11th September 2013.
I didn’t know Candlenut Kitchen have set lunches. Fortunately, they do and they are rather affordable, from 14-16 SGD which includes additional appetizer, soup and rice along with a choice of main such as Wok Fried Sirloin and Assam Fish Fillets or Babi Pongteh which I had.This time round, I thought the Babi Pongteh was better than the previous time I had it, it was tenderer and the gravy was delicious with the fragrant white rice.
I also had the strange Buah Keluak Ice Cream with salted caramel, chocolate crumble and chilli specks, topped with warm milk chocolate espuma which is a buah keluak flavoured chocolate dessert mixed with a spicy, crunchy “soil” with a surprise popping candy. I think it is a re-invention of the chocolate lava cake but instead of using temperature for the warm, Chef Malcolm uses chilli powder.
I like the addition of salted caramel in this dessert and the overall flavours but I thought the texture is still quite rough and unpolished compared to the other desserts and priced at 14 SGD, it had to be better or it is a matter of acquired taste.
Within a week, I was back again at Candlenut Kitchen for dinner as I wanted to let my foreign exchange studio mates have taste of Peranakan Cuisine and since we are nearby, why not? Together we shared a few dishes, namely: Mum’s Curry (14.00++ SGD), Beef Rendang (18.00++ SGD), Assam Fish (16.00++ SGD), Sayur Lodeh (12.00++ SGD) and Ayam Buah Keluak (16.00++ SGD).
The Beef Rendang, dry aromatic coconut curry with kaffir lime leaves and roasted coconut was the spiciest of the lot but the beef shin was very tender. The Ayam Buah Keluak was different from the usual ayam buah keluak I had elsewhere, the buah keluak was like a fine powder rather than the whole nut itself. Our favourite seemed to be the Mum’s Curry.
Last but not least we ended off with the Banana Caramel Pudding (9.00++ SGD). Both of our French studio mates decided to get one of their own after trying it.
Candlenut Kitchen is involved in Restaurant Week (7th - 13th October) too with a different menu from its current menu. By the way, I just learnt this from a talk on Peranakan culture by that Babi Pongteh and Kueh Koci are not supposed to be served on birthdays.
331 New Bridge Road #01-03