Mama Panda Kitchen at the Singapore Zoo
I'm not sure how easy it is to make out from the photo, but that steamed Chinese bao is supposed to be a panda's head. See, we made our way to the Giant Panda Preview at the zoo today, and just after exiting the gift shop lay this panda-themed fast food restaurant, serving not just that azuki-stuffed bun above, but also bamboo rice bowls and also a number of Sichuan dishes, including mapo doufu, yuxiang qiezi, and ganbian sijidou.
Not surprisingly though, these last few dishes hardly featured any Sichuan spices, and thus lacked the punchiness that makes Sichuan food so exciting. Of course, being at the zoo, these guys surely had intentionally toned down the flavors, especially with so many families and tourists patronizing the place. But it would have been interesting if they had kept it more authentic, especially since I'm sure that restaurants near the panda facilities in Chengdu wouldn't be shy on the spices, yeah?