Monday, 22 June 2015

[June School Holidays: Week 1] Fishing, Cafe Hopping and Food Hunt

Time flies and now we are into the last week of June School Holidays. Although we did not plan any overseas trip this year but we do have lot of fun during the past few weeks exploring different parts of Singapore. For example; we went for fishing, food hunt, picnic, cafe hopping as well as day trip to Johor, Malaysia.

And on days when the boy has tuition classes, we would stay in door enjoying bonding time together whipping up meals or baking some tea snacks. Some days we also mingle around our little garden take care of our plants and vegetables. So for this and the subsequent posts we welcome you to join us walking through the wonderful time and memories that shared between me and the boy during the June school holidays.



MONDAY, 01 JUNE 2015
(Fishing @ Bedok Jetty)


If you still remember, about a month ago we actually visited this jetty during our cycling trip which I shared in one of my post here. And since 01st June is a public holiday in Singapore (Vesak Day - 卫塞节), we decided to bring the boy for fishing which he always wanted to.

Fishing @ Bedok Jetty
As this is the first fishing trip for the boy he is very exited and eager to learn how to set up the fishing rod and reel before the catch.

Ok, with all the set-up done it's time to wait patiently for the fish to get hook on. At first the boy was excited but after 15 - 20 minutes past by he begins to be a bit impatient because he don't seems to get anything on hook. But after getting some advise from one of the regular who fish there he managed to reel up his first catch in joy.

Perhaps due to the timing or water tide, when I walked around the jetty I saw almost everyone's catch was rather small (about palm size or smaller). While most of the people are waiting for catch, some folks shared that big fish usually appears early dawn or late evening onwards depending on the tide.

Picnic @ Bedok Jetty
Besides fishing, I also prepared some food and beverages for breakfast as well as snacks to kill time while waiting for our catch. From top: dim sum items (steamed bun and siew mai), hot coffee, swiss roll, fried bee hoon with sides as well as packed drinks and fruits.

After spending a few hours at the jetty, we decided to call off for the day due to the hot weather.We then cleaned up and packed our things and head off to IKEA Tampines for lunch which is on the same route home. As usual, IKEA is always packed with people who goes there for their food (meatballs and chicken wings) before picking up some items from their showrooms.

Our pick for lunch are: chicken curry with rice, BBQ pork ribs (first time trying and I love the tender meat and sweet savoury BBQ sauce), kid's nugget meal, fired chicken wings and butterscotch cookies for our after meal dessert. Total damage = SG$23.10 including drinks.



TUESDAY, 02 JUNE 2015
(Lunch @ ibis Hotel, Bencoolen + Dazzling Cafe)


Mother-in-law is a frequent patron at TASTE Cafe which located at the ground level of ibis Hotel (Bencoolen Street) because with her Accor Card, cardholder is entitled for a 50% OFF on any food items ordered except beverages (15% OFF). So since she always invite us to try their lunch menu, we decide to go with her during school holidays so that we have ample time to enjoy lunch without rushing for time.

[TASTE Cafe] Lunch Menu
TASTE Cafe lunch menu consists both Asian (local Singapore dishes) and Western dishes which you can choose from chicken rice, satay to pasta or steak as well as dessert of your preference.

[TASTE Cafe] Tapas Set Lunch
Above is our Tapas Set Lunch (SG$17) where we get to select any 3 Singapore local delight from the menu. For us we ordered Chicken Rice, Fried Hokkien Mee and Laksa. Gosh all carbo loading dishes right? That's because my boy wanted to try their chicken rice whereas I am craving for noodle dishes. And we didn't know their tapas serving was quite big else I will get the prata and rojak instead so many carbo dish.  

[TASTE Cafe] Chicken Rice

[TASTE Cafe] Fried Hokkien Mee
Out of the 3 tapas items, Laska is my least favourite due to it's gravy which was rather bland. Guess due to preparation methods or health benefit they might have reduce the amount of coconut milk and spices used in order to cater for tourists preference too. As for chicken rice, the rice texture is well cook and infused with ginger and lemongrass taste plus their steamed chicken is also tender and juicy to bite.

[TASTE Cafe] Healthy Set Lunch
Besides Tapas and Ala Carte Menu, they also have International Set Lunch which serve with choice of main, soup/salad together with coffee/tea and fresh cut fruits at SG$16 pet set. Above is the Healthy Set which mother-in-law ordered and it consist of a main course that changes daily depending what is available on the chef menu for that day.

[TASTE Cafe] Healthy Set; Stir-fry Fish with Assorted Veggies
Close-up view of the Asian style Stir-fry Fish with cook with colourful assorted vegetables such as mushroom, carrot, baby corn, kailan and etc which makes it a nutrition dish.

[TASTE Cafe] Healthy Set; Fresh Cut Fruits
The Healthy Set also comes with a big bowl of fresh cut fruits such as watermelon, papaya, rock melon, pineapple, grave and water apple as a after meal dessert together with either coffee or tea.

Overall their food was quite good and affordable for a lunch deal in town area. We paid about SG$23.40 (after 50% OFF with our Accor Card) for 2 lunch set and a cup of flat white for the food items.

Interior view of TASTE Cafe at ibis Hotel Singapore

ibis Hotel Singapore on Bencoolen
170 Bencoolen Street
Singapore 189657
Telephone:+65 6593 2888
Website: www.ibis.com/gb/hotel-6657-ibis-singapore-on-bencoolen/


[Dessert] Dazzling Cafe Singapore

[Dessert] Dazzling Cafe Singapore Menu
After lunch we went shopping around Bugis Junction area for a while before taking a train to City Hall where we walked over to the newly opened Capitol Piazza at Stamford Road. This new mall has many "must try" eateries such as Angelina, Dazzling Cafe, Four Seasons Chinese Restaurant, llaollao and etc. Will share our visit to Dazzling Cafe (Taiwan cafe that serves Honey Toast with Ice-cream) in another separate post. 
  


WEDNESDAY, 03 JUNE 2015
(Movie Time : San Andreas)


[Movie Time] Kaya Butter Toast & Toast Cubes for Brunch.
As we were out on both Monday and Tuesday, we decided to do something relax by catching up a movie on Wednesday which the boy waited for long since its preview last month. After getting the tickets, we went to our favourite cafe to grab a quick brunch with Kaya Toast and Coffee (the boy having milo) before the movie starts.

[Movie Time] Sweet or Salted Popcorn for you?
San Andreas might not be a great movie to many of us due to its usual "old plots" for disaster movies but I think the few minutes of visual effects does make it worth watching for a second thought. Besides that my boy was excited to see familiar places being featured in the movie which brings back many of wonderful memories during our trip to San Francisco last year.



THURSDAY, 04 JUNE 2015
(Apple & Pear Pork Ribs Soup - 苹果梨排骨汤)


[Soup of Day] Apple and Pear Pork Ribs Soup
The weather was pretty hot and humid these few weeks so I decided to boil Apple & Pear Pork Ribs Soup for the family in order to help detoxifies our body, nourish the qi-asthenia, skin, stomach & intestines. Since fruits and candied honey dates are added the taste of this soup will be rather on the sweet side but not as sweet as having dessert so it still be served together with rice and savory dishes.

Ingredients for apple and pear pork ribs soup.

(Yield: 2-3 | Preparation: 10 minutes | Cooking: 40 minutes)

Ingredients:
2 Large Apple
1 Nashi Pear
500g Pork Ribs
3 Candied Honey Dates
1/2 Tablespoon Bittersweet Almond
Some Red Dates & Wolfberries

Method:
1. Remove the core of apple and pear then cut into wedges.

2. Blanch pork rinds in boiling boil, remove, rinse and set aside.

3. Bring 1.2 liters of water to boil, add in all ingredients (except apple and pear) and bring to boil.

4. Lower heat and simmer for at least 30 minutes on low heat. Lastly add in fruits and cook for another 10 minutes. Remove and serve.

5. Alternatively cook soup in slow cooker for 2 - 3 hours on Auto setting. (add fruits last 30 minutes)


近日因天气炎热所以就煮了这苹果梨排骨汤因为可以润肠胃和肌肤还有补肾气,解热毒等等的功效。不喜欢排骨的朋友也可用鸡骨或肌里肉(柳梅肉)代替。

(分量: 2-3 人份    | 准备: 10 分钟   | 炖煮时间: 40 分钟)

材料:
2个苹果
1个雪梨
500克排骨
3粒蜜枣
1/2 汤匙南北杏
少许红枣和枸杞

做法:
1. 苹果梨,去核,切块备用。

2. 排骨飞水, 洗净备用。

3. 用大火将1.2毫升的水加热,放进所有的材料(除了苹果和梨)转文火煲煮30分钟。

4. 最后加入水果在继续煮10分钟即可。



FRIDAY, 05 JUNE 2015
(Brunch @ Chinatown Food Centre + Flower Pot Dessert @ Banana Tree)


On Friday, we went down to Chinatown Complex and Food Centre to meet up with mum and aunty lily for brunch because the boy is craving for his favourite Scissor Cut Pork Chop Rice from Damn Nice Curry Rice.

A photo posted by Rey W (@greenpiggy) on


Above is the scissor cut pork chop rice from Damn Nice Curry Rice where he often topped up with ngoh hiang, curry potato and hard-boiled egg. Oh ya, their homemade otah (spicy fish cake) is also another good choice to loot into your ordering list too.

[Chinatown Food Centre] Emerald Soy Sauce Chicken
Aunty Lily introduce us to this Emerald Soy Sauce Chicken from unit #02-45 which she often patron and half portion of the chicken shown above cost SG$7.00. Although the chicken meat is tender to bite but somehow we feel it's still lack of that intense flavour of soy sauce.

Shall try the Hong Kong Soy Sauce Chicken Rice & Noodle from unit #02-126 which is near the Xiao Long Bao stall as it is popular among patrons where you often see queues coming in even at off-peak timing.

[Chinatown Food Centre] Chee Cheong Fun & Yam Cake
Jia Ji Mei Shi (佳记美食) is best known for its peanut porridge, yam cake and chee cheong fun. As we are ordering a few sharing items, I decided to get their steamed yam cake and chee cheong fun to share. Love these two items especially with the accompany sweet sauce and chilli.

[Chinatown Food Centre] Hill Street Fried Kway Teow
The Fried Kway Teow was on the downside where the noodle was rather wet and oily making it taste so greasy. Furthermore the overall taste was a bit too salty for our liking and we need to wash it down with some iced cold water.

[Chinatown Food Centre] Xiao Long Bao
Mum knows that we love Xiao Long Bao (小笼包) so she went to get 2 baskets from Zhong Guo La Mian Xiao Long Bao (中国拉面小笼包) which located at unit #02-135. These freshly made xiao long bao comes in a basket of 5 (you need to get minimum two baskets for SG$5.50) with thin skin wrapper that holds flavoursome soup broth and juicy meat fillings. Worth trying!

[Chinatown Food Centre] Close up view of the Xiao Long Bao

[Food Hunt]Keong Saik Road
After lunch we shop around Chinatown complex area before heading to our destination at 26 Keong Siak Road which is along the same stretch as the famous 亚东 (used to be coffee shop) building.

Oh ya did you spot the tallest building at far back? That is The Pinnacle @ Duxton with sky-bridge park at level 26th and 50th. My mum and brother are staying in one of the unit at level 45 where she can enjoy great views daily.  Besides that she is also bless to be surrounded with all the yummy food and cafes in this area.

[Dessert] Banana Tree Cafe, Singapore
The Korean wave continues to hit Singapore over the past few years with K-Drama, boy bands, fashion and now even dessert cafes are into trend these days selling Bingsu (Korean style shaved ice with assorted toppings) which is popular among youngster.

[Dessert] Bingsu & Flower Pot Pudding at Banana Tree Cafe.
Here we are trying out a newly opened Korean dessert cafe; known as Banana Tree which is located at 26 Keong Saik Road. Their main attraction is the "flower pot pudding" where dessert is being served in a flower pot with flowers (plastic instead of real edible flowers) on top that makes it resemble flower in a pot. Will share more about this cafe in another post on Bingsu in Singapore soon. Stay tune.

You can read more about this cafe @ http://www.ellenaguan.com/2015/06/korean-dessert-in-singapore-bingsu.html



Dinner for that night was some fuss-free homecook cook dishes since we were out for the whole afternoon. From top left; Hong Zao Ji (红糟鸡), Stir-fry Veggie with Mushroom and Steamed Threadfin with ginger and Chinese preserved vegetables. Out of all the three dishes; Hong Zao Ji (红糟鸡) is my all-time favourite which I could wobble up a big bowl of rice just with this dish alone.


SATURDAY, 06 JUNE 2015
(Dinner @ Changi Airport)


As we were sending the in-laws off for their holiday trip, we decided to have dinner at the newly revamped Kopitiam food court located at Changi Airport Terminal 3 basement (non-transit area). Although they are many variety of food to choose from but the quality was just average when compared to some of their other outlets or food centres in town.

The Roast Duck Rice and noodles that we ordered were either too salty (for the noodle) or the meat is tough to bite for the roast. The Taiwan Braised Pork Belly Rice (卤肉饭) that I ordered, the pork belly was rather lack of flavour from the spices used unless you eat it together with the pickled veggie and chilli.


SUNDAY, 07 JUNE 2015
(Murphy's at Ang Mo Kio Ave 10)


[Dinner] Cozy dinner at Murphy's
On Sunday we went food hunt at cozy cafe known as Murphy's which is recommended by a few foodie friends near Ang Mo Kio ave 10 (opposite Cheng San Market and Food Center). It's our first time there trying their well-known Fish and Chips which used arrowtooth fish instead of the usual halibut, haddock or cod fish.

Our order:
1. Murphy's Fish and Chips (SG$16.00)
2. Eggs Benedict with Ham (SG$12.00)
3. Mushroom Soup (SG$3.50)
4. Hot Mocha (SG$6.00)
5. Affogato (SG$6.00)

[Dinner] Murphy's Fish And Chips
There are basically two types of Fish And Chips at Murphy's where you can choose either original or special batter (with an additional SG$1.00 top-up). Overall the fish has a crisp outer batter and fresh juicy meat beneath. Serving portion wise is quite huge for one pax with 2 slices of fish, handful of chips and salad to go along for the price of SG$16.00.

Will update our visit in another separate post soon.


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