From Monday to Friday this week, the Go Away team will be revealing the 50 foods we believe will define your dining experience in Singapore. A mix of international and local flavours, these lists comprise of old-time favourites, well-known populars, as well as little-known gems. Part 1 of our 5-part series shares some of the best seafood dishes in Singapore we love.
Other than the predictable chilli crab, barbecue stingray, and fishhead curry, what other awesome seafood dishes should you try in Singapore? The Go Away team eats up a storm and reveals 10 seariously delicious seafood-based dishes that created a perfect storm on our palates.
1. Lobster Mac & Cheese, $25.50
For those of us who crave this comfort food ever so often, the Lobster Mac & Cheese at The Providore will not disappoint. Creamy with just the right amount of “brightness”, every bite of this indulgent pasta dish is guaranteed to take off the edge of an extremely stressful day at work. Nestled within the cheesy macaroni are chunks of lobster meat and fennel, which gives the dish an interesting mouthfeel, making it possible to actually wipe out the entire thing without making you feel sick.
2. Lobster Porridge, Market price
Diamond Kitchen (Science Park Branch)
87 Science Park Drive (Tel: 6464 0410)
This is off the menu so you will have to specially request for it. The sweetness of the lobster coupled with the warm, brothy comfort of porridge that’s been cooked in Chinese-wine spiked chicken stock is seriously a combo that’s hard to beat. We love it with some ginger slices and chilli padi added. We wake up in the middle of the night dreaming of this porridge. #truestory
3. Sambal Fish, Market price
Lai Huat Sambal Fish
17 Upper East Coast Road (Tel: 6448 9077)
This tze char restaurant has been around since 1963, and now has several outlets around Singapore. They are best known for their sambal fish. The pomfret has been fried so well that you can even eat the bones! It’s topped with a generous lashing of moreish, umami-rich sambal belachan. Ask for extra sambal to eat with your bowl of rice. Only way to describe it: SHIOK!
4. Stir Fried Fish Maw With Prawns, $44
Tao Seafood Asia
12 Marina View, #02-10, Asia Square Tower 2 (Tel: 6844 9969)
Not a fan of fish maw? This dish could very well change your mind. Fish maw is traditionally served soft and soggy in stews or soups, but the fish maw here is stir-fried, which gives it a unique bite that is slightly crunchy on the outside yet still delightfully spongey and soft inside. Best consumed with Tao Seafood Asia’s signature Thai-style green chilli sauce – the flavourful sauce adds a mean kick to this scrumptious dish!
5. Roasted Japanese Yellow Sea Bream, $78
The Royal Mail Restaurant & Bar
2 Finlayson Green (Tel: 6509 3589)
This dish may not come cheap at $78, but considering that you get the whole fish, it’s definitely worth forking out for if you’re in the mood for a good fish. The texture of the fish is fresh and firm, and the slightly spicy, sour marinade (the chef’s secret recipe) will see you polishing off the whole thing on your own.
6. Marinated Red Miso Cod, $33
81 Tras Street (Tel: 6221 3988)
Take a crowd-pleaser like cod and marinated it for 24 hours in black miso and beetroot puree. What you’ll get is a flavourful fish with lots of texture and bite. A relatively new name to the restaurant scene, Violet Herbs is a semi-fine dining restaurant serving up modern European cuisine. The cod here is roasted first before it is caramelised under a salamander to give the fish a full-bodied flavour and an appetising colour.
7. Chirashi Don, $25
9 Mohd Sultan Road (Tel: 6738 9395)
Chirashi don is a staple at most Japanese restaurants in Singapore but for value and quality, Chikuwa Tei is hard to top. Not only is the sashimi is always ultra fresh, you’ll get more than 10 slices of thickly-cut fish so you can taste the subtle sweetness of each piece. Chikuwa Tei is usually packed to the gills (pun intended), so be sure to make a reservation or arrive by 6.30pm for dinner.
8. Ju’s Prawn Pasta, $20
The Fabulous Baker Boy
The Foothills, 70 River Valley Road, #01-15 (Tel: 6694 8336)
The secret to the fresh egg papardelle used in this dish? It is made with “pau” flour, not semolina flour as we’d all expect. Even though this is a cream-based pasta dish, you will not experience any “ger-lak-ness” at all. The prawns and cream work together to create a flavourful yet sweet sauce. It is comfort food for days when you have a crazy deadline to meet. A must-eat if you love the prawn-y flavour!
9. Butter Calamari, $8.50
Ah Loy Thai
Shaw Towers, 100 Beach Road, #01-39/40 (Tel: 6509 9825)
We feel this butter calamari deserve a spot on this list because it is simply what all calamari should taste like. Thick, juicy ringlets of squid are covered in batter and deep fried perfectly before being drenched in a sauce made of melted butter and chilli. Each squid ring has just the right mix of crispy, bite, buttery, spicy and, it all goes down so well with hot steamed rice. If you’ve never ordered this at Ah Loy Thai, you have, our dear readers, truly been missing out.
10. Balcalhau Porridge, $28
6 Bukit Pasoh Road (Tel: 6221 0132)
Balcalhau is a dried and salted cod, and is an iconic ingredient in Portuguese cuisine. At BOCA, the chefs serve balcalhau in a bread-based porridge. Homemade bread is aged for 2 days before being immersed in balcalhau stock. This is all then transferred into a pot and simmered until the bread takes on the consistency of porridge. Unlike Chinese porridge, this porridge resembles more closely to risotto, with a more substantial texture. The addition of the salted cod adds a sweet flavour that stays on your palate. Perfect comfort food!
Fellow foodies in Singapore, we know this list is by no means exhaustive. Let us know your personal recommendation too!