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Showing posts with label Chinese Food. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Chinese Food. Show all posts

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Bites: Amazing Chinese Fry-Up @ Canton Lane, Belmont

Every now and then my family dines at Belmont Forum for a quality brunch.  Then are the times we go out for a Chinese Meal.  But in my 11 years of staying in Australia, my family have never had a Chinese meal in Belmont Forum, until this week.  So what has changed you might ask?  Well, a lot.  Starting from the rejuvenation of Belmont Forum to the addition of quality bites, the whole Forum is changing.  Rapidly.  From GYG Mexican and Schnitz to San Churros, a new Chinese restaurant called Canton Lane has opened and it was epic.  

Familiar faces at Canton Lane tells me that the restaurant is a quality chain that includes Canton Bay and Hong Kong BBQ.  With that being said, I expect the Roast Meat at Canton Lane to be top notch so I decided to give the Peking Duck a try.

This was the Peking Duck (without the deep fried Mantou).  Describing it in one sentence, Canton Lane has used crispy duck skin paired with juicy duck flesh wrapped with refreshing pickled vegetables finished with a dollop of sweet sauce!  Its been awhile since I had Peking Duck so this was really enjoyable!


We also had another appetiser of XO Radish Cake.  This one ticks all the boxes with their perfectly browned radish cake which is fluffy and soft on the inside.   The XO sauce packed a decent punch with hints of scallops present through-out the fry-up.  If anything, I would have liked it a little stickier (i.e. more sauce)! Nonetheless, it was every bit satisfying.  


Prawns with Salted Egg


Japanese Beancurd on Hot Plate with Diced Chicken and Salted Fish.


The Canton Lane’s main menu has all the usual Canton suspects.  Pictured are the Prawns with Salted Egg, Pan Fried Tooth Fish, and Japanese Beancurd on Hot Plate.  Other favourites like Peking Ribs and Roast Meat are also on the menu.  The cooking at Canton Lane hit all the sweet spots I would want when I dine at a Cantonese Restaurant.  Execution of the Deep Fried food such as the prawn and fish was kept really clean.  No sense of overpowering greasiness in the fragrance or to the taste.   Salted egg dressing was really traditional (and generous)! What more could you ask for?  Even the Garlic Kailan was delicious!

Dad is very critical about his Chinese food and felt that Canton Lane exceeded his expectations for a restaurant soft launch.  For me, I was super keen to know we no longer needed to go through the struggle of finding parking in Northbridge!!  A much welcomed addition to Belmont Forum.  Canton Lane opened on the 10th of April serving Dim Sum during the day and Chinese meals.  From delicious Dim Sum to perfectly Roasted Meats to traditional Cantonese fare, you can get it all at Canton Lane at Belmont Forum.


Thursday, November 17, 2016

Bites: Crazy About Dumplings @ Authentic Bites Dumpling House.

Coming home from site there was a sudden craving for dumplings, so my sister’s suggestion to go to Authentic Bites Dumpling House in Northbridge was timely.  This little shop has queues building up early even before the doors open which I found to be very Melbourne-esque where all popular dumpling houses had long queues.  But hey lets skip the queue talk and get inside.

The dining area is small but the turnover here is relatively quick.  The menu is pretty straightforward with a few of our favourite appetisers making a surprise appearance.  To start was a serve of drunken chicken and lightly pickled cucumbers

Drunken Chicken:
Both, were amazing especially the chicken which had the fragrant of the wine coating the smooth chicken flesh.  Its flavour was very mild and what was even more surprising was how the cold chicken tasted more fresh than heavy.  Then comes the tangy cucumbers marinated in a little chilli, salt, sugar and some Szechuan pepper corn.  Light numbing but superbly flavourful. It was a table favourite least to say!

The  Shanghai Dumpling we ordered were a mixture Pork and Crab.
While I would normally go for the normal pork dumplings after a mediocre experience at Shanghai Street Dumpling in Melbourne, the lure of the briny crab flavour paired with the juicy pork was hard to resist.  Fortunately, Authentic Bites did not disappoint.  The flavours were great and I really enjoyed it then.  Except for the fact that I went to Singapore and had an even more amazing Shanghai Dumpling where the skin was really thin.  No one likes thick dumpling skin!! Especially when steamed :P!

We also had some noodles! The Braised Beef Noodle soup.
The braised beef itself was no doubt on part with some of the best braised beef in town and I was over all very impressed.  What disappointed me was the broth which I felt could have been more beefy.  It was very mild so I decided to enhance its flavours with some soy and chilli oil.  Over all,  not too bad but nothing to rave about!

We also had the famous the pot stickers filled with a morrish mix of spicy kimchee and juicy pork.  Unfortunately I did a terrible job of getting a picture so there will be none.  The dumplings themselves were very similar to the ones you’d get elsewhere but with a special crispy finish to bottom.  It was really yums.  I mean who would complain when they get more crispy bits right?  Authentic Bites Dumpling House serves some serious dumplings but even better appetisers.   Their noodles? Hmmm those were ok but I would not come back for them.  Dumplings?  Definitely.  Dad though has his preference set for the more dainty Cantonese style dumplings served at yamaha.  So this is not on his list!


Authentic Bites Dumpling House Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Bites NLD: Dim Sum @ Oriental City, Amsterdam

Dim Sum is a culinary art beyond the norm.  Its presentation is fine, food tasty and variety plenty.    Wherever its Malaysia or Australia that I am at, Dim Sum is a monthly ritual for me.  My colleague and I went recently went for lunch at Oriental City, a recommendation from his Chinese barber in Amsterdam.  Oriental City is a popular family spot on the weekends with a 30 minute wait for a table even thought it was 1pm. This shows how famous Oriental City is with the locals.

At the table, you are given a list to tick the type and quantity of dim sum you would like to order.  Naturally, I quickly ticked the usuals suspects and before we knew it, we had about 10 dim sums presented before us (not all pictured).

The Siu Mai; Pork Dumpling


The Har Gow; Prawn Dumpling


The Char Siew Cheong; BBQ Pork Rice Paperoll


The Hor Yip Fan; Glutinous Rice in Lotus Leaf

These are some of the most traditional offerings that you can find at every Dim Sum place.  Oriental City did prepared them quite well although I was not too convinced by the thicker than usual Har Gow skin.  This was a surprise for me because the Char Siew Cheong skin was pretty thin which allowed the dark red colour of the BBQ pork to be exposed!  My favourite Dim Sum dish the Siu Mai was quite refined unlike the ones I usually have in Perth and Hong Kong where the meat inside is quite chunky.  Still every bit as more-ish!  The glutinous rice was average at best.  I felt that it was lacking something! 


The Oriental City Dumpling; Roast Duck, Prawn and Coriander Dumpling.


Shanghai Soup Dumpling


Fried Noodles

While Oriental City excelled with the classics, the same could not be said for its other offerings.  The fried noodles were good, I dare not call it classic Soy Fried Noodles in any way.  If it was, then its a reinterpretation by the chefs at Oriental City.  The reason why the Shanghai Dumpling and the Oriental City Dumpling joins the list of my dislikes it because of the skin wrapping the dumpling.  It was seriously thick!  So much thicker than the Prawn Dumpling ones! Eventually, I ditched the skin and only ate the fillings :P!   


Mango Pudding

Last but not least was the Mango Pudding.  Flavour wise it was spot on.  But then comes it consistency which was super hard and not like what the Chinese would often describe “Q-Q” which means springy jelly like!  Did I like it?  No.  But did I absolutely hate it no?  It was just not a good one that is all.

Oriental City was a promising prospect.  Serving over 3 floor of hungry dinners simultaneously shows how busy this place is.  But perhaps the 40 minute wait got the better of me and had me set my expectations rather high. Would I come here again? Perhaps yes if there was no wait!  The food was at best decent for a fussy eater like me!

But also note that prices for Dim Sum in Europe is more expensive compared to other places too!  Be prepared to fork out some €25-30 for decent meal here because 1 bamboo basket is typically around €4.70.


Monday, October 5, 2015

London: Delicious Roast Duck and Pork @ Four Seasons Roast House, Bayswater

The Four Season Roast House is easily an iconic symbol of the East in London.  With its celebrity like popularity, the Four Season Roast House name has spread back to the east as far as Australia, Malaysia and Singapore.  In fact, there are a couple of branches in Malaysia, and Bangkok; perhaps even more!  Coming to London, I knew I had to taste for myself whether the Four Season Roast House is the real deal or plain hype.

At 2pm, I walked in and asked a table for two.  Believe it or not, there were no seats just yet.  Do not even bother asking for a wait duration too as the long list of names and unpredictable customer behaviour make it impossible to gauge.  But thankfully, it only took some 25 minutes before Jacques and I were seated. For lunch today, the Frenchman was going with my suggestion.  We each ordered roasted meat and rice along with a piping hot bowl of wanton soup.  A classic Cantonese lunch.

My choice of roast is none other than my staples, the crispy roast pork and juicy roast duck for £8.50.  It is decent pricing when you consider the fact that London is one of the world’s most expensive cities to live in.  
But money is only figure when it comes to food.  Its the taste that makes a fact.  As far as anticipation goes, the roast meat at Four Season Roast House ticked some very important boxes.   For starters the Roast Pork was well seasoned at the bottom whilst at the top, it was thin, shard-y and crisp!  First bite in and you get that sensational crunch.  The proportion of fat and lean meat is around 35-65 which is decent but can get a little too fatty towards the end!  Over all, it was tasty!

The Roast Duck on the other hand, was equally impressive.  On the outside you get that beautifully roasted skin while its flesh was still mildly juicy and very tasty.   While the meat themselves were delicious, I did not like the sauce which they put on the rice.  It was a little too sweet which masked the natural flavours of the roast meat.  Instead, I wanted something a little more savoury from the juice of the meat that can be served with the rice.  I would not mind if it was a little more herbed too.

The wanton soup for £3 was the perfect way to wash down this meal of roast meat which can leave your mouth feeling greasy.   This salty-slightly peppery soup filled with tasty morsels of prawn wrapped in wanton skins was rather basic but is still every bit quintessential of the Cantonese cuisine. Topped with finely slices scallions, it was delicious.

The Four Seasons Roast House served me some serious Roast Pork and Duck that day.  But was it worthy of all the long queue, newspaper publicity and hype that has been bestowed to it?  For me, definitely NO.  If you have eaten in Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia and even Australia, yes AUSTRALIA, you will not be fully impressed.  The quality displayed by the Four Season Roast house was almost flawless but its overly sweet sauce was a let down.  It needed more balance on the plate.  

See my other delicious Roast Duck/Pork posts which includes my 2 Perth favourites, a Malaysian Chinese Classic and my Michelin starred adventure in Hong Kong.  Also in the list below is what I believe is the best Soy Chicken I have ever eaten, a shop located in Melbourne.

Four Seasons Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Monday, September 7, 2015

Bites NLD: Cantonese food with a touch of home@ Fat Kee, Chinatown

I'm always up for fine dining where over the top precision in presentation and meticulous composition of flavors are usually the highlight of a 4 hour evening. But at times, all that ones craves for is some comfort food that tastes like home. Traveling back from Amsterdam to The Hague, I decided to sample flavors a little closer to home.  Thankfully my veteran friends have a little place in Chinatown for that. 

Stepping into Fat Kee in Chinatown, this well-known Cantonese restaurant offers traditional Cantonese cuisine along with several other Indonesian dishes on their menu. For the three of us who were starving to death, we ordered three dishes which were plenty to go around.

Stir fried Kangkung with Belachan

Simple stir fried in the aromatic Belachan. The sticky consistency of the stir fried greens makes it a close match to what's found at home minus that fragrant "sambal" bite. A noteworthy find considering how most places serve Kangkung that is still wet. 

Mixed Roast - Soy Chicken, Roasted Duck, Roasted Pork and BBQ Pork. 


This large roast combination that we got was a bit of a mixed batch. My two friends very honestly called the Roast Duck an "overly roasted duck". It's not far from the truth but it was yummy. Something like the Hong Kong Violin duck.  However, the Roast Pork was my favourite of the lot with its crispy skin and salty five spice rub bearing close resemblance to what I would expect as a minimum.  The biggest loser would be the BBQ Pork.  The lack of caramelisation and smokiness made it no more than lean pork coated in plum sauce.

Yong Tau Foo stuffed with Prawn Meat. 

The last dish on the table was the Yong Tau Foo. A dish where bean curd and other vegetables are usually stuffed with meat and flash fried before being cooked further in various ways.  At Fat Kee, these were beautifully braised in oyster sauce. Quite delicious I must insist. 

Fat Kee is my first venture into the Cantonese food scene here in the Netherlands. The food is simple, humble and ridiculously tasty. So do not be surprised to come any day during dinner and find the restaurant jam packed. The good news is that Fat Kee serves the food really quick and so the turn over is only 10-15 minutes long. The three dishes including the usual suspects rice and tea would set you back 43 Euros which is pretty decent!


Monday, August 17, 2015

Bites NLD: Chinese-French @ HanTing Cuisine, Prinsestraat

The fastest way to the heart of a country is by eating food said many.  I have recently moved to the Hague as part of my training.  As a keen foodie, I walked the predictable path of attempting to understand a culture by eating my way through town.  Last week I took the time to visit HanTing, a 1 Michelin star Chinese - French restaurant.  Located in the city, it was in a convenient spot to begin.  

The concept was really unusual because while Japanese-French establishments are as cliche as humans’ breathing in Australia,  the Chinese - French connection was new to me! But lets leave the food to do the talking.

Tray of “snacks”.  

A superb mix of colours, textures and flavours.  The complex offering started with a squid ink bun filled with some mild horseradish which gave the sweet-ish almost brioche like bun a subtly pungent bite.  Next was the beetroot meringue.  It packed a crunch with an unmistakable earthiness from the beetroot.  This was followed by was a savoury macaroon, a crisp and crudités with a saffron aioli dip.

Amuse Bouche

Tomato Jelly, Mousse, celery and smoked eel.  It was acidic, creamy and salty.  All of which was serenaded by a whiff of smokiness.  Small and potent, but more importantly it was interesting.

Steamed bread with fried shallots.

The dish of HERRING was the First course presented to me.  This fish is a typical Dutch stereotype so when it was served it felt like a surprise but not really.  Served raw, I was really quite concerned by the thick layer of “blood" running underneath the skin.  But Chef Han’s idea of serving the fish with a host of fruity and refreshing elements was absolutely genius.  Among the accompaniments identified are compressed watermelon, Yuzu dressing, Guacamole and tomato jelly.  This oily fish was buttery and left only the slightest hint of the sea in my mouth.  But scoop a little of each element to eat with the fish and it did not at all feel like a fish!  It was light, subtle, and fruity.


For diners that find the HERRING fishy, HanTing serves a complimentary course which felt like a re-interpretation of the Japanese “ONIGIRI”.  Its sweet-vinegary flavours readies the palate for the next course.

The Second course featured TUNA in several ways.  Seared-all round and a sushi.  Served with red pepper puree, soya, cucumber and a wasabi jelly, this was an intricate dish. Not to mention melt-in-your mouth squid and aubergine in the middle.  But was all this effort in vain? Not all but some.  The sushi probably was the least impressive dish.  The sticky shards of rice and pressed tuna tasted stale.  With the seared tuna, I found the pairing with the lukewarm wasabi jelly log too mundane.  I did not get that kick which I got from the HERRING dish.  With the warm temperature in the dining hall, having served the dish with a wasabi sorbet would have totally win it.  Oh, do not forget to omit the sushi too!


My Third course was a dish of SEA BASS and razor clam.  Another dish from the sea, but this time cooked.  A good way to imagine this dish is to think of a perfectly cooked fish.  And then think of the last time you had a perfectly cooked fish and cry.  Ok just joking lol.  Think of the fish and at the same time imagine a soy based sauce that feels buttery, filled with shrooms and a touch of sweet rice wine.  Everything was bang on perfect.  The HERRING course I had at HanTing is probably not to everyone taste, but this was definitely a crowd pleaser.


The Fourth and last savoury course was a meal of VEAL.  Served pink in the middle the VEAL was tender, juicy and flavoursome.  The seared loin was well-seasoned and one flavour that was more prominent than others was five spice.  A spice frequently used by Chinese to season meat.  On the side you had turnips, yam and also a very special solidified lard with shallots.  By itself, the veal was delicious.  But melt the flavoured lard onto the meat and you get the hint of ginger and spring onions which perfumed the veal so very nicely it was awesome.


Last but not least was a sweet ending.  Sorbet frozen using liquid Nitrogen, white chocolate ganache shaped and twisted, and to cut through the sweetness of the lot, some sliced candied Mandarins. 


The meal at HanTing was nothing short of being impressive.  The kitchen’s thought on the plate was clearly “more is more” and not "less is more".  While this worked brilliantly for most courses, the TUNA took a few steps back with that thought.   I wanted a little more surprise that suited the warm summer season.  But with 4 out of the 5 courses winning my approval, it is a clear sign that HanTing’s 1 Michelin star is well-deserved.  If you had to ask me what my favourite courses were, I would no doubt vouch for the Herring which freaked me out initially.  Its buttery sweet flesh was second to none.   The Sea Bass is the second best followed suit by the Veal and Dessert of White Chocolate & Berries.  


Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Melbourne: The Best Soy Chicken @ Pacific Roast House, Lonsdale St.

A delicious Chinese roast is always up there amongst my list of comfort food.  Imagining crispy roast pork crackling, juicy roast duck, and garlicky Kailan with piping hot rice simply gets me drooling!  Pacific Roast House on Lonsdale St. serves a delicious Soy Chicken feed in town, and they are not shy the flaunt it.  With a full bird close to $40, it was easily the most expensive Soy Chicken in Australia.  A full bird at Good Fortune is only $24!

At Pacific Roast House however, the common protein is transformed in to a perfectly caramelised bird with a tender flesh.   Its skin is silky smooth  and I cannot help but feel terribly impressed by the Soy Chicken served at Pacific BBQ.  The colour itself just looks extremely tantalising.  To add to the glory, its accompaniment the ginger is generously formed and sautéed to perfection.  Salty, mildly pungent and extremely fragrant, it gingery flavours could easily make anyone eat a bucket of rice!

The duck here though is only mildly impressive when compared to the likes of my home favourites Good Fortune Roast house and HK BBQ house in Perth.  Nevertheless, it was not a bad eat.  Just nowhere near as outstanding at the Soy Chicken they serve.

Pacific Roast house has always been a good eat since my first time there 7 years ago, but never a good host. Unfortunately, if you frequent places that serves awesome roast, sometimes part of the dining experience is the attitude; bad ones where hospitality feels a bit more like hostility.  The waiter comes up with little courtesy and offers drink the typical way you get asked in HK.  It does not go “Would you like a drink?”, instead it will be “Drink!?”.  It just cracks me up knowing how many people suffer a culture shock coming to Pacific Roast House.  But a veteran eater knows that this is no more than a norm.  In saying that, it does not necessarily mean I agree!  Just that I expect it!

Pacific Seafood BBQ House on Urbanspoon

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Bites: A Chinese Banquet @ Northbridge Chinese Restaurant, Roe St.

Northbridge Chinese Restaurant also known as Lok Fook by the Chinese population in Perth is a popular Chinese restaurant on Roe St.  While it is popular, this place draws a host of criticisms from me in the past for its arrogant lady boss, incompetent service and inconsistent food quality.  Earlier this year, it became known to me that the chefs took ownership of the restaurants and so my family decided to have a family dinner here after a long time of being away.  Under the new management, Northbridge Chinese Restaurant is a fair bit different now that is has a level of service which is more acceptable.

That night we had two tables of 8, one for the youngsters and the other for the oldies :P!  Since it was a special treat for my parents as well as my two aunties who traveled from Singapore and Sydney, it was an all out banquet for the family.

The first dish to reach was an “egg drop" Chinese mushroom soup  The thick gelatinous soup did not quite tickle my fancy but was a decent start to the meal.  It is probably just me, but I have a preference that other than the good old Shark’s Fin soup with crab meat, I prefer Cantonese style soups which are thinner in consistency yet potent in the sweetness of its ingredients like pork ribs, lotus root, peanuts, dates and a host of other herbs.

Scallops on shell steamed with emperor soy, glass noodles, topped with crispy garlic oil and finely chopped scallions.  Scallops are always a treat when served not the table. This was no different.  The sweet protein of the sea when cooked to perfection is a no brainer.  Here it was  prepared simple, yet delicious but a tad overcooked.  Thinking of the perfect scallops, I feel the need to revisit Marea in NYC.  The scallops at Marea had to be the best I have ever had.  See this post here to get what I mean :P!

Next up was another dish that involved some intense finger action.  Snow crabs tossed in a salted egg sauce.  It is not hard understand why people go crazy over snow crabs.  Its large chunk of flesh from the claw easily overwhelms that of any other shellfish on earth.  Add a fragrant garlicky salted egg sauce to the equation and boy it was good.

At this point of the dinner, the chef probably thought that it was a good time to give our palates a rest and cooked up a piping hot serve of garlic Kailan.  A basic dish that never fails to satisfy. Easily cooked at home, but never the same, restaurants tend to use a bigger “burner”  resulting in a drier vegetable dish.  At home, most garlic kailan usually comes out watery!
Next was up was the boys favourite, the Pai Kuat Wong or the Emperor Ribs.  Crispy deep fried meaty ribs coat in a sticky sweet fruity sauce is a dish that tastes very similar to the Peking Ribs with the exception of the mayonnaise.  

Next was another deep fried dish @@!  It was a very unhealthy night but hey, once in a blue moon right? haha.  The last one was a fusion between an aubergine and a prawn/chicken paste of some sort.  I have to say, I was not the biggest fan of the dish for the sole reason of it being way too oily.  Aubergine is quite a spongy vegetable.  It absorbs things well.  Oil in particular. So deep fry something like that and oh that oil! Just a couple of days back we had another Chinese meal two doors down and they served their specialty chicken skin and prawn paste dish which was absolutely moreish when compared to this.

To end were the complementary fruits and sago in coconut milk.  Neither were particularly impressive but who am I to complain when the word complimentary is involved :P!
The meal at the Northbridge Chinese Restaurant was a very good one.  It is actually the second time I am visiting the place in the last 2 months as I had another big family dinner here when my relatives were here from Canada.  Altogether as a family, we were worried initially when we made the booking due to the poor the place rating it had on Urbanspoon.   Nonetheless, two successful dinners has shown that the new management is not short of skills when it comes to preparing quality Chinese.  This in itself is a good reason to come back.  But for everything else Chinese especially Chinese Roast, I would stray no further than my favourite HK Barbecue or Good Fortune :)!

Northbridge Chinese Restaurant on Urbanspoon

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Bites: My Malaysian Feast @ PappaRich, Northbridge

When I was younger, mom and dad got me most of the thing I wanted as a kid. I had the Donkey Kong on my N64, Sonic to go with the Sega MegaDrive and all the PlayStation games I wanted. In exchange for good results of course which involves hours of text book grinding.  This was what an invitation to PappaRich, Northbridge felt like after being hard at work for a long time, and by long, I mean really long.  Walking into PappaRich, I witnessed familiar sights that quickly got my senses excited.  Finger pulling roti action followed by curry dipping.  Damn it was good.

Both my sister and I have not gone back to Malaysia for over a year now but seeing the many varieties listed on the menu did not send us into a limbo because we already knew what we missed from home. In this instance, I was definitely choosing things I wanted rather than the poor marketing Malaysia does in making the world think we only drink Teh Tarik and eat Roti.
For our drinks I called the Milo Dinosaur while my sister had the Soy Bean milk with Cincau.  Malaysia makes some of the best Iced Milo and this was no different.  My drink definitely brings back all the adolescent memories where Iced Milo was a staple at the breakfast table or as a beverage before bed.  Needless to say it was delicious.  The Iced Milo was richer than usual which meant calorie alert but who can resist drinking this with the little bits of biteable Milo Chunks!  Sister's drink was also yummy with PappaRich blending the Soy Bean milk with ice giving it a slushy style treatment.

First up were the chicken satay, our first appetizer.
The lure of this chicken pieces marinated in lemon grass, and Turmeric is easily a global phenomenon.  I doubt  there is any other food on a stick that drives a crowd as crazy as satay in Australia.  The satay at PappaRich was a very close imitation of the product back home.  Perhaps even better then some stalls in Malaysia.  The only criticism was not in its taste but rather, its texture.  In Malaysia, you get layers of lean meat and skin making the whole eating experience juicy and tender with little juicy explosion of  seasoned lard.  PappaRich makes it a lot leaner which, as a healthier alternative was a bloody tasty treat.  While eating satay I usually take turns between cucumber chunks and onion slices before dunking it into the yummy peanut sauce.  Did it the way I do back home.  Yums!

Whatever healthy benefits I got from the former was all lost when I decided to call this cheeky little creation PappaRich had.  Deep fried chicken skin, the second appetizer.
What is there to say here?  So damn good.  Crispy, and salty with a mild peppery note.  One little warning, it takes two person a lot of skill and capacity to finish one serve!  My sister and I barely finished half.  Also, this is something to be eaten quickly as starts becoming chewy once cold!  So grab a couple more friends to come and this would be an absolute table favourite.

Sister's dinner that night was Pappa's Special Briyani.
There is a lot to take in when you see the plate arrive.  In the middle, you have the fragrant rice so carefully prepared with cardamon, cloves and other herbs.  Meanwhile, the side sports some perfectly grilled egg plants, delicious chicken and sambal prawns.  Sister was extremely satisfied with the egg plants and grilled chicken which she happily finished.  But when it came to the prawns she asked me to "try".  An evil trick to have me finish things she does not like.  So where did it go wrong?  Closing my eyes and re-winding back to my last awesome Sambal Prawn.  I remember how all the Mak Cik preparing this at the stalls in Malaysia never lacked the essential Malaysian ingredients which enhances the flavour of the prawn.  At PappaRich, perhaps all it needed was more tamarind and maybe more shrimp paste/belachan to give the sambal coating a rich and more flavourful consistency.  Was this a big disappointment to the dish as a whole?  Definitely not.  In fact, most would probably just ignore it altogether.

My main was the Nasi Lemak, a staple food of mine back in Malaysia.
The most important component of this dish lies in the name itself, "Nasi Lemak".  Rich and fragrant, the rice which is cooked in coconut milk has to be prepared to perfection to pass my test.  The rice test?  Each grain is whole, firm and fluffy. At PappaRich, the rice was prepared with enough respect to be liked.  The sambal was good. It felt more Malay rather than Indian or Chinese.  But then again, every sambal in Malaysia is different up to a level where it is not based on district or region but rather the chef itself.   Curry chicken was yummy but I was hoping for maybe a piece or two of potato with it because curry chicken with potato is yummy!  The half an egg was ok, but I was hoping to get maybe two halves because egg and Nasi Lemak are like two peas in a pod.  An awesome pairing that feels incomplete without each other.

To end the night we ordered a dessert which was something totally random which we just hmmm felt like it?  Banana fritters with ice cream.   The fritters were a little unripe for my sister's liking but I thought that it was OK.  As the Vanilla Ice Cream was out of stock, we opted for the premium chocolate for an extra dollar.  I have to say, it was every bit worth that extra dollar especially when you see hints of gooey chocolate fudge sitting between the creamy ice cream.

My cravings for proper Asian Malaysian food has been satisfied.  PappaRich is a quality addition to Northbridge replacing an EXTREMELY hideous Vietnamese place called Saigon.  Its quality was pretty damn close to home and I really hope it stays the same because everything we ordered was really quite nice.  Is this home?  Perhaps not, but considering I am thousand of miles away from home, I cannot complain for sure. Visit any day to see a snaking queue goes on to say a lot about PappaRich in Northbridge.  Expectations is one, and the other is the number of people who love Malaysian food.   Compared to PappaRich in Malaysia, the fit out in PappaRich Northbridge is a class above the rest and the ambience was really good although the noise is deplorable.  Definitely a new hangout place should they decide to open till late on Fridays and Saturdays! I would be there for supper at 1am :)!
Also, if it is true, a little bird has told me that another branch will be opening in Carousel Mall in Cannington.  True or False?   Only time will tell.  Thanks for the invite PappaRich Northbridge.

Papparich Northbridge on Urbanspoon