Monday, November 24, 2014

Bread & Hearth - Keong Saik Road, Outram Park

Bread & Hearth serves artisan bread baked daily, fresh out of the oven! One good thing to know is there are no preservatives were used in process. Although the b

I tried some of the food from Bread & Hearth over a span of 2-3 weeks so I decided to do a compilation of the food I tried.

Located at 18 Keong Saik Road, 089125.

This place can be a little hard to find if you never been around the area.

Nearest MRT: Outram Park, Exit H

Opening hours - Daily 8am - 930pm.

Good variety of breads, tarts, puddings and viennoiseries available.

Devil's Food Cookie - $3.80

I love the cookies. Rich dark chocolate flavour cookies with crushed walnuts. These cookies have a hard outer layer and a chewy center. Very addictive.

Their coffee menu are above the counter so look up for the prices!

Latte - $5 a cup.

Bread & Hearth mixes their own coffee blends and their coffee has a rich nutty flavour. I also love that fact that the coffee is not sour at all (I hate sour coffee). It really does complement the breads and pastries well like they mentioned. The hot coffee are served with a piece of financier cake - sponge cake with shredded coconut filling. Yum.

Bacon Egg Mayo (Pain De Campagne) - $9

My favourite sandwich here. Anything with bacon goes! This rustic bread has a crackly crust and a slightly chewy interior filled with bubbles. Pain De Campagne contains 20% dark rye flour. The dark bread has a kind of fragrance that I really like. The bread is drizzled with olive oil and layered with cheese, bacon strips, lettuce and egg mayo. A very flavourful sandwich.

Lemon Chicken Sandwich (Herbaceous Ciabatta) - $7

This has a crispy crust and a chewy interior and it is much softer than pain de campagne. The aroma of the herbs goes well with the lemon chicken. The bread is also drizzled with olive oil and the basil in the sandwich adds another kind of fragrance to it.

Ham and Cheese Sandwich - Jambon Fromage (Pain Au Tomate) - $8

If you ever order the Jambon Fromage just go with the default baguette. I chose pain au tomate bread which is sour because of the sundried tomatoes and on top if it, mustard is used as a spread here. You can imagine how this is more sour than it should be.

Matcha Orange - $2.80

The bread are toasted when you dine in. If you are having takeaways, do request for the bread to be warmed up. (It just makes the bread 10 times tastier) The warm matcha bread has a crispy crust and a chewy interior. The bread is pretty dense and there is a subtle green tea aroma lingers in the mouth. The citrus orange peel is a pleasant surprise. 

Lemon Meringue Tart - $6

Real lemon juice are used to make the lemon filling. I think the different flavour is well balanced. The sourness of the soft lemon filling with the sweet meringue on a mildly sweet, thick buttery crust.

I purchased some viennoiseries and breads back home. Their breads can be only be kept till the next morning (no preservatives) so it can last till breakfast.

Pear Danish (Pain Au Poire) - $3.20

I love viennoiseries. 

Basically viennoiseries are bread that has laminated dough (a lot of layers) and the most common viennoiserie is the croissant. This one comes with sweet custard and pear slices. Sweet.

Butterhorn - $3.50

I really like this one. Sugar coated, crispy and showered with a lot of caramelized bread crumbs on top! A little messy to eat because it is very crispy and flaky.

Pizza puff- $6.50 Not the ordinary cheap pizza bread. Love the layered crust, topped with pineapples, capsicums, onions, mushrooms and cheese on top. Mildly sweet and salty. 

Croque Monsieur - $4.50

I find this one pretty ordinary. Cheese on the top and more grilled cheese and ham in the middle. I guess if you like grilled cheese and ham then this might be the bread for you.

Viennese Chocolat - $2.80

This is a soft and fluffy white bread with lots of chocolate chips. I expect it to be super sweet but surprisingly it tasted only mildly sweet and I was told that they used dark chocolate chips for this.

Overall, I think they serve excellent coffee and good bread. This place gets pretty crowded during brunch hours but is a good and quiet place to chill in the late afternoon/evening/night on a weekday. They provide free public wifi only when you check in via their facebook page.

Great news is that they do not have service charge and there is a 10% discount for UOB cardholders for dine in.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Chiso Zanmai - Clarke Quay

I went to Chiso Zanmai on a Monday afternoon with some of my friends. 

6 Eu Tong Sen St, 059817 (The Central #02-17)
Located at Soho 1, at the end of a corner. It can be a little hard to find but it is pretty close to Goods of Desire on the second level.

Adults: $14.99++
Free flow drinks $1.99++ 
We spent $20 nett per person for a lunch buffet from 12-3pm. I would recommend a weekday lunch because it is cheaper than the dinner buffet and there isn't much of a crowd.

The place is huge. The food counters serves a variety of cooked and raw food. 

The drinks bar serves free flow instant coffee, tea and soft drinks.

There aren't exactly a lot of variety of sushi but nonetheless delicious.

Got some chicken and eggs for the hot pot.

There are also free flow pork and beef shabu shabu available.

Okonomiyaki, Potato Croquettes and Vegetable Tempura. I would recommend the potato croquettes. Very creamy potatoes and crisp batter!

The cooked food available are pretty ordinary so I would recommend you guys to eat more from the hot pot!

Ramen and Udon noodles are available.

If you love spicy broth, go for the Tom Yum soup base. It just makes all the ingredients 10 times more delicious. Tom Yum ramen is great!

Each person is entitled to a $5 portion worth of sashimi (Around 6 slices with kelp  so remember to collect it near the cotton candy area.

Time for some dessert. Soft serve ice cream is available with toppings like raisins, marsh mallows, cornflakes and syrups like chocolate and caramel. 

*I tried putting soft serve in root beer and it was awesome! 

You can also find mochi, chocolate brownies, cheese cakes, fruits and other sweet treats.

Make your own cotton candy time.

Check out this cool cotton candy machine!

I read a lot of reviews that the variety of the food is limited but for me it is a great deal considering that it is $20 for so much food! I definitely think I ate more than $20 worth of food and I will be back for a second visit.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Macarons and Swiss Roll - City Square, Johor Bahru

I headed to Malaysia over the weekend and bought some pastries from the different shops.

First up - French Macarons from Lavender Bakery.

Macaroons at RM $4 each. I got a box of 3 for RM $12. (Around SGD $1.60 for a macaron slightly cheaper than the ones sold locally) 

These sugar babies were packed in a convenient drawer style box.

From top to bottom: Matcha, Citron, Earl Grey.

Matcha Macaron. - It is great that it has a rich Matcha flavour without the bitterness at all. I love how all the macarons have a thin sugar crust and is soft and chewy on the inside. It is like eating a sugar cookie and candy at the same time. 

Earl Grey Macaron. My favourite among the 3 flavours. If you love anything earl grey, this is one not to be missed. Very rich earl grey taste that lingers in your mouth.

Citron Macaron. This one is lemon flavoured. It tasted like those lemon essence from the baking store so I'm not really fond of  it. 

I think the macarons tasted fantastic but there is just one downside to it - they all got air bubbles. (Hollow in the middle) I'm not sure if it was just the batches of macarons that day but it will be perfect if there weren't air bubbles! 

PS: A good read over here if you wanna know more about macarons. - 10 Signs of a Bad Macaron

Next up Mika Swiss Roll. They got a ton of flavors but I chose:

Raspberry Swiss Roll - RM 13.90

The other end looks neater but I wanna take a close up of the nice thick Raspberry cream.

I love the sponge cake, Super soft and fluffy.

Spiralling cream in the middle of the cake. The cream has a very rich raspberry taste with raspberry seeds in it. 

I like how the sweetness level is just right. I can finish the entire swiss roll for dessert.

Friday, November 7, 2014

Gifts from Tokyo

My friend bought me some gifts from Japan so I thought I would share with you guys.

These Tokyo Bananas have been popular on social media sites for a while now and I finally got to try them.  I googled them up and it turns out a box of banana is pretty expensive, around $28.

Tokyo Banana (東京ばな奈)

Opening the Package. Really elegant and minimalistic wrapping. I love the design and layout.

The box looks amazing as well.

12 banana cakes neatly arranged in a box.

Best consumed within 7 days of purchase.

The tokyo banana has a fluffy sponge cake with banana custard in the middle. 
(*Sorry about the lighting.)

Banana puree was used to make the custard and you can expect them to be super smooth. I actually don't really like banana but this is pretty good. Great quality with natural ingredients. 

Here are 2 other flavours I tried: Tokyo Banana Caramel キャラメル味(Left) and Tokyo Chocolate Banana チョコバナナ味 (Right)

Cool print on sponge cake.

This chocolate banana version. It is chocolatey but the chocolate does not overpower the taste of the banana.

If you don't really like the banana taste, I would recommend the caramel flavoured banana. The custard tasted more like toffee than banana. 

After trying out the different kind of Tokyo bananas, I think I know why they cost so much. This sweet treat requires much work to make. It is exquisite - from packaging to taste. A great gift for your loved ones.

Next up more sweet stuff.

Hokkaido Creamy Milk Cake. Another beautiful packaging.

Initially, I thought there is a difference between the baby blue and yellow pack but they tasted the same.

Tasted like steamed cakes. Buttery and milky with a soft, fluffy cake.

It gets a little too sweet and cloying on the second cake. I need a cup of hot Matcha.

Another Hokkaido treat: Shiroi Koibito - Chocolat Blanc Langue de Chat

This one has got white chocolate. 

The biscuit is soft and crumbles easily. Smooth white chocolate sandwiched between 2 milky and buttery biscuit with some coarse sugar. 

The thing I like about Japanese food is the details and thoughtfulness they put in to make the products. Many thanks my friend! :)