Friday, August 31, 2012

Cooking with Kids

Cooking with the family - we’ve seen how it can result in healthy, fun and tastier meals. But there are even more benefits when you involve children in the process. It’s good to start them young too, when they are at their most curious and able to learn.

Here’s some ways in which they benefit:

1. You expand their sensory experiences - touch, sight, smell, sound and ultimately taste. In her special education school, teachers got Nadine to sniff herbs and spices, feel different textures and try out various tastes. It’s good stimulation for brain development.

2. They improve their motor skills and coordination - sorting, cutting, peeling, mixing all involve certain dual-hand plus eye-hand coordination. Their fine motor skills will certainly get a boost!


Cooking with Kids

3. They expand their vocabulary and food knowledge. Learning about ingredients, how they are produced and used, and nutrition! Perhaps next time when you ask them where a chicken comes from, they will not say, “the supermarket!”

4. They learn how to count, measure and follow sequences, in a very hands-on way!

5. Life skills - knowing how to cook is an essential part of daily living and a great skill to have!

6. Confidence - when all of you successfully create a healthy dish or bake something nice, it really boosts their self-esteem and encourages positive attitudes.

7. Tradition - food is very much part of culture, and generations have been passing down knowledge of cooking and recipes. If your parents are still around, get them involved too! Learn as much as you can from them, and pass it down.

8. Bonding - cooking together is a great way to spend time communicating. This will help foster trust and closeness that will be so important as they grow older and need to share about pressure in school, issues with peers and life in general.


Cooking with Kids

9. Creativity - They’ll graduate from PlayDoh pizza to the real thing! Let them experiment with combinations just to see how it works. Every meal they make will be an adventure! Getting them to work with new ingredients may make them more open to trying new food.

10. It’s fun! Yes, there will be some exasperation at times, but there are going to be laughs and beaming smiles all round, and lovely memories to cherish.


Tips on cooking with young children - most of these border on common sense:

1. Keep sharp items away! Give the kids safe utensils (wood or plastic).
2. Wash your hands before you start.
3. Always supervise them closely, don’t leave them alone.
4. Invite them to pick a recipe and gather up the ingredients from around the kitchen
5. Be flexible - substitute items that you don’t have available.
6. Let each kid participate in every step of the way, taking turns if necessary. 
7. Have strict rules about the stove, oven and electrical appliances.
8. Read aloud the recipe along the way - this will help your child follow directions
9. Include clean-up as part of the routine!
10. Don’t go in hungry! Have a snack first, or you might get cranky kids!

Cooking with Kids

Above all, enjoy the process, even though it may take longer, much longer than if you were cooking alone. The lack of speed and efficiency is more than made up by the benefits the kids will reap. 


And if you haven’t already joined the Health Promotion Board (HPB)’s “Let’s Cook Healthy Together” photo contest, take a look at the prizes! You could win the top prize of S$3,000 worth of Fairprice vouchers, along with cooking lessons for the family at Cookery Magic! Contest details are in my first post here or at the website link above. Contest ends 9 Sept 2012, at 11:59pm (Singapore time), so hurry!

Not sure how to participate? There are just three simple steps:

2. Fill in your personal particulars.
3. Upload 1 photo (in .jpg format) of a dish that you cooked and submit the recipe you used. 
That’s it! For bonus points, upload a photo of you cooking together with 2-4 family members or friends. 




(sample photos)

Here’s how the contest will be judged:

Category
Max. Points Possible
Healthy Recipe
a.     How healthy is this recipe?
b.    Are the key steps easy to re-create?
50



Dish Creativity
a.    Does the dish look appetizing?
b.    Is this a creative recipe?


50
Bonus Activity
Points are awarded for this activity, on a variable scale, based on the following criteria: 
a.   Does the Group Photo convey the message “Cooking Healthily Together”?
b.   Does the group look like they’re having fun?

5 – 20 Points
Total
100 (105 – 120 with Bonus Activity)


Have fun and keep healthy with your family!

Cooking with Kids

Thursday, August 30, 2012

The French sure know how to make bread!
Ah, db Bistro Moderne, one of our favourite places to meet with friends (we often shorten the name to just "db Bistro" or just "db"). Food's good, place is cosy, and not crazily crowded all the same time. The place has just enough Parisian chic and cachet, but isn't pretentious, so one can dine in casual comfort. Plus the breads are always so good here.

If you feel you've exhausted the menu, you'll be glad to know there are seasonal menus now rotating according to region. They kicked off with Alsace, and now are bringing us a taste of Provence which is perfect for summer. Later on, Lyon should prove interesting, as that's where Daniel Boulud himself is from.

So what can we expect from the "Mondays in Provence" menu (S$68++)? It's a three-course meal, with various options.


Executive Sous Chef Nicholas Tang giving us detailed descriptions of the dishes
Executive Sous Chef Nicholas Tang presented the dishes and explained to us in detail what we were eating. Note that some of these are smaller portions for tasting purposes, and you will get 2-3 times bigger servings at the actual dinner.


Provencal canapes
We start off with Provencal canapes, all of which were quite delightful. From left to right:
- Caramelized onion and rosemary tart (caramelized onions with garlic, rosemary and sherry vinegar topped in a tart case)
- Eggplant and goats cheese crostini (eggplant caviar with chopped basil, topped with creamed goat’s cheese that has been seasoned with espelette and chives)
- Tart Provencal crostini (Tomato compote, basil pesto and smoked mozzarella)


FIRST COURSE: APPETISER

Soupe Au Pistou
Warm your stomach first with Soupe Au Pistou, a medley of coco beans, yellow and green zucchini, carrots, cabbage, fine beans, red onions and potato in a vegetable broth, garnished with basil pesto and oil. This is the kind of soup you immediately feel like recreating at home. It is so light and yet comforting.



Petits Farcis Provencaux
Or pick the Petits Farcis Provencaux - grilled vegetables stuffed with minced lamb and beef and topped with crispy breadcrumbs.  You get baby zucchini, baby eggplant, and red onions. The purple artichoke they threw in as an extra for us to try.


Salade Nicoise
You could also have the Salad Nicoise, which is the most substantial of the three options. Generous chunks of tuna confit plus seared tuna tataki adorn this platter of fresh butter head lettuce, olives, capsicum, artichokes, quail egg and anchovy-tied olives. We loved the little "tom berries" or berry-sized tomatoes. Salad Nicoise is from Nice, and is originally without mayo. This one is tossed with a light, lemony dressing. Read how French purists have been up in arms over how liberties have been taken with this salad.



SECOND COURSE: MAIN


Seafood Bouillabaisse
Possibly my favourite dish of the night - the super umami Bouillabaisse! This was so intense it tasted like a seafood bisque. The fish broth is made with crushed fish, saffron, Pernod and fish stock. Topping this silky rich soup is fennel, tomato confit, potatoes, John Dory fish, red snapper, scallop and tiger prawn. Served with toasted baguette and a bowl of saffron rouille made with roasted capsicum, egg yolks, parsley, potato, garlic and olive oil.



Ratatouille de Legumes
Ratatouille de Legumes - if you are a vegetarian, you could opt for this. I love how the crispy polenta cubes look so tempting perched atop the eggplant, capsicum, zucchini, red onions that have been stewed with tomatoes and basil. A baked quail’s egg lies in here somewhere too.


Ravioli a la daube d’agneau - lamb ravioli
Red meat lovers will want to choose this as their second course - Ravioli a la daube d’agneau, or Braised Lamb Ravioli with Vegetable Tian and Rosemary Jus. The stuffing is lamb shoulder that has been braised in red wine and lamb stock - incredibly intense and savoury!



FINAL COURSE: DESSERT

Apricot Clafoutis with almond tuille, honey marinated apricots, bourbon foam and almond ice cream
Apricot Clafoutis with almond tuille, honey marinated apricots, bourbon foam and almond ice cream. On the website, there is a different dessert listed, the Tarte Tropezienne - a brioche brimming with light custard, fresh strawberries and cream cheese ice cream.


Mousse Au Chocolat Au Lait
The menu does list as a second choice the Mousse Au Chocolat Au Lait - milk chocolate mousse atop chocolate hazelnut biscuit, topped with praline gelee, and praline glacage (glaze). Cutting through all this richness is the cherry gel and scoop of praline-lemon ice-cream.


Pair the Provencal dinner menu with some wines (extra S$32)
Pair the Provencal dinner menu with some wines (extra S$32) from Chateau d'Ollieres.


There's even an iPhone/iPod charging dock inside the private dining room!
There's even an iPhone/iPod charging dock inside the private dining room!


Madeleines from db Bistro Moderne - still the best ever!
But as always, the best part about db is the final nibble - those mini madeleines make even the fullest stomachs ask for more. You just can't stop at one.


Many thanks to the Marina Bay Sands and db Bistro Moderne team for this culinary taste-trip to Provence.



DB BISTRO MODERNE
B1-48, Galleria Level
The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands
(Across from the Theater)
Tel: +65 6688-8525
Open daily
Lunch
Monday - Friday: Noon to 5PM
Weekend Brunch
Saturday - Sunday: 11AM - 5PM
Dinner
Sunday & Monday: 5:30pm to 10PM
Tuesday - Saturday: 5:30PM - 11PM

Monday, August 27, 2012

Healthy Cooking with Family

Can cooking help you appreciate and enjoy your food more?

Michael Pollan, author of “The Omnivore’s Dilemma” and “In Defense of Food”, certainly believes so - especially if you share the process with others. He recommends involving family by giving them a task (wash, chop, mix, stir, set the table, etc.). As a bonus, he notes that people who cook tend to eat more healthily and weigh less than those who don’t.

So ready for healthy, fun and tasty meals - really truly happy meals? Cook with your family!

It’s Healthy: you control exactly what goes into your dish - what could be better? When you eat out, sometimes you don’t know where your food is from, and don’t know how much highly processed ingredients the eateries use. When you take charge, you can make healthier options and be assured of the quality of your food as well as the way it’s prepared.

It’s Fun: family members make up your closest circle. Kids especially can make cooking a riotous adventure. Sometimes it can be frustrating as much as it is fun, but hey, it’s a great opportunity to laugh even when things go wrong. These are the memories we will cherish and keep with us. Kids too, will have more fun with cooking than with expensive toys. They will pick up critical life skills too.

It’s Tasty: with good and fresh ingredients, you need little else to make a dish shine. I’ll agree that some skills are required with cooking, but nothing that can’t be mastered with a bit of interest and experimentation. Try some one-pot dishes with simple ingredients that you can whip up in a jiffy. You can also season and flavour the dishes to your family’s preferences. Ultimately though, as Alton Brown of the Food Network says, “as long as it’s made with love...”, the family will most certainly enjoy it.


HPB has contest for "Healthy Cooking with Family"

Meanwhile, take some photos while you and family are whipping up your next healthy, tasty dish, and join the “Let’s Cook Healthy Together” photo contest by the Health Promotion Board! Contest details are in my first post here. You could win the top prize of S$3,000 worth of Fairprice vouchers, along with cooking lessons for the family at Cookery Magic!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Sin Hoe Hin (Rowell Road) Dark Sauce Style Wanton Mee

Ah, it's heartwarming to see the younger generation take up a good hawker legacy.

Those of you who love dark sauce wanton noodles will certainly recall Sin Hoe Hin Wanton Mee at Rowell Road - it was the closest we could get to the KL-style noodles. How we cried in anguish when they decided to close for good in 2008 when the coffeeshop was sold.

But they are back, thanks to the son of the lady boss. He's been learning the skills from his mother, and is running the shop with another partner. It's at Jin Hock Food Place, the renovated coffeeshop at the corner of Upper Serangoon Road and Simon Road that took over Nam Heng coffeeshop.

Upper Serangoon is not a place I frequent, so I didn't get to see the old pre-war Nam Heng eatery where the famous oyster omelette used to be (they've moved a few doors down to 965 Upper Serangoon Road). Now it's just another brightly coloured modern coffeeshop.

But let's see how the noodles fare. Are they as good as they used to be? I was really (and desperately) holding out high hopes (never a good thing, as we all know).


Sin Hoe Hin (Rowell Road) Dark Sauce Style Wanton Mee
OK, mix it up and you'll get the dark sauce coating the noodles. Mine (dry wanton noodles, S$3.50) was prepared by a young girl, and not any of the bosses, so I don't think I got the best deal.


Sin Hoe Hin (Rowell Road) Dark Sauce Style Wanton Mee
Well, it doesn't seem as potent somehow. I remember the old noodles were not so one-dimensional.

What I do like - the fresh and fairly large pieces of wanton, the fried pieces of lard and the watercress which is a nice change from wretched chye sim. The soup that came with it was also decent.

It's still a good plate of noodles in general. Just a bit shy of wow.

There's hope though. I hear your experience might differ if someone else prepares your noodles.


Sin Hoe Hin (Rowell Road) Dark Sauce Style Wanton Mee

You can see the wantons being freshly prepared. If I do go back, I'd try the shrimp dumplings.


SIN HOE HIN WANTON MEE
Jin Hock Food Place
941 Upper Serangoon Road (junction of Simon Road)
Singapore 534713
Open 8am to 10pm daily except Mondays




Friday, August 24, 2012

Nature's Wonders has a range of healthy snacks, most of which are baked nuts, not fried
If you're like me, always peckish and wanting a nibble, you'll be glad to know there's now a range of healthier snacks that taste pretty good. The Nature's Wonders range brings you cashews, almonds, pistachios, macadamia nuts, US Walnuts that are lightly roasted and unseasoned - the natural taste is gorgeous! They also have big, plump golden raisins and mixed nuts (some of which include brazil nuts and dried figs).

Toss some of these into your cooking (cashew chicken?) or baking (walnut muffins?) and you'll be adding more nutrients. Chop some up and scatter them on your breakfast cereal, yoghurt, ice cream or onto your salad.


The kids love the packs
Needless to say, the kids love the brightly coloured packs and the crunchy goodies within.

Prices are pretty decent for the premium quality you get. They range from S$6+ for almonds/cashews/pistachios, to S$12+ for macadamia nuts. I like them all but my top 3 favourites are the cashews (so naturally sweet and creamy), the Royal Mix and macadamia nuts.


HPB approved! The nuts bear the Healthier Choice Symbol
The Nature's Wonders range also carries the Health Promotion Board's Healthier Choice Symbol. We all know that nuts and fruit are way better choices than fried snacks or chips, but some of the nuts sold here aren't prepared all that healthily (fried or coated with batter). I was surprised to see that these are by Tai Sun too, but are so much healthier than the existing snacks.

These healthy snacks are by Tai Sun but nothing like its earlier range
I have to say the Nature's Wonders snacks are so addictive, the danger is in eating too much without realising. Because they taste quite light and non-greasy, you don't get the "jelak" satiation warning point. But just pour out a responsible portion, and you should be safe. I love them anyway, and have also bought more packs and given them to friends.

You can get them at most supermarkets and also as toppings at Yoguru, the yoghurt chain which they have partnered.

Nuts about nuts

Monday, August 20, 2012

Muji Silicone Mould - Kitties and Doggies

Don't you sometimes wish madeleines could come in different shapes? Like kitties and doggies? This silicone baking mould was really too cute to pass up. Made some mini-cakes and they were gone in a flash. Gorgeous texture - lightly crisp on the outside, and moist within.

I got these baking moulds from Muji in Japan during my trip to Okinawa which I haven't finished posting about, actually (two-thirds more to go). I have seen some other silicone products in the Singapore stores but not these yet. I hope they bring them in!


The Muji Silicone baking mould even comes with recipes, albeit in Japanese
The Muji Silicone baking mould even comes with recipes, albeit in Japanese. You can use the moulds for shaping chocolate, jellies, puddings, or even ice.


I love this simple round baking mould by Muji - cleanup is so easy!
I also got a round baking mould - cakes come out really easily and cleanup is a cinch. I didn't bother greasing or lining with paper.


The Muji Silicone baking mould eve comes with recipes, albeit in Japanese
Oooh...the recipes look so good.

I really wish I got more of these baking moulds when I was there, at least two of each. They are so much cheaper there too! Just that I hadn't tried or tested them before. Next time, I will swipe everything!

So anyway, that's my lazy weekend baking with lazy iPhone photos.

Sunday, August 19, 2012



Food made with love naturally tastes better. And what more food that everyone had fun in preparing? Cooking healthy food with the whole family is probably one of the best things you can do together.

Kids are naturally curious, and open to new ideas. Everything is an adventure. Healthy eating can start early. Yes, catch them when they are young. Encourage them and make it fun, so they will more likely stick to it. Well at this stage, everything is fun, so just enjoy the thrills and squeals they bring.

But what exactly constitutes healthy eating? If you’re not sure how to start, take a look at the Health Promotion Board’s website and guidelines. For example, make sure your diet includes two servings of vegetables and two servings of fruit each day.

You can consider stocking your pantry with the following superfoods too.
Almonds: good for heart health, these delicious nuts are loaded with vitamin E, an
antioxidant that keeps you from aging.
Barley: rich in manganese, selenium, phosphorus, copper, magnesium, iron, zinc and
potassium.
Broccoli: helps reduce risk of heart disease, helps fight cancer and lower blood pressure
Garlic: allyl sulphur slows the growth of cancer cells and is most potent raw. Garlic also
has powerful anti-bacteria, anti-yeast and anti-virus properties.
Red or adzuki beans: all beans are somewhat beneficial but these have the highest
levels of protein and the lowest levels of fat. They also contain high levels of potassium,
fiber, B vitamins, iron, zinc, and manganese.
● Salmon/Herring/Sardines/Mackerel: fish rich in Omega-3 oils that can help lower heart
disease risk, help arthritis, and may possibly help with depression, memory loss and
Alzheimer's.
● Soy: not only a source of protein, but may help lower cholesterol too!
● Sweet potatoes: loaded with fiber, protein, vitamin A, and vitamin C.
● Tea: has antioxidants and polyphenols.
● Wolfberries or Goji berries: we’ve been using them for ages in soups and dishes, and revere them as medicine. Little wonder as they yield over 14% protein, 21 essential minerals, and 18 amino acids. This includes more vitamin C than oranges and more beta-carotene than carrots.

And one more you’ll be glad to add - dark chocolate! It’s rich in antioxidants and can help lower blood pressure. Look for chocolate with 60% or higher cocoa content - basically, the darker, the better. Darker versions also have lower fat and sugar content. Double win!

With so many wonderful foods to add to our daily diet, why not get the family involved in learning about and preparing the food?

Take some photos while you’re at it, and join the “Let’s Cook Healthy Together” photo contest by the Health Promotion Board? Contest details are in my first post here. You could win the top prize of S$3,000 worth of Fairprice vouchers, along with cooking lessons for the family at Cookery Magic!

Photo Contest

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Real Food at The Central, Clarke Quay
A healthy-living friend of mine recommended me this place. Real Food serves largely organic and vegetarian food (all very clearly labelled - vegan, gluten-free, garlic/onion-free, etc). They started out as an organic grocer with a few tables for dine-in bites. But demand for their food grew so much that they had to expand and take up the next unit. They've also opened up a second outlet at Killiney.

I do like the simple, chic and cosy ambiance. Nice place to chill. They still have a corner selling organic goods. The food though, is a mixed bag, and may not sit well with everyone. But if you're a strict vegetarian or vegan, the choices here might be interesting for you. They've got all-day breakfasts, salads, sandwiches, pastas, pizzas and desserts.


Pasta with Pesto Genovese
This was probably the best dish of the lot that we tried. Some pasta with pesto Genovese, zucchini, potatoes and feta cheese (about S$9.80). Do crumble the cheese and mix it in well, as the pasta might be a tad bland without the saltiness of the cheese.


Mushroom Noodles
My friend absolutely loves the mushroom noodles (vegan, about S$8.80) here. Wholegrain Japanese ramen noodles, braised shiitake mushrooms, cherry tomatoes, and leafy greens. I do have to agree the ingredients are beautifully fresh, and the sauce smooth-tasting. But maybe my expectations were raised too high, for it didn't wow me as much as I'd hoped. For me, it was the unexpectedly fiery chili sauce on the side that lent the dish a kick.


The Beet Burger unfortunately has a patty that's too mushy
The Beet Burger (about S$13.80) has a bright maroon patty made from beetroot, carrot, sweet millet and zucchini. Pity the texture was too mushy. And I've been ruined by the Beet Burger at Skyve - however, that one costs S$30+ but it does come with a mountain of most excellent truffle fries!

This used to be called "You Can't Beet This" but they've added a Lentil Burger as well, so this got named The Beet Burger for simpler differentiation.

So far, I've only tried these three dishes. I hear the pancakes, salads and brown rice sets are good. The organic juices also came recommended, although prices have gone up.

Note that they do keep "improving" the flavours, so the next time you go there, the same dish might taste quite different.

Service is a little slow, and portions are a little on the small side. All three of us were not full after our mains. The good thing is - no GST or service charge, so prices are nett. That doesn't seem so bad for organic fare. Anyway, good to see more vegetarian and organic choices in Singapore. I'm always hoping for more healthy and tasty options, so if you know of any, gimme a holler.


REAL FOOD

6 Eu Tong Sen Street
The Central #B1-52/53
Singapore 059817
Tel: +65 62244-492
Open daily 10am - 9.30pm (Last Order 9pm)

110 Killiney Road
Singapore 239549
Tel: +65 6737-9516
Open daily 10am - 10pm (Last Order 9.30pm)


Monday, August 13, 2012


Photo Contest

Let's face it - we all know that the healthiest way to eat is to take charge of our own food preparation. But it takes planning and is not necessarily cheaper than eating out. Still, the reward of feeding the family right should far outweigh the cost and effort. Why not turn cooking into a joint activity for family bonding as well?

Not too many generations ago, food preparation often involved the extended family. Grandmothers, aunts, sisters, sons, cousins would share the tasks of chopping, slicing, pounding ingredients and make slick work of even the most complicated dishes. There was often a lot of unspoken love and bonding created even before the food made it to the communal table where it was enjoyed by the whole family.

Today's family nucleus is much smaller, and both parents often have to work. But we also have a lot more information today about healthy eating, and easy access to many recipes on the Internet for healthy dishes. And we have such amazing choices today in terms of ingredients available to us. You can get really creative.

Guidelines for healthy eating include:
  • Eating two servings of both fruits and vegetables every day
  • Having two or three servings of whole grains every day
  • Consuming less salt (no more than 5g or one teaspoon a day)
  • Choosing the right type of fat, or eating less fat
  • Using healthier cooking options - steaming, grilling, stir-frying instead of deep fat frying (also look out for Healthier Choice Symbol products)



The Health Promotion Board (HPB) of Singapore is organising a photo contest to encourage families to take this step of cooking healthy together. Check out the official "Let's Cook Healthy Together" Photo Contest page to see video recipes of chicken rice, chicken curry and Creole crab cakes with mango salsa.

Contest details:
Gather up to four family members (including one child below the age of 18) and snap away while you cook. Upload the photo on to the contest on the HPB Facebook page. That's pretty much it - simple!

Submission: 13 Aug 2012 (09:00) to 9 Sept 2012 (23:59)
Voting of finalists: 11 Sept 2012 (09:00) to 21 Sept 2012 (17:00)
Announcement of winners: 28 Sept 2012

The prizes are pretty generous!

1st prize
• $3,000 worth of vouchers
• 3 Cooking classes for a family of 4 at Cookery Magic

2nd prize
• $2,000 worth of vouchers
• 2 Cooking classes for a family of 4 at Cookery Magic

3rd prize
• $1,000 worth of vouchers
• 1 Cooking class for a family of 4 at Cookery Magic

Plus, there will be 11 consolation prizes of $100 worth of vouchers each!

Sounds so good, I think I'll gather up Nadine and Jolie for some cooking or baking! They're always nicking my utensils to play anyway, and they'd definitely love a chance to do some real "masak masak" (cooking).

If you'd like more inspiration for healthy recipes, check out HPB's Healthy Chef app for iOS devices. There are over 70 recipes from various cuisines - Chinese, Indian, Malay, Western - and you can view calories, adjust the servings required, compile a shopping list and even rate the recipes. Best of all, the app is free!



All images courtesy of HPB.


Tuesday, August 7, 2012


It's the holy month of Ramadan and the Grand Hyatt Singapore has brought in guest chefs and a host (incidentally named Mr Ramadan) from their sister hotel in Doha, Qatar to add on Middle Eastern specialties to the already very excellent buffet spread at the Straits Kitchen.

My full story and photos at on Yahoo Makanation
http://sg.entertainment.yahoo.com/news/rare-middle-eastern-treats-mr-ramadan-113006368.html

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Third time meeting Joël Robuchon in Singapore
Joël Robuchon was in town recently to present some new dishes. This is the third time I have met the man with the most Michelin stars in his restaurant collection - when he first came to announce his restaurant concepts at Resorts World Sentosa, and later when he came to open them. He actually comes here quite often, once a quarter, I hear.

This time we got to get step in and take a peek at the Joël Robuchon kitchen! It was eye-opening. Oh man, it's so chic, clean, full of character...and not cramped!


I love the black and white checkered Robuchon kitchen!
Love the checkered patterns, bold contrasts and the brushed steel elements. I had to take a photo and put it up on Instagram immediately.




Now that is a grill - I can feel the heat from across the room!
Now that is an awesome grill - we could feel the heat from across the room when they fired it up.


We were treated to a demo by Executive Chef Tomonori Danzaki
We were also treated to a short cooking demo by Executive Chef Tomonori Danzaki (I previously had the pleasure of witnessing his DBS Masterclass where he showcased three of their recipes). Next to him is Restaurant Manager Guillaume Anglade, who also helped with some French interpretation.


Demo dish by Tomonori Danzaki
Poached egg wrapped in shredded filo pastry, topped with caviar and placed on a cream base with miniscule-cubed salmon. And the signature dots in green.

There are new dishes at both restaurants. We first tried the ones at L'Atelier de Joël Robuchon.

L'atelier de Joel Robuchon at Resorts World Sentosa
The L'Atelier is gorgeously decked out in black and red lacquerware colours. The display kitchen is where they make your meal, and the servers engage with diners in friendly banter.


Avocado and grapefruit "ruby red" with fresh coriander
Starter - Avocado and grapefruit "ruby red" with fresh coriander

Refreshing gelee, creamy avocado and juicy grapefruit combine to make your mouth water, but I did feel it was a little too tart (possibly my segment of grapefruit).



Le Caviar Imperial - Imperial caviar on a corn veloute, shivering beef jelly
Le Caviar Imperial - Imperial caviar on a corn veloute, with shivering beef jelly

The corn veloute is made with Japanese corn - it's beautifully sweet, silky and smooth. The beef jelly gives it a savoury boost, and the caviar completely brings it over with an umami tang. Fabulous - loved every drop of this.


La Tomate - "Merinda" tomato and mozzarella méli-mélo with spring vegetables crisp
La Tomate - "Merinda" tomato and mozzarella méli-mélo with spring vegetables crisp

This particular dish is really a showcase of how quality produce needs little else to deliver. Sweet tomatoes, good olive oil, and fresh mozzarella. It also tasted really healthy.


Joël Robuchon introducing the Japanese guy who helped him start Atelier in Tokyo
Joël Robuchon himself was in the kitchen putting together some of the dishes. Here he is introducing Chef Yosuke Soga, the Japanese guy who helped him start L'Atelier in Tokyo. Yosuke is the one who designed the next dish.


L'œuf de Poule - Soft boiled egg with piperade flavoured Iberico
L'œuf de Poule - Soft boiled egg with piperade flavoured Iberico

This had all the tastes of an exquisite omelette, but in comforting soft-boiled form. All thanks to the flavours of peppers, onion, and Iberico ham with a dash of piment d'esplette - the chile pepper of Basque country. I absolutely loved this dish, although HFB next to me didn't quite take to it.



Joël Robuchon Restaurant is very fine indeed
We next moved to the Joël Robuchon Restaurant, which is so very fine and elegant.


Joël Robuchon Restaurant has The Winter Garden, which houses a tree in the centre of a sunlit room
The media guests sat in the Winter Garden, which houses a tree in a sunlit room. This is a photo from a previous visit when it was still daytime - it's beautiful with natural lighting. As it was evening when we dined, the room was bathed in soft romantic lighting instead, giving the place a whole new feel.


Oh my, can I take this bread basket home?
Oh the breads! We already ate almost the whole shared basket over at L'Atelier when we were presented with an even bigger array here! But they are so good, we had no regrets filling ourselves up with carb.

Yoshihiko Tauchi is the baker chef to both restaurants, responsible for these beautiful creations. Chef Tauchi was baker chef at La Boutique de Joël Robuchon in Japan for seven years before coming here. The Robuchon restaurants have an exclusive bakery in the central kitchen of Resorts World Sentosa where they make all of this.


The bread trolley has over 15 types of bread
There's more bread on the bread trolley - possibly more than 15 varieties. Toss your low-carb ambitions aside just for a day and indulge. I really wish they would start selling their bread (ideally in town)!


Those decorative flourishes on the plate are painted on - the black stroke and little lavender blossoms
And now for the new dishes at Joël Robuchon restaurant. We were first presented with this very pretty plate. Look carefully at those decorative flourishes on the plate - the black stroke and little lavender blossoms - these are hand-painted by the chef! I heard it was Danzaki, who's quite an artist.


L'Oursin - Sea urchin zephyr with wasabi foam
L'Oursin - Sea urchin zephyr with wasabi foam

Three generous chunks of uni bathing in an almost whimsical wasabi foam and flower bath. We were told a zephyr is something between a creme blanc and a souffle. The fresh sea urchin and slightly sweet wasabi totally hit it off.


Le Homard - Roasted lobster with small spinach leaves flavoured with black pepper sauce
Le Homard - Roasted lobster with small spinach leaves flavoured with black pepper sauce

Wow, this was intense! Robuchon's take on our black pepper seafood is a real winner. The lobster claw is beautifully roasted and the dark sauce is unabashedly spicy and concentrated.


The beef fillet Rossini style came shielded in this dramatic glass dome
The beef fillet Rossini style came shielded in this dramatic glass dome.


Beef fillet in Rossini interpretation with vintage Taylors port and bitter salad sprouts
Le Bœuf - Beef fillet in Rossini interpretation with vintage Taylors port and bitter salad sprouts

Heavens! Beef and foie gras together! Indulgent? Yes,but they so gloriously deserve one another's company.

The beef is so tender and flavourful (we found out it was cooked sous vide style). And the foie gras adds even more richness and fatty flavour. Oh, and please eat the bitter salad sprouts - they have been carefully picked and assembled - and actually help take a bit of the richness off your tongue. Love the potato curls in the background too.



The famous uber-creamy mashed potato
The famous uber-creamy mashed potato - some guy in the kitchen has to whip these for several hours to achieve that incredible texture.



Pre-dessert - The Le Parfum de Iles - smooth passion fruit, rum granite, light coconut foam
Pre-dessert - The Le Parfum de Iles - smooth passion fruit, rum granite, light coconut foam. Love the combination. I had this at the L'Atelier side on a previous visit. I remembered the name, although the presentation is quite different this time.


Le Jaune Fleuri - lime zest lightness flavoured with yuzu
Le Jaune Fleuri - lime zest lightness flavoured with yuzu

The presentation for this absolutely floored us. We practically didn't know where to start but ooh and aah for a while.

Desserts at the Robuchon restaurants are usually quite an experience. Their Pastry Chef Antonio Benites was previously executive chef at world-renowned pastry boutique Pierre Hermé in Rue Bonaparte, Paris.


Guillaume pours a decadent sauce onto my dessert
Guillaume pours a decadent sauce onto my dessert. Pity I was already too full to appreciate this!


Final petit fours

Petit fours with tea and coffee round off the meal - all very good but we were so stuffed already. But hey, I always appreciate fine-dining that fully satisfies in every way including portion sizes!

So yes, there are some interesting culinary thrills among the new dishes, and they are already available at their respective restaurants. Note that they are open only for dinner. Bon appetit!


L'ATELIER DE JOEL ROBUCHON
L'Atelier de Joël Robuchon is open daily 6.00pm to 10.30pm (dress code: smart casual)

JOEL ROBUCHON RESTAURANT
Joël Robuchon Restaurant is open 6.00pm to 10.30pm, Tues-Sat only (dress code: smart elegant)

Resort World Sentosa
(near Universal Studios and the Waterfront Monorail station)
For reservations, either call or email
Tel: +65 6577-7888
Email: robuchon@rwsentosa.com



Many thanks to RWS, the Joël Robuchon team, and Weber Shandwick for the invitation.
 
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