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Tseng's Noodle x Mala Abalone

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What's raging instagram these days is meals created from petrol kiosk purchases and I decided to join in the fun with these two IT products of the season!

Tseng's Scallion Oil and Sichuan Pepper Noodles ($10.90 for 4 packets)


Made famous by Taiwanese celebrity host, Tseng Kuo-Cheng who created a recipe out of his wife's love for noodles. These sun-dried noodles are the reason behind tons of fans lugging back cartons of these noodles on their Taiwanese escapades.

When in doubt, always go spicy!


These are retailed at selected Shell petrol stations and I managed to get just of the three flavours to try.



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No doubt really springy thick cut noodles that is more satisfying than our mee pok, there's almost nothing that gives it instant noodles origins away - well I guess sun-dried would make a difference to the taste profile and texture. Sold and I would love to try the other flavours! 

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These baby abalones doused in chilli oil and mala spices ($14.95) is bound to please - I never thought I would be hooked and I was. The mouthwatering spiciness converted us all that we even added more canned abalone for another meal!

It sure ain't cheap eating from petrol kiosks, a simple meal of noodles with mala abalones easily cost $10 not considering the water and electricity charges.

Blue Lotus Revisited @ Tanjong Pagar

Even with CNY over and done, Blue Lotus is still serving their CNY menu till 11th March. I like their menu so much I've headed back twice over this festive period just to have some solid chinese food.

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Kurobuta Minced Pork, Sang Choy Bao ($14)

Saucy minced pork wrapped in refreshing lettuce leaves - this gives salad a whole new delicious meaning.

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Spicy chicken nuggets is my weakness, infact my favourite snack on Mcdonalds' menu is spicy mcnuggets which is hardly a perma feature. Mouthwatering shiokness in every bite and these nuggets are fried so crisp, boo to soggy nuggets. Spells favourite!




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Prawn Paste Boxing Chicken ($14)

Har jeong kai given a lease of new life with a side of spicy tangy sauce. Fried chicken is certainly their forte - crispy skinned juicy wings.

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Crab Balls ($22)


A must try is their crabmeat balls with a piquant pomelo chilli crab sauce. It is akin to eating their famous chilli crab without the mess.

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48 Hours Slow Cooked “Dong Po” Kurobuta Pork Belly ($26)

This reeks of alcohol and definitely not for those who mind the taste of it in your food. The pork belly was a fatty cut and that made alot of people rejoice - perfect with rice.



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Claypot Mapo Tofu, Onsen Egg ($20)

I've loved this since day one, their version of mapo tofu with an onsen egg is evil. The spiciness does not whack like crack but the addiction that lingers is real. Smooth tofu cubes in creamy spicy minced meat and mushroom sauce. I could have just this alone and be one real happy lass.

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Gong Bao Chicken ($26)

A competent version of Gong Bao with tasty chicken chunks yet this does not rank as the top favourite dish from Blue Lotus.


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Sweet and Sour Pork with Lychee

I love my sweet and sour pork and lychees separately and Blue Lotus did justice to both ingredients with a delightful version of ku lou yoke. Some may find it too saucy but nobody's complaining when all I need is a bowl of rice to go with this and I'm good.


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Claypot Hua Diao Drunken Prawns ($28)


Another heavy handed alcoholic dish and certainly not for the faint hearted. The broth is so rich and nourishing and it comes with enough prawns to go round if you're sharing!

And moving onto the less spicy and more homecooked items!

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Quick Fried Seasonal Vegetables with Garlic ($20)



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Paper Wrapped Salt Baked Herbal Chicken ($32)

Tender cooked paper wrapped chicken with an assortment of herbs.


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Steamed Kulbarra Barramundi Fillet in Thai Teochew Style ($38)

Great for toddlers I'd say and this would make any Teochew really proud with their rendition.

All in, I am a crazy big fan of Blue Lotus and would head back for their popiah buffet and spicy dishes!


Blue Lotus 
5 Wallich St, #01-13

Jiak Private DIning - Dialect dining all in one meal

~Invited Session~

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The best thing about being an Eastie is that's where the good food is (I can imagine lots of rejections), and good food not just withstanding to hawker food but also private kitchens. Chef Anon's humble abode is around Joo Chiat and we were treated to a different world up in his step up apartment.

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This view that pretty much sums up my rooftop experience, would have been lovelier right at sunset.

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Jiak offers whiskey pairings with their meals and you get 4 different whiskies to go with the courses.


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This utterly cute menu should not be missed, test your chinese reading skills by reading the menu!


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Prime Rib Lotus Root Soup
Double boiled over charcoal 


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We started the meal with a bowl of homecooked goodness, overflowing with pork ribs and lotus roots. Not to mention, refills are readily available. I loved how sweet the soup is from all those hours of simmering - this definitely resonated with my cantonese roots.

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Signature Foie Gras Ngor Hiang 

On the saltier side, this beancurd skin fritter was given an innovative twist with foie gras paste and the likes of minced pork and chestnuts. Perfect with whiskey actually.

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Herbal Emperor Chicken 

The dash of alcohol gave this nourishing dish an aromatic finish. Fall off the bone tender, this reminded me very much of home - so comforting.

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Steamed Cod Fish in Chicken Broth 

Another hearty dish is this cod fish chunk steamed in a tasty chicken broth.

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Braised Kurobuta Belly 
Chinese steamed buns 

In short, khong bak pau and his version was slightly saltier than what I have been eating yet who can resist these fluffy buns!

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Tiger/Vannamei Prawn Dry Laksa

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Homemade Fish Otah Nasi Lemak 

Our mains was a choice of laksa and nasi lemak and the best thing about bringing a partner is I get to have both and then pick a favourite! I leaned towards nasi lemak as a favourite mainly because of his homemade fish otah.

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Green Bean Soup
Coconut

Chef Anon's version is probably the thickest I've eaten for green bean soup.

$70 nett per pax

Thanks Chef for such a lovely homecooked meal, another option for private dining and support local!

Jiak (家)
184B Joo Chiat Place

Vegetarian House @ People's Park Centre

~Invited Session~


The honest truth is I hardly eat vegetarian food, mainly because of the amount of gluten used and I usually have to compromise taste for that. If I had to, salad is always the top of mind to go and until Vegetarian House I had my reservations.

This eatery along a the stretch stands out for being the only vegetarian place at People's Park Centre.  The bigwigs are located in the upper floors so I guess being more affordable helps reach the masses too.



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On top of the usual kopitiam beverages, they offer a range of homemade teas and the assortment of flavours is mindboggling!


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The spread for the meal - bet you cannot tell at first glance these are all vegetarian!

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Seaweed Beancurd Crispy Stick ($4)

This is my all time favourite vegetarian snack and seaweed does make a world of difference. The only grouse is, this tends to be really oily.

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Homemade Dumpling with Spicy Sour Sauce ($4)

Stuffed with mushrooms, this spicy and sour dumpling dish would give 红油抄手 a run for its money. 


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If anything, the only thing giving this away is the mushroom stuffing otherwise the smooth skin and piquant dressing is on point.

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Lo Han Zhai ($2.50)

Their version comes with a hint of vinegar and actually I would not mind seconds. The portions are on the small side.

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Fragrance Hainan Chicken Rice ($5)

Now here comes the taste test for their signature dishes. The sesame rice is absolutely fragrant and does taste like chicken rice! Infact everything on the dish looks the part except the texture of the 'chicken meat' which was unfortunately gluten and barely tasted like chicken. Otherwise, this is really best effort to date.

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Deep Fried Abalone Mushroom Bento  ($8)

This was probably the most expected out of vegetarian cuisine with mushrooms, mixed vegetables and seaweed.

It turned out to be a better than expected experience at Vegetarian House, I am keen to check off their nasi lemak and braised duck rice!


Vegetarian House
101 Upper Cross Street #01-05M, People’s Park Centre

Tenshin Revisited @ Regent Hotel

This visit to Tenshin was a surprise one as much as the Hubba hinted that we are going to a place we have been to and want to revisit.


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Our platter for the night and it's a joy watching these items get fried one by one. My only grouse is the meal always ends too quickly.


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Chef works swiftly and barely engages in conversation - maybe because we are not regulars.


Yuki Tempura Course ($180)
6 kinds of seafood, 5 kinds of vegetables

The last couple of visits I remember topping up for sea urchin and they were so good to miss! This time, it was included in our set meal - hooray!

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We always kick start our meal with spinach and tofu skins, no different this time and still as refreshing as ever.

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 Then comes the lacquer box filled with the season's goodies, we had an equivalent of a chut chut, a sea snail nicely curled up in its shell (that broth was heaping with umami), steamed squid and roe that was so tender, boo to all overcooked squids out there!

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Then comes the biggest surprise of them all - tofu with horseradish, the texture is out of this world smooth, so much so it actually melts in the mouth like mousse. What sorcery it turned out to be the best of the box.


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Prawn heads

The best part of the prawn definitely belongs to these heads, incredibly crispy and rich in flavour. Belittle them not!


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Prawn

I truly believe sweet prawns taste so much different from the usual - these are delicious till the end.

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This seasonal vegetable got me on the fence, slightly bitter and in the centre and tastes like onion at the sides.

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When seconds appear, savour it even more slowly than the first!

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This time we explored having them with the seasoning that were placed on the counter. Curry powder went the best with this and between the Hubba and I we may have emptied the jar. So tasty, it actually made everything dipped in so so so tasty!

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Asparagus

I hardly rave about my vegetables but the Japanese really treat them so right. Whatever magic went into this, move over white asparagus.

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Brinjal is another of those wonder vegetables presented - and truly I can only say the Japanese know their way around these produce. It's firm, juicy and hardly like any others I have eaten.


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Crabmeat is always a welcomed sight, next to uni and the real crabmeat is always a treat. No need to shell and off it goes into my mouth - oiishii!

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Pumpkin

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Mushrooms

I'd like to think being a vegetarian in Japan would be a major treat. These maitake mushrooms are extra earthy and juicy.

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Leaf with white fish

Not quite a common way to eat white fish and paired with a leaf, strangely I find myself approving of this combination.

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Sea Urchin

A must eat every single visit.

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Sea urchin porn and I'm dying to go for a sea urchin feast!


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Anago served salted presents a different taste profile of eel. I walloped this bones and all and how does tempura taste so healthy even when it's deepfried?


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Salad

It has to be the combination of tomatoes and wafu dressing that makes even salads taste better.


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Special tuna on rice was the Hubba's order and he actually thought it was as satisfying as my tempura bowl. These tempura specialists do good raw fish dons too!




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Rice bowl with small tempura cake was a no brainer order for me when it came to picking my own mains.

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Even with that many tempura items consumed, I was happy to take on another. Crisp prawn pieces in a cake and perfect with fluffy rice.


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Everytime miso soup appears, it signals one more course to the end and as much as I with did not have to end, this miso soup is amazing! The equivalent of a cantonese double boiled soup, the flavours were so exquisite not to mention these delicious baby clams.


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Fruits for dessert and I'm not complaining when my orange and melon are thoughtfully sliced so all I need to do is pop them into my mouth.




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When at Regent, always order their cakes and Hubba made sure of that - one of my favourites from their cake range!


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Blueberry cheesecake that seriously reminds me of Hilton's in its heydays.