Sunday, 22 July 2012

THAT Wednesday Night

So on that fateful Wednesday, THE fateful wednesday I've been shouting about like mad for the past week, I held that very special plusixfive supperclub feast for a hungry group of 18. It's odd how nervous I felt that day. I've cooked alongside Goz before, not once, but twice, and for larger, scarier groups with that odd michelin chef or foodie of presumably harder-to-please tastebuds.

But dinner that night felt different. That dinner pretty much encompasses what I'm about, what this blog is about-- taking food grown with love by the people here, and cooking it with lots of love and lard and sambal. Everything on the menu featured the best of British summer (quote Goz "not the rain, you sillies, the produce!") but done in true Singaporean style.We had a rough menu in mind but up till the very last few hours, we were pretty much still flirting around with ideas and worrying about not having enough food to feed everybody ("Should we add a chap chye, maybe with early sweetheart cabbage and new carrots?" "Or do we have too much veggies? Nonya chicken curry? With baby new potatoes?" "Lamb satay??") so last Saturday saw my fridge jammed full of groceries from the farmer's market.

I'm glad to say everybody left rolling and groaning back home. I shall shut up now and let the photos do the talking.

For starters, we had mackerel paste hand-bashed by the lovely Christine, then wrapped in beancurd skin, fried, and drizzled with sweet sauce a la yong tau foo; chilli sardine puffs; and bowls of Mum's "old-fire"watercress soup.


Onto the mains, turmeric-rubbed fried whole sardines and mackerel steaks; braised pork belly kong bak with fennel served alongside crisp English baby gem lettuce; grilled baby aubergines with sambal; sambal beet leaves, an alternative to the Singaporean favourite sambal kangkong; and Hainanese pork chops with a cherry tomato sauce. Oh and with all these rich dishes, a pickle that everybody couldn't stop picking at, proper Nonya achar made with the best of summer's cucumbers, new carrots, cauliflower and beetroot (hence the ruby-stained juices).


A palate cleanser of shaved ice with pickled plum powder, followed by two rounds of dessert. Warm black sticky rice pudding with coconut ice cream, drizzled with gula melaka syrup and finished with toasted coconut flakes aka snazzy pulut hitam; and that childhood favourite treat, agar agar jelly two ways, clear with organic raspberries in the middle, or dyed a natural red using beetroot juice instead of artificial colouring (the pink layer comes from swirling in coconut milk).


And we were finally done. A fabulous night that ended with happy stomachs and a dirty kitchen (thank you Goz's cleaner). Photo credits to the amazing J (the good ones were by him, the not-so-good ones by me and my point-and-shoot).

31 comments:

  1. Wow well done, how to fit that many people in a dining room is what I want to know, food looks wonderful

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. well it was a bit of a cosy squeeze ;)

      Delete
  2. I was so glad I got to eat everything in this post. It was a brilliant night and I must say the food were just as delicious as they looked. Thanks for the wonderful evening shuhan, and for the mentioned. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No problem J, thanks for being an absolute angel that day, photographing and even popping up to help serve rice!

      Delete
  3. 18 people! wow...that's a lot of work...but then again, must be also very fun!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Well done and everything looks amazing! I certainly hope that I'll get a change to taste your cooking soon!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh I do hope to feed you one day, esp since you;re in London too, no excuse!

      Delete
  5. oh my god I wish I had been there... it looks so utterly incredible... when is the next one?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. My next time cooking will be on the 4 aug, part of the pop up singapore house, and then again on he 8 aug, as part of the supperclub summit which will be bloody brilliant as it's also to celebrate our national day! unfortunately all tickets are already sold out though :( Will keep everyone updated if I have more before I go back to singapore, really hope to meet you one day dom!

      Delete
  6. Oh wow!!!!! That is just incredible. Your cooking just sounds out of this world. Wish I could have come. Are you doing more?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. quote from my reply above to dom: My next time cooking will be on the 4 aug, part of the pop up singapore house, and then again on he 8 aug, as part of the supperclub summit which will be bloody brilliant as it's also to celebrate our national day! unfortunately all tickets are already sold out though :( Will keep everyone updated if I have more before I go back to singapore (:

      Delete
  7. wow what an impressive dinner party wonderful food

    ReplyDelete
  8. You were a busy girl, wow, everything looks wonderful!

    ReplyDelete
  9. What an impressive meal! I have so much to learn about Singaporean cuisine!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's what I hope to do with my blog (:

      Delete
  10. that looks absolutely fantastic- a huge feast with so much effort put into it.. but i would love to get my fork out and dig in!

    ReplyDelete
  11. Awesome food...looks like all went well...I especially love the sound of the old-fire watercress soup.
    Well done...glad it was successful Shu Han.
    Deb

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks so much deb! I've got the recipe for that on my blog too if you ever crave a bowl of watercress soup (:

      Delete
  12. What a feast! I wish I was there... I really need to try your turmeric fried fish recipe. The fish looks so beautiful, not to mention the taste it must have. Congratulations for the great job!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's quite a simple homely dish really, just fried fish, but stained a beautiful golden with the turmeric! Thanks so much sissi!

      Delete
  13. Wow! I'm impressed! 18 hungry foodies and you doing all the cooking! What a menu! Shu-Han, I applaud you! Love the thought of those pork chops and the sambal aubergines!

    ReplyDelete
  14. "lots of lard", haha :D, I had to chuckle! That food looks fantastic, absolutely amazing... would have loved to have been able to sample even a little! My first apartment here some years ago was 27 square metres and I once entertained ~22 people there for a Christmas dinner. I know that it can be a lot of fun, and very cozy, but for the cook(s) it can also be terribly stressful, especially when guests are spilling over into the kitchen from the living room because space is running out :p - Great job!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks a lot charles! My apartment here is probably smaller than yours, but thankfully this was held at goz's spacious flat. I can't iamgine fitting 22 people in that little space! But definitely yes, it's always fun having lots of people around with lots of food (:

      Delete
  15. Your are very creative with the menu, wish I was the one in the party to try out all these, you are an amazing cook!

    ReplyDelete
  16. Brilliant work, it looks stunning. Particularly like the sound of the jellies.

    ReplyDelete
  17. everything just looks so good...too bad I don't live anywhere near UK...but i like the idea of cooking party like this though.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Bean Bags
      Engrossing article – cheers. You consistently publish a riveting blog post. Thanks once again – I will visit again.

      Delete
  18. Hi Shu Han, thanks so much for a superb night of market fresh, home-made and creative food. Particularly enjoyed your watercress and pork rib soup (in fact you inspired me to make some a few nights later), turmeric fried fish, mackerel and sticky black rice...everything in fact! It was worth a 2hr journey.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm really really happy you enjoyed the food that night, and even happier that it inspired you to make some later! You have no idea how much it means to me when I hear back from people who I've fed. Thanks so much for coming again, and hope to feed you again in future. Lots and lots of love x

      Delete