Monday, January 31, 2022

Healthy Soba IKI before the lunar new year with reds, tomatoes, oranges, wafu dressed burrata and what could be argueably construed as yu sheng

Healthy Soba IKI, One Raffles Place

Came back Healthy Soba IKI for a couple of their limited soba bowls. (十一十二, 十三)

Healthy Soba IKI, sashimi

They have sashimi sometimes. We've seen people order them. This was our first.

Healthy Soba IKI, avocado shirasu don

We managed to snag the last bowl of mini don for the day.

Healthy Soba IKI, burrata wafu dressing

That's burrata with wafu dressing - which from what I could tell contained olive oil and some shoyu. It's pretty good with the creaminess from the cheese. The thing that had never occured to me was that the milk component from the cheese took away most if not all of the heat away from the wasabi leaving it sweet. So wafu dressing, wasabi and burrata were a new combination of flavours for us which I thought was nice.

Healthy Soba IKI, lou hei soba

Lou hei soba - we wanted to try this when it was available last year but missed it. Those candied orange peel, smoked salmon and crushed peanuts basically made the dish. Pretty refreshing with the citrus flavours and light sweetness. 

Healthy Soba IKI, jewel tomato soba

I was curious about their jewel tomato soba which were flavoured with little beyond olive oil, dashi jelly, some shreds of shiso and toasted buckwheat. This plate of noodles tasted Japanese Italian. Tomatoes were sweet but not as sweet as I had imagined.

Healthy Soba IKI, One Raffles Place

Sunday, January 30, 2022

Re-revisiting Nanjing Impressions (南京大牌檔)

Nanjing Impressions (南京大牌檔), Plaza Singapura

It's been some time since we were last here.

Nanjing Impressions (南京大牌檔), madam chiang's nutritious beauty porridge

Madam Chiang's Nutritious Beauty Porridge. Again.

Nanjing Impressions (南京大牌檔), steamed glutinous rice with pork

Managed to try their glutinous rice with pork belly after so long. The glutinous rice was very tender. We were expecting the slices of pork belly to be the same but they were just hard. Surprisingly mediocre dish which we will never get again.

Nanjing Impressions (南京大牌檔), sesame julienned beancurd

Repeat order of their chilled julienned bean curd because we remember liking it the last time we had it. It's still good.

Nanjing Impressions (南京大牌檔), tender tofu with shrimp sauce

Another repeat order was their tofu in shrimp sauce. This was shrimp-y delicious. As good as we remembered it.

Nanjing Impressions (南京大牌檔), claypot cabbage with cured meat

Tried their claypot cabbage with waxed meat. Wasn't bad. It was spicier than I thought from the dried chillis. The waxed meat tasted like lup cheong.

Nanjing Impressions (南京大牌檔), sautéed beef tendons with leeks

What was impressive and new for us this time round was their sautéed beef tendon with leeks. Those tendons were tender and gummy while the leeks were lightly crunchy with sweetness. Would have no qualms getting these again the next time.

Nanjing Impressions (南京大牌檔), steamed rice

All these dishes just calls for steamed rice.

Nanjing Impressions (南京大牌檔), Plaza Singapura

Saturday, January 29, 2022

Shun Feng Roasted Delights (顺沣港式烧腊), Toa Payoh Central

Shun Feng Roasted Delights (顺沣港式烧腊), Toa Payoh Central

I changed my mind real quick here (#01-120, 177 Toa Payoh Central). Was intending to try their sui gao noodles and was distracted by the tray from the guy in front of me in the queue who ordered roast pork rice. So this ended up as char siew with roast pork and tau kwa. Haha. The roast pork wasn't bad but I swear the ones that the guy in front of me had looked much better.

What I was more impressed with was the char siew. I asked for the fatty one which turned out well caramelized with a respectable char. I'd come back for that again and maybe also the duck which I heard was the thing to try at this stall.

A week later...

Shun Feng Roasted Delights (顺沣港式烧腊), wanton mee sui gao char siew

I missed the duck again by having wanton mee with fatty char siew and a bowl of sui gao. The latter was pretty darn good as well packed with minced pork, shrimps and black fungus. My bowl of soup had tender vegetable stems. Those noodles were unimpressive on their own but with the chilli paste and pickled green chilli, it because a different thing altogether. What I ended up with was fusion of a savoury nuttiness from the red chilli (not very spicy but deliciously savoury) and a invigorating tanginess from the pickled green chilli. Nice.

Shun Feng Roasted Delights (顺沣港式烧腊), Toa Payoh Central

Friday, January 28, 2022

Làng Nướng Việt Nam (Lang Nuong Vietnam), Foch Road

Làng Nướng Việt Nam (Lang Nuong Vietnam), Foch Road

Heard about Làng Nướng Việt Nam just off Jalan Besar (18 Foch Road, tel : +65 9632 6039) a while back so I was intrigued. We tried some stuff that weren't so commonly found in most of the Vietnamese restaurants here.

Làng Nướng Việt Nam (Lang Nuong Vietnam), crispy fried hog's pudding

Dồi sụn chiên giòn - described as crispy fried hog's pudding on the menu. I dug around and learnt that it was some sort of cartilage sausage that might be made with various pig parts.The serving lady appeared concerned that we were trying to order it. The sausage was deep fried in a crisp casing with a filling texture that was pretty gristly. Every bite was filled with crunch from the bits of chopped up cartilage. I was getting star anise, black pepper and a bunch of other spices which I knew was in there but couldn't put a finger to.

Làng Nướng Việt Nam (Lang Nuong Vietnam), squid's beak with butter and baguette

This was described as sautéed squid teeth with butter and baguette. It's actually squid beak - the area which their teeth is located. These needed a lot of jaw work. Much more chewy than those I had previously. The 'butter' was a rich creamy sauce flavoured with coconut...and butter with some spiciness. What surprised us was that there were bits of fried pork lard in it too. Hell yeah it was good. Almost mopped the plate clean.  

Làng Nướng Việt Nam (Lang Nuong Vietnam), stir fried pho sliced beef

I ordered stir fried phở with beef and had imagined that it would look similar to Penang char kuey teow. But instead, those rice noodles were pressed into cakes, seared and sliced into pie shaped wedges. Lots of vegetable in there with the beef and also gravy. Tasted very much like a local hor fun with less salt.

Làng Nướng Việt Nam (Lang Nuong Vietnam), Foch Road

Thursday, January 27, 2022

Teochew Fish Porridge Da Pai Dang (潮州鱼粥大排档), Toa Payoh Central

Teochew Fish Porridge Da Pai Dang (潮州鱼粥大排档), Toa Payoh Central

Here's a bowl of twin fish (双鱼) soup with fish roe from Teochew Fish Porridge Da Pai Dang (#01-316, 183 Toa Payoh Central). This one had milk. Yes, this guys are just next door to Great Wall Chicken Rice. Couldn't be closer to each other. I remember seeing another stall at Seah Imm that looked similar so I'm wondering if they are different branches of the same stall.

I liked it. Pretty flavourful broth that came with thick slices of batang. Surprisingly, I kinda like the bits of fried egg floss they added in there. Will come back another time.

Teochew Fish Porridge Da Pai Dang (潮州鱼粥大排档), Toa Payoh Central

Wednesday, January 26, 2022

Claudine, Dempsey Hill

Claudine, beyond the white rabbit

Chef Julien Royer of the 3 Michelin starred Odette opens Claudine (39C Harding Road, tel : +65 6265 2966) and the world (maybe just this tiny part of the world) gravitates. What began as the journey for reservation started sometime middle of last November ended today. The wait was finally over. 

This spot is at the restored Ebenezer Chapel - or where many locals would remember as the church where White Rabbit used to be. Somewhere across the road from Atout.

Claudine, through the looking glass wine glass dried flowers

It's a pretty place. You know - stained glass windows, dried flowers along the walls, nice tilings and all through abundant natural light. Lots of people taking photos like tourists.

Claudine, sourdough iberico butter

They serve pretty good sourdough. The warm bread exuded a mild tanginess to the nose coupled with a light grainy smokiness along the crust. Crusty and tender in each slice. Reminded me of the bread at Belon. What further impressed was their Ibérico butter on the side - whipped into airiness, also lightly smoky, gently salted and very savoury. No one would be blamed for asking for seconds.

Claudine, saint nectaire croquettes

Got a couple of plates from their Prelude. Like this croquette of Saint Nectaire cheese with a dollop of vin jaune gel. Summary of the flavours could be a pungent creaminess from the cheese pairing with the fruity sweetness from the yellow wine in the gel.

Claudine, nougat de foie gras

That's their nougat de foie gras - a foie gras terrine studded with nuts and dried fruits. Though the menu mentioned just almond, cranberry and apricot, there was also pistachio and what I thought might be peanuts as well. Salt and pepper provided a finish which fused with the savoury sweetness of the creamy liver terrine.

Claudine, brioche

Believe it or not, that nougat de foie gras was even more enjoyable generously slathered across some of their airy buttery brioche.

Claudine, steak tartare fries salad

What have we here? Salade et frites.

Claudine, steak tartare lady

Steak tartare à la Parisienne is done à la minute - completed table-side with Argentinian grass fed beef.

Claudine, making steak tartare a la parisienne

This was our third table-side steak tartare. The previous ones were from db Bistro and L'Angelus.

Claudine, steak tartare a la parisienne

Not bad. No waxing lyrical here.

Claudine, vol-au-vent sweetbread morels cockscomb quenelle

The dish I was looking forward to most in this visit was their vol-au-vent. Reason being that the fillings included morel, sweetbread and cockscomb. There's chicken quenelle in it as well. All held together in the buttery pastry with their superb morel cream sauce. Costed a pretty penny but it was so good. I wished there was more sweetbread.

Claudine, baked alaska

Dessert was a baked Alaska.

Claudine, baked alaska

Claudine's had chestnut, pear and ginger; flavoured with Poire Williams. Tasted okay. We ordered it because we were intrigued by the combination of ingredients.

Claudine, coffee dried flowers and stained glass

Coffee's decent but not so strong. Was looking forward to something with a bit more kick after the rich meal.

Claudine, Dempsey

Tuesday, January 25, 2022

Even more pasta and pizza from Zazz Pizza

Zazz Pizza, Cross Street Exchange

Back at Zazz Pizza much faster than I thought we would. We were offered a couple of shots of grappa on the house at the end of the meal. I wonder if they remembered our faces. 😱

Zazz Pizza, meatball pomodoro

Pleasantly surprised by their pomodoro sauce for their meatballs. There's cheese and garlic flavour in it that mellowed the sour from the tomatoes. Meatballs also had a molten cheesy centre. The meat was marinated for flavour and while it wasn't bad, I'm usually more of a more is less kind of person when it comes to beef.

Zazz Pizza, seafood aglio olio

Pretty good seafood linguine aglio olio there. I'm getting a bit of garlic and something that might have been a savoury seafood stock - I cannot be sure. But we liked it enough to lament that there wasn't enough noodles. Prawns were sweet and mussels were plump. I think the point has been made.

Zazz Pizza, parma pizza

I've been wanting to try their Parma pizza because of those pomegranates that they sprinkled on top. Added some tanginess in that which doesn't happen in most Parma ham pizzas. The crust was exceptional today. I liked how chewy it was beneath the crusty surface. Pizza where I'd gladly finish the cornicione. That's why we keep coming back for their pizzas. 

Zazz Pizza, dark chocolate sorbet

Chocolate sorbet to finish (and affogato too!). The texture was just a little bit creamy and didn't feel so sorbet to me though. 

Monday, January 24, 2022

Xi'an Famous Food (西安名吃), Toa Payoh Central

Xi'an Famous Food (西安名吃), Toa Payoh Central

Not to be confused with Xi'an Famous Foods. This one (#01-518, 190 Toa Payoh Lorong 6, tel : +65 8693 8921) is singular. 😂 We've known of their existence for a while and I have been wanting to give them a try since.

Xi'an Famous Food (西安名吃), pumpkin millet porridge

We had pumpkin millet porridge. Gruel-like consistency with a light pumpkin and grain sweetness. Not bad if you're looking for something less intensely flavoured or if one is under the weather.

Xi'an Famous Food (西安名吃), cumin pork rou jia mo (肉夹馍)

One of the things I wanted to try from them was their rou jia mo (肉夹馍). This one was stuffed with pork stir fried with cumin and onions. The bun had a dense and dry 包 like texture similar to those from Huang Tu Di Xi’An Delights (黄土地西安小吃) and the defunct Xun Qin Ji (寻秦记) than the pastry types at Qin Ji Rougamo (秦記肉夹馍). Loved the cumin-y meaty bite in the strips of pork. I'd eat this again.

Xi'an Famous Food (西安名吃), biang biang mian

The other dish I was curious about was their biang biang mian. The flat noodles looked like they were made from one single long strip. Noodle texture was a little chewy.

Xi'an Famous Food (西安名吃), biang biang mian

The tomato sauce made it tangy and the chilli didn't add much heat. Not even after I put in a couple more spoons of them but those had a nice nutty aroma. Wouldn't mind eating this again but I'll be looking forward to try something else first the next time.

Xi'an Famous Food (西安名吃), Toa Payoh Central