Tuesday 20 January 2015

SINGAPORE: How Much Does a Dumpling Weigh?

I got that little gem from Tiffany. It made me laugh so hard.
Greetings ladles and jellyspoons;
We are aware of our lack of posts but this is because the klutzy lamb of the family has gone and dropped her phone fatally, and we are now looking around for viable options to repair it and recover the photos and notes taken from our food outings. It's really just been a series of unfortunate events for me (Jia) and I eventually reached a point where I wondered if I had a cursed touch with electronics. First I arrived in Singapore and my laptop wasn't - and still isn't- working, then I broke my phone, then I started using my father's laptop and somehow that shut down all of a sudden one day for no apparent reason and Songie was hesitant to let me touch any of his electronics after that....yeah you get the idea. In any case the laptop started working randomly yesterday so I was pretty happy. We were quite diligent in not eating the food until a picture was taken and it's really difficult not being able to post when we have so much to write about.
I did get a new phone recently (it's very cool), but I'm unwilling to revisit every single place all over again because it was often spontaneous eating upon reaching different places. Buuuuut I'm sure our stuff is recoverable so its fine.
Upon purchasing the phone in JEM(Jurong East Mall), we went to eat at Din Tai Fung, which I think Asian readers may know of. Their Xiao Long Bao(dumplings with soup inside) are really good. Since it was my first day of having the phone I think I can be excused for a few unfocussed photos I think.....

It's a nice place, suitable for casual lunches/dinners and also formal ones, as most classy Chinese restaurants are. It's based on a first-come-first-serve basis I believe, although it's probable that you can book a table. Usually around lunch time they get extremely packed and you'd have to wait a good 15-20 minutes depending on your party size. It's not a very noisy place, unless there are loud babies nearby or something.

There's more but I didn't get a photo because I was busy learning how to use the phone, sorry guys!

Okay, the food.

Drunken Chicken

This dish is small but really, really nice. It's steamed chicken that's been soaked in Chinese wine, and the flavour of the wine isn't overpowering but rather enhances the taste of the chicken. The chicken itself is tender and pleasant to the tastebuds.  Yes I know good things come in small packages but I wanted more. This cost $7.50. At that price I wasn't as keen on getting more.

Xiao Long Bao

We are certain they have perfected the art of Xiao Long Bao because they are just amazing. If you wait a few minutes for it to cool down, it is actually the perfect temperature to go into your mouth and pop without the soup scalding your mouth. For those of you who have not had these dumplings before, they are (usually meat) dumplings that -if made well- have soup inside them and you can lift them and put them on your spoon with the skin staying intact and the soup remaining inside.

Of course as a result the inside is usually still quite hot so its good to be careful when eating them. Like an egg yolk, you can pop it and let the soup ooze into your spoon(as shown above) and drink it before eating the dumpling, or you can put the whole dumpling in your mouth and let it pop on your tongue. When I was younger I used to pop all of them and let the soup drip into a bowl, and after collecting enough I would drink the soup by itself. By then it was a bit cold and its not as delicious. Personally I can't eat more than 8 because they're quite filling and oily in a sense, but Songie loves them and claims to be able to eat them every day. We ordered 20 at the price of $19.60.

Truffle dumpling

This one I did not try personally, because I've had it before and I wasn't keen on it. Contrary to the appearance, we did not in fact forget to take a picture before eating it, we really only ordered 1. it was $4.50 for one so you can see why. According to Songie it was really good since the unique taste of the truffle mushroom was really strong. (Song here - not really a unique taste, it just tastes like a mushroom but its a really different flavor from the normal versions)

Yam paste dumplings

This is a dessert type dumpling, with sweet yam paste inside. I didn't have any this time (She's lying. She had one) because I'm trying to cut back on sweets(I know, that's amazing), but I do recall them being delicious. Its not soupy at all, but the paste is sweet and smooth. I don't like how the skin of the dumpling gets a bit hard once it cooled down, but I guess that's because they intended for us to eat it warm. We ordered 10 at $8.80.

Overall the cost was about $50, including tea. Price wise I guess this is a normal price and the food is really good. It is quite expensive though and you could definitely get the same amount of food at a much lower price at a hawker centre but the type of food is very different, as well as the venue.

The service was good; the food came out pretty fast, the waitresses were nice and patient with us non-Chinese speaking customers, and our tea and water was constantly filled up. They were also attentive with clearing the table which I think is good.

All in all, a good place to go, just maybe not for students on a budget. Anyway it's good to be back in the blogisphere; stick around and we'll hopefully blog more frequently unless more technical issues arise. We'll  leave you with some pictures of desserts from the Food Republic at ION Orchard.

Mango Pudding

Aloe Vera and Grass jelly dessert from the same place. Unsure of the actual name.

The Lambs

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