Monday, January 24, 2011

Straits Chinese Nonya Restaurant With Video - Classic Nyonya Cooking in 313 Somerset

It is always hard to find nyonya food in the mainstream, and apart from Ivins which has a number of outlets in various parts of the island, it is hardly easy to find peranakan food in town.

So, it was with great curiosity when we spotted this nyonya outlet right in the middle of a food court in 313 Somerset. We had put off a few times trying it simply because of the price, which was hardly food court standards.

Nevertheless, we decided to brave it last weekend and had a chance to savor what turned out to be quite a pleasurable meal, albeit somewhat pricey.

Sambal Kang Kong

The sambal kang kong seemed simple enough, but what grabbed our attention was the way it was fried. It was done with large cloves of garlic and it was wonderfully fragrant. The kang kong was not overdone and hence, retained that crunchiness about it. It was kang kong done very well.

Babi Pong Tay

The braised pork in this classic nyonya dish was simply delicious. Superbly braised until soft, the pork was well infused with the familiar fermented bean paste that comes with this disk. The nice bits of mushrooms and bamboo shoots added a nice mix of texture and flavors to this plate. Beautiful.


The chendol was less spectacular. They did provide a generous helping of red beans, and the gula melaka was really sufficient to blend with the coconut milk. But they used the artificial coloring type of chendol, which did not go down as well as the more authentic ones you find in Jonker, Malacca.

Gula Melaka

The sago laden gula melaka dessert was on a different level. The sago pearls were huge and had this lovely bouncy texture to it. And the brown sugar in this bowl was really ample and delicious. I really enjoyed this dessert and it is hard to find this particular dessert nowadays.

Authentic Nyonya Cuisine

They also served many other classic nyonya dishes like buah keluar and po piah, but for our money, the fare that we sampled was really quite authentic and classic. Nothing fancy, but nyonya cooking is known for its time consuming efforts and to find one such eatery in Orchard, and in a food court no less, was already exemplary.

What was less exemplary was its pricing, and as food court standards go, this was a bit above what most families would pay for when they come to a food court. Still, it is admirable to have such a nyonya place in town.

Straits Chinese Nonya Restaurant
Food Republic at 313 Somerset, Orchard Road

Written, filmed, edited and directed by Silverchef Productions.
Shot and edited entirely on Apple's Iphone 4 and at Food Republic, 313 Somerset.
No sago was harmed in the shooting of this video.
"东风破" performed by 周杰倫.

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