Friday, September 20, 2019

Guangzhou Restaurant in Guangzhou, China

Baiqieji

Yes, Guangzhou Restaurant is the actual name of another large old school chain here in - you guessed it - Guangzhou. I sat down to try their baiqieji, whose cuts amusingly were reassembled into their bodily positions on that plate. But what I really wanted to see how different it was from Singaporean chicken rice.

First off, there is no rice. Nor soup. And the chicken is not as aromatic either. But it's incredibly moist; so moist that it was it was literally gelatinous under the skin, making it all very delicate. I really liked the yellow ginger dip, as it was also mixed with scallions and a hefty amount of salt.

Diandude (Dian Dou De) in Guangzhou, China

Dim Sum

I was very curious to see if the dim sum up here in Guangzhou was different from how they do it in Hong Kong. So I went to an outlet of this old local chain this morning, and they immediately started with your choice of tea, done kungfu style. I naturally followed that with a basket of hargow, whose skin was unexpectedly thick, but in a chewy way, making it kinda fun.

Those brown things above were changfen, but using red rice, which one could argue made it a little healthier, putting aside the fact that there was a greasy youtiao shoved inside. I also had some duck congee, which was surprisingly mild. I'm not sure if other shops around town do these the same way, but I'm glad that I came here to try them.

Thursday, September 19, 2019

The Huangsha Seafood Market in Guangzhou, China

The Huangsha Seafood Market in Guangzhou, China

This place is cool. This narrow alleyway near Huangsha station is lined with fishmongers eager to sell you all sorts of live creatures (actually, it was mostly shellfish). Make your purchase down on the street, and bring your catch upstairs to one of the many restaurants who will cook it for you, kinda like Noryangjin Market in Seoul.

Snails

I grabbed a number of local items, like those snails from Hainan above, which were salted and cooked in a foil and paper wrap, as well as some local mantis prawns, which the restaurant deep-fried in salt and pepper. I liked the tender and small abalone that they steamed with soy sauce and ginger, and as well as some impressively sweet scallops. And I didn't mind the minced garlic topping as much as I thought I would, especially since it made the bean noodles tasty.

Female and Male Taihu Crabs

Oh, and fortunately, it's hairy crab season now. I found one lady who exclusively sold hairy crabs from Taihu Lake, swimming in tanks (as opposed to being tied up like other stalls). So I grabbed one male and one female from her, the former of which was more straightforward (a slightly metallic but concentrated egg yolk-like taste) while the latter was more rounded and savory. The latter was definitely more fun.

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

WISH Wutong Peking Duck Restaurant Lounge in China

Shui zhu yu

My local teammate picked this Peking duck chain here in China tonight, in part because an outlet was next to my final meeting of the day. He wanted to try the duck in particular, as the skin was crisp with a lot of flavors going on in the fat. Yes, it was good, but I was also a fan of things like that shui zhu yu above, which wasn't the usual bright red pot of oil but was still delightfully numbing with those green peppercorns. I was also happy with the other things that we had, including some meatballs on a hot plate and a soup served in a cute little pumpkin. We kept it all edgy with some some spicy duck heads (nice creamy brains inside!) and stewed mud loaches too. I'd be happy to come back.

The Diabetic Meal on Singapore Airlines

The Diabetic Meal on Singapore Airlines

No, I don't have diabetes. But I'm still on a no carb and no sugar deal this week, so I figured that a diabetic meal would be suitable. Kinda. They still provided fruit and a roll of bread, but at least the omelette and veggies provided the necessary fiber and protein. I basically got something similar in the lounge this morning: eggs, sausage, and bok choy.

Monday, September 16, 2019

The US Beef Lunch Set at Shi Li Fang

The US Beef Lunch Set at Shi Li Fang

I haven't been to Shi Li Fang in a while, so I'm not sure how long this option has been available. But they were offering lunch set priced at a few bucks more than the regular S$9.90 (US$7.25), like this one featuring US beef, as well as an upgraded vegetable basket featuring more leafy greens and mushrooms. It hit the spot, but next time I think I'll revert back to my usual fish set, as that is good enough.

Thursday, September 12, 2019

The Oxtail Stew from Mariner's Corner in Singapore

Braised Colonial Oxtail Stew

I went to Mariner's Corner tonight, in part because I was drawn by their pitch for this oxtail stew: it seems that Hainanese chefs from the colonial days were known for this dish, and this was the family's recipe from those days. Yes, it was fall-off-the-bone tender, and it came out piping hot in that clay pot with a mildly tangy sauce.

The other reason why I came here was the novelty of the destination itself: the decor is a time warp to the 80's. The staff was friendly and attentive, and it was surprisingly busy tonight too, filled with families. Now, none of this was so exciting that I'll come running back, but I left with a smile on my face.

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

The Healthy Society at Clifford Centre, Singapore

Chili Coriander Fish

This is not a place that I would've normally considered (24 Raffles Place #02-05, 8862-1338), especially with its low calorie, low carb, and fat trimmed meals. But there was a sign outside for a chili coriander fish that looked pretty good, and hey - the low carb aspect dovetailed nicely with my ongoing gut cleansing.

It was delicious. Of course, it helps if you're a cilantro freak like I am, but it was also spiked with a few cuts of chili padi for additional delight. Most importantly, they didn't overpower it with garlic like I feared they might. I liked it so much that I nearly went back for a second plate, except...you know: gut cleansing.

Tuesday, September 10, 2019

Haakon Superfoods & Juice in Singapore

Salmon Shirataki

I never had much interest in going to this small chain. But this gut cleansing isn't over yet, so I figured that it'd be pretty easy to find something here that was suitable. It turned out that that came in the form of shirataki, or konnyaku noodles, which were buried underneath that pile of protein and veggies in a light sesame sauce. Sure, it was healthy, but I wasn't particularly satisfied.

Friday, September 06, 2019

An Outlet of Gong Yuan Malatang in Singapore

Malatang

This malatang chain has been spreading across the island, and with long lines at lunchtime too. I was near one today and waited patiently in line after picking out my ingredients. The good thing was that the broth was spicier than it looked, leaving a residual bit of warmth and numbness in my belly. The bad thing was that the broth was sweeter than it looked, which meant that I left it untouched, and won't come back to eat it again either. I am kinda curious to know what their dumplings are like though.

Wednesday, September 04, 2019

Club Meatballs at China Square Central in Singapore

Meatballs in Tomato Sauce

I wasn't expecting much from this place given that it seemed like more of a pub (20 Cross Street #01-35, 6222-8660). But I was happy enough with those meatballs that they were gone in minutes. Sure, they were a tad hard, but that meant that they were slightly crispy on the outside, and the tangy tomato sauce helped facilitate things. Even the chopped salad that I got to go with it was tasty, with just the right balance of ingredients and without overdressing it. I'll happily come back.

Putien's Pan-Fried Live Eel on Hot Plate

Putien's Pan-Fried Live Eel on Hot Plate

Putien is one of those places that I've always liked yet somehow it's never at the top of my mind. But I was on a mission to come here today because they are currently running an eel festival right now, with live eels either boiled in spring water as a soup or grilled on a platter with just oil and salt. I went for the latter, and it was surprisingly thick but also fatty enough to be tasty.

I suppose it was like shirayaki unagi or even Korean eel, but it was done on a platter rather than grilled. Anyway, I gobbled it up along with some greens. Once I'm off this gut cleansing program, I'm coming back to try the seaweed and shrimp starter that I saw on the menu. But I also need to remember to save up my money, because this place isn't cheap.

Epilogue: they also have a soup version of this. Or rather, it's just eel boiled in clear spring water along with a bit of ginger and wolfberries. It didn't sound nor look like much, but it was delicious, with a light yet savory broth that helped offset the fat from the eel's skin. I just love how the simplest food tastes the best.