Tonight I made the aubergine with anchovy and oregano and it turned out to be the first recipe from Simple that failed to impress. Considering that I’ve thoroughly enjoyed every other dish I cooked from Simple so far, I even went through the recipe again to check whether I’d missed a crucial step / ingredient which caused the end result to be so ordinary.It isn’t a bad dish and was ok paired with a couple of sausages. But it’s definitely not something I will be repeating in a hurry.
This is what happens when your local Albert Heijn stops stocking gluten-free beer without notice. Thanks to: beerwulf.com
On our last trip to Singapore I went on a hunt for the best laksa in town. While Katong laksa came up top, there was another place that piqued my curiosity. It had good laksa, of course, but the fruit juice mee siam was the other interesting item on the menu which I absolutely had to try.
My mom, Oggie and I found ourselves walking in the direction of Chinatown yet again. This time though we were looking for a hawker stall in the Hong Lim Food Centre by the name Famous Sungei Road Trishaw Laksa.
Considering this stall finds a mention in the Michelin guide I naively imagined there being signs guiding visitors to the stall. But there was no such thing. The people I asked for directions to get to the stall hadn’t even heard of it. An older gentleman, in an attempt to help out an obvious tourist, told me that I’ll find some of the best Laksa in building – no need to go anywhere else. I did manage to find the stall though. I would have probably found it sooner had I cared to read the address carefully!
The stall is operated by Daniel and Susan Choo, a charming couple who take great pride in their food. I ordered large portions of Laksa and the fruit juice mee siam which cost 10 SGD in total. While they prepared my order we chatted about their trip to Amsterdam many years ago and how much they had enjoyed the boat rides in the canals.What sets Daniel Choo’s laksa apart is the broth. He manages to keep it light without compromising on the flavor. The coconutty broth together with the rice noodles, chicken, shrimp, bean sprouts, tofu puffs and cockles make the laksa a wholesome meal.
The star of this story is the fruit juice mee siam – a dish that comprises thin rice noodles, bean sprouts, omelette, chicken, hard-boiled eggs all swimming in a fragrant, sweet and sour broth. Though the broth traditionally contains tamarind water Mr. Choo uses a secret blend of fruit juices which results in a sweet and sour broth packed with flavour and lingering floral notes which I bet comes from the addition of lychee juice.We ate our packed lunch in the Hong Lim Park across from the market and it’s definitely one of the most memorable meals I had in Singapore!
For breakfast today I tried to re-create the chorizo hash I ate at The Food Club a couple of weeks ago. I must say it came pretty close to the original in terms of taste. The poached eggs didn’t look very pretty because I didn’t have fresh eggs at hand; in fact I think they might have been pretty close to hatching. I wish I could have this for breakfast everyday but there is no way I can spend half an hour cooking breakfast every morning. Oh wait… I don’t even make breakfast on weekdays. That’s @fatherofogg‘s department 😀
I didn’t go to Singapore expecting to eat biryani. Firstly because there are so many other things to eat and secondly because I try to stick to the local cuisine when I’m travelling. This ‘rule’, if you can call it that, has been proven to be a stupid one on multiple occasions. The most notable being eating at a Chinese restaurant in Oslo – that made me re-evaluate quite a few notions I had about what to eat where.
Coming back to biryani, we ended up choosing Bismillah Biryani because the place I originally wanted to eat at was closed and Bismillah Biryani was within walking distance and had good reviews.
It’s not a fancy restaurant by any stretch of the imagination but it’s clean and the decor fuctional. It reminded me more of a canteen. They have limited items on the menu (and by limited I mean you can’t even get white rice if you want it) and we had the mutton dum biryani, haleem and raita. We sipped on mango lassi while we waited for our food to arrive and we didn’t have to wait long. The biryani was very spicy – so spicy that I thought my mouth was on fire. But it was so tasty that I kept eating and after a few mouthfuls the high heat levels didn’t bother me that much. The rice was flavourful and the meat succulent and just fell off the bone. The raita which normally isn’t fiery at all and offers respite from the heat was spicy too, so that was relegated to a side and we didn’t look at it again.
It was also the first time I ate haleem and absolutely loved it. I promptly mixed some of the haleem and biryani at the start and ate it and really liked the combination. Some time later the owner walked up to our table and said, “No matter what you do please don’t mix the haleem and biryani”. Oopsie. So I followed his advice and I must agree the haleem and biryani had on their own taste much better than mixed together.
I also wanted to try the nihari but unfortunately I’m human and not a cow so I have just one stomach and not four.
I did manage to make some space for kulfi. It had the flavour but was a low-fat, watered down version of the original.
Utrecht is now home to a very unique restaurant – one that is completely gluten-free. ‘Absolutely no gluten on the premises’, I was assured by the owner when I asked him if all dishes on the menu were gluten-free.
I’d been reading news articles about plans to open this restaurant with great interest so when it finally opened I felt compelled to check it out. So yesterday I took advantage of the lovely weather and walked to The Food Club. The place is bright and spacious and the decor industrial in keeping with the current trends. Jeroen and Carlijn, the people behind this restaurant were welcoming and friendly. Anyway, how very Dutch of me to talk about the decor and ambience even before I talk about the food. I hope to never do it again.
Having gone through the menu I settled on the dirty chai and the chorizo hash. Though coffee wreaks havoc on my body I seem to be ordering it very often these days. Guess some people never learn. The dirty chai was flavorful and mildly sweet (though I didn’t add any sugar) with a nice kick coming from the coffee. Extra points for not calling it dirty chai tea. It was accompanied by a tiny meringue which absolutely melted in the mouth. I even picked up the crumbs from the table and ate them.
The chorizo hash comprised two perfectly poached eggs (runny yolks and all) on a bed of sauteed mushrooms, sweet potato, bell peppers and of course chorizo. Nothing spectacular but better than the lunch fare available at most other restaurants which is bread / soup / salad. I would totally order it again. At 10.5 euros it is pricey but certified gluten free products are more expensive than their regular counterparts anyway. They even have a store tucked away in a corner where they sell gluten-free products.
I wished Jeroen good luck when I left but he probably doesn’t need it as on it’s second day itself the restaurant was packed with visitors from different parts of the country.
Last time we visited Singapore Kaya toast was my breakfast of choice. Bread and I are no longer on good terms so I had to look for other options. This is what I happily ate every single day while we were in Singapore – two soft boiled eggs with soya sauce and pepper.
I didn’t think of combining the eggs with soya sauce until I asked the ladies at the adjacent table what they were eating and one of them came over and poured sauce and sprinkled pepper over the boiled eggs while the other warned her to go easy on the pepper.
It turned out to be a great combination. I love eggs in any form but the addition of soya sauce elevates it to a different level. I loved it even more because the combination seemed strange and I didn’t expect to like it but I did. A LOT!
This gives me hope that even when I’m old and toothless I can enjoy a good meal.And the ginger tea which I miss everyday day now that I’m back, was perfect on all counts. It had the right colour, was as strong as I like milk tea to be and the flavor of ginger was just right – doesn’t knock you out but definitely makes it’s presence felt. All in all a great breakfast.
Coffee and I share a love-hate relationship. I love coffee and it hates me. Couldn’t resist taking a few swigs of this one and absolutely loved it.