Sunday, July 20, 2008

Day 3 Sing: Dinner

We hung around Orchard Rd briefly; it's no fun having 3 guys around who don't like shopping. We then took a cab to Parkway Parade which is near Mandarin Gardens where we have something to do. Parkway was crazy busy. I spent hours reading in Borders. I especially was engrossed in the chick book 'Love The One You're With'. Made me think of the choices I had to make too when I came to crossroads; patted myself on my back because I don't regret my decision. Then I went to my favorite section, the magazines, which were free for all and not sealed like those in KK. I just love to check out bookstores and supermarkets when I travel because the ones back home are pathetic. Btw, not because I read them, but I noticed Sing has 'Playur' instead of Playboy and the photos are as hot as ketchup.

We tried out some small items in Parkway's food court. Food's so cheap here! I made it a point to never eat on Orchard Rd.

Hub's Uncle Bernard is extremely hospitable. For the last 20 years when we visit, he'd always take us to the best restaurants then end the night in the lobbies of the best hotels. It gave me a very classy impression of Singapore. My own uncle, my Dad's older bro, was the greatest any one can have. I first came to Sing when I was 11 and subsequently made many visits. Each time, he'd take time off from his camera and men's shoes shop on North Bridge Rd (above which he and his wife raised 8 kids) and take me (and one time, with my friend Jo) to Haw Par Villa, Jurong Birds Park, see the Merlion, and even saw Anita Sarawak's concert. My obsession with Sing laksa stems from those visits when we ate laksa for breakfast, chicken rice at People's Market and roasted chestnuts from the push carts. He even went with me to Katong where I had my (disastrous) wedding dress made. He was the most gentle and loving uncle, and he will always be in my heart.

When I was told we were near Katong and Boon Tong Kee Chicken Rice (recommended by a reader), that was exactly where I wanted to go, and so we did. We were a group of 8, as Uncle Bernard's son Charlie came along too and my other BIL was also in Sing. Seeing Charlie reminds me of Yi, because they got on so well when Charlie came to visit once. Charlie remembers you as a tomboy who loves to catch bugs, Yi. That made me smile, because I remember how she'd stick a bug into some kids' face and make them scream and run. She took ballet lessons from Mrs. Lu when she was 6 or 7. She didn't tell me until last year that Mrs. Lu found her catching tadpoles in the drain once, dressed in her ballet tights and all, while all the other kids stood around watching. She never completed even Grade 1 of ballet. All my kids catch bugs (Wey is given the job of catching bugs for George, Ming's praying mantis, while we are away). I think it has to do with the fact that I actually thought of majoring in entomology.

You can see I'm very chatty today. I slept well. When I travel, I can't fall asleep if I stay in hotels.

Okay, let's bring on the food.

Lobak (radish, daikon) omelette, S$5

Only S$5! After Orchard Rd, this is so cheap.

Bun min, S$3.50

This was quite good but doesn't quite make my standard because they used mustard greens instead of sayur manis. We had these at Parkway.

Dinner was again a toss, between Boon Tong Kee and Five Stars Chicken Rice. We choose BTK, which was air-conditioned. While waiting to be seated, we heard a lady tell her friend that BTK's much better than Five Stars, which was 2 doors away. And it was good, so thanks to the person who recommended it :)

Cheong fun, S$2

Man, this was good! I love plain cheong fun with all the sweet and hot sauces. It's all about the texture and flavor of the fun/noodles and sauce so fillings are unnecessary.

Mui choy pork belly slices, S$10

Not very good, this. The mui choy/preserved veg wasn't very fragrant.

Bean sprouts with salted fish, S$7

I love this dish anywhere, and this was good although I was surprised the sprouts weren't very thick or crunchy.

Bittergourd soup, S$8 large

Ming's a soup boy. This was light, and I couldn't detect much msg in it. In fact, so far BTK's dishes seem quite light on msg.

Fried baby kailan, S$7?

Yum, with a strong shao xin flavor.

Plain boiled boneless chicken

This is what we came for, BTK's chicken rice. We had a whole chicken, and this is half of it. Now I've always preferred yellow, corn-fed home-reared chicken for its flavor and firm texture. However, I've noticed chickens in Sing are whiter than my thighs; in fact they (the chickens) look almost albinic. But I know they have to use these white chickens because they give slippery-smooth and soft chicken which don't have thick skin like corn-fed chicken. With these albino chickens, you eat everything, skin and all, and I'll confess that I very much wanted to eat the whole plate by myself. The only thing though is these chickens don't have much flavor so it's all up to the sauce and the texture. I'm not complaining. For once.

Bernard paid, as usual, and I don't really know how much the meal costs. Thanks Bernard!

I was told the famous 328 Katong laksa was only 2 blocks away. Although we were stuffed, I still wanted to sheck the place out because I wasn't sure if we'd come back to the area again. Also, I still wanted to find out which laksa place s the best. Two years ago, Hb and I took a cab to eat at 328 Katong and we were so utterly dsappointed. Since then I discovered food blogs and learnt that the original stall had moved and the new guys are using the famous name. This was confirmed by Charlie, who doesn't like 328 because their laksa is too coconut-milk creamy (exactly what I thought too) but prefers the one right across. I was so happy that someone agrees with me about 328.



But it was not to be. I was not to find out The Truth ABout Katong Laksa. The laksa place right across, 49 Hock Tong Hin, was just dishing out its last bowl at exactly 9pm. We had to settle for 328. I still don't like it. I might as well be drinking thick savory santan cream. I was drinking thick savory santan cream.

Singapore laksa S$4

I nearly got sick in the cab. Eating like this is a torture.


Rei said...

Hi Terri, you've got mail. :)

singaporean said...

if you have time for fine-dining, you can try Prive, Gunther's, Valentino's, Garibaldi, Iggy's or Saint Pierre.

for a cheap yakitori lunch in orchard you can head to nanbantei on the top floor of far east plaza for the S$10 obento set. very decent, proper yakitori. the alacarte yakitori menu is good if you are willing to spend more. if you are in takashimaya, romankan's katsu sandwich makes a cheap and scrummy snack (it's at the food hall on the basement level). oh and i love royce chocolates, which is in the same food hall too.

do get someone to take you to dempsey where you can have a leisurely lunch and pick up gourmet products from jones the grocer.

for kopitiam style western food you can try aston's specialties.

for desserts: 2am dessert bar, laurent's cafe and chocolate bar, and if you find yourself in one of the malls, look out for canele or bakerzin.

many are of the opinion that malaysia has better street food than sg, so i'm not sure if you'll come away disappointed. nevertheless, maxwell is a personal favourite for the zhen zhen yu sheng. not far from maxwell is 25 degrees celsius where you can pick up some cookbooks and sit down for an affordable meal.

"Joe" who is constantly craving said...

looks like u recovered in time to eat all those..haha

worth getting sick again rite?

TeaLady said...

Looks like you had fun once you started feeling better. Great Eats. Thanks for the pics.

hongyi said...

miss u...

looks like u're def heavier than me now. haha! :D

wmw said...

I like the look of the lobak omelette!

NEE said...

hi...are you feeling better? poor thing.sick while on holiday.

It is good that you blog about food in singapore. otherwise there are always plenty of places to eat but we dont really know where to go for the really superb ones. TQ!

hongyi said...

where are yooOOoOOouuuu...?~?~

been calling ur sg & msian number but i can't get you... :<

*sad melting labrador eyes*

Sophie said...

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