Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Strictly Pancakes

Totally enjoying my annual leave D2! I just went to Aoki for lunch (and whatsapp-ing the photos to a poor colleague stuck at work ^-^) Annual leave is even better than school holidays - no need to worry about assignments, doing holiday homework etc! Best ever! I've been watching movies on my ipad and messing up my sleep cycle. Cant believe that I've worked without annual leave since January!
Finally tried Strictly Pancakes at Prinsep street - didn't attempt to go there before cos it's in CBD and the carpark's a pain. It still was a pain to park there on Sunday (I parked at Sunshine plaza, it's $3 per entry on Sundays) and took a short walk over. The seating's really limited and we had to wait about 30min (not like there were many other restaurants open around that area on Sunday morning, or we would have defected to another restaurant/cafe. It's a pretty interesting concept where all the dishes are pancake based and there's both savory and sweet pancakes.

Had the equivalent of Eggs benedict (can't remember the name of this dish, but it's essentially Eggs Benedict with pancakes instead of muffins). It looks a bit bare cos we got the Hollandaise sauce on the side. The eggs were nicely poached, not overcooked and still runny inside. It was also very reasonably priced. The pancakes are the thick floury kind which aren't really my favourite type but it worked well in absorbing the runny yolks and hollandaise sauce so no complaints here.

We also added an extra side of mushrooms which were pretty good for the price (I think it was $2.50-$3 additional charge)
Each of the mains come with a choice of butter (herb garlic, unsalted and salted) as well as maple syrup. Makes it a bit more interesting instead of eating a whole dish of savory pancakes. Do note that you would have to pay an additional charge to add maple syrup/butter to the dessert pancakes (or those that don't come with this butter and maple syrup).
I can't remember the name of this dish but it's a sure-win combi of all of my favourite things. Pancakes, kinder bueno (my fave chocolate snack ever! especially mixed into Horlicks Ice Cream from Ice cream chef!) and nutella and a scoop of vanilla ice cream. The pancakes are special peanut butter pancakes which I really didn't like cos I found it too heavy going and a bit salty. They were quite stingy on the nutella spread. I think I'd have liked it better if it was plain pancakes with more nutella. The best way to eat this was to spread the 'innards' of the kinder bueno over the nutella side of the pancake and eat it with the ice cream.

Strictly Pancakes
44A Prinsep Street

Friday, September 23, 2011

Artichoke Revisited

One more call before I go on loooong annual leave! :D
I just watched Tree of Life yesterday and it was really one of the most painful movies I've ever watched! I was just thinking to myself barely 1hr into the movie that it was really sad that I wasn't at Universal studios (cos it was raining madly in the morning) and that the movie was like watching fragments from national geographic channel without any narration :(
Went to Artichoke again (?a month back) cos I was missing the dips and the lamb ribs.
They've changed their dips - tzatziki and hummus were my faves (always are) but I didn't like the carrot and walnut dip (don't particularly like carrots). Turkish bread comes separately for about $3 (but it's a small portion)
Fried Halloumi Cheese with came with some grilled vegetables - my first time trying this cheese. It's very firm and looks a bit like a tau kua. Taste wise it's not very remarkable.
My favourite dish at Artichoke - their slow cooked lamb ribs with mint yogurt with a scattering of pomegranate seeds. The lamb is very gamey so people who don't like the lamb smell please avoid this dish!
We had one of their sharing meat platters which totally made everyone so uncomfortably full. The meat platter is really very very filling, salty and oily. And gamey. It comes with chicken, lamb, sausages. Please don't order the lamb ribs and the meat platter cos you'll really overdose on the lamb. Other than that, I quite liked the sausage and the grilled cherry tomatoes.

Was wayyy too full to even think about dessert.

161 Middle Road, Sculpture Square
Tel 63366949

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Ramen Champion

The wonders of technology - I've been slacking off and maximizing my off days - and I've gotten a new addition to my Apple family. I spent my off day and post call day watching movies on it instead of catching back my sleep, but it's so luxurious to turn on the airconditioning, lie in bed and watch movies with the ipad on my tummy:)

Ramen Champion has been gaining much popularity recently after the Straits Times published an article on the 6 famous ramen stalls from Japan battling it out to set up a store in Singapore. I've tried 4 out of the 6 ramen so far:Menya Ihora which comes from Toyama has this black shoyu (soya sauce) broth as well as a more traditional miso based broth. I tried the black shoyu broth and it has a really pleasant taste, and isn't oily. It sort of reminds me of brands chicken essence actually. The noodles are the curly springy yellow kind (the type I like, as opposed to the straight Hakata style noodles which are similar to the kind you'll find in Ding Tai Fung). They also had one of the best half boiled eggs with the nicely runny golden yolks.
Gantetsu - the 'stubborn' chef's recipe from Sapporo has a robust pork bone broth - I like the broth from this place the best and their signature ramen comes with the uslal bamboo shoots, sweet corn and freshly grated ginger. You can also choose to have butter added.
One of the more unique ramen is from Bario - it's superbly oily broth is tasty but slightly too salty for my liking (I suppose they haven't reduced the salt for the local palate). It's like the Menya Shinchuan Ramen style at Gallery Hotel where it's a huge heap of ramen with a equally generous portion of bean sprouts that's guaranteed to make the general population uncomfortably full. The broth is extremely robust and has a strong garlic flavour - you can even add additional garlic if you wish.
The thing I liked about Bario is the noodles which is unique - they're made from bread dough so it's firmer and flourier and they look messy and curly but tastes very good.

The other ramen I tried was from Tetsu (which I tried on my first visit to Ramen Champion). Their signature ramen comes with broth separated from the noodles, and you're supposed to dip the noodles into the broth when eating - very much like how you would eat cha soba. I really didn't like this one cos it was extremely extremely salty - felt like I was a salted dried fish after this and I needed to get a drink asap. The egg was also a disappointment - it was overcooked and the yolk was all powdery and yucky (I hate eating hard boiled egg yolks which taste terrible and are not worth the cholesterol).
I can't remember where I got these gyoza from but I think it was from Tetsu? They had this weird bamboo smell which I didn't like either.

Ramen Champion
Opening hours 10.30am-11.30pm

Tuesday, September 6, 2011


Had a delicious dinner at the month-old Hanayoshi, which is tucked away in Duxton Road. The simple wooden interior and Japanese decor is really nice.
Ordered the Chirashi don ($45++), and it came prettily presented, with perfectly vinegared rice, otoro (I didn't ask but it was so deliciously fatty and marbled) and uni (sea urchin). I also had the chawanmushi which was silky smooth and tasty. Didn't get a nice shot of it (partly cos I was using my iphone and not my S90, which I sadly left in another bag :(
The Salmon skin salad ($9++) was light and refreshing, and the salmon skin didn't have the oily taste. Comes with vinegrette dressing.The ice cream here is supplied by a secret contact that the restaurateur knows, and it's not ice cream but Gelato. I particularly liked the Ume ice cream ($8++ per scoop) which was pleasantly sour, not extremely tart and tasted very creamy. Very much like yogurt but it's plum! We also tried the green tea gelato and the peanut butter gelato, but my fave is still the Ume. I liked the mochi that came with the latter two:D
Since the restaurant is very new, it was pleasantly empty (apart from some other patrons in the private Japanese style rooms) so we had a nice quiet dinner. The service here is supberb and personalized. I think the lunch here is much more affordable than dinner, and the lunch sets come with a scoop of ice cream (do try the ume!)

21 Duxton Road Singapore 089487
Tel 62255567

Friday, September 2, 2011

Space @ my Humble House

Hello everyone who is bored enough to come to my dying blog. I've been eating lots of good food (my to eat list is getting longer and longer everyday!) but I've been procrastinating more! Somehow, my job doesn't pay me enough to get stressed but it seems like I've been stressing over it everyday! :( And I'm reminded how lousy my Chinese and how successful LKY is in abolishing all dialects in Sgp... But seriously, I really really really cannot understand how someone living in Sgp their whole lives can only speak ONE language (dialect! especially the rarer ones like Hakka and Hainanese!) How do they buy bread or roti prata or any other dishes for that matter?

Anyway, the pictures below have been edited with Lightroom as opposed to my usual Paintshop Pro 7 (which is so outdated!) I've been inspired by my colleague to learn how to utilize my totally underutilized macbook pro (which costs slightly less than my upcoming holiday).
Space@my Humble House is the poor sister of My Humble House where one can get local fare with a modern twist. Here's the Laksa with oyster and scallop and a very un-spicy but fragrant soup. Laksa again, and very expensive XO Carrot Cake with scallops and prawns. I found the chunks of carrot cake too large and floury. Smaller pieces = more surface area = tastier carrot cake.
Their famous Chicken Rice - I'm not a fan of chicken rice and the last time I ate chicken rice was when I was on call and didn't have any other choice. I suppose it's the thought that counts and it was free...
Their Herbal Jelly with Aloe Vera and lime juice. The aloe vera comes pre-marinated with lime juice but I was really dying to eat the Herbal Jelly. Big mistake cos the aloe vera is really very well marinated with lime juice and I hate anything citrus mixed in my food.
Their nice simple decor with green apples. And I now suddenly recall why I ate here - went to watch this magic show called Vsion which is staged by our very own local talent - it really exceeded my expectations - they managed to make a Lotus appear.

8 Raffles Avenue
Esplanade Mall
Tel 64231881