Sin Chao Gardens: A Great Place for Teochew Porridge
I think most Singaporeans get their Teochew Porridge fix either at home or at one of those late night coffeeshop stalls like Yue Shang Hai where all the cooked dishes are laid out for your picking. Places where dishes are cooked to order are less common. The one which I always remember fondly was Xu Jun Sheng at Joo Chiat. They had the most incredible tofu prawns, cold crabs and even simple dishes like fried cabbage was superb!
I first met Damian D'Silva in 2008 when he was serving steaks and chops out of a coffeeshop in Bedok! Back then, he was a tough talking, no nonsense, cowboy chef with an persona reminiscent of Marco Pierre White sans the hair. At the time, I had no idea of his mastery of Eurasian and Peranakan cuisine since he was just doing steaks and pasta.
You can always judge a Teochew restaurant by the quality of its pomfret. If it is anything less than super fresh, you will be able to pick up its fishy odour since it is always served either steamed or in a simple clear soup! That is why passionate restaurateurs like Jimmy Koh, 67, make the effort to buy their fish direct from Senoko every day!
Folklore: Damian D’Silva’s Homage to Singapore Cuisine
Our kakis meets each Wednesday to try out new places and, in short, Folklore is the best meal we have had this year. It is rare to find a restaurant where the kakis are unanimous in their praise and where each and every dish was greeted with mouths filled with food and eyes twinkling with satisfaction.
It is hard to write about an eatery when expectations are so high. Firstly, Ka Soh has been around for a long time and is regarded by many as a Singaporean institution. Mention fish head beehoon and har cheong gai and its name would invariably turn up! And then, there is the fact that they are on the listed in the Michelin guide as a Bib Gourmand restaurant! With these two accolades, you won't be blamed for expecting the food to be stellar.
Once upon a time, there was a man who ran a very successful restaurant serving traditional Cantonese style food. This man, Mr Chai Kok Hoong, had two sons and he brought them up in the kitchen. He taught one son how to use the wok and the other how to steam the food. Each son was to specialise in his own area of the kitchen and wasn't allowed to encroach on the other's territory.
I must have walked past Lee Do Restaurant countless of times whenever I visit the Automobile Megamart, but it had never occurred to me that this austere looking eatery is one of the last guardians of Fuzhou cuisine in Singapore! I was equally intrigued to learn that they were the ones responsible for making cold crabs the popular dish that it is today!
Classic Singaporean style Teochew food! One taste and you know you are onto some really good stuff. This kind of Singaporean heartland restaurants are a real gem and are, in my opinion, the type of restaurants that should really be included in the Michelin Guide so that tourists can have a taste of solid Singaporean cuisine.
Have you ever been asked what would your last meal be? I have been asked this many times and I have also come across other people’s responses. I think that the given answer is not really what the questioner is after because most people would pick a dish of nostalgia; like the kueh that grandma used to make or the porridge that mum cooks on a rainy day.
Chef Kang’s Kitchen: The Return of the Canton Wokman!
Congrats to Chef Kang for winning One Michelin Star for 2017! Fans of Chef Kang of the defunct Canton Wok will be ecstatic to know that our favourite Cantonese Chef is back and this time he means business! After a short hiatus, Chef Kang has opened a little boutique restaurant which seats only 40 pax and […]
Good Chance Popiah: Another Next Gen Zi Char Chef!
Good chance popiah has got a few things going for it. Aside from the fact that it is opened by a 3rd gen Singaporean chef who is super passionate about food, they also have a few items which are unique to their restaurant which is difficult to find elsewhere. There are also very few restaurants […]
Dong Po Colonial Cafe: Traditional Cakes to go with Kopi!
Singapore’s very own coffee culture has come a long way since Ya Kun started the ball rolling by ushering in the concept of Kopi Cafes in the 90′s. Before that, Singaporeans were only able to enjoy Kopi and Kaya Toast at individual kopitiams. So if you wanted Ya Kun’s kopi you had to head to […]