The Catch: No Catch, Just a Good Catch
We have a group of makan kakis who meet every week to eat. Our goal, (which really is the goal of every foodie) is to find the next taste sensation, the next restaurant of resonance, the next mesmerising makan, to add to our resume of epic eats. This task is not as easy as it seems.
Hakka food of Miaoli, Featuring Onsen Papawaqa and ChooArt Villa
If you need an excuse to visit Taiwan, then Onsen Papawaqa is surely it. Rockett Girl and I fell in love with the place the moment it came into view along the mountainous road. The minimalistic wood and concrete building is located in a valley right next to a river and looks as if it had just grown out of the riverbank. It is one of many eco-friendly places in Taiwan where one can go to escape the stresses of city life.
Wangji Seafood Zi Char: Another one for the list
This week's recommendation came from Francis Andre who wrote in to alert me to this hidden gem in Sims Drive serving cheap and good food. After our makan session, our kakis also agreed this is certainly one of the better neighbourhood Zi Chars around!
Best Food in Taoyuan Part 2, Zhongli Night Market
The night markets are one of the big tourist attractions of Taiwan. I could spend the whole night just hopping from stall to stall looking to discover new taste sensations! Like our own hawker centres, each market will have its own specialities even though most of the popular items like fried chicken, oyster omelette, and stinky tofu will be available at most markets. Our reason for visiting Zhongli night market is for a particular stall that sells Mala Stinky Tofu.
Best Food in Taoyuan, Featuring Chiang Fu Yan
Do you remember the Master Chef featured in the Taiwanese movie, “Eat, Drink, Man, Woman?”. The opening scene of the movie absolutely enthralled me. What seemed like a series dishes prepared for a banquet ended up being the everyday meal for a family of four! In the movie, the protagonist was a semi-retired Master Chef of Taipei’s Grand Hotel who has been responsible for showcasing Chinese cuisine to local and foreign dignitaries for decades. The movie went on to tell the story of his three daughters garnished with lavish food scenes in between.
Ponggol Seafood: Back where it began!
Ponggol Seafood was founded by Mr Ting Chong Teng in 1969. At the time, he was working as a foreman at a sauce factory and driving taxi part time. One day he drove all the way to Ponggol point and saw a place for rent and decided to go into the restaurant business. With the knowledge gleaned from his experience working at the sauce factory, he managed to come up with different sauce recipes for his seafood dishes. In the beginning, it was quite difficult and one by one, his partners all exited the business. But Mr Ting persevered and the rest, as they say, is history!
Dancing Char Kway Teow man of Circuit Road Food Centre
It is good to find a Char Kway Teow man who seems to have fun fun at work. Mr Chee Wei Liang, 60 tells me that he doesn't have time to exercise, so he incorporates a dance routine when he fries his kway teow in order to work up a sweat. I am sure that the heat and steam from the wok also helps to complete the sauna treatment.
Tau Yew Bak (Braised Pork Belly) Recipe
Here is a very traditional Hokkien dish which every household should be able to cook as it is quite straightforward and uses a few ingredients which should already be in the pantry. The key to the dish is the dark soy sauce. You should try to get your hands on the very best quality dark soya sauce and it should be the thick type which is not salty and just slightly sweet.
Crabmeat Wanton Mee: Next Gen Hawkers!
Would you like to try some crabmeat wanton mee? I bet you must have walked pass many a wanton mee stall without batting an eyelid. But "Crabmeat Wanton Mee"? Now that is worth at least a second look.
Singapore’s Best Burgers for around $20 or less
Burgers have come a long way since I first wrote about the ieat Superburger in 2006. My vision of what a perfect burger should look like a decade ago has evolved somewhat over the years. Ten years ago, what I wanted was a BIG burger with all the trimmings: the bigger the better. Now, I am more focussed on the basics, ie the quality of the beef patty and the bun that accompanies it.
Taste of Thailand: Thai Zi Char
Thai style Zi Char was quite the rage in the 90’s. I remember a particular Thai Zi Char place in Bedok where I used to frequent with my surgical registrar when I was still working at Changi General Hospital. It can best be described as Zi Char with Thai inspired flavours. In those days, authentic Thai food wasn’t as widely available and so this was our local version of Thai food.
Japanese Durian Cheesecake Recipe
It's off season for durians but you still have a craving. What do you do? Make a Japanese durian cheesecake!
Ashino: The Season for Kai
Sushi can be divided into five different categories. They are shiromi-dane (white meat), akami-dane (red meat), hikari-mono (shiny skin), ni-mono (braised) and hokano-mono which is all the other stuff like squid, crabs, uni and our topic for today, kai 貝 (shellfish).