Monday, May 23, 2011

22 May 2011 - Tang Dian Wang

To start off, this day was one of the most agonizing ever. Randomly walked into Tang Dian Wang for dinner, and the experience alleviated things a little. Nice ambience, good lighting, seats were high-backed and well cushioned, and probably the best service he's encountered so far.

The service staff comprised of a mix of foreign talent, fondly termed FT, and they left a very good impression. Interacted with 4 different service staff throughout the meal, and found them to be very polite, their smiles also added to the comfort factor. Prompt to react, yet not clumsy like in many other Chinese restaurants. Even though they had decided to sit around after settling the bill, the service staff also willingly acceded to their request for more tea. Ok... let's head to the main dish now.

Snapped a picture of the "lanterns".

He got himself Live Prawn Soup, $10.80++.
Soup came boiling, and the water level went down really fast after a while, perhaps due to the noodles soaking it up. Prawns were probably fresh as the heads were still firmly stuck onto the prawns. The flesh was crunchy and did not stick to the meat, this made it easy for him to peel the prawns with just mouth and chopsticks. Also in the soup were bean sprouts which added bite to the noodles, pork slices and some vegetables.

She ordered Fresh Eel in Fish Bone Broth, $9.80++.
They were initially undecided about having snapper or unagi, until she went for the more familiar fish. Opted for flat glass noodles, and her soup contained button mushrooms, carrots and the clump of leafy vegetable.

Crispy Eggplant with Pork Floss, $3.80++.
First time eating deep fried eggplant, and it was really good. Crispy on the outside, fluffy soft on the inside. The pork floss added a savoury touch, but somehow it also felt like the dish had been treated to an uncalled-for sprinkling of salt.

Siew Mai Dumpling with Fish Roe, $3.80++.
Although it also contained shrimp, this paled in comparison to the ones he had at Old Hong Kong. The meat filling felt a little "old".

Shared dessert of Mango Cream with Pomelo, $4.20++.
The chilled mango soup was aptly sweet, with a tangy hint. In it were some mango bits and "tadpoles", which were fun to chew on.

Would return, thumbs up for the service rendered and the really fresh prawns. Shall also experiment frying eggplants this weekend.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

21 May 2011 - Tortilla Wraps for dinner

Itchy to start wrapping after viewing this on YouTube.

Cooked the remaining crab sticks and bacon, 1 large portobello and 1 white button mushroom. Sadly, totally forgot about the cheese slices while wrapping the bacon version. Mom and Aunt seemed to like it. Managed to also clear some bread in the next serving, with similar filling.

Was making scrambled egg when Dad came home. He cooked some ham and sliced more tomatoes, and did not forget the cheese this time. Doesn't this look more plump and appetizing than the previous? In any case, he still can't get enough of the wrapping action, really enjoyed doing the wrapping and cutting the tortilla wrap into half.

21 May 2011 - Toasted Pizza

Had been eyeing the wraps for quite sometime before swooping in on them on Friday night. Also added crab sticks, bacon, cherry tomatoes, red and yellow peppers, portobello and white button mushrooms to the basket.

Considered between making bacon wrap or pizza, and went with the latter for something crispier, hopefully.

Since he was using a toaster oven, he had to cut the wrap in half so that things would fit. Here's what he did:
1. Set wrapping paper as base in the oven tray.
2. Brush the side of the wrap facing up with some olive oil.
3. Wash and slice the mushrooms, tomatoes and pepper, brush with a mixture of olive oil, ground black pepper and salt.
4. Place the tomatoes and pepper as the first layer on the wrap.
5. Cut the bacon and crab sticks into small pieces and layer them on. He left the bacon on the topmost layer.
6. 1st toasting of 3-4 mins.
7. Check amount of browning before 2nd toasting of 3-4 mins, adjust as required.
8. Top with the mushrooms and sprinkle cheese (he shredded processed cheese slices).
9. Final toasting of another 3-4 mins until cheese has melted, or browned if you'd like.

This was the first half of the wrap where he toasted everything for the same amount of time. The cheese got a little too burnt as you can see in the background. Got the thin, crispy "crust" effect.

The second half, done as per the steps listed above. Mushrooms were less mushy and cheese did not get burnt. The "crust" was equally crispy though.

He used only 1 slice of cheese for each half, perhaps he would try something with more cheese tomorrow. Or maybe he should make bacon wrap tomorrow.

Just to add, it was really interesting to watch the bacon sizzle and crackle through the glass. He had some leftover fillings, and so he wrapped a slice of bacon around 2 crab sticks as filling for a slice of bread. So sinfully delicious without the vegetables.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

15 May 2011 - FIsh and Co with the family

Brought Dad, Mom, youngest brother and Aunt out for lunch. 2nd bro arrived late and didn't want to order any.

Wary of the portions, he decided on ordering platters to share.

Seafood feast - $59.95. The tiger prawns from the Seafood platter (39.95) tasted much better than the huge king prawns here. The 6 of them could not finish the rice and chips.

Blue mussels in some lemon butter sauce $19.95. Too much sauce that could not be used up with one basket of bread. The serving size and mussel size lost out to The Mussel Guys.

The bread.

Mom got a huge mug of pineapple ice blended which she couldn't finish, and littlest bro got cola tonic which he immediately regretted after a sip.

$155.20 in all, and got some not-very-useful Citibank vouchers for weekday returns.

14 May 2011 - Old Hong Kong Kitchen for dinner

Finally settled the exam and could clear the desktop, both physical and virtual. Accompanied her to the private L'Oreal sale where she netted many prizes. *groan*

After spending some hours there, as always, she found out that her stomach was needy. She decided to expend the final Old Hong Kong voucher despite his pleas to use it on another occasion. Booked Old Hong Kong Kitchen since it was nearest to town.

Ordered Soya Chicken - $12. Smooth and succulent, with the accompaniment standing out. A mix of oil, spring onions, unsure of the other ingredients, garlic and ginger perhaps. Didn't smell pungent nor did it leave nasty breath. Probably should google it up one of these days.

Diced beef $18 (?), too salty on its own, Ordered a bowl of rice to go with.

Rack of lamb, 2 puny portions for $20. Tender stuff.

Seafood soup in melon $25. Luckily the soup was as good as it was interesting.

Soup served.

Topped things off with a warm dessert of yam mash with almond cream. $7.50 (?). Go on diet? Lose weight? Lies....

The flowery tea that they had.

30 April 2011 - Old Hong Kong Taste

With the second last voucher on hand, they re-visited Old Hong Kong Taste at Serangoon Gardens.

Lean meat porridge, finely shredded.

Pineapple buns (bo luo bao) which contained no pineapples, barbecued pork filling instead.

Cross section of the pineapple bun

"Phoenix" claws again...

Flour wrap (chee cheong fun) with prawn fillings. He prefers the barbecued pork version.

Siew mai, had it so frequently it didn't taste fantastic anymore.

Beef noodles with noodles like "wonton" noodles. Generous serving of beef.

Beef brisket radish soup, simply love the clear soup.

Comparing braised tendon and tendon from the soup. The braised one tasted better while the one boiled in soup seemed more gelatinous.

The egg yolk lava buns making their appearance again...

Thursday, May 5, 2011

05 May 2011 - Grilled Tomatoes

Grilled tomatoes at lunch

Simple steps off the internet that he followed, see link.
- Halved each tomato from the side.
- Scooped out the pulp into a bowl for eating on its own.
- One teaspoon of olive oil, a quarter teaspoon of salt and liberal sprinkling of black pepper for seasoning.
- "Grilled" cut-side down on low flame in a pan, checking the level of wilted-ness every 2 minutes until desired. He used burnt marks as a gauge.

Soft, warm and flavorsome.