My 18th birthday was remarkable but it was at its best when we celebrated it in Tao Yuan, giving my friends and I a taste of Singapore. Well, we allowed Tao Yuan to take part in this big event of mine because aside from the fact that it was easy to locate for the sake of my guests, my father, which includes me, is partly Chinese and wanted us to experience good foods which are different from the typical Filipino birthday banquet. I love that this kind of restaurants have set menu which already consists of appetizer, soup, rice, main courses of seafood, chicken and meat and dessert. This is a perfect set to serve in every table as what most of my Filipino-Chinese friends do on their own celebrations. I enjoy the idea of putting the dishes one by one so we can focus on the flavors of each. By the way, we ordered set one which composes of the cuisine below.
Assorted Cold Cuts Combination
“Ane, ano itong pinapakain mo sa amin?” This was the question asked by my teenage friends when their table finished their appetizer. Actually, these are jellyfish, century egg, char siu, suckling pig, soya goose, five spice beef and cold pig intestines. How could you not know these, guys? These are typically served at dim sum restaurants. But I won’t comment anything special about the food because, personally, I can’t find any. It’s as mouthwatering as the other restaurant’s assorted cold cuts.
Salad Seafood Roll
Salad seafood roll, which comprises of fish, lobster, shrimp and crab, according to my taste buds, is another favorite. As you can see, I quickly took a photo of this right after it was placed on our table but my tablemate was swifter and excited as they got he own roll, afraid that she might run out of this, that’s why this photo misses one roll. And I was feeling the same way because I’m a fan of seafood, salads and rolls and the combination of this three is the most amazing thing in this world.
Mashed Winter melon with Crabstick and Dried Scallop Soup
Every spoonful is thick, heavy, generous and deliciously rich with mixed flavors of winter melon, crab and scallop. A small bowl will leave you either satisfied or wanting more. I just don’t recommend this soup if you ordered a set or a lot more dishes just like us because this makes your stomach full immediately stopping you from eating more of the other Tao Yuan’s specialties. Nonetheless, if there’s a big food basket inside you, then this is definitely for you, for us, rather.
On the set that we ordered, there should be steamed elephant shell but it isn’t available by that time. Instead of being sad because I want to discern the clams I’m unaware of, I was glad because they replaced it with the cereal prawns, which are crunchy and tasty as always. No wonder why Tao Yuan is known for their sweet and fresh shrimps regardless of the way these shrimps were cooked since they also offer steamed, sauteed, baked, toasted and sauced.
Sauteed Singaporean Fishcake with Seasonal Vegetable
I wasn’t able to nosh this thing here because I was getting busy during the time it was served. But I let my friend, who loved Tao Yuan’s Sauteed Singaporean Fishcake, type in this portion. Although it didn’t have a smack of a fish, I liked the simplicity of the dish. Their flavor was clean yet not lacking. Going back to me, Ane, this dish by looking at it and reading my friend’s critique, this gave me an idea twist the recipe of fish balls, squid balls and the like. Wait for that, people.
Tong Po Pork with Steam Bun
My brother told me that comparable to their soup, the buns, with tong po pork in between, fills our stomach immediately. But when it comes to stopping me from the foods I would like to devour once it showed to my view, I’m being disobedient. The tong po pork, which I believe should be dongpo pork, was not oily despite of the fact that it’s mostly belly. The bun, on the other side, may not be as soft as I expected, but it surprised me with its creamy tang.
Singaporean Curry Lapu-Lapu in Pot
I wonder if the Singaporean version of lapu-lapu curry really has larger greens than the fish, but when I reached for the lapu-lapu itself, the authenticity and greatness was there. Its sauce made it all savory in flavor and interesting in texture and has a perfect touch of spiciness. I think it would be better if they placed it on a platter instead of a pot with less vegetables and sauce so it would look better. Curries can be that way, right?
The last to be served before dessert was their soyed chicken. I just hoped that the chicken included in the set was their Hainanese chicken, the best in town. However, I must say that their soyed chicken didn’t disappoint me. Similar to their Hainanese chicken, the flavor is not just skin-deep, but also, it seeps all the way to the chicken meat. It is all tender, juicy and tasty at once. I’m glad that it was served sliced. But still, I prefer their Hainanese chicken. They have the same makers, by the way.