The Tempinis diaries

April 6, 2008

Review of Teochew Cuisine Restaurant

Filed under: food — Tags: , , , — toru @ 12:34 pm

Went to Teochew Cuisine Restaurant at Bukit Batok with Mrs. T which is located in an unassuming HDB Block (Block 132) at Bukit Batok West Avenue 6. We weren’t very hungry and so we ordered three small dishes – duck breast with taupok, nai pai (baby bok choy) with dried scallops and fish soup. We were quite surprised that all dishes were above average. The duck was really good. And best of all the seasoning of the food in this place is very light and subtle – just like how Teochew food should be. The bill came up to S$ 29. The chef and service staff are from China. I found the waitresses to be attentive and friendly. And their dipping sauces are quite unusual and delicious.

We were too full to have orh nee (the yam dessert). But this is a restaurant we will definitely come back to. I will probably return with friends so that we can order more. I have my eye on the cold dish and the crabs.

Review of Cafe Fahrenheit at Eng Kong

Filed under: food — Tags: , , — toru @ 12:33 pm

It seems that restaurants are popping up in all the most ulu parts of Singapore. Lunch was at Cafe Fahrenheit at Eng Kong. Mrs. T really liked the location of the cafe and said she would definitely be back. We ordered a bruschetta and eggs benedict to share. The bruschetta was above average and I liked the tangy pasta salad that went with it. The eggs benedict did not fare so well. While the poached egg, sauce and spinach was quite delicious (Anthony Bourdain would say pornographic – the way the yolk oozed out), the English muffin below spoilt the dish for me. I thought English muffins were supposed to be tasteless, like bread. At least that’s the kind of English muffins I had in England. Their English muffin tasted like – a muffin. The sweetness at the bottom of the savoury dish just totally threw me and spoilt the dish for me. Guess I wont be ordering that when I next come here.

Anyway, I surfed around and saw that they seemed to do very good desserts. I will probably come back here for the strawberry dessert.

March 23, 2008

Review of Soup and Satay at Jalan Jurong Kechil

Filed under: food, singapore — Tags: , , — toru @ 1:19 pm

I went to a charming cafe at Jalan Jurong Kechil called Soup and Satay which only recently opened. The satay was quite delicious – very nicely spiced with lemon grass, beautifully basted, moist and glistening. Mrs. T ordered the fish and chips which turned out to be ordinary. I had the mee soto which was quite yummy – the soup was peppery and not oily at all. The mee soto here is better than the famous Inspirasi mee soto in Bedok. Surprisingly, the best dish turned out to be the tauhu goreng – the spicy peanut sauce was the best I ever eaten.

Overall, a very good find. I would definitely go back to Soup and Satay.

January 19, 2008

Bodyweight 350

Filed under: exercise, family, food — Tags: , , — toru @ 3:15 pm

 Did this workout today which only utilises your bodyweight .  I thought it looked really easy but it turned out to be tough.  It really took a lot out of me – I was feeling kinda woozy during dinner and my legs felt like jelly.  The prisoner squats and the lunges were tough!  And the pullouts were a killer.   Finished the workout in 38 minutes – which is a fail unfortunately. I am supposed to finish it in 30 minutes.  I guess I am not as fit as I thought.  Hopefully, I can do it within the stipulated time the next time round.   I am quite tired from the workout and will probably sleep early today.

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Discovered a pretty good pan mee in Beauty World Centre Hawker Centre today when I went out for lunch with Mrs. T.  Hooray.  Pan Mee in Singapore tend to be damn gross e.g. the horrendous Qiu Lian Pan Mee which has a thick inedible floury soup.  This Pan Mee had a nice clear soup.  I will probably go back to this stall again.

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Dinner was with my cousins and Mrs. T.  Coffee later at Jones the Grocer.  The coffee was a little below standard but I really like the atmosphere of Jones.  It is nice to get to know my cousins.  Part of my resolution to make an effort to be closer to my relatives.

January 14, 2008

An Ode to the Pan Mee at Chun Heong at Lucky Garden

Filed under: food, malaysia — Tags: , , — toru @ 1:45 pm

My all time favourite breakfast and lunch in the world must be Pan Mee at Chun Heong at Lucky Garden, Bangsar.  This is something that I have eaten for more than 20 years since I was a teenager.  When I come back to KL, I can eat this every day for two weeks and not be tired of it.   I have always joked that if I ever become a millionaire, I would put the husband and wife team who makes this wonderful bowl of noodles on my entourage so that I can enjoy these noodles at any time. 

 The pan mee is a beautiful combination of wonderfully textured home made noodles, crispy ikan bilis (anchovies), slices of pork, pork mince, kow kee choy (a kind of green leaves) and served in a very tasty broth.  Now what makes this dish so delicious is the chilli sauce that is served with this dish.  It is a slightly sour, belachan infused and made with fiery chilli padi – the sauce just completes this delicious bowl of noodles by providing this dish with a feisty ‘kick’.  When I eat my pan mee, I am always faced with an impossible choice.  Do I toss the entire serving of chilli into the broth and enjoy the spicy goodness of the soup or do I enjoy the clean flavours of the soup and periodically dunk the ingredients into the chilli?  Such a difficult dilemma!  Either way I absolutely love this dish!  From the beautiful texture of the freshly made noodles, the crunchy taste of the ikan bilis, the wonderfully flavour of the fried shallots and the refreshing taste of the kow kee choy – I enjoy this bowl of noodles to the very last drop of the broth.   

Place: Kedai Makanan Chun Heong, Lorong Ara Kiri 2, Lucky Garden, Bangsar.  Open for breakfast and lunch only.

January 6, 2008

Mrs. T’s Birthday Lunch and Restaurant Review

Filed under: family, food, restaurant review — Tags: , , , — toru @ 12:47 pm

Mrs. T’s birthday was a few days ago.  And we went out to celebrate!  Of all the things I am thankful for  in my life, the one I am most grateful  is Mrs. T’s presence and continuous love.  I worked from home that day and went out to celebrate with Mrs. T.  Mrs. T’s birthday lunch was at the new restaurant called Absolute Haven located at Prinsep Street.  It’s slightly difficult to find – the best thing to do is to park at Sunshine Plaza and walk there.

 The restaurant was absolutely empty except the two of us for lunch.  Mrs. T enjoyed having the restaurant all to herself.  Ambience wise – it wasn’t as posh or as chi chi as some of the newest restaurants in town.  The restaurant was pretty casual with some dark gothic wall paper.  It probably looked better at night.  Service was attentive without being intrusive.

Mrs T had a starter of chicken consomme and I had a mushroom and spinach salad.  Both starters were simple and excellent.  Although Mrs. T enjoyed the soup very much, we both felt that a simple chicken soup for S$ 12 was a bit too expensive.  We can have something similar at Mrs. T’s mother’s flat!  The mushroom and spinach salad was basically three kinds of mushrooms (oyster, button and shitake mushroom) sauted in balsamic vinegar and some onions.  It was served with some fresh baby spinach leaves and cheese shavings.  It was really simple but the whole combination worked very well.  I must remember to try this at home.

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December 29, 2007

Chicken Rice for the Soul

Filed under: family, food — Tags: , , , , , , , — toru @ 1:51 pm

So Christmas lunch was at Tian Tian Chicken Rice at Maxwell Hawker Centre.  I could tell Mom really wanted to try it (my fault – I told her it was famous) when we went there the other day to eat Zhen Zhen porridge for breakfast in the morning.  Problem was that it wasn’t open in the morning.  We tried again after walking around Chinatown at night one day.  When we tracked down the stall, it was closed!  Mom was disappointed again (she even confronted the stall owner as he was closing).

So I decided to try again on Christmas day before bringing Mom to visit Mrs. T’s mother.  I thought it might be closed but it wasn’t.  But the problem was that many people had the same idea as us to have chicken rice for christmas lunch.  The queue was absolutely mad – I queued 30 minutes for it (I wouldn’t normally line up for chicken rice).  We ordered three plates of rice to share between the four of us (Mom, Ah Kim, Mrs. T and I), a plate of chicken and a plate of bean sprouts with cuttlefish.  Mom and Ah Kim loved the chicken rice!  Mrs. T and I thought the chicken rice was pretty good but way too oily for our palate.  Mrs. T was completely put off by the greasiness of the rice that she only had a quarter of the rice.  Mom loved it so much she brought Auntie and her family the next day to eat the chicken rice again.  We also had the famous Xing Xing tapioca cake and the Fuzhou oyster cake.  The tapioca cake was really good – even better than the stuff you find in Malaysia.  The texture was fantastic and it was not too sweet.  Fuzhou cake was a bit too greasy but quite tasty.  The cincau dessert I ordered was a complete disaster – horrible texture.  I took one bite and refused to eat it.

 The meeting between Mom and Mrs. T’s mother went pretty well.  Mom can be very charming when she wants to.  And everyone loves Ah Kim who is such a simple and kind hearted lady.

October 26, 2007

Of Mongrel Strain

Filed under: food, friends, life — Tags: , , — toru @ 2:03 pm

Mrs. T thinks this blog thing is a good thing.  Instead of boring her with the same old stories, I bore the world instead.  More time for her to watch her favourite Korean shows.

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Over lunch, one of my best friends, whom I have known since Form Five way back in Malaysia said to me, “We Malaysians are like cockroaches.  We are of the mongrel strain.  We are a lot more hungry than the average Singaporean.  That’s  why we do so well here.”  In a way, what he said was quite true.  Lots of Malaysians have done very well in this city state. My friend is now an extremely successful professional in town.  Both of us sure have come a long way from the days when we were schoolboys in our ratty white shirts and olive pants uniform.  But I thought that the statement about being of mongrel strain was pretty ironic considering that we were having lunch at the very posh Li Bai at Sheraton Hotel and eating decadent hairy crabs.   The hairy crabs were yummy by the way.

October 21, 2007

Dinner with Mrs. T’s Folks

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , — toru @ 1:43 am

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Had dinner with Mrs. T’s folks yesterday at Long Beach, East Coast.  Mrs. T’s mom, brother, sister and brother in law were there.  Mrs. T is still very surprised after all these years that I am able to have a conversation with her mom.  Mrs. T’s mom will usually call every night and we will talk about mundane things (is the papaya I gave you sweet?  what did you have for dinner?).  We can talk for half an hour about essentially nothing.   I find such conversation somewhat pleasant although why this is so leaves Mrs. T completely mystified.  In my current state, I have been thinking that what is important in my life is building relationships with people.  And what better way to start than with family.  The dinner was a belated birthday treat to Mrs. T’s mother.  Mrs. T’s mom seemed to enjoy the evening although she was not very good at eating lobsters and crabs.  She did enjoy the concept of a lobster dinner though. 

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Every post seems to be somehow about food.  This post is no different.  Dinner at Long Beach was quite tiring.  Difficult to get parking and you have to work very hard to get the lobster and crab meat out.  The restaurant was also extremely crowded and noisy so much so that I had a headache when I left.  But I can understand why the restaurant was packed.  The food was quite good.  Although the cooking was not ‘fine’ like Lei Garden or Li Bai at Sheraton, the food was very imaginative.  The Mango Roll was unusual – deep fried mango custard – a combination of hot and cold.  Portugese style lobster was very tasty as well.  The stir fried vegetables with pine nuts was a nice twist and really refreshing.  Of course, the chilli crab was dependable and the sauce tasted great when eaten with the deep fried man tou.  The ambience of this restaurant was not so good – dont think I will return soon.  If I have to bring a guest to eat seafood, I will probably go to their branch in IMM or their yet to be opened branch in Dempsey.

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