High Tea Buffet at the Lobby Lounge Conrad Centennial 26th February 17

26th February 17 was a special day cos I was going to see Jacky Cheung’s A Classic Tour at Singapore Indoor Stadium and Joyce suggested why not we go for a high tea first before the concert and she made a reservation via Chope.

I was early for our reserved time at 3pm but the wait staff promptly showed me in to our reserved table. The Lounge was quiet and I liked it that the tables were set far apart enough that you won’t hear the conversation from the next table.

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Included in the buffet is a choice of one Gin and Tonic and unlimited choice of tea and coffee. As Joyce was not here yet I started off with an Earl Grey.

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Feeling hungry, I started on the food options. While the spread is not as huge as buffet goes but I feel the quality was not bad. I really like the smoked duck couscous salad.

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Fresh oysters, mussels and prawns were offered and oysters ran out super fast and I think as there were not a lot of customers, they did not replenish so I guess I was lucky that I managed to get 3 pieces.

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The cooked food like fried rice and stir fry beef were so so but I like the kueh Pie Tee. The shell was crispy and do not have the oil taste.

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The scones were served and not available via the buffet table so do be sure look out for them. I asked for both cream cheese and clotted cream to go along with the scones. Surprisingly, l like the cream cheese better.

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I selected the Ransom Old Tom and the wait staff poured my tonic for me and it’s pretty nice so do make your choice to get one of it since it’s factored into the cost.

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The desserts here are definitely quality esp the raved Chocolate Royal Hazelnut Crunch cake which is Conrad’s Signature cake. It tastes just like Roche chocolate!

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The cost was at $38++ per pax which I feel was value for money so I think it’s worth it to go again and enjoy a leisurely afternoon in a lovely posh setting.

Lobby Lounge, Conrad Hotel (website)
High-Tea Buffet
Weekday: 3pm to 6pm | Weekend: 2pm to 6pm
For reservations, please call +65 6432 7483.

 

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Chives Dumplings / Jiaozi 韭菜饺子

I love jiaozi and regardless they are cooked in soup or pan fried, they are simply delicious. I used to get the frozen ones but they are quite expensive and no matter what it is not good to eat too much preserved food. So instead of thinking about making them, I finally got down to it and made them using ready-made wrappers.

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Ingredients (makes about 26 dumplings)

  • 250gm of minced meat best with a bit of fats
  • 100gm of chives
  • 2 tsp of corn flour
  • 1 tbsp light soya sauce
  • 1 tbsp fish sauce
  • 1 tsp hua diao wine
  • Dash of white pepper
  • Dash of sesame oil
  • some grated ginger (I forgot to add)
  • 1 packet japanese gyoza skin wrapping

Steps

  1. Wash and pat dry the chives and chop into small pieces
  2. Add the chives and mix with minced pork and seasonings and chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes before wrapping.
  3. Prepare a small bowl with some water for sealing dumplings
  4. Place a heaped spoon of filling on wrapper and use finger to damped the edge of the dumpling skin. How to fold the dumpling –  https://youtu.be/zhvKFEudJt8
  5. Chill dumplings first to set before freezing if not cooking immediately
  6. Heat a bit of oil in pan. Place dumplings in a single layer without touching.
  7. Fry until bottom is golden brown and add some water to about half of dumpling height and cover with lid and cook until water evaporates.
  8. For soup, just throw in the frozen dumplings to cook until it floats up.

Kimchi Fried Rice

Yes, I am finding ways to eat up my own homemade kimchi. I did a mini hotpot last week and it was so easy with ready stock and some pork belly. This round I am going to do kimchi fried rice which is like a simple comfort food for Koreans. One of my memories of this dish was eating it at Nami Island the shooting locale of the Korean hit drama Winter Sonata before the island got overran with zealous tourists.

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Ingredients

  • 3 cloves of minced garlic
  • 1 bowl of kimchi chopped into bite size pieces
  • 1 – 2 bowls of cold rice
  • 1/2 tsp of sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp of olive oil
  • 1 egg

Sauce

  • 1 tbsp gochujang or kimchi paste
  • 1/2 tsp light soya sauce
  • 1 tbsp kimchi juice

Steps

  1. Fry the egg sunny side up – grease pan and crack an egg into the pan. Cook about 1-2 minutes until egg yolk is just set
  2. Heat oil in pan and fry garlic and then add kimchi and stir fry for 1 min.
  3. Add rice and pour sauce over. Stir fry on high heat until rice is dry and absorbed the sauce evenly. The rice will “pop” when it’s dry.
  4. Drizzle sesame oil over and serve with egg.

Note: As confirm with friends who have made this dish, water should not be added.

Recipe from Noobcook

http://www.noobcook.com/kimchi-fried-rice/

Geylang Koung’s Wanton Mee on 22nd February 17

Been cooking a lot ever since I moved so never really gotten around to exploring the food options near my new place. Yesterday had a chance to try out this Wanton Mee that was just around the corner from my house.

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Apparently, there white and dark sauce version. I prefer the dark sauce version which is tastier. I find the white version some what bland. The char siew is pretty good, not reddish type that is too lean and dry. Apparently, this wanton mee is a famous and very long established one and I must say they do have standard.

Address:
205 Sims Avenue (Geylang Lorong 21A), Singapore 387506

Okonomiyaki

This has always one of my favorite things to eat in Japan and I was quite happy to find the premix Okonomiya flour from Dasio which makes it even easier to make this tasty dish at home.

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Ingredients (1-2 pax) 

  • 100gm of Dasio Okonomiyaki mix
  • 90ml water
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 – 1/2 of a small cabbage
  • Some frozen mixed veggies
  • 200gm of bacon or thinly sliced pork belly
  • A bit of Olive oil
  • Japanese mayo

Okonomiyaki Brown Sauce

  • 3 tbsp of tomato sauce
  • 1 tbsp of Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tbsp of soya sauce

Steps 

  1. Cut or shred cabbage into small pieces
  2. Mix water, egg plus okonomiyaki mix in a big bowl until there are no lumps
  3. Cut some of the bacon / pork belly into small pieces
  4. Mix both cabbage and the meat into the batter – there will be enough for 4 portions.
  5. Heat olive oil in frying pan and scoop in one portion.
  6. Flatten the portion to ensure even and fast cooking
  7. Pan fry for about 2-3 minutes
  8. Add few pieces of bacon / pork belly on top of the pancake
  9. Flip and cook for another 2-3 minutes -try not to add too much batter as it might not cook thoroughly.
  10. Check that pancake is cooked and serve hot with sauce and mayo

Homemade Kimchi

I was invited over to Alanna’s place a couple of days ago for a kimchi making session and it’s actually a lot easier than I expected to make this famous Korean food at home. It definitely needs a better part of a whole day as the vegetables need to be sliced, cabbage to be salted and preparing the paste. It might not be the most traditional way to prepare but it taste pretty good and of course it’s much fresher!

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Ingredients

  • 1 whole head of wong bok cabbage
  • 2 carrots
  • 1/2 white radish
  • 12 cloves of garlic
  • 1 whole onion
  • Stalks of chive or spring onion

Paste 

  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tbsp glutinous rice flour
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 3/4 cup of chili flakes
  • 2 tbsp of Gochujang  Hot pepper paste
  • 2/3 of 1/4 cup of fish sauce
  • 1/8 cup of fermented shrimp chincalok

Steps

  1.  Julienne the carrots, radish and chives
  2.  Chop up garlic and onion finely
  3. Using low fire, mix the glutinous rice flour with the water
  4. Add sugar and boil the mixture and set aside to cool
  5. Wash, drain and cut cabbage into long sections and salt each leaf layer by layer in a huge pot. The cabbage needs to be turned every 30 mins. This is for the salt to extract the water content from the cabbage until it is softer
  6. Add chili fakes, gochujang and fish sauce to the cool glutinous rice paste.
  7. Mix and add in the carrots, radish and chives. Mix well and set aside.
  8. Check that cabbage has soften adequately.
  9. Rinse cabbage to remove all the salt and drain off the water.
  10. Use a dry cloth to pat the excess water from the cabbage leaves.
  11. Coat and spread the paste evenly on each layer of cabbage
  12. Roll the cabbage up compactly and put into a glass or plastic container. Note that Kimchi will leave a taste stain on the container. Flatten the rolled up cabbage neatly and cover the container.
  13. Leave the container in room temperature to ferment further for at least 24 hours.
  14. Remember to open the container to release the build up gas once in the morning and once at night.
  15. After that store kimchi in the fridge.

Stir-fry Kailan with Beef / Pork

Kailan is not a vegetable that everyone likes as the taste can be slightly bitter. The usual way that I like to eat it is to stir fry this vegetable with a generous dose of hua diao wine and also some meat. My mum usually add pork but this time I decided to use beef instead.

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Ingredients

  • 1 packet of kailan (choose baby kailan for less stems or bitter taste)
  • Sirloin or flank steak sliced thinly (I used 8 pieces of shabu shabu beef) / Pork
  • 3-4 slices of ginger
  • 1 tsp of minced garlic
  • Olive oil

Marinade for Beef 

  • 1 tbsp oyster sauce
  • 1 tbsp hua diao wine
  • 1 tsp grated ginger
  • 1 tsp corn starch
  • 1 dash of sesame oil
  • 1/4 tsp of sugar

Stir-fry Sauce

  • 1 tbsp oyster sauce
  • 1 tbsp hua diao wine
  • 2-3 tsp water
  • 1 tsp corn starch
  • 1 tsp water

 

Steps

  1. Marinate beef for at least 30 mins or overnight
  2. Wash and cut kailan to uniform size
  3. Add oil and stir-fry beef / pork until redness is gone but no need to cook through
  4. Remove beef from pan and add some oil
  5. Fry garlic and ginger until fragrant
  6. Add stalks to fry first if there is a lot else add in all vegetables
  7. Pour in sauce once leaves become soft
  8. Add back beef /pork to stir-fry and pour in cornstarch mixed with water
  9. Wait for sauce to thicken then dish up

Jasmine’s Birthday Lunch at 九宫格火锅 11th February 17

This is one of the latest food trends in Singapore – steamed towers or platters of seafood so we decided to try one out since Jasmine’s birthday was right round the corner. From recommendations by eating bloggers – we decided on this restaurant. I arrived early before 12 noon as I went to get a birthday cake and was welcomed by the friendly Chinese staff even though they were actually having lunch.

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This restaurant serves both the steamed seafood platter and steamboat so you need to tell the staff which one you are having so that they will pass you the right menu. We ordered the $148 set mean for 4-5 pax.

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The whole huge steamed platter is prepared inside the kitchen and takes a little while so have to wait a bit to eat but it really looks impressive as the male staff carries it out and put it on the stand. There are 12 mini lobsters, 1.5 lobsters, 2 full crabs, 4 oysters, 8 scallops, 16 prawns and I didn’t count how many lala. Disposable gloves are provided but it’s actually easily to eat with bare hands I feel.

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Overall the seafood was very fresh and the broth was very very rich towards the end with all the simmering seafood. Only comment is that both the mini lobster and the crab was a bit hard to eat as the shell is pretty intact. This is why I prefer to eat crab at home so that I can slowly pick my way through the meat.

九宫格火锅

470 North Bridge Road #01-02, Bugis Cube, Singapore 188735

Nearest MRT: Bugis

CNY Dinner at White Restaurant (Sembawang White Beehoon) at Toa Payoh 9th February 17

Met up with my fellow bunny welfare volunteers for CNY lohei and dinner. Yifeng recommended we visit  the White Restaurant cos the food is pretty good and price pretty reasonable. Without further ado, here are the photos and comments:

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Lohei 鱼生 – Portion looked small but actually it’s ideal as we ordered a lot of food. Liked it that the sauce was not too sweet and overpowering.

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Sambal Lala 叁巴啦啦 – Recommended dish. Sambal was fragrant but not spicy and the lala was fresh and the meat very tender.

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Signature Meat and Seafood Roll 招牌虾枣 – Recommended dish. This was delicious and all ingredients very fresh. There is a roll of bean curd skin right in the middle of the roll. The roll was generous and full of fillings.

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Signature White Beehoon 招牌白米粉 – Recommended dish. Again ingredients was generous and the broth very flavorful. The beehoon soaks up the broth nicely and while the taste is somewhat lighter than the beehoon from typical zhichar stalls but it’s still good. I had like 3 helpings of it.

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Sweet and Sour Pork 咕噜肉 – Pork was crispy and goes well with the tangy sauce which is a hint on the sour side.

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Prawn Omelette 虾煎蛋 – Recommended dish. Full size prawns were used in this omelette which was fried to perfection and totally fluffy.

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Sambal Sweet Potato Leaves 叁巴番薯叶 – Recommended dish. This really tasted like a homecooked dish and I really liked it. The sambal is fragrant but not spicy and the potato leaves is just nice with a bit of bite but not mushy.

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Salted Egg Prawns 咸蛋虾球 – Recommend dish. Salted egg taste was just nice and not too thin. Prawns were big and juicy but this dish is best eaten while hot.

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Red Garoupa Teochew Style 红石斑潮州式 – Fish is very fresh and succulent but as we ordered quite a lot of dishes. Most of us were quite full by the time this was served so in a way could not enjoy this dish fully. I do like sour vegetables with steam fish.

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Verdict – The food was good and the restaurant is quite well spaced out so that no one feels packed in and can enjoy their food in a pleasant environment. Pricing is reasonable and definitely worth a visit with a big group again.

White Restaurant@Toa Payoh

600 Toa Payoh Lorong 4, #01-10 Singapore 319515
Open: 11am to 2.30pm, 5pm to 9.30pm
(Daily)
T: 6255 2002
Nearest MRT: Toa Payoh

 

 

 

 

Sable Viennois Butter Cookies

Another favorite of mine and this cookie recipe is very adaptable for other favors by adding matcha powder or cocoa powder. This cookie is dependent on the butter used and I realized French butter is one of the best to use for the richness of taste.

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Ingredients

  • 200 gm unsalted butter
  • 75 gm icing sugar
  • 30 gm egg white
  • 225 gm cake / plain flour
  • Flavorings:
    • Vanilla Extract / Essence 10 gm
    • Coffee Essense 10 gm
    • Vanilla Powder One pinch
    • Matcha Powder 15 gm
    • Cocoa Powder 15 gm
    • Orange / Lemon zest 1 tsp

Steps

  1. Preheat oven to 160 degrees
  2. Cream butter and icing sugar until light and fluffy
  3. Add in egg white and vanilla extract and mix well
  4. Sift flour into the mixture and combine with spatula be careful not to over mix
  5. Put mixture into piping bag with nozzle.
  6. Use dough scraper to push mixture and pipe on tray
  7. Bake for 15 mins and check at 10 mins until light golden brown.

Chicken Essence Steamed Chicken

While chicken essence is great and packed with a whole lot of benefits but I really do not enjoy drinking them straight from the bottle so it was great that I came across this quick and simple recipe which help me to clear them from my larder. The taste after steaming is much nicer with a hint of sweetness from the dates and wolfberries.

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Ingredients

  • 2 chicken thighs / drumsticks 0r 3 chicken wings
  • 1 bottle of chicken essence
  • 3-4 pieces of dried mushrooms
  • 7 red dates
  • 1 tbsp of wolfberries
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 tbsp hua diao wine
  • 1 pc of ginger grated

Steps

  1. Soak dried mushrooms in water to re-hydrate
  2. Trim off fats from chicken and marinate chicken with salt and pepper and hua diao wine for 30 mins.
  3. Cut mushrooms into strips
  4. Place chicken in a steaming dish and place mushrooms, dates and wolfberries on top.
  5. Pour in both chicken marinate and chicken essence.
  6. Steamed for 30 mins or until tender

 

Recipe from Pinkypiggu

http://www.pinkypiggu.com/2012/12/recipe-steamed-drumsticks-in-essence-of.html

 

 

No-Knead Cinnamon Rolls

Ingredients (12-15 Rolls – halved)

Dough

  • 125 ml milk
  • 25 gm brown sugar
  • 31 ml of vegetable oil
  • 1/2 tsp of instant yeast / 3/4 tsp of active dry yeast
  • 125 gm plain flour
  • 1/8 tsp baking powder
  • 1/8 tsp baking soda
  • Pinch of salt

Filling

  • 1/2 tbsp of cinnamon powder
  • 25 gm of brown sugar
  • 25 gm of melted unsalted butter

 

Steps

  1. Mix milk, sugar and vegetable oil in a pan. Scald (heat until just before boiling) the mixture. Leave to cool for 45mins ~ 1 hour.
  2. Place 250g (2 cups) plain flour and Instant yeast in a mixing bowl. Make a well in the centre and add the above mixture. Stir with a spatula until the mixture comes together to form a thick batter. (If using Active Dry Yeast, sprinkle the yeast into the mixture and let it sit for a minute before adding it to the plain flour.) Cover and let the batter sit for at least 1 hour.
  3. Add in the remaining 30g (1/4 cup) flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Stir until the mixture comes together. Either go ahead to make the rolls or cover and leave to chill in fridge over night or until needed. If left to chill, check the dough and punch it down by folding with a spatula if the dough rises almost to the rim of the mixing bowl. (Note: dough will be more firm and easier to work with if left to chill in fridge).
  4. When ready to make the rolls, mix ground cinnamon and sugar in a small bowl.
  5. Dust the work surface freely with flour. Dust the top and bottom of dough with flour. Roll out the dough into a rectangular shape. Then roll out as thin as possible. Dust the dough and work surface with flour when necessary.
  6. Brush the rolled out dough with melted butter. Sprinkle the cinnamon and sugar mixture evenly over the surface.
  7. Start from the opposite end of the dough, roll the dough neatly in a line towards you. Roll as tightly as possible. Dust fingers with flour if the dough feels sticky. Pinch the seams to seal.
  8. Cut into 1 inch thick slices and arrange on baking pan lined with parchment paper (or greased with butter). Place the rolls close together so that they are almost touching.
  9. Cover and leave to rise for 30mins (1 hour if dough was left to chill over night) or until the rolls double in size. (Note: the rolls can be left to chill in the fridge over night and bake them the next morning. If rolls have doubled in size, bake them right away. Otherwise leave to sit on counter until double in size before baking.)
  10. Bake in preheated oven at 180degC for 20mins until golden brown.

 

Recipe from Foogo!

https://readysetfoogo.wordpress.com/2014/05/11/recipe-no-knead-to-worry-cinnamon-rolls/