Eating out: Candlenut Singapore
2014 comes to an end in about two weeks and I’m still ploughing through all these wonderful meals I’ve had this year and so much content to share.
Candlenut in Singapore was one of my best Peranakan meal on one of my many trips home to Singapore. Traditional dishes, some done in new ways (like gula melaka ice cream our dessert! or buah keluak ice cream!) both a must order, we ordered everything except the durian and definitely going back to try it.
The restaurant is nicely decked out with elements of a Peranakan household, but the branding and logo, a contemporary twist, minimalist, a beautify line drawing of the pestal motar – a ubiquitous tool in every Peranakan household.
Everything from the braised pork belly to chap chye (mixed vegetables) and kueh pie tee was perfect, as was the simple cincalok (mini dried fermented shrimp) omelette – all the dishes reminiscent of homecooked food I had growing up. These days, my mother barely cooks because the effort to do everything from scratch just for a small audience with none of us living at home these days.
We ordered all of my favourite dishes that I grew up on, the buah keluak portions were small – but the amount of work that goes into preparing it in immense, so I’d advise ordering extra portions if you love these nuts. Here, at Candlenut, they’re served with fresh saffron, a nice touch to the traditional dish. A common way to cook it is with chicken ayam buak keluak and this dish is often known as the pièce de resistance of any Peranakan menu.
The smoked duck and gula melaka stir fried prawns were rich without the heaviness, deliciously savory and perfect with a side of steam white rice. You have to order the prawns – small parties get the big tiger prawns, we were 6 pax and opted for smaller prawns.
Our total bill worked out to about 60SGD including tips, we had a few beers and a bottle of sauvignon blanc. Service was bad, but who cares, it’s really about the food here.
331 New Bridge Road
Tel: +65 8121 4107.babi, buah keluah, candlenut, chap chye, cincalok, gula melaka, nonya food, peranakan, singapore