Ootoya 大戸屋

>> Friday, April 30, 2010

ootoya orchard central

Back to Ootoya at Orchard Central, but now there's no longer as much crowd as before.

okra taro salad

Shared this salad dish, which was a mix of seaweed, egg, taro and okra. Actually, it came with natto too, but we requested for it to be omitted as we were not quite into that. This was very light in taste and probably extremely healthy too.

sweet sour vinegar chicken

Took the Sweet & Sour Chicken. I was a little disappointed that it did not come with the braised pumpkin side dish that I had the last time I was here. But the chicken pieces were fairly large and well coated with the tangy sauce.

sweet sour vinegar chicken

Once again, we bought the waffles from Marvelous Cream. This time we tried the Tiramisu and Mandarin Orange Mango & Pineapple Yogurt. The Tiramisu was great, and the chocolate within was soft yet intense.


Wah Lok Cantonese Restaurant

>> Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Been some time since I had proper dim sum meal. Came here as I had a good experience here before.

I don't actually eat fatty pork, so I can't quite say how this stacks up against other places.

Steamed carrot cake which I rather like. Reminds me of a similar one at Victor's Kitchen. Carrot cake was very soft and the sauce was not too salty.

This was probably one of our favorites - Char Siu Bo Luo Bun. The fillings inside was quite tasty. On the outside, crust was sinfully good, while the bread was thin and soft. We had 2 servings of this. I still miss the Bo Luo Yao in Hong Kong, though.

We ordered 2 types of steamed rice rolls - Char Siu and scallops.

Steamed glutinous rice with chicken inside. Nothing to shout about.

I like the Har Gao. The prawns were succulent and fresh, and the skin was not hard nor too chewy.

The Siew Mai tasted pretty good too.

Fried prawn dumplings with mayonnaise.

Egg tarts. The pastry was extremely fragile and literally breaks apart in your mouth.

Beancurd Skin which I found to be too hard.

Ended off the meal with desserts. The almond cream on the left seemed pretty watery, but I did not taste it so I have no idea how good it was. I took the Mango & Pomelo Sago. It was fairly thick and full of sago, and not too sweet. Overall, I thought it was quite nice although maybe it would have been a little better with more mango.


Pizza Kun

>> Monday, April 26, 2010

I probably passed by this stall at the basement of Bugis Junction for years, but never bothered to try it until 2 weeks ago.

It basically sells pizzas and you can choose to have either the usual dough crust or a base that is made of rice. There is a variety of preset toppings to choose from.

I cannot remember the name of this that I chose, but basically it's Japanese flavoured with baby octopuses, bonito, green peppers and cheese. It was a slightly unique taste with the rice base which was rather aromatic.


Manjyuu..or at least intended to be

>> Saturday, April 24, 2010

Wanted to make Japanese manjyuu; guess I failed and came out tasting like a biscuit, but it was not that bad after all.

Added a mochi in between out of my own imagination. I think it would have been better if my skin had succeeded. Well, another one to add to my "to master" list.


Red Bean Mochi

>> Friday, April 23, 2010

Actually this was a test for something I am intending to make as I had extra red bean left from my Green Tea Mousse & Red Bean cake, but it turned out to be pretty good.

Mochi turned out to pretty soft and not too chewy. This was achieved by adding some rice flour to the mix, as I initially tried one batch without rice flour and it turned out to be too chewy when cooled.


Glutinous Rice Flour 80g
Rice Flour 20g
Sugar 20g
Water 120ml
Corn/Potato starch for dusting

1. Mix all the dry ingredients together. Add in water and mix well until no more lumps.
2. Pop into the microwave at High for 30 seconds.
3. Stir and microwave at High for 20 seconds.
4. Repeat step 3 for another 2-3 times until you get an off-white coloured sticky paste. Go slow so that you do not overcook it and end up with it being too dry.
5. Allow it to cool. It will be very sticky, so dust the mochi and your hands with corn starch.


Funan Weng Hor Fun & Once Upon a Milk Shake

>> Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Was just trying to settle lunch as this was not the main reason we were in the area, so we went to Funan Weng at Maxwell Chambers.

ipoh hor fun

I took their signature hor fun, which came with prawns and chicken. The hor fun was very thin and soft, which I rather like. The chicken was all meat, yet very tender. Prawns were succulent and fresh, although it looks a little deceiving here as they were in fact sliced in half.

Next we went round the building to our main reason coming to this area - Once Upon a Milk Shake. The decor was interesting with some lower than usual stools and tables.

chocolate milkshake

Was contemplating taking the Litchi or Rum & Raisin initially. At the last minute, I changed my mind and decided to try the chocolate which was supposedly the most popular. It was indeed very creamy and chocolate-y, although somehow it tasted a little like Milo to me. My friend took the Rum & Raisin, which was pretty intense.


Tampopo @ Ngee Ann City

>> Monday, April 19, 2010

Tampopo serves ramen and a variety of tonkatsu dishes. But my favorite order over here has to be the yuzu infused tonkatsu.

This is something different from the usual tonkatsu, and is eaten without the usual tonkatsu sauce. It is seasoned with salt and drizzled with yuzu, giving it a slight tang. Served on a bed of mizuna or Japanese mustard, which was crisp and light. The only downside was that the meat seemed a little tough compared to the first time when I had it at the Liang Court outlet.


Green Tea Mousse & Red Bean Cake

>> Saturday, April 17, 2010

As much as I like chocolate, it was time to attempt something else apart from the usual chocolate and cheese related stuff.

Covered with green tea chocolate ganache. Ganache's was a little too sweet in my opinion. I had a problem, though. Whenever making a souffle kind of sponge cake, it will always shrink at the top end as it cooled, leaving somewhat of a trapezium cross section. In the end, I had to trim off the sides, resulting in a smaller cake.

Three layers of souffle sponge with green tea mousse in between, as well as adzuki or japanese red bean.

I like the end result. The cake was soft, and the combination of green tea and red bean went well together. I did think the green tea taste could have been stronger. And I still need to improve my skills at stacking a layered cake and applying the ganache.

Printable Recipe

Sponge Cake
Eggs 4
Castor Sugar 90g
Water 30g
Vegetable Oil 50g
Flour 90g
Green Tea powder 1 1/2tsp

1. Separate the yolks from the whites.
2. In a bowl, mix the yolks, water, oil and half of the sugar together.
3. Add in the green tea powder and flour, and mix well till no longer lumpy. You will have a thick batter.
4. In a clean bowl, whisk the eggs into a meringue, adding the remaining sugar as you go along.
5. Fold the meringue into the batter.
6. Bake at 170 degrees C for 30 minutes.

Green Tea Mousse
Castor Sugar 70g
Fresh Milk 150g
Green Tea Powder 2tsp
Whipping Cream 300g
Gelatine Powder 10g
Water 50ml

1. Dissolve the gelatine powder in the water.
2. Heat the milk and dissolve the sugar and green tea powder in.
3. Remove from heat, add in the gelatine and leave to cool.
4. Whip the cream until fold into the cooled milk mixture.

Green Tea Ganache
White Chocolate 200g
Cream 200g
Green Tea Powder 2tsp

1. Melt the white chocolate in a microwave at High for a minute.
2. Heat the cream over your stove and mix in the green tea powder.
3. Pour the hot cream into the chocolate and mix well, ensuring all the chocolate had melted and mixed well with the cream. Leave to cool, or put into your freezer for a while until it become thick and more easily spreadable.

You will need a can of adzuki beans which is already cooked and sugared.

1. Slice the cake into your preferred number of layers. Or you can even bake and extra round of the sponge cake to create thicker layers.
2. Alternate the mousse and sponge cake layers, adding in your desired amount of red beans within each mousse layer. It's easier if you have a cake ring you can use. I didn't, so I refrigerated the mousse until it is thick and spreadable.
3. Once all the layers are completed, spread a little of your cooled ganache all around cake pop into the fridge until it is a little solidified. This helps in sealing the crumbs of the cake and avoid a grainy texture on the ganache.
4. Spread the ganache over the cake until the whole cake is well covered.


Din Tai Fung

>> Friday, April 16, 2010

I have not been to Din Tai Fung for a long time. Frankly, while the food isn't all that bad, I prefer places where I can be spoilt for choice.

sour spicy soup

Ordered the sour and spicy soup which turned out to be not spicy and only a little sour. I think the stall below my workplace serves better soup.

prawn fried rice

I had the Fried Rice with prawns. A tad too oily and while still fairly aromatic, did not seem to be as much as what I remembered it to be, although I have to admit my last visit was years back, so maybe it's my memory that's fuzzy.

prawn meat dumpling

We ordered the prawn and meat dumplings. I have never been crazy over the dumplings, so they tasted as what I expected them to be. I did feel that the insides could do with a little more fillings than what they provided as seen in the pic below.

prawn meat dumpling

This red date dish was pretty nice in my opinion. Basically, it's red dates stuffed with mochi in the centre. The dates were a little sweet, although I'm not too sure if it was the natural sweetness or just having been sugared. The mochi in between did however balance well with the sweetness, and was not overly chewy. Overall, its texture was pretty unique, but this is definitely not for people who do not like herbal-like stuff.

red dates mochi

Pay your bill with a Citibank credit card and you can get a free basket of 6 of yuanyang dumplings. This is a dessert dish with yam and red bean paste inside the dumpling. I thought this was quite nice and not too sweet.

yam red bean

yam red bean



>> Wednesday, April 14, 2010

yam paste

Dessertstory at Tiong Bahru Plaza sells a variety of Chinese desserts and some savoury snacks as well.

yam paste

I was in a yam paste mood, so I decided to buy some. The sweetness was just right as I do not like overly sweet stuff. However, I think it was a little tad too oily, but yam paste would not be 'smooth' enough without the oil. The blandness of the gingko balances with the sweetness as always.

steam milk pudding

Another Chinese dessert I will surely buy is the steamed milk pudding. I still miss the one I ate in Hong Kong. This one was a little sweet, but otherwise milk taste was pretty strong.


Caffe Beviamo

>> Monday, April 12, 2010

cafe beviamo

Had lunch at Caffe Beviamo at Tanglin Mall, where my friend said there was good Sticky Date & Toffee Pudding.

sweet potato sandwich

The cafe serves a variety of sandwiches, pasta, salads and pizzas. I was adventurous and tried the Kumera sandwich. This basically consisted of sweet potato, lettuce, cheese and tomato pesto. It was quite a unique blend of tastes as you seldom find sweet potato in sandwiches, coupled with warm melting cheese oozing with every bite.

sticky date toffee pudding

Finally, the reason why we were here in the first place - Sticky Date & Toffee Pudding. This was presented slightly differently, as it came in squarish slices with the vanilla ice cream sandwiched in between. The pudding was moist and soft, and in my opinion, does not lose out to Marmalade Pantry's. The vanilla ice cream however seemed pretty ordinary, and if I recall correctly, Marmalade Pantry's vanilla ice cream had a richer taste.


Spinach Quiche

>> Sunday, April 11, 2010

spinach quiche

I always did like quiche, and I did try to make one long, long time ago. Decided to go meatless this time round and make something a little healthier - quiche with spinach, tomatoes and brie cheese.

The problem with my baking is that I am using the convection function of the microwave oven. The heat source emanates from one side, which usually results in the center of my cake/pie taking longer to cook, and when it does the sides may be a little over-done. A conventional oven would probably fare better since its heat source is either from the top or bottom.

spinach quiche

I think this turned out to be pretty alright; just that I did not put enough salt, so it was slightly bland. You can taste the spinach and on the whole, it was not over-baked. However, I think I can actually bake it on lesser time so that it comes out a little more moist and soft.

spinach quiche

Printable Recipe

Pastry Base
Flour 250g
Unsalted Butter 150g
Salt 1tsp
Milk 1tbsp
Egg 1

1. In a bowl, mix the flour and salt together.
2. Cut the butter into cubes and rub the flour into the butter cubes until the mixture resembles coarse breadcrumbs.
3. In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs and milk together.
4. Pour the egg mixture into the flour/butter mixture, and mix well until you form a dough.
5. Roll the dough into a ball or disc shape and refrigerate for about 45 minutes.
6. Roll onto your pie tin. Using a fork, make a couple of holes at the base of the crust and bake at 180 degrees C for about 20 minutes.

Onion 1
Olive oil 1tsp
Spinach 280g
Tomato 1
Eggs 3
Heavy cream 1cup
Milk 1/2cup
Salt and pepper to taste
Cheese of your choice

1. Dice the onions and sauteed it.
2. In a bowl, mix the eggs, cream, milk, salt and pepper and whisk lightly.
3. Dice the tomato, then add it together with the spinach (squeezed dry of water) and sauteed onions into the egg mixture.

1. After baking the pie crust, allow it to cool.
2. Place cheese of your choice at the base of the crust.
3. Pour your filling in, and bake at 180 degrees C for about 30-35 minutes.


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