Few things can bring people together like food which melds cultures on a plate. Just look at the different types of fusion foods available. Through food, bonds are built. The popularity of family meals that encourage sharing is proof of that. And through food, we can transcend time. How? By giving old favourites a new twist to appeal to Millennials who have a hunger for food trends, of course.
1. Eat Your Tea
Grandpa and grandma drank their teh halia (ginger tea). The milk tea infused with ginger is a Malayan brew which traces its origins to post World War II sarabat (drink) stalls run by Indian Muslims. Today, it is still the preferred cuppa to accompany a freshly tossed prata (Indian fried flour pancake).
There is a whole new way to enjoy this traditional drink. Introducing the Teh Halia Cupcake. With the heady aroma of ginger and the strong taste of tea in every bite, it is like having your afternoon tea with cake all rolled into one.
By the way, some traditional local desserts have been given a makeover as well. Chendol , orh-nee , and ice-kachang now comes in cupcake flavours, too.
2. Chilli Crab in a Bag
There are few dishes that say ‘Singapore’ quite like chilli crab. It was created right here in 1956 by a husband-and-wife team who sold the stir-fried mud crabs in a chilli and tomato sauce from their pushcart. Locals revel in cracking the crabs to get at slivers of juicy meat and then mopping up the thick eggy gravy with bread or mantou (steamed buns).
The Millennials’ way to enjoy this somewhat messy dish is in a neat all-in-one package – the Chilli Crab Xiao Long Bao . Almost twice the size of a regular xiao long bao (steamed dumplings), these are filled with minced pork and chunks of fresh crab meat and bursting with a spicy-sweet crab-based broth.
Also available is the hassle-free Steamed Chilli Crab and Pork Bun. This dish encases chunks of chilli crab and fresh pork along with a full-bodied gravy that packs in the heat in a pillowy soft steamed bun. It is chilli crab and mantou in every bite minus the mess. These little pouches of steaming, spicy goodness are available only seasonally, though. So keep an eye out for them.
3. Have a Slice of Laksa
Laksa (rice noodles in a spicy coconut broth) is usually enjoyed in a bowl. The popular Peranakan dish can now be savoured in a slice. Singa Laksa features fresh crab meat, squid, tuna, prawns, laksa leaf, tau pok (fried beancurd) topped with mozzarella cheese. The fragrant laksa leaf is the first hint that this pizza is a fitting tribute to the local delight. Bite into it and the flavourful laksa sauce confirms it. The addition of tau pok , a laksa must-have is particularly thoughtful. Why bother with a bowl when you can simply pick up a piece of laksa ?
4. Rendang in a Burger
Rendang is a spicy meat dish from the Minangkabau ethnic group in Indonesia. The festive favourite was the number one dish in CNN International’s list of ‘World’s 50 Most Delicious Foods (Readers’ Pick)’ in 2011. Usually eaten with rice, the traditional dish is wooing a new generation of diners in its incarnation as a slider. The Mini Pulled Pork Wet with Rendang Burger is tender pork shreds soaked in luscious rendang gravy between puffy burger buns that fit nicely into the palm of your hands. A perfect companion for your Happy Hour drink!
5. Milo Dinosaur with Bite
Milo is a chocolate malt drink from Australia. In Singapore, many people, baby boomers and beyond would have grown up drinking Milo. About 20 years or so ago, a new interpretation of this drink came onto the scene. The Milo Dinosaur is ice-cold Milo served with a heap of Milo powder on top. It was a natural progression really because children have been stealing spoonfuls of the chocolatey treat to eat for generations.
Now, lovers of the innovation can delight in a new permutation of the drink. Milo Dinosaur Sundae Dirt Pot is exactly what its name suggests – Milo ice-cream with a layer of Milo powder on top presented in a pretty flower pot complete with gummy worms, a pretty gooseberry, and a shovel. You can even take the pot and shovel home when you are done. A Milo Dinosaur with bite indeed!
6. Grass Jelly Freeze
Grass jelly is a jet black Asian jelly made from the leaves and stalks of the mesona chinensis plant. Often sold as together with the milky white soya bean curd in every Singapore hawker centre, it can be eaten as a dessert or served as a drink. But that is old-school grass jelly.
Grass Jelly Shaved Ice is crushed ice in grass jelly flavour. This forms the base of the new-style dessert. Top that with an assortment of ingredients from matcha balls, sesame balls, sweet potato balls, and taro balls to pudding, beancurd, jelly, grass jelly, nata de coco , yam, sweet potato, and beans – and you have an explosion of flavours and textures in your mouth!
Thanks to these creative twists to traditional hits, bridging the generation gap could not get any yummier.
Dine with us:BlackBall Singapore
Din Tai Fung
Hood Bar and Café