (though we could have had the cake & photo done earlier).

one friend brought a very nice cake for the 3 november birthday boys & the 55ers, wonderful chocolate & a nice biscuit base with contrasting texture. it was an excellent cake. that reminded me that another friend’s sister made excellent cakes (incredible camera cake & cupcakes during his 30yr wedding anniversary dinner last year! btw that dinner was better organised than most young couples’ weddings). we should order from mongstirs next time.

let the party begin – makan time! 🙂

thai prawn tanhoon appetizer

thai prawn tanhoon appetizer

beer can chicken

beer can chicken

teochew briased duck

teochew briased duck

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braised egg, tau kua, tau pok

braised egg, tau kua, tau pok

we had 11 dishes.

#1 the thai tanhoon by my domestic helper was good as always – tasty, spicy, tangy, just the right amount of chilli padi, lime & shallots.

#2 the teochew braised duck was 1 of my best (it was also very good the last 55ers dinner on 5.5.2013 though i did struggle a bit couple other times including cutting my fingers for the 1st & only time preparing meals). it was very “pang” ie flavourful & meat was tender & not “june” ie tough.

#3 the “pang” braising sauce was put to full use with the braised egg, tau kua, tau pok.

#4 the beer can chicken was i guess ok, tasty, but nothing special. the chicken was brined in sugar & little salt for 24hrs, rubbed with oyster sauce, & with herbs & garlic slices pushed under the skin. & roasted for 40mins “standing” on a 100plus can. this way of roasting enable all round browning (almost la!) w/o need to turn over the chicken.

miso belly pork

miso belly pork

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nonya curry chicken

nonya curry chicken

steamed black bean pork ribs

steamed black bean pork ribs

chilli sotong

chilli sotong

steamed red garoupa HK style

steamed red garoupa HK style

blanched HK kailan with shitake

blanched HK kailan with shitake

high heat dry wok garlic prawns

high heat dry wok garlic prawns

#5 the miso belly pork was inspired by a lunch at jason atherton’s pollen @ gardens by the bay. i was doing a good nobu miso cod & decided to use the same 3-day marinade recipe, and the char siew method (oven slow low temp cooking immersed in miso marinade so retaining the juices  & no drying out + high temp broiling). the meat was moist (as seen in the photos, just like the duck & chicken were moist) & tender & the miso flavour was excellent.

#6 nonya curry chicken was my consistently good dish, made w/o curry powder directly using a self-blended spice mix recipe, and of course unhealthy coconut milk, and so very fragrant in smell & taste. i love this curry.

the other dishes (plus #1 thai tanhoon) were ably done by my domestic helper.

#7 chilli sotong was excellent – a craving inducing dish.

#8 the steamed pork ribs looked so wonderful in the photo & was tasty with tender bite.

# 9 steamed red garoupa HK style was always good, & at 20% restaurant prices.

#10 blanched HK kailan was a good accompaniment after all the meat dishes. 🙂

#11 the last was my dry wok garlic prawns. wok needed to be dry & on open high heat to get charred flavour (so cannot cover as condensation would result in steaming the prawns). fish sauce is the chief ingredient to create the flavour & wok hae under high heat. prawns de-veined but not shelled so would bake in shell & not overcook & also not salty with reduced contact with fish sauce. 🙂

all fun moments come to a close. so this post is for memories, till the next get-together. 🙂

c.h.e.f andy