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Food Spy

Travel to eat with HomeTeamNS

Take a global culinary journey without worrying about Vaccinated Travel Lanes or long queues to clear customs.

TEXT AND IMAGES: HOMETEAMNS

What’s one of the best parts about an overseas holiday? Eating abroad like a local and treating yourself to authentic foreign food – without wondering if the recipe has been “localised” to suit Singaporean tastebuds.

The good news is, the recent Vaccinated Travel Lane (VTL) announcements mean that travel opportunities are gradually increasing. If your favourite holiday destination isn’t on the VTL list, you can still sample global cuisine right here in Singapore! And if you’re a HomeTeamNS member, you could enjoy a good deal in the process, so bon appetit!

INDULGE TEPPANYAKI & GRILL HOUSE

This eatery, located at HomeTeamNS-JOM Balestier clubhouse, is known for serving Western cuisine with a delightful fusion of Asian flavours. As far as fusion cuisine goes, the restaurant makes it possible to well, indulge in popular treats. Burgers? Check. Pasta and rice dishes? Check. Grilled meats and fish? That’s just the tip of the culinary iceberg!

Location
HomeTeamNS-JOM Balestier
31 Ah Hood Rd
#01-04
Singapore 329979

JOM MAKAN SEAFOOD

If you’re craving for crustaceans or longing for lobsters, this Muslim-owned restaurant is the place for you. It’s known for a variety of dishes including staples like Sambal Sotong, Sambal Stingray, the Shovel Seafood Platter, and barbecued dishes. For a truly local take on a seafood dish, nothing screams “SG” like their Maggi Goreng Lobster.

*Jom Makan Seafood is Halal Certified.

Location
HomeTeamNS-JOM Balestier
31 Ah Hood Rd
#01-07
Singapore 329979

SELECT GOURMET KITCHEN

Miss Hong Kong cuisine but don’t fancy jumping through the extra hoops needed for a VTL flight there? Select Gourmet Kitchen offers a taste of the foodie delights you’re after. They serve an array of Hong Kong favourites like their Signature HK Wanton Noodle that is made with premium Kurobuta pork and fresh prawn wantons. HomeTeamNS members enjoy a 15-per-cent discount off their food bill (not applicable with ongoing promotions, discounts or vouchers).

Location
HomeTeamNS Bukit Batok
Singapore 659003
2 Bukit Batok West Ave 7
#01-09B

SWATOW CITY

What happens when Teochew cuisine meets Hong Kong Dim Sum? You get the delectable menu at Swatow City. Whoever said that revenge is a dish best served cold didn’t try Swatow City’s Teochew Cold Crab, which uses yellow roe crabs whose natural sweetness has been magically preserved by the restaurants skilled chefs.

It’s also known for other dishes like Black Truffle BBQ Duck, Siew Mai with Fish Roe and Steamed Prawn Dumplings.

Location
HomeTeamNS Bukit Batok
Singapore 659003
2 Bukit Batok West Ave 7
#02-05

SUKI-SUKI THAI HOTPOT

Say “sawadee ka” to this homely Thai-inspired restaurant that features an all-you-can-eat Halal buffet menu. With a variety of soup bases to choose from, dig in with quality ingredients including thinly sliced beef and chicken, home-made fish paste and unlimited fresh vegetables. Continue the post-buffet festivities with crowd favourite desserts like Mango Sticky Rice and Thai Pudding.

Members enjoy 10-per-cent off their total bill. The All-Day Buffet Set for 2 promotion is available for S$35 nett from Mondays to Thursdays and S$41 nett from Fridays to Sundays. This deal includes the Regular Buffet and a free flow of drinks for two diners.

*Suki-Suki Thai Hotpot is Halal-certified.

Location
HomeTeamNS Khatib
2 Yishun Walk
#01-01
Singapore, 267944

SIAM KITCHEN

If one Thai restaurant is good, two is even better. Siam Kitchen serves authentic Thai fare, prepared by a culinary team that includes chefs from Thailand. Tuck into familiar Thai street food favourites like Green Curry with Chicken, Phad Thai and Thai Olive Fried Rice. The All Day Set for 2 is available from S$42++.

*Siam Kitchen is Halal Certified.

Location
HomeTeamNS Khatib
2 Yishun Walk
#01-01
Singapore, 267944

FUJI IZAKAYA BAR

If indulging in Japanese food is your cup of tea, this recently-opened Japanese restaurant could be just right for you. Step right in and you’ll instantly feel like you’re transported to Japan! It serves a large variety of Izakaya food, dons and ramen. Drinks include exclusive Yukari-flavoured cocktails and award-winning Izumofuji Daiginjo sake. HomeTeamNS members enjoy a 10-per-cent discount off their total bill.

Location
HomeTeamNS Khatib
2 Yishun Walk
#05-01
Singapore, 267944

What are you waiting for? Make your way around the world right here with HomeTeamNS! Find out more about HomeTeamNS members’ deals and treats.

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Categories
Food Spy

Food for the soul

Fruits and vegetables are good for the body, but what can be considered good fodder for our souls?

TEXT: MORGAN AWYONG
PHOTOS: HOMETEAMNS, SHUTTERSTOCK

For some it’s soup. Others, something deep fried and crunchy. Food cravings can happen when it’s chilly or if we’re a little fatigued or under the weather, but only certain types can give us that something extra to brighten our moods.

Like how the rodent in Ratatouille won over the heart of the difficult critic with his childhood dish, most soul food conjures feelings of warmth and comfort through their links with fond memories. In Singapore, thanks to our racial diversity, we often have more than one favourite dish that will send us to gastronomic heaven and instantly warm the cockles of your heart.

SATISFYING MAINS

No other dish says “Singapore” quite like it. Whichever brand you favour, from Maxwell’s Tian Tian to the premium Chatterbox variety, Hainanese chicken rice dominates most lists as the food that best says “home”. It checks all the right boxes when it comes to a nourishing meal –dancing with savoury and spicy notes (when you add that tangy chilli), and combining tender slices of chicken mixed with flavoured grains. Then that little bowl of clear soup comes in just right, to help you wash it all down.

Then there’s the Ramly burger. What started as an unassuming item at pasar malams (night markets) quickly became a staple, found sometimes even at Muslim hawker stalls because it’s just that good. The famous burger is unpretentious, messy and delicious. It usually couples a thin fried egg skilfully wrapped around the patty, then drowned in black pepper sauce, mayo and buttery magic. One chomp, and you’ll be sold.

While chicken soup is often said to be good for the soul, we’d prefer to have a serving of Indian soup kambing. It takes the place of a main because it’s incredibly rich, featuring intense flavours heady with spice. The signature yellow soup comes from turmeric – which is said to offer anti-inflammatory properties. Mutton is a rich source of high-quality protein and many vitamins and minerals, including iron, zinc, and vitamin B12. Hearty and flavourful – we like!

NOODLY GOOD

Noodles are enjoyed all around the world, but for locals, a rich and creamy bowl of laksa hits the spot every time. Recipes differ slightly, but the robust bowl can always be counted upon to include belacan (shrimp paste) and chilli paste, shallots, blue ginger (galangal), and turmeric in its signature coconut milk broth. The tedious process of making this soup base makes this a dish of love, and the glassy thick white noodles are the perfect match to the intense flavours.

At the other end of the spectrum, ban mian comes in a clear soup but it’s no less flavourful. This is Asia’s version of chicken soup, with the savoury broth made punchy by fried anchovies and minced pork. The dish usually comes with an egg and fresh vegetables, making this truly a balanced bowl. And one of the ban mian’s best feature is how you can pick and choose the type of noodles that go in. From flat squares and thin noodles to transparent vermicelli, the options allow you to find the texture you want for this classic.

And how can one go wrong with mee rebus? Although there is a clear variety in Terengganu, the ones we know in Singapore are of a thicker consistency, made delicious with sweet potatoes. This deep, earthy base is mixed with beef or chicken stock for an amazing combination and comes with yellow noodles to give it that oh-so-homely taste that satisfies. If you have two servings, we won’t judge – the dish is often smaller in portion so go ahead!

SOULFUL SEAFOOD

No local food list would be complete without seafood dishes. Many of us will have fond pre-pandemic memories of tucking into mouthwatering chilli crab and barbeque stingray dishes with family members and friends. Whether to celebrate a special occasion or “just because”, these communal meals played a part in forging the ties that bind for many of us.

Opening at HomeTeamNS-JOM in late-2021, Jom Makan Seafood is a Muslim-owned eatery that serves a variety of signature dishes, like their Shovel Seafood Platter and Maggi Goreng Lobster. And what seafood meal would be complete without dishes like Sambal Stingray and Sambal Sotong.

Orchid Live Seafood, located at HomeTeamNS Khatib is offering a 1-for-1 deal on its popular Boston Lobster dish as well as 10-per-cent discounts off all orders, while stocks last.

SWEET SPOTS

Sometimes, a little goes a long way. Soulful food is often uncluttered by complicated cooking, and nothing speaks of such simplicity more than a traditional pairing of youtiao (fried fritters) and a soya bean drink.

It’s just two strips of flour fried in oil – with a shockingly symbolic past referencing a traitorous advisor and his wife in ancient China. But  somehow, every munch of this doughy pastry fulfils, especially when washed down or soaked in the milky soya bean drink.

Dip in. Bite down. Be happy in its simplicity.

The ubiquitous kaya toast combines the sweet coconut egg jam with a touch of salty butter (choose frozen for that old-school kicker) – the perfect filling to make this an ideal snack any time of the day.

Local food empires were built upon its flaky toasted crust, and when paired with a local cup of Nanyang coffee or tea, instantly conjures scenes of a raucous kopitiam.

Being the global city that we are, it’s only natural that some Western items have become included in this soulful list. Jewel Cafe, located at the HomeTeamNS Khatib clubhouse is offering a buy-2-get-1-free promotion on its gelato.

There are, as it turns out, many ways to lift one’s spirits and fuel the soul, and these gastronomic delights are just the tip of the iceberg. Bon appetit!

Categories
Food Spy

Ice-cold ways to beat the heat

These shops are the reason why there’s never a bad time for ice cream in Singapore.

TEXT: RAYMOND TAN

The bad news: Singapore’s weather typically ranges from warm to … well, warmer.

The good news: That’s great if you’re an ice cream lover.

Gone are the days when your only options for frozen desserts were mass-produced supermarket treats. Over the past decade, homegrown ice cream brands have proliferated all over Singapore, and there is now a wide variety of ice cream shops in Singapore with different niches and specialties. We suss out some of the best ones to check out.

BIRDS OF PARADISE

Photo: Raymond Tan

Birds of Paradise quickly shot to fame when it opened in Katong in 2016. It has since opened a second outlet in Jewel and even garnered a recommendation from Michelin Singapore. They are the only ice cream concept that specialises heavily in botanical-inspired flavours, using spices, herbs and even flowers, as ingredients for their frozen treats.

Their bestselling flavours are the light, floral White Chrysanthemum and the fruity-minty Strawberry Basil. We recommend ordering your ice cream with a cone instead of the cup – their cones are thyme-infused and hence, extra fragrant.

Just a warning, though: Expect extremely long queues on the weekends.

CREAMIER

Photo: Raymond Tan

Sometimes, less is more. Creamier doesn’t really bother with newfangled or esoteric flavours, instead keeping to more tried-and-tested favourites. But their classic flavours are done perfectly. Bestsellers here include Earl Grey Lavender, Salted Gula Melaka and Blue Pea Vanilla. Their Roasted Pistachio flavour is a must try – creamy, nutty, and sweet without being cloying. Get your ice cream with their fluffy and fragrant waffles.

DOPA DOPA

Photo: Raymond Tan

The flavours at Dopa Dopa are often on rotation, but the one that we almost always end up going for is Roasted Pistacchio, which is appropriately nutty. Their Hazelnut ice cream is also delicious – if you find it too sweet, wash it down with one of the many flavours of tea they offer, preferably with something light and floral like Osmanthus.

Dopa Dopa offers the option to have your ice cream wedged in the middle of a croissant so if you’re not in a rush, ditch the cup or cone and get your ice cream fix in the form of a sandwich.

ISLAND CREAMERY

Photo: Island Creamery

Local flavours can be luxurious too. Case in point: Island Creamery’s many distinctly Singapore-inspired concoctions. Their signature Mao Shan Wang durian ice cream stands out from other durian ice creams with its creamy texture, rich flavour, and unapologetically durian-esque fragrance. The durians used in the recipe are sourced from a well-known store in Ghim Moh and are very fresh – hence the strong aroma. Other must-try locally inspired flavours include Chendol – coconut ice cream sprinkled with red bean, pandan jelly and swirls of gula melaka –  and Teh Tarik, made with freshly brewed black tea blended with evaporated milk.

BUTTERKNIFE FOLK

Photo: Raymond Tan

If you’re looking for nostalgic flavours such as Milo Dinosaur or Teh Tarik, you can’t beat Butterknife Folk. Of all the ice cream shops on this list, none offer as many local flavours – more than 40! – as them. The gelato specialist serves an eclectic range, including savoury and boozy creations, but we recommend you try one of their uniquely Singaporean flavours, such as Ondeh Ondeh, Rojak, and – wait for this – Chicken Rice, which contains dark soy sauce and chicken rice chili swirled into the gelato base.

THE HUMBLE SCOOP

Photo: The Humble Scoop

Going local is the name of the game at The Humble Scoop, a modest ice cream parlour tucked away in the basement of Katong Shopping Centre. The ice cream here is all homemade and many flavours feature a local or nostalgic element. Popular flavours include In-Kueh-dible, a salted coconut and gula melaka creation; Cereal Killer, which is made with cereal and milk; and Milo. There’s also a range of sorbets available, including guava with sour plum.

KIND KONES

Photo: Raymond Tan

Kind Kones’ frozen treats are perfect for socially-conscious diners. They’re made without dairy, eggs, refined sugar, preservatives, and additives. Their entire array of ice cream is vegan-friendly; some are even keto-friendly. They even offer gluten-free options.

Their flavours are rich and robust, and certainly don’t come across as “diet ice-cream”. Stand-out flavours include the Keto Chocolate Sorbet, Coffee Chocolate Fudge Swirl, Pandan Gula Melaka, and Passionfruit Sorbet. Have your ice cream together with a vegan brownie for the ultimate guilt-free indulgence.

MOOSH SOFTSERVE

Considering how airy and light soft-serve ice creams are, it’s easy to dismiss them as mild, unsatisfying versions of their creamier and heavier cousins. Moosh Softserve breaks all the stereotypes of soft serves.

Light in texture but big on flavour, their soft-serve ice creams make for a satisfying cold treat. At any time, Moosh Softserve offers four to five flavours of soft serves, and bestselling ones include Ondeh Ondeh, Nutella Brownies Cheesecake, and Smores (pictured). Their soft serves are embellished with a generous toppings, such as marshmallows and cookie crumble, for added texture and fun.

UDDERS

This homegrown ice cream franchise is one of the brands responsible for bringing about Singapore’s  ice cream renaissance in the early 2010s. They have an array of unique flavours, such as the boozy Baileys & Bourbon, the locally inspired Champion Chendol, and the decadent Snickers Mars Honeycomb Vanilla. Have your ice cream together with their uber fluffy, ultra-crispy signature waffles, and you’ll find yourself in dessert heaven.

FAT CAT ICE CREAM BAR

Just as its name suggests, Fat Cat is a shop that wears its mischievous heart on its sleeves. They’re one of the most adventurous and experimental ice cream parlours in Singapore, with a wide variety of flavours that range from classic (Chocolate, Vanilla) and alcoholic (Butter Beer) to local-inspired (Durian) and floral (Osmanthus Honey).

Many flock here to try their smoked ice cream flavours, such as Hay & Honey and Smoked Peppermint, which have a savoury element to them. The ice cream bar is also well-known for their pillowy-light charcoal waffles, which can be crowned with toppings of your choice, including salted egg yolk custard sauce and maple syrup.

COOLMAN FROYO

Image: Coolman Froyo

From the signature all-time-favourite parfait to a scrumptious Nut-Tell-Lah Waffle, chill out with Coolman Froyo on a sunny day, and enjoy 20 per cent off your desserts! Refresh your palate with their amazing variety of smoothies, milkshakes, fruit juices and frozen yogurt.

To unlock the promo code, download the HomeTeamNS mobile app, then download the Coolman Froyo app to place your order. Don’t forget to enter the promo code before making your payment! This promotion is valid till Dec 31, 2021.

Don’t miss out on HomeTeamNS promotions! Get first dibs on our Amazing Treats, from dining to wellness.

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Food Spy

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Food Spy

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Put a new thematic spin to your game-night eats

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Food Spy

Hungry For Sports

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Food Spy

Around the world in 8 halal-friendly restaurants

Whether it’s for a casual chow-down or a formal feast, there are plenty of eateries serving halal fare. We nosh our way from Mexican and Cajun specialities to keto croffles with ondeh ondeh gelato to give you a taste of some delicious dishes, with a twist.

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Food Spy

9 Food Delivery Options to Dine Like A King At Home

Order in the ultimate, pampering restaurant experiences right to your dining table.

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Food Spy

Cook up a storm this Valentine’s Day

TEXT: MORGAN AWYONG
PHOTOS: SHUTTERSTOCK

Stay tactical with these tips and be set to impress.