Monday, May 23, 2011

New Fut Kai Vegetarian Restaurant

This is really a difficult place to find for one unfamilar with the area, it is in fact near neither the Lavender MRT & Farrer Park Mrt that one can see on the map if you are thinking of travelling by mrt. We had a hard time searching for the place.
The Icon is it is located at the shophouse just beside Cityhub hotel. So, after knowing this green modern building is Cityhub hotel, and for those who frequent the nearby Foochow building for cultural or religious events, or the Jalan Besar Swimming Complex which is diagonally behind, hopefully all these Icons can aid more people to find the place.

Well, what made me go through all the trouble to want to find the New Fut Kai Vegetarian Restaurant are the 2 dishes at the centre, the Steamed Vegetarian Cod Fish and Herbal Chicken that I had tried at a catered vegetarian dinner by the restaurant.

The flavour of the Steamed Vegetarian Cod Fish was very much like the Teochew style steamed fish method with slices of tomato, mushroom, pickled vegetables, carrots, lettuce and the coriander leaves (Chinese parsley) that greatly enhanced the flavour of the dish. The steamed cod fish texture was of the compressed soft beancurd skin type and the dish was so well cooked that made one really felt like one is tasting the authentic Teochew dish.

The Herbal Chicken, a common dish now easily available even in food court was a dish that I greatly missed, not for its meat but for its herbal gravy/soup and accompanying ingredients.
I was rejoiced to finally find this vegetarian style which was also authentically cooked too.
Strong herbal aroma arises as soon as the aluminium foiled dish unfolds. The well-stewed mushroom, carrot, walnuts and especially the crunchy water chestnut became the main stars and won praises by all and the dish was quickly finished within minutes. :P
This dish is not available at the restaurant daily and has to be pre-ordered if you really want to try it. It is available only at 1 size and cost $25 each if I had not recalled wrongly.

OK, back to the restaurant, it is a small shop with traditional setting and one is welcomed by their appetizers, the Chinese pickles - A-zhar and crispy fried seaweed stripes. We tried their Cream Corn soup with Spinach. It is an unique combination and served with pieces of nourishing Baihe. The others would had liked it to be more creamy as the name had reflected on the menu but I am okay with the texture.

Next, the Stir-fry Vegetarian Delight in Pumpkin and Tapioca Ring is recommended for those who like pumpkin. Instead of the traditional Yam ring of Chinese dishes, this is the enhanced flavour with fragrances and flavour of pumpkin.

Then another of my favourite dish, Deep fried Vegetarian Prawn with Crispy Cereal, the well fried cereal, curry leaves and I wonder how they marinated the vegetarian prawn to make it taste so much like the real... :P

Actually, I was also amazed how they maintain the "freshness" of the vegetables, such as the Stir-fry Vegetarian Abalone with Broccoli at a catered dinner. Well, this is really a caterer that I will seriously consider and recommend if there are any Vegetarian events.

I would think New Fut Kai is really a good venue for just turned vegetarian who used to enjoy non-vegetarian cuisines to visit to remind themselves that it is the cooking style and not the meat that they used to like and also a place that non-vegetarians can try to accept vegetarian cuisines.

Located at 282 Jalan Besar , Spore 208945
(Diagonally left front stretch of shop houses from Jalan Besar Swimming Complex, next to Cityhub Hotel.)
Buses stopping just in front of Cityhub Hotel: SBS 23,64,65,66,130,139,147, SMRT 67,857
Opening hours: 10am-2.45pm; 5pm-9.30pm
Tel: 6398 0836

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Bishan Vegetarian

Was a hot day that I didn't feel like having a heavy meal, decided to have a quick snack at Bishan Vegetarian instead.

Realised that they had increased their menu to include Vegetarian Hor Fun, Bitter Gourd Fish soup, etc. but still decided to have something light, their "Shui Kway" became my choice.

It is difficult to find this traditional snack to be pure vegetarian as the toppings of carrot pickles is usually stir-fried with pork lard/onion oil if purchased from non vegetarian vendors. Hence, I had not had this dish for a long time. Well, the toppings turned out to be oily which I can happily taste without a sense of guilt/hate the aftertaste of onion and the pickles quite crunchy with the white rice cake flavour enhanced with dipping of their chilli sauce. An nice light meal that I will return again for.

Located just above the food centre above the Bus Interchange, Up from the colorful stairs near the traffic light, you can see it just beside a fishball noodles stall.

Fo Lai Ping (Popular) Vegetarian

Revisited Fo Lai Ping for its vegetarian Sweet & Sour Pork but this round, the cooking style differs slightly from previous trial though both presentation looked similar from picture.

The previous visit's tasted more like fatty version of "Gu Lu York" while this round's trial varies abit to be dryer exterior & tasted more to another version of sweet & sour pork ribs? One can taste that the filling inside is different too and is more likely a type of mushrooms being used. But taste as superb! The culinary skill is as good. Will definitely return for this Sweet & Sour dish again.

We also ordered Claypot beancurb which contains a good portion of braised beancurb, vegetables, black fungus and button & straw mushrooms. Value for money but perhaps I was too overwhelmed by their Sweet & Sour dish that I did not pay enough attention to the claypot dish.
This is certainly a value for money vegetarian outlet for quality & quantity. :-)

It is quite easily accessible, being located near the lift lobby of Blk107, Lor 1 Toa Payoh, #01-264 (same stretch as POSB & McDonald), HDB flat from Exit A of Braddell MRT. They are usually opened to around 10pm but closed on most Sundays so do make a call at 63580107 to check to avoid disappointment.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Ci Hang Western & Chinese Vegetarian Fast Food

Arrived at Ci Hang for a late dinner with its last order at 9pm, we managed to have a quick nice dinner. Recommended friend to try their Braised Mushroom Noodles and she enjoyed it while I ordered something new, their home-made Dumpling noodles. The accompanying noodles is yes, the white jade noodles. The soup is simple with tomato quarters and Caixin and the fillings of the dumpling is good mixture of shredded vegetables. However, the skin of the dumpling which the lady boss proudly claimed was made from organic wheat flour? is abit coarse. Maybe it would be softer and tasted better if cooked a bit longer.
The delight of the night is the Fried Mushroom which does not appear appetising but while served hot, softness of the mushroom inside the crispy exterior coat of flour melts in the mouth.

It is located at 72 Lorong 25-A Geylang, at stretch of shophouses besides Aljunied MRT.
Tel: 6747 1229. Operates from 10am-9.30pm with last order at 9pm. Closed on Fridays.

Dining Hall of Buddha Tooth Relics Temple

Visited Buddha Tooth Relics Temple recently and saw near its entrance that its Dining Hall at Basement One now sells Vegetarian Delights and Beverages to the public from 9am-3pm.

Decided to pay a visit & was enticed by its colorful air-conditioned Dining Hall that welcomes one for lunch.

The theme is local delights at very reasonable price of $3 for its main dishes such as Wanton Noodles, Hor Fun, Yee Mee, Char Siew Noodles & rice, and Mushroom With Shredded Chicken slices Hor Fun.

It also has Dim Sum of any 3 pieces at $2. Among their Dim Sum, I would recommend their Char Siew Su (pastry with mock barbecue pork as filling) and Strongly recommend their home-made brewed Herbal Tea at $1. It was serving Chrysanthemum with Luo Han Guo on my day of visit and it is real good cup of tea that certainly worth more than the price. :-)
Overall, the environment is very welcoming with bright colours theme and would be a good place for relaxing and have a tea-break with friends.

It is located at Basement 1 of Buddha Tooth Relic Temple and Museum which is located at Chinatown: 288 South Bridge Rd, off Sago street or opposite the famous Maxwell food centre, nearest MRT: Outram/Chinatown MRT. It is open from 9am-3pm.