my awesome cafe, tanjong pagar

I think it takes guts to use an adjective like awesome in one’s name – especially because it invites comparison where there might not have been any.

like, do I usually give cafes concessions for serving not-nearly-up-to-the-mark food? yes – because they pander to the hipster and the cool, and so sometimes the food gets overlooked for the decor or the drinks. but when a place calls itself awesome, it sets up expectations that might be difficult to fulfil.

but that’s not to say that the food here is bad, because it isn’t: it’s hearty and quite filling and rather delicious, BUT the name just makes me wonder if I’d have naturally said that it was awesome (or would anyone, unless they had lived as a or was stuck in the persona of a teenager in 90’s america).

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egg cups

I could – I could really do with one of these right now.

last night, a crime happened. my innocent, soft loaf of delicious, seedy (not seedy but seed-y), wholemeal bread was ripped from its sanctuary atop my oven and tossed to the floor, packet ripped open, bits of plastic and crumbs everywhere. when I gingerly lifted it from its prone position, the bread slices fell out like the saddest flood of emotion.

the suspects of this violation? the cat from next door, or a bird – whichever animal which had come in early last week to do the same unspeakable crime to a piece of jerky we had left wrapped on the counter.

pray for bread loaves everywhere, everyone. I hope you get to eat a lovely breakfast yourself full of eggs and ham and delicious things!

xx

p.s. as some quick instruction: flatten your slice bread with a rolling pin, cut into the four corners an inch inward, fit into a muffin pan, and fill with ham and cheese. top it off with an egg, and bake at 175c until jiggly but set. at the beginning, it’ll take longer than you expect, but it’ll finish faster than you’d think (the same can be said of the eating)!

grilled cheese

it’s a lazy sunday! perfect time for a grilled cheese – especially since many of you guys must be feeling the cold weather. even hot-hot-hot singapore is going through a bit of a cold, wet spot.

grilled cheeses are really the result of technique rather than any exact ingredient choices; here, we took spinach and sauteed it with garlic and soy sauce, piled high our cheddar-mozzarella grated mix, and laid on strips of black pepper ham over our seeded rye bread.

if you’re making one, make sure you press the water out from your cooked greens, pile the cheese high (there’s no such thing as too much – anything that doesn’t stay in the sandwich forms a crispy tuile), and spread lots of butter on the two sides of the sandwich that meet the pan. you want to fry the bread – there’s no dieting here.

have a great rest-of-the-weekend!
xx

tart blanc, millenia walk

just a quick head’s up this morning that this tiny hole-in-the-wall cafe at millenia walk does a decent set lunch – you get a permutation of one main course with soup and/or drink and dessert for very good prices (getting all four hits you barely twenty) – very good value in an otherwise rather pricey bit of town.

I suspect the cafe’s name comes from its very white walls and the rows of tarts in their counter – it’s quite a small (seats maybe 8), clinical space juxtaposed with cheerfully colorful tarts and cakes. I didn’t know what to expect of its savories – but my sandwich of mushroom and beef was surprisingly filling, with wholemeal bread holding in a rather generous mass of cheese and shroom and meat (I took half of it away).

there’s also a tiny dressed salad on the side, which was a nice touch, and my ice-cold earl grey capped it off nicely. it’s a homely little space, and good for sitting down with a book for lunch (or a friend, if you must).

I’ll be back to try the sweet stuff.

tart blanc
#01-102 Millenia Walk
9 Raffles Boulevard
Singapore 039596
tel +65 6238 6893
$$: 10-20 per person, depending on how greedy your order is

coq & balls, tiong bahru

so-so brunch at this small cafe-bar-bistro in tiong bahru. this place is kind of meh – the food is just about alright – in that I would visit if I were living just a block away – but otherwise, it’s not entirely worth the trip.

and, such a deliberately provocative, scandal-inciting sort of name. almost definitely thought up by men – if the joy had by my male dining companions were anything to go by.


n.b. that is a photo of literal twiddling thumbs because I had confiscated the coffee to photograph. the camera eats first!

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feedlot steakhouse bar & grill, tanglin

pretty meh food at this steakhouse – with only a couple of dishes moving past that meh – in the tanglin post office. this place certainly looks inviting, big patio and sophisticated dark interiors, but you’re probably better off food-wise with some brunch from the nassim hill bakery, or even cooking your own with goods from that delightful swiss butchery upstairs.

I don’t know what it is about this place – the food is pretty adequate, but it doesn’t seem anything special at all, and certainly options abound if you’re looking for something better. it’s good if you’re in the area, but otherwise not quite worth the effort.

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canele patisserie chocolaterie, paragon orchard

great casual eating at the paragon. the last time I did a review of this place, I was pretty much fixated on their delicious chocolate cake – this time, I managed a more indicative meal, and it was pretty good too (even though the chocolate cake still makes the most compelling reason for a revisit).

(this chocolate confection makes for a pretty compelling argument, too).

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roosevelt’s diner & bar, outram park

pretty good brunch place – with enough classics and twists to be interesting in its class – and rather conveniently located next to the mrt, which is a lovely characteristic that must not be overlooked (in a market full of eating establishments that pride themselves on inaccessibility).

so I came here when there were barely any reviews out there on this place (not that that matters, as by the time I publish this – there are bound to be many, many more) – and in singapore, that in itself is a feat – on a leap of faith, really; so it was rather a pleasant surprise that we enjoyed our meal.


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roadside banhmi, ho chi minh

located at 37 nguyen trai.

we were drawn to this store by the smell of delicious grilled meat on charcoal – vietnamese grilled meats almost always have a touch of sweetness in their marinades, so they caramelize very nicely and make it known to you by way of the maillard effect.

this lady was grilling tiny patties of meat – slider-style, if you’re being hipster – on a tiny grill next to her store, forming them as she went along from a large bowl of mince. we ordered a banh mi – which is a vietnamese sandwich made with pickles, fresh vegetables and certain meat options – and it came with four gorgeous patties slid between a crusty french loaf atop pickled radish and carrot, as well as some crisp lettuce.

street food at its best, and cheapest.

p.s. meds noticed the google results on the side of the store – which led me to find out that this might be saigon’s best banh mi at 37 nguyen trai! what a good find, and so brilliant that she noticed – really made this foodie’s day!

le fournil de l’artisan, lyon

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great little bakery in near the central train station in lyon. I have just come back from a week’s holiday in the south of france, where we ate our way through lyon, marseilles, nice and monte carlo, and I have some food photos to document our journey. and of course I’m pleased to share with you the best of the things we ate on this trip!

of course, while in france, the only thing I really want to eat is bread. not pastries, just lots of baguette and rustic bread. they do so well with its myriad forms, and I have blissful memories of my first trip in france with a baguette on my bag and a jar of nutella (new-tell-uh) as a constant snack.

we flew into Lyon, and this was the first boulangerie we saw upon arrival. it had a remarkably long queue (that picture above is taken on a second occasion when it was closed) and so as the curious hungry foreigners we were, we joined the queue to grab a spot of lunch.

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