Divine Pasta & Wine!

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Click to listen/ download this week’s pastariffic episode!

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This week, our Makan Kaki Annette Tan of private dining experience FatFuku waxes lyrical about a lovely little spot in Chinatown, off Keong Saik Road. It’s Singapore’s first pasta and wine bar, where you can sit at their counter and watch them make fantastic, tasty pastas and little sharing plates. Or if you prefer, they have tables in their intimate space too. The food at Bar Cicheti is amazing and they also recently started a wine programme, in which they introduce diners to wines sourced from regions that are off the beaten path. From biodynamic to organic to sustainably-farmed wines, they would be more than happy to recommend a good glass that will pair well with your pasta and other sharing plates. Annette has not been disappointed so far and though not a big drinker, she has always enjoyed the enhanced flavours of the wines served.

But let’s talk about the food! Continue reading “Divine Pasta & Wine!”

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Favourite Fishball & Herh Keow Noodles

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Click to listen/ download podcast of this week’s bouncy, fishy epsiode!

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Hello Makan Kakis! Sometimes, we need reminding just how good a long-standing stall is and this is definitely a stalwart that deserves repeated recognition. So for lovers of fish ball noodles and in particular, the addition of that Teochew accompaniment herh keow (fish dumplings), remember Soon Wah, located at Newton Hawker Centre. This week, our Teochew foodie friend behind the homegrown F&B brand New Ubin Seafood, SM Pang explains why this is the real deal.

Continue reading “Favourite Fishball & Herh Keow Noodles”

Order the Porridge at this Duck Place!

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Greetings Greedies! This week, our Makan Kaki Chef Ming Tan of JAM @ Siri House returns with one of his most favourite dishes of all time. So where can we find the best Cantonese Pei Dan Chok (Century Egg Porridge) in Chef Ming’s opinion? Surprisingly, at any of the Imperial Treasure outlets! This Singapore success story in F & B really excels in the most basic and simplest of things and if they’ve got that right, you know everything else delicious will follow. Specifically, Chef Ming is drawn to the transcendental porridge lovingly and painstakingly created by the chefs at Paragon’s Imperial Treasure Super Peking Duck. Yes, it’s funny one would go to a Peking Duck restaurant for pork and egg porridge, but trust him, it’s really really good! But before we get to that, of course their Peking duck is fantastic, as are their roast meats. And there are 2 other dishes Chef Ming wants to highlight.

Continue reading “Order the Porridge at this Duck Place!”

Jin Hock is Jin Ho (So Good!)

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Our Makan Kaki Annette Tan of FatFuku private dining is back to tell us about one of her Regular Zichar haunts in the East – a place that offers up rather unique dishes, alongside the usual classic Zichar staples like sambal seafood, rice & noodles. Jin Hock Seafood is a very humble stall at the bottom of a block of flats in Chai Chee, but flavour-wise, everything is punchy, full of wok hei, smoky and really delicious. One of the things she likes to order is their Crispy Salted Egg Bitter Gourd (see above). Now, she doesn’t usually eat bitter gourd, but theirs is so good she’ll make an exception at Jin Hock. The key is in the treatment and preparation of the bitter gourd, which is sliced really thin then allowed to dry out a little. They then coat the bitter gourd slices with salted egg and deep fry them till they resemble crisps – SO addictive! Bonus is the curry leaves, red chillis and crunchy ikan billis scattered throughout this dish.

Continue reading “Jin Hock is Jin Ho (So Good!)”

Tongues for Tasty Thai!

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Our Makan Kaki Chef Shen Tan of Ownself Make Chef was talking about a dish from her Rice to the Occasion menu that she “stole” from the Thais – they toast up glutinous rice, grind it to a powder, then add herbs, spices, sugar, salt and other seasonings to create a dry rub. Chef Shen does the same and dry marinates pork neck before confitting it and finally grilling it off for her private diners. And the dish that inspired Chef Shen can be found at a tiny, little, hidden Thai restaurant at Golden Mile Complex, called Dee Tongue Thai. Continue reading “Tongues for Tasty Thai!”

Amazing Akashi & Ebi Tempura Maki Mono!

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How lucky we are in Singapore to have such great access to great Japanese produce & spectacular Japanese restaurants. And while there are a good many top quality Japanese restaurants that specialize in one thing, from Ramen to Sashimi, there is something to be said about this week’s recommendation.  Our Makan Kaki Chef Ming Tan‘s go-to Japanese restaurant, while not a specialist eating place, still manages to serve up a whole variety of really solid dishes, whether it’s a hot bowl of Gyudon (Udon, sliced beef in broth) or Chirashi or Sushi that you want.

Akashi is an old stalwart that has been around for a good amount of time, delivering consistent quality across the board, yet is still accessible and won’t break the bank. Time and again, Chef Ming is impressed by Akashi’s ability to please and surprise with the quality of the produce they obtain and he is always happy and satisfied when he dines there.

Continue reading “Amazing Akashi & Ebi Tempura Maki Mono!”

FatFuku’s Favourite Burger

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Hello Makan Kakis, in this season of Lent, some of you might be looking for meat-free food alternatives or perhaps for health and environmental reasons you’ve decided to cut down on your meat intake? No meat? No problem! Our Foodie Friend, Annette Tan of private dining experience FatFuku, recommends what she thinks are the best burgers (both meat & meat-free) in Singapore!

Omakase Burger is not a new burger joint, but it is Annette’s favourite. Recently, they launched their Impossible Burger, which uses an entirely Vegetarian patty that’s meat-like in every way but not made from animals. If nobody told you it’s not beef, you wouldn’t be able to tell – that’s how crazy-good this vegetarian burger at Omakase is! The anchor ingredient in the Impossible patties is called Heme – possibly short for hemoglobin – which gives the product a slight bloody, realistic, juicy look and nature. Except it’s not blood and it’s 100% Vegetarian. Looks, feels like the real thing, but truth be told, the only thing missing is that distinctive metallic taste of blood you get from a real beef product. In this burger though, you wouldn’t be able to tell.

Many other local restaurants have also introduced Impossible “meat” burgers to their menus, but Omakase have made theirs even better – they add  tomatoes, mushrooms & other secret ingredients to create a really luscious, meat-like patty. The flavours are really umami. Another unique thing they do with all their burgers Impossible and Beef ones, is they employ the smash technique.

Continue reading “FatFuku’s Favourite Burger”

East Meets West Seafood – Rice & Noodles!

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Click to listen/ download podcast of this week’s East-West Seafood episode!

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Father and son team behind the New Ubin Seafood brand are back! SM Pang (Senior) and Alex Pang (Junior) have such a passion for creating truly Singaporean Zichar that brings together traditional seafood with Western Contemporary dishes, so it is interesting to note that while they agree on many things concerning the palate, they still chose different places to recommend the last time! So how will it turn out this time?

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Let’s start with Pang Senior, who breaks away from his traditional Zichar background once again to recommend acclaimed Spanish Tapas restaurant FOC on Hong Kong Street. FOC  means fire and their food is imbued with smokiness of their special grills. According to SM Pang, when Chef Jordi is around, their tapas out of this world! But what really stands out is their excellent seafood paella. A crispy crust that sticks to the bottom of the pan is what you want and FOC absolutely delivers in this respect. With the rich, deep flavours of the ocean and the almost creamy rice that has just enough al dente bite, it’s not hard to see why paella would appeal to the Asian palate – something Pang Senior concurs with. He says it’s like the Spanish version of Cantonese Sar Po Fan (瓦煲饭 – Claypot Rice), so hes really not straying too far from his roots with this choice!

TASTE:
FOC by Nandu Jubany
40 HongKong Street S(059679)
Open Daily: 12 – 3pm & 6pm – 12 midnight (Mon – Sat); 6 – 11pm (Sun)
Tel: +65 61004040

As for Alex, he also sticks to what he knows – just like last time, he recommends a stall that his father has bringing him to since he was 4 or 5 years old. You may be familiar with this famous stall – Wah Kee Big Prawn Noodles at Pek Kio. The queues already start forming before the stall opens, with hungry diners waiting for their fix of the incredible noodles, especially the broth. Alex says says the prawn stock is easily the best in Singapore, hands down! It’s all in the way they slice their garlic – very thin, until it virtually melts into the soup. Most Prawn Noodles start off with a stock that is pork and prawn based, but here at Wah Kee, theirs is slanted toward an intense prawn flavour, which makes for a soup that is sharp and umami. Shiok!

Their prawns are indeed big, enormous, in fact, so be warned, a bowl can easily go for up to $20-$25, depending on what and how many you order. But rest assured there is also a more reasonable, regular bowl price which is no less delicious. Pang Senior prefers this cheaper version with the small prawns. He gets a standard $5 bowl with dry Mee Kia noodles and leaves the big prawn action for his son Alex! For him, it’s really all about the soup. As for Alex, his go-to is a large bowl of dry noodles with big prawns, plenty of extra crispy pork lard and a side order of the Kang Kong. Alex has observed that hardly anyone goes for this humble vegetable side, which is a shame, as it is done exceedingly well. Fresh, crunchy and really flavourful, the Kang Kong is braised in prawn stock and slathered another tasty sauce, but overall, there’s a definite prawn flavour that comes through beautifully.

TASTE:
WAH KEE BIG PRAWN NOODLES
Pek Kio Market & Food Centre
41A Cambridge Road, #01-15, S( 210041)
Open Wed – Sun: 8:30am–2pm (Closed Mon & Tues)

So there you have it, Makan Kakis, the New Ubin guys have done it again – despite recommending 2 different makan places, both dishes are seafood based, which goes to show that when it comes to this father and son team, they are really same-same but different! 🙂