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Sheraton Singapore: Shermay Lee x Dining Room

12:00 PM , 0 Comments

~Invited Session~


Cilicuka and Sambal Hijau

Shermay Lee, of Shermay Singapore Fine Food fame, has worked extensively in the Fand B scene in Singapore, providing food consulting services to big industry players (such as Fullerton Bay Hotel and Singapore Airlines). Largely regarded as a next generation doyen of fine Peranankan cuisine, her expertise is now tapped by Sheraton Towers Singapore in a collaboration with the buffet dining restaurant, The Dining Room.

After more than 11 years of operating, owning and teaching at the renown Shermay’s Cooking School, Shermay closed her school to focus on her food consulting and her brand of sauces – Shermay’s Singapore Fine Food. The brand owns and distributes its own range of four sauces (Cilicuka, a Peranakan chilli sauce based on her grandmother’s recipe) and dry spice mixes, such as, Nonya Chicken and Fish Curry Powders.

Presenting, Kuehntessentially Peranakan.


Platter of keropok to start


I had the pleasure to try the chili, the perfect foil to the crispy keropok. This came in 3 levels of spiciness. Her grandmother's original recipe was the one for level 1, a sweet tasting chili. This was pleasant and surely a crowd pleaser for many, but I like my chili strong and fiery. Next up was level 2, a blend of 25% chili padi and 75% red chillies. Deliciously addictive, this was a nice balanced of spiciness and sweetness with a tinge of garlic. 


But no pain, no gain. Level 3 it is. It is a 100% blend of chili padi, and is truly for those who are brave, or just love feeling of being burnt in the mouth. Boy that was hot. But it was sooooooooooo good. I just had to have it again and again and I finished 1/3 of the jar myself.


The Sambal Hijau was interesting; its almost a blended version of Chinese mei cai with sweet chili. This, to me, went well with something like prawn sticks, you know, the Calbee type? 


Kueh Pie Tee, a Nyonya quintessential!


We kick started the session with some deliciou kueh pie tee. Everything, down to the pastry, was handmade in house. The pork floss and prawn paste was just enough to provide a savory goodness to the dish, and not at all overpowering. What a great start!


Rojak Java, a not-so-common version of Rojak


This version had the ingredients soaking in generous prawn paste. Unlikely the other versions, whereby its drizzled on heavily, this one is eaten more as a dip. Turnip, Pineapple and Cucumber completes this seemingly simple but oh-so-hearty dish.

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Over-baked snapper with sambal hijau baked in banana leaves


Now this was not a traditional Peranakan dish, since the main ingredient here is the snapper and not stingray. Shermay wanted to showcase dishes that was tasty, and yet easy enough to replicate in an everyday household kitchen. To her, this was merely marinating the fish in the spices, basting in generously, and then sticking into the oven. The taste, however, was much more complex than this and was just amazingly rich for such a simple dish (or so she claimed!).


Char Siew, with a wonderful charr


Peranakan char siew? This is certainly a cuisine that marries the flavorful roasts of Cantonese cuisine with the copious amount of spices in Malayan cuisine. This was done Cantonese style, with just the right amount of fats and chewy porky goodness. Super good.


Ayam Buah Keluak, simply divine!


I love buah keluak. So earthy, and fragrant, like our local version of black truffle. This version of ayam buah keluak is rich and gooey stew of a delightful mess. Best with copious amount of rice and a hearty appetite. When I was a teenager this was one of my go-to dishes whenever I saw it on the menu.


Udang Nanag Pedas, Prawn and Pineapples in spicy gravy


Next up was an ubiquitous prawn dish in Peranakan cuisine. This one was a tad too watery for my liking, and not spicy enough. If only the sauce was a bit more gao, perfect! Still, a very good version of this mainstay of Peranakan cuisine.


Coconut ice cream chendol that was very satisfying


We finished the meal with a delightful coconut ice-cream chendol. Just like what you get in Penang, this was light, not too sweet, and a little runny, just the right texture to me.


I was so full, that I did not even have space for the other items in the buffet line!


Such as this! Baked slipper lobster with chili and peppers


 And I did not have space for the wonderful desserts too!

This Shermay x The Dining Room collaboration is scheduled to run only on weekends in April, so only 8 days in a month. Seats are limited, so if I were you I would make my reservations very soon!

Dinner Buffet Prices at $68++ (Adults) and $34++ (Child).

The Dining Room
Sheraton Towers Singapore
39 Scotts Road


Souvenirs from Shermay's repertoire - keropok and cilicuka!


So much nostalgia in a single glass bottle. At heat level 1, this was barely spicy.


My keropok went skinny...dipping.


Like nachos to cheese, this is keropok to chilli and so darn addictive.


Don't say I didn't share, these were so addictive, the packet was gone in less than 2 seatings. Available online and selected outlets.

A foodie born to eat, shop and travel. Forced to work.

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