Sunday, March 10, 2013

Wonderful Taiwan Delights 顶好台湾小厨

I'm a huge fan of Taiwanese fare, judging from the number of times I've visited that country and the number of night market visits I clock whenever I'm there. So when I'm back home in Singapore, my only way of reliving an iota of the taste of Taiwan is through the lousy pasar malam food. It's only after popping by this little eatery tucked snugly in a corner of Marsiling that I've finally found a place to stave off my craving for authentic Taiwanese fare until my next flight out. And if you're careful with your calories, you should just steer clear of Taiwanese food altogether because it's the calories that count here.

Stewed Pork Rice

I first got to know about this place through my JC friend, whose Taiwanese parents are the owners and chefs of Wonderful Taiwan Delights. While I didn't get the chance of meeting him on the day of my visit to the restaurant, the hospitality was nothing short of warm and homely.

The menu has a wide variety of appetizers, stir-fried dishes, desserts and drinks which are common fare in Taiwan. If you're on Facebook, you should follow them closely, for they occasionally add new dishes to their menu to give customers something new to look forward to during every visit. It is evident that they have injected some Singaporean flair into a few dishes to cater to the local taste buds.

Every table gets a serving of the following appetisers: braised peanuts, spicy seaweed, marinated beancurd skin and braised preserved vegetables with fatty pork. I particularly liked the beancurd skin for its chewy texture. The seaweed was a little too spicy for my liking.

Spicy seaweed, braised peanuts, marinated beancurd strips and braised perserved vegetables with pork

Oyster mee sua is a no-frills staple in Taiwan, but to make a lip-smacking good version of it takes a whole lot of conviction. The chefs did it right, judging from how the contents in this bowl was snapped up in an instant. The rice noodles were silky smooth, and I didn't find those disgusting starch balls in mee sua made by unskilled chefs.

Oyster Mee Sua
 This dish is somewhat Singapore-inspired, though it's not too difficult to find in Taiwan. My family cooks this at home too, and I like our version with cubed century eggs and salted eggs. The silverfish added a dash of flavour and colour to the spinach.
Stir-fried spinach with silverfish and century egg
 I could eat tofu all my life, and this satiated me. The savoury sauce had an assortment of sliced mushrooms and the tofu was ol' so melt-in-the-mouth soft and fluffy.
Tofu with assorted mushrooms
 The sweet and sour fish was a notch above those you get at zhi-char stores, because there wasn't a thick layer of batter coating the fish slices. The tangy sauce did a good job at fusing all the various flavours from the vegetables with the fish. Shall try the milky butter version on my next visit.
Sweet and sour sliced fish

The chicken wings are worth a try, though my dad commented that the seasoning could have been done for a longer period of time.

Preserved tofu and prawn paste chicken wings

For the adventurous. :)
Chilled drunken chicken
 Oh, this kept the carnivores busy. My family couldn't get enough of the braised meat rice and its meat sauce. If you stirred it well, the meat sauce would be sufficient to coat every grain of rice with a generous amount of sauce and oil. If you're planning on having this alone, I'm afraid one serving would not suffice. :)
Braised minced meat rice
 The family were adventurous enough to try the battered oysters.
Milky butter fried oysters
 My heart fluttered when I heard the word "dessert", and not without reason. We seldom get red bean pancake on menus unless you're talking about dim sum restaurants and the likes. The red bean pancake served here is good enough to put some big names to shame. The pancake was crispy and topped full of sesame seeds on the outside, yet soft and fluffy on the inside. The red bean paste was delightful without being cloying to the teeth and throat, and you just want to have piece after piece after piece.

Red bean pancake
If you need a drink to wash down all the goodness, the amiable lady boss will be more than happy to recommend their drinks, which are mostly imported from Taiwan and definitely not found on supermarket shelves here. It may be a tad tricky to get to this place from Woodlands MRT station, but the travelling is worth all the while. At least there's no boarding pass and check-in involved for this Taiwanese experience.

Ambience: 3/5
Food: 3.7/5
Price: $$-$$$ (depending on what you order)
Service: Poor/Fair/Good/Excellent

Eat where:
Wonderful Taiwan Delights
Blk 210 Marsiling Crescent #01-10 Singapore 730210
Opening hours: 11.30am-2.30pm, 5.30pm-10.30pm

1 comment:

  1. Lousy food... very localized taste ... just like foods that found in foodcourt, but super expensive.