Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Bitter Grass, 苦草/ 穿心莲

It is well-known that this Andrographis herb is especially effective for heat-clearing - easing sore throat or swollen tonsils from too much heaty (fried, dry) food. But we seldom resort to applying it because of its extreme bitterness!

Bite into a leaf of it, and you will be knock off with the most unforgettable bitterness! It is almost brain freezing!

But i had my worst this month - all started with a swollen gum on my left cheek with a slight fever. Ignoring it, it gets worse after a week with a swell that becomes so visible, i felt embarrassed. By this time, my left tonsil had bulged also, resembling that of a Mumps virus infection. I was alarmed and in serious pain; it is unbearable! - desperate, i places all hope on my most unsweetened friend.

We found that the most comfortable way of taking the bitter grass is through drinking; cut 2 leaves and make tea out of it, letting the bitterness slowly sip in. Refill with a second cup, washing down the leaves finally. And i actually felt noticeably better after 3 hours. By the next morning, half the battle is won!

If you want a seedling of this plant, give me a jingle.

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Coffee Hut, 咖啡姐茶轩

Kopi with Toast Bun Set ($2.40)

If you wake up one morning in 2015 and are craving for some really good Nanyang Kopi; determined to travel further than the all familiar Ya Kun or Killney, this is it - Coffee Hut, stall 43 in the Jalan Berseh Food Centre.

We cross our heart for it. And be warned, that you order their toasted bun with the most amazing texture; thick butter and Kaya spread too!

Friday, December 26, 2014

Mookata Steamboat at Rattana Thai

Was intriguing to start our first Thai Mookata BBQ steamboat at Rattana Thai after getting a 
Deal voucher at $19.90 (Add $2 for service charge payable to merchant) meal set for 2 pax. For big eaters, we don't think the portion of food is filling enough.

Seafood Menu 
Marinated Fish Slices
3 Tiger Prawns
Whole Squid
3 New Zealand Green Mussels
Chicken Sausages
Free Flow Authentic Tom Yam Soup
Green vegetables Platter: Cai Sim, Cabbage, Kangkong.
2 Fresh Eggs
Vermicelli / Glass Noodles
Soft Egg Tofu
Imitation Crab meat Sticks
Straw Golden Mushrooms

Inclusive Ala carte dishes:
Mango Salad
Deep Fried Calamari
Top Shell with Rattana seasoning

Ala Carte: Mango Salad, Deep Fried Calamari and Top Shell with Rattana seasoning

We enjoyed cooking the fresh ingredient in their Tom Yum Soup base, but towards the end of the meal, everything start tasting the same, and gets salty. On the hindsight, we should have just request for a top-up of plain hot water for the soup base to water things down.

Quite wonderfully, the 3 ala carte appetizers that came free with our deal actually taste great - the Mango salad and the Top Shell. It got us coveting - that their ala carte kitchen would serve us better than an all Tom Yam soup steamboat.

Now, camera off. As we start our steamboat with a rub of oil with a fat lemongrass stem; instead of pork lard!

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

the Little Penquin Shiraz 2008

the Little Penquin Shiraz, 13.5% vol. ($24.90)

A wonderful bottle from the Little Penguin, South Eastern Australia. And boy! With Singapore higher taxes on alochol, the reds here are up by at least $4 per bottle.

Here, wishing you a Holy Christmas & a Blessed 2015!!

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Siraj Famous Waterloo St Indian Rojak

Assortment of Indian Rojak - Flour Potato, Coconut Flour, Flour Egg, Fish Cake, Veggie Mix... etc. ($8.30)

We were met with unexpected friendliness and patience from Sabeek, who had numerous interviews with the local media for being one of Singapore's best Indian rojak stall with a long history. 

Unlike the island's many Indian rojak stall which left you guessing - of being overcharged, Sabeek at the Albert Centre Market & Food Centre listed their pricing clearly on the stall front.

In your selection from the rack, don't forget their flavorsome prawn fritters (both the large prawns and the smaller shrimps version) which are one of the better ones around. Then dip everything into the thick potato sauce which has a piquant sweetness and spiciness altogether!

(They are also famous for their Mutton Soup ($5), and Mee Siam ($3) !

Sunday, December 14, 2014

欣美, Xin Mei Congee

煲仔面, Claypot Noodle ($3.50)

The all day rain have us craving for some really hot soup or smooth congee that fills the stomachs and warms our bodies! There's a nice congee stall (#01-214), just next to the 40 cents satay stall in Chong Boon Market and Food Centre - they serve freshly deep fried dough fritters with every bowl of their congee!

We love that. But for a change, Ric says, let's try their 'claypot noodle' that so many people are ordering too!

So we get to savor the unique flavor of the oven-dried noodle that works the rich broth together with fresh ingredients of minced meatballs, pork, pork liver and a beaten egg... Mmmm... Such gratifying bowl for the cold night!

皮蛋瘦肉粥, Century Pork Porridge ($3)

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Hougang Five Mile Cooked Food - Cheapest Satay at 40 cents?

Satay - Chicken & Pork ($0.40) Mutton ($0.50), Ketupat ($0.50)

Gone were the days of 30 cents satay; when our old hawker retires. Today we chanced upon a 40 cents satay stall in Chong Boon Market and Food Centre, Ang Mo Kio. Looking for cheap and good satay? You no longer need travel to Clementi - Chai Ho Satay where they are the island cheapest at 38 cents.

In fact, we thought this stall is better.

The friendly middle age couple who mans the stall seldom burn our satay as badly as Chai Ho does, ever so often. Their sticks are also meatier; never missing the piece of crunchy fat in between the lean meat for the pork! Best of things, the waiting queue here is reasonable.

And the chunky peanuts sauce is served hot, without that sinful layer of oil. They would have scored a perfect 10, if pineapple puree is added into the satay sauce!

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Sichuan Mala Fragrant Pot, 麻辣香锅

We are always enthusiastic to trying out new food in the neighborhood hawker centre; particularly foreign cuisines which look appetizing from the patronizing tables. But sometimes, we didn't know what or how to order!

Sheepishly, we asked the stall owner, "What is this that you have? How do we order? How do we eat it? Which are the popular ingredients to have?" And now we know that 'hot pot' doesn't always implied steamboat.  

Our ala-carte for 2 pax, with 1 rice ($11.90)

The friendly hawker at the Alexandra Village Food Centre recommends the beef tripe, cabbage and instant noodle pack that we missed; while Ric got down to picking up as many varieties of food as he can.

Our selection - beef, pork, cuttlefish, enoki mushroom, king mushroom, shimeji mushroom, beancurd skin, taupok, pig's skin, spinach vegetable, black fungus, lotus roots, mung bean sprouts, instant noodle pack and my favorite thick vermicelli (濑粉)!

Vegetables               $0.80/ 100g
Meat Type               $2.50/ 100g
Fungus Type           $1.80/ 100g
Seafood Type          $3.00/ 100g
Minimum amount to order is $4.

The hawker weighs our selection with us, then proceed to cook and spicy up the dish with Mala sauce, spring onions, sesame seeds and roasted peanuts! This big bowl of mildest spice level is hot enough for us to douse ourselves with chilled sugarcane drinks and still numb our lips! At the same time, the taste is novel and temptingly spicy - we couldn't stop eating!