Category Archives: Pastries

Takeaway Special! Pop Up Scrolls, T by Luxbite

scrolls

Pop Up Scroll
86 Smith Street
Collingwood
Vic 3066
+61 4 3384 9281
Pop Up Scroll on Urbanspoon

One Friday night, I turned to The Angmoh and asked him in a most casual manner, “Angmoh*, watcha gonna do tomorrow since I gotta work?” to which he rattled off his usual weekend pattern followed off with a “why? Can I get you something?”

Well, since he asked, I couldn’t say no, could I? And that’s how I got myself 3 delicious scrolls from Eat a Scroll in Collingwood. I left the flavours entirely in the hands of The Angmoh, which tested the waters of our relationship if he’d returned with those filled with ingredients I didn’t like. We haven’t broken up, so he chose well.

The Angmoh made away with a cream cheese scroll, a chocolate and caramel one and finally, one with peanut butter and banana. These 3 were brioche-based, although there are croissant-type ones too. I’ll be honest, I had them on the Monday later. And guess what, they were still fresh and delish. The scroll itself was soft and not too buttery and the filling was gentle with the amount of sugar in it. Even the chocolate and caramel scroll was just right in terms of sugar and richness, leaving you without the feeling of sick.

My absolute favourite scroll of choice is cinnamon and I hope Eat A Scroll will someday create some old-fashioned ones too.

*I do not really call The Angmoh “Angmoh”.

T by Luxbite
2/517 Flinders Lane
Melbourne
Vic 3000
+61 3 9629 9662
T By LuxBite on Urbanspoon

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(Left) Calamansi – jackfruit, chilli salt, longan, meringue, kaffir lime sherbet, vanilla tart $9
(Right) Yuzu – Raspberry, matcha marshmallow, meringue, baby shiso, vanilla tart $8

I swung into T by Luxbite after a shopping spree at Gorman. Shorts, skirt and raincoat poorer but fuelled with adrenaline and serotonin, I oohed and ahhed at the too-pretty-to-eat tarts on display. It was a hot day and already hyped from shopping, I found myself not craving chocolate. Instead, it was the lighter citrusy flavours that I was after.

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The tarts are priced according to their shape. I chose the Calamansi tart, which is circular, and the Yuzu tart, which is rectangular. Both tarts are filled with a rich citrus curd which is once again not too cloyingly sweet. The prominent taste of jackfruit in the Calamansi tart was very enjoyable. However, some of the flavours are lost on me, such as chilli salt in the former and shiso in the latter.

That tarts are lovely but I’ll wait till it’s much cooler before trying the Chocolate and Kuma tarts, which I’m sure will be fantabulous.

 

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Filed under CBD, Collingwood, Pastries, Sweets

A weekend in Sydney

Once a year, I dedicate a weekend to Sydney. One weekend of pure gluttony, where getting full is not an option and optimising every last bit of space in that second stomach is very much mandatory. Last year Fakebooo and I flew up for a weekend of pastries, cakes and brilliant Argentinian food and you can read all about it here. This year my itinerary was pretty much the same, except this time round, The Angmoh came along as my dining companion.

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His only request food-wise was to have yumcha. That’s how we found ourselves in The Eight Restaurant, gorging on prawn dumplings, steamed pork ribs and glutinous rice as soon our plane landed. The restaurant was quiet when we rocked up close to 11am, with trolleys piled high with steaming bamboo baskets. By the time we left though, it was packed and rowdy, the way every reputable yumcha restaurant ought to be. The food was pretty good: slippery fresh prawns housed in silky translucent skins, smooth beef balls with the delicate crunch of water chestnut and velvety soy curd in a gingery syrup.

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We walked out lugging our backpacks and hiked across town towards Woolloomooloo, for the one and only and my Sydney-must-have Flour and Stone. Here I indulged in a rich chocolate tart while The Angmoh nibbled on some fruit toast. Deciding against the panna cotta lamington to save space for dinner, we headed towards our hotel for an afternoon siesta.

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At 5pm, we were the first in line for Porteno. Having inadequate figures for a table booking, we decided to be kiasu and started camping an hour before the doors opened. Was the wait worth it? Hell yeah! Porteno panders to every carnivore’s wet dream where meats are grilled to perfection. Served in generous portions by cute waiters in leather aprons, every dish a sight for sore hungry eyes. My absolute favourite item, ironically, is a vegetable one. The grilled peppers are an absolute delight. Their skins blistered from high heat slip off to reveal soft flesh, succulent and sweet. Desserts here are excellent too, and I split an alfajores with The Angmoh. This was an amazing dish with crumbly buttery shortbread sandwiching a sticky caramel-like dulce de leche, all smothered in chocolate and then topped with an incredible brown butter ice cream. I was in dessert heaven.

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IMG_9417The next morning, we squeezed ourselves into a tiny café. Room 10 is a hole-in-the-wall which we’d chanced upon during our brief stroll in Kings’ Cross. We were counting the number of strip joints where a turn led us onto an unassuming laneway which had a handful of cafes and bistros. The morning crowd built quickly and we were lucky to get a table right away. The coffees were served hot and leant towards bitter. While The Angmoh enjoyed a slab of homemade banana bread with Pepe Saya butter, I worked off my morning gym session with a protein-heavy sandwich of smoked ham, triple cheese and smashed egg. Both dishes ticked all our breakfast boxes.

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Next on our agenda was another of my Sydney must-haves: Blackstar Pastry’s strawberry, watermelon cake with rose-scented cream. This has to be one of my all-time favourite cakes. Feminine in description and appearance, this cake is pure heaven with just the right amount of sweetness and perfect combination of floral and fruity flavours. It’s not only this cake that excels at Blackstar. The pastries too, are sensational. The Angmoh, after sampling the sausage roll, declared it to be “the best sausage roll of his life”. The flaky pastry is loaded with butter and filling was packed with flavour and spice, and even retained a resilient chewy texture. We took a couple of these bad boys back to Melbourne and The Angmoh’s dad proclaimed the very same.

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To kill time before dinner, I catched up on my zzz’s while The Angmoh enjoyed “Locke”. These odd arty-farty movies aren’t quite my thing but our final meal totally is. Gumshara Ramen sits in a foodcourt in Chinatown. The broth here is one of the best I’ve come across, with depth and stickiness achieved from boiling pork bones till kingdom come. The noodles and egg are cooked without any fault, retaining bite and wobble respectively. I enjoyed mine with a hit of black garlic and less salt. Needless to say, it went down a treat.

Sadly this concludes our weekend in Sydney. I’m already anticipating another foodie trip that will challenge the waistline and loosen the belt. Please hit me up for any mouth-watering delectable recommendations!

The Eight
9-13 Hay Street,
Haymarket
NSW 2000
+61 2 9282 9988
The Eight Modern Chinese Restaurant on Urbanspoon

Porteno
358 Cleveland Street
Surry Hills
NSW 2010
+61 2 8399 1440
Porteño on Urbanspoon

Room 10
10 Llankelly Place
Potts Point
NSW 2011
Room 10 on Urbanspoon

Black Star Pastry
277 Australia Street
Newtown
NSW 2042
+61 2 9557 8656
Black Star Pastry on Urbanspoon

Gumshara Ramen
211/25-29 Dixon Street
Hawmarket
NSW 2000
Gumshara Ramen on Urbanspoon

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Filed under Argentinian, Brunch, Chinese, Coffee, Japanese, Noodles, Pastries, Ramen, Sweets, Sydney, Travels, Yum Cha

Quick Bites: Pho Nom, Cacao Lab, Depot de Pain

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Venturing into Emporium feels rather surreal to me. It’s super bright, enhanced by a lot of white, stark in a sense and the myriad of elevators that do not connect directly with each other contribute to a general feeling of stepping foot into a sort of spaceship. But never mind all that, for when there’s food, all is good.

Emporium houses 2 dining spaces, one in the lower ground level and a vast food court up on the third. Most of these are franchises of famous establishments. Each were approached by the higher-ups of Emporium, who were striving for a sense of exclusivity and quality. To name a few from the food court, there’s Earl Canteen for sandwiches, Jimmy Grants for souvlakis, I Love Pho Express for pho (duh), and Chinta Ria Soul for Malaysian food. Down below pays homage to established names too, like Dumplings Plus and Ramen Ya.

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Pho Bo Saigon – sliced rare beef, brisket, meatballs $12

My sole purpose one afternoon, however, was a new introduction into Melbourne’s dining scene, Pho Nom. Pho Nom offers popular Vietnamese street food, from banh mis to Vietnamese spring rolls to pho. It was the latter that I was after, a piping hot soulful bowl of slurpy rice noodles and tender slices of beef in a flavoursome beefy stock. This is comfort food at its best, especially in the heart of a bitingly cold winter.

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Due to its locality in a shopping mall, it’s pretty much a self-service set up. Diners place the order at the cashier, wait in line for their food and take it away to their seats. Even the basil and beansprouts are piled high at the end of the counter, take as little or as much as you need. Thankfully, the seasoning sauces are generously scattered around the dining tables, if not, I can imagine a never-ending wait during peak times.

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Being a fusspot for pho, I was quite ready to critique and dismiss Pho Nom’s pho. Instead, I was blown away and left to eat humble pie. And boy did I lick and slurp every bit of it, well, not pie of course. The soup, boiled from Warialda beef bones, was compressed with an amazing amount of flavour and the beef was of the utmost quality. I’ll be honest and say it beats I Love Pho Express hands down (The Express, I’m afraid, is just not quite as good as the I Love Pho mothership in Richmond).

Pho Nom’s pho is my absolute choice in the CBD. But given an option, I’d rather journey to Richmond, for there’s nothing like having it in true authenticity: Ethnic suburb, cacophonic restaurant and proper non-disposable cutlery.

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(Top Left) Madagasca single origin chocolate eclair with crispy rice puffs $5.50
(Bottom Right) Audrey Hepburn – vanilla rose $5.50

But of course, no true meal is complete without something sweet. I weaved around corridors and landed at Cacao Lab for a couple of eclairs. Normally having an aversion to creamed sweets, I have no idea why I was craving these delicate pastries. But I was and so I indulged. I preferred the chocolate one, with its deep cocoa tones apparent throughout the dessert. The Audrey Hepburn’s white chocolate portrait had overwhelmed the subtle rose cream, much to my dismay.

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However, these just weren’t as good as the 2 that I’d sampled from Pain De Depot in Hawthorn. Pain De Depot’s choux pastry was fresh, light and crisp, despite eating them half a day after purchase. The rose and raspberry éclair was delightful with the pink flavours marrying well.

So this concludes what is most likely to be a continued series of quick bites with the remaining of Emporium food stores awaiting my tums.

Pho Nom
Store 33, Lower Ground
Emporium
287 Lonsdale Street
Melbourne
Vic 3000
+61 3 8609 8221
Phở Nom on Urbanspoon

Cacao Lab
Driver Lane
Melbourne
Vic 3000
+61 3 9662 4777
Depot de Pain on Urbanspoon

Depot de Pain
616 Glenferrie Road
Hawthorn
Vic 3122
+61 3 8803 7898
Cacao Lab on Urbanspoon

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Filed under CBD, Emporium, Hawthorn, Noodles, Pastries, Sweets, Vietnamese

Fukuryu Ramen, Traveller (NORA Charcoal Tarts)

Fukuryu Ramen
22-26 Corrs Lane
Melbourne
Vic 3000
+61 3 9090 7149
Fukuryu Ramen on Urbanspoon

Traveller
2/14 Crossley Street
Melbourne
Vic 3000
traveller on Urbanspoon

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It’s amazing what pictures of food can trigger off. Just slightly over 72 hours ago, Winston (The Hungry Excavator) posted a couple of pictures of new Ramen shop Fukuryu on Instagram. 24 hours later, Libby (The Very Very Hungry Caterpillar) posted a review on the very same place and the next thing I know, I’m there the very next day having lunch with Long Legs.

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Fukuryu is located in the same building as Sichuan House, albeit a couple of flights up. I was the very first customer that day and was greeted in a united rowdy “Irrashaimase”. As I doodled on my phone, checking on Facebook current affairs, the same cheerful greeting signalled the arrival of Long Legs.

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Signature Tonkotsu Ramen $9.90

We quickly got down to business. There’s was no fussing about, we knew we what we wanted and got straight into ordering the tonkotsu ramen each. This has got to be one of the best ramen broths in Melbourne. The soup alone blew me away: it was rich with pork flavours and had a strong taste of garlic. The noodles are bouncy, the soft boiled egg soft and gooey and it came with my favourite, marinated bamboo shoots. Long Legs kept going ‘Yum’ as she slurped up mouthfuls of noodles and soup.

We left, smiles on our faces and bellies thoroughly satisfied to the hearty cheer of “Itterasshai”.

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But I’m not done yet. I must mention what I did before heading into Chinatown. I must mention breakfast at Traveller, a relatively new coffee joint on the narrow strip of Crossley Street, the very same street of famous Melbourne eateries Von Haus and Gingerboy.

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Traveller is conspicuously small, sits just a rough handful and is a perfect place to chill and enjoy a Seven Seeds coffee. And of course, these.

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(Clockwise from Left) Lemongrass ginger brulee, Chocolate ganache with navel orange puree and popping candy, Coconut pandan with toasted puff rice $5 each

These ebony-cased beauties are charcoal tarts with the most imaginative and delicious fillings. The greedy oinker in me ordered 3 with the intention of taking them away for afternoon tea. As I sat and sipped on my piccolo latte, something felt amiss and I simply had to fulfil it by munching into the lemongrass brulee tart. The pastry is firm with a good crunch and there is no unpleasant taste of carbon or charcoal. The brulee had a nice torched surgary crisp and the custard was smooth and creamy with lovely flavours of lemongrass.

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Piccolo latte $4

I hear this and the pandan tarts sell out quick, so go early and have one. The only problem will be settling on a flavour, but your mouth will thank you once you do.

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Filed under CBD, Coffee, Japanese, Noodles, Pastries, Ramen, Sweets

HM Quan, T.Cavallero and Sons, Footscray Rickshaw Run

HM Quan
Shop 5
68-82 Hopkins Road
Footscray
Vic 3011
+61 432 423 979
HM Quan on Urbanspoon

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Cookie Monster suggested lunch at HM Quan after reading about it from Lauren (Footscray Food Blog).

Located opposite Footscray market, I was taken aback when I stepped foot into the restaurant. There was fake grass, bamboo dining sets and the sound of running water. It didn’t quite fit the suburb but hey, it certainly was cool.

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(Clockwise from Top Left): Congee $2.99, Caramelized pork $2.99, Shredded bamboo stirfried $2.99, Caramelized fish $2.99

The menu offers plain congee with a variety of condiments to choose from, some bun (rice vermicelli) dishes and a couple of rice items. Cookie Monster and I had a bowl of congee each, with sides of caramelised fish, caramelised pork and chilli bamboo. I was keen to try the coffee avocado smoothie but unfortunately it wasn’t available that afternoon.

The food was simple. Plain congee with just the right consistency (some can be done too thick or runny), with sweet charred meats and tender bamboo shoots marinated in chilli oil. Cookie Monster and I couldn’t complain, especially when we walked out, nicely full and having only spent $15 between the 2 of us.

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HM Quan offers comfort and simplicity. Bask in the green, take in the peaceful trickle of water and down some soul-soothing congee. But do not leave Footscray just yet, coz down the road, there are 2 delicious snacks that will fill the gap for peckish afternoon tea: Nhu Lan’s breadrolls and T.Cavallaro’s famous cannolis.

T. Cavallaro & Sons
98 Hopkins Street
Footscray
Vic 3011
+61 3 9687 4638
T. Cavallaro & Sons on Urbanspoon

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Our handmade cannoli – filled with ricotta $3.40 each (takeaway)

T.Cavallaro and sons is a family business that has been around for more than 50 years and offers Melbourne’s best cannolis. The recipes are authentically Sicilian and sweet treats such as biscotti and cakes are available. I was after the renowned cannoli which are filled with either vanilla and chocolate pastry cream or ricotta. I had a ricotta-filled one to go which I devoured very quickly with supreme satisfaction. The filling is surprisingly light and not too sweet and housed in a crunchy deep-fried cookie-like shell.

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Footscray offers a crazy abundance of food options. And what better way to experience it than on a rickshaw? The Footscray Rickshaw Run is part of the Melbourne Food and Wine Festival that is created by the Footscray Traders’ Association. It involves a foodie adventure of 6 stops around Footscray, with food sampling, kitchen lessons and entertainment, going from place to place on a rickshaw.

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When Lauren asked for volunteers as rickshaw pullers, I shot my hand up thinking “why not, it’d be pretty fun”. A week later, I found out that Fakebooo was attending the Footscray Rickshaw Run and I arranged for Lauren to have my shift coincide with Fakebooo’s session. Fakebooo had The Angmoh come along as his plus one, and that’s how I ended up pulling both boyfriends in my rickshaw.

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(Picture courtesy of Fakebooo)

I shall now share my experience as a volunteer rickshaw puller. It is not hard, trust me, I managed to pull 140kg of total boyfriend weight. The journey can be somewhat staggered and contorted, especially if there is a bit of delay at particular stops. My legs were mostly between stops 1-2, 1-2-3, 1-2-3-1 and 5-1 (which is the longest and most tiring of the routes). This also means that I did not get to pull The Angmoh and Fakebooo throughout their entire Footscray tour. Traffic, both human and vehicular, can be somewhat tricky to navigate, especially during peak hour. And even stationary objects, like dustbins and parked bicycles, can also contribute to a bit of tight squeeze when you’re pulling a rickshaw on the pavement. At the end of the session I had worked up a bit of sweat, developed thickened calluses and lost a tiny bit of skin from repeated abrasion. To all rickshaw uncles out there, respect.

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The Angmoh really enjoyed his Footscray tour. He sampled more than a fair amount of food in the following itinerary:

  1. D&K Live Fish: freshly shucked oysters
  2. Little Saigon Market: tropical fruit (rambutans, longans, lychees)
  3. Sen: rice paper rolls (rolling lesson included)
  4. Phong Dinh: hu tieu, a rice noodle soup
  5. To’s Bakery: coconut pancakes, sugarcane juice, drum entertainment and massage
  6. Sapa Hills: bun cha ha noi (rice vermicelli with chargrilled pork)

pull rickshawwAngmoh pulls RS
(Pictures courtesy of Fakebooo)

I thought he might need to work off some of his dinner, so I enlisted him to pull the rickshaw for the final leg of the tour, while Fakebooo and I sat and enjoyed the breeze in our hair. Thanks honey, I love you.

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Having had a long day and The Angmoh having an early start the following morning, I didn’t stay for the meal provided at the end of the rickshaw run. Instead, Lauren had kindly organised a takeaway meal from Sen. As we made our way over to collect it, the lady boss recognized The Angmoh and was astonished to hear that he had dined comfortably while his girlfriend was out on the roads slaving away. As she handed over the takeaway bag, she bade me good night and told The Angmoh that next year the roles have to be reversed. The takeaway meal was bun cha ha noi, and I ate every single bit of it in my drained exhausted self. There was pickled vegetables, fresh herbs, bouncy noodles and tender charred pork. It was a heartening meal, which I’d desperately needed at 10.30pm that night.

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The Footscray Rickshaw Run turned out to be an enjoyable experience. Thanks Lauren, Kenny (Consider The Sauce), Rebecca, Mick and Matthew for the wonderful company. Fakebooo will be sharing his experience, so stay tuned here!

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Filed under Footscray, Melbourne Food and Wine Festival, Pastries, Sweets, Tours, Vietnamese

Travels: Singapore, Part I

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The Angmoh and I travelled to India and Singapore in October 2013. It was our first overseas trip together and he was keen to check out the country from which his girlfriend was. Of course, meeting the Singlish-slurring family members was inevitable. On the good side, there was new food to try, with an almost inexhaustible variety to choose from.

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The first night in Singapore was a brief stopover before moving onto India, but packed a hell of a punch nonetheless. The Angmoh met 9 family members and sampled over fifteen types of local fare. My relatives went all out to welcome the foreigner. My brother and sister-in-law took us to Bedok Central for a classic carbilicious Singaporean breakfast of soon kueh, chwee kueh, chee cheong fun, fish ball noodles and soup kambing. This of course needed washing down with kopi and soy bean milk. Dinner was a heavy affair of meeting the extended family who had gone all over the island to get takeaway from various eateries. There was mee siam, rojak, roast chicken, tau kwa bao, poh piah, chilli crab, achar, satay, char kway teow and or luak (oyster omelette).

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We returned to Singapore 15 days later for more eating adventures. The Angmoh fully intended to play the part of tourist, so my parents took him to Chinatown. He had char siew and roast duck rice for breakfast and sampled bak kwa from the famous Lim Chee Guan. We cut through the CBD towards Marina and stopped for tea at Suntec City. Over here I fulfilled cravings of kueh tutu, a steamed fluffy cake filled with dessicated coconut or peanut.

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Our trip included a stay at Marina Bay Sands (MBS), famous for the casino in which requires locals to pay a $200 entry fee each time (but is free for foreingers) and of course, the infinity pool. Before checking in, we had chicken rice at Katong Shopping Centre. This place serves the best chicken rice in Singapore, in my honest opinion. The chicken (both steamed and roasted) is tender and flavourful, and the tasty chicken-fat cooked rice is perfect for drizzling dark soy and chilli all over. Soup and pickled vegetables (or achah) is complimentary.

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The Angmoh, a lover of tea and scones, insisted to stop for just that at TWG. While he lathered on clotted cream tea-infused jam onto his warm fruit scones, I nibbled delicately on macarons. This is one place where drinks are pricier than the food and tea is particularly steep (pun intended). However, the price is justified by the quality of the brew.

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After soaking up the views from the pool, we headed to The Black Swan for dinner with the girlfriend’s girlfriends. The Angmoh and I both had the burger, which I admit, is a far cry from any of the burgers mentioned in my burger posts. Dessert was a sinful chocalatey affair.

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The next day, I introduced The Angmoh to yong tau foo. Most stalls would have a good variety of leafy greens, fish-stuffed vegetables and deep fried delights to choose from. They are eaten with noodles in a soy bean-based stock and can make a healthy meal, if you do not pick any of the deep fried items. Over-ordering can commonly occur because each item looks so small but before you know it, the carbs and soup will kick in and fill you up. The Angmoh and I had about 6 items each and we were full. We walked off lunch at Gardens By The Bay, joined by Mum. Gardens By The Bay is an beautiful picturesque man-made park. The grounds are extensive and includes 2 oppositely-themed glasshouses, alienish urban trees, ethic-themed mini-gardens and plenty of greenery. My favourite was the Flower dome, a glasshouse which mimicked the arid deserts of South America and the Mediterranean, with bloated baobaps and pebble-like succulents.

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During our last couple days in Singapore, we went “prawning”, checked out the night scene at Clarke Quay and did the Henderson Tree Top Walk with Dad. The Angmoh tried durian, which he “does not mind but will not order”. Brother had him try a famous rojak in Toa Payoh. I was pretty “meh” about it. I suppose the long queue stems from the generous amount of heh ko (fermented prawn paste) and bunga kantang (ginger blossom) in the salad.

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On our very last day, I made a dash to Tiong Bahru Bakery to try the reknowned Kouign Amann. It was sweet, flaky, delicious and everything a good pastry should be… until Lune Croissanterie. (I’m now extremely spoilt and will rather queue at 7.30am on a weekend morning for one of Kate’s precious goods.)

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This concludes the first half of our Singapore/India holiday. Stay tuned for more travel and eating adventures!

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Filed under Burgers, Hawkerfood, Pastries, Singapore, Travels, Wanderlust

Kitchen Workout 4: Vegan Pineapple Tarts

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Having been away from home for the past 9 years and missing out on multiple Chinese New Year celebrations, this time of the year usually leaves me slightly forlorn and homesick. I miss the chaos, the crowds, the redness of it all. I miss the tedious chore of travelling from house to house to house to pay respects and collecting red packets. I even miss the kaypoh questions like “got boyfriend or not” or “when are you going to graduate ah” even though I’ve been out in the workforce for the past 4 years. Most of all, I miss getting together with my family and eating as a unit.

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Homemade Yu Sang

Reunion dinner always has all of us gathered at my grandparents’. We’d cater, and without fail, delicacies such as sharks’ fin soup and steamed fish would grace the table. My aunt would have started making pineapple tarts several weeks in advance. Dad would prepare his highly sought after pork belly, hanging it to dry a good 24 hours before marinating and roasting it.

peanut cookies
Homemade peanut cookies

For the past couple of years, I’ve started following in my grandma and aunts’ footsteps: pineapple tarts. The jam was made from scratch with no referred recipe and the pastry was from Fakebooo’s blog. 2 years ago, I hosted a Chinese New Year get together for my colleagues, which you can read about here. It was a vegan affair, and the most challenging part was making the goodies without eggs and butter. Nevertheless, it turned out to be quite a success and my colleagues, Caucasian and all, got into the spirit of lo hei and made a wonderful delectable mess.

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This year, pineapple tarts were to be made once more (of course). I had the intention of gifting some to Goth Mum and made them vegan again. Pineapple tarts are pretty simple to make, just laborious. I recommend making the jam and the pastry on 2 separate days, for the whole assembly of these tarts take up the most time-consuming portion. My preference for pineapple jam sways toward the sour, so feel free to crank up the sugar to your liking!

Pineapple Jam

Ingredients:

1 ripe pineapple
1½ tablespoons brown sugar
1 cinnamon stick
2 star anise

grate

Method:

  1. Grate pineapple. (Do not process it, that will cause the jam to lose its textural appeal)
  2. Tip grated pinapple, juice and all, into a saucepan and add the sugar and whole spices.
  3. Cook, stirring frequently, until the mixture has significantly less liquid and is sticky.
  4. Set aside and cool.

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Pastry (adapted from GetYourVeganFreakOn)

Ingredients:

225g plain flour
100g vegan margarine (I used Nuttlelex)
pinch of salt
2 tablespoons cold water

Method:

  1. Combine flour, nuttlelex and salt in a large mixing bowl
  2. Rub the nuttlelex into the flour
  3. Once mixture resembles wet sand, add cold water a drizzle at a time. Knead and add more water until the dough forms a ball
  4. Wrap in clingwrap and place in the fridge for at least 2 hours

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Assembly:

  1. Pat and roll out dough until approximately 5mm thick
  2. Use pastry cutter to cut out tart bases and set them on a lined baking tray
  3. Spoon a teaspoon of jam into your palm and roll into a ball. Place the jam ball in the middle of tart.
  4. Bake at 190 degrees for 12-15 minutes
  5. Place on cooling rack once done

(Optional: eggwash glaze can be substituted with melted nuttlelex or vegetable oil)

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These little babies can be gifted or stashed for secret binging.

bryan food
(Top) Ayam Buah Keluak
(Bottom) Chap Chye

My Chinese New Year this year pretty much consisted of work, a couple of dinners with my favourite boys, more work and some kitchen exercise. Reunion dinner was a rowdy affair at Papparich. 3 days later, Fakebooo hosted a dinner at his. He had made Ayam Buak Keluak (it was oh so sedap!) and Chap Chye. I contributed a homemade yu sang which consisted of grated carrot, cucumber, daikon, ginger, candied fruit, pomelo, nuts and sesame seeds. It was The Angmoh’s first Lo Hei and he absolutely loved it.

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Lo Hei! Huat Ah! (Picture courtesy of Fakebooo)

So Happy Horsey Lunar New Year! Congrats and prosper, have ten thousand successes, stay healthy always and be annually fishy!
Ps. These are rough translations of Chinese wishes!

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Filed under Chinese New Year, Domestication, Kitchen Workout, Pastries, Recipes, Sweets, Vegan