Prawn-less pao fan? I know it’s borderline blasphemy, but I was too lazy to peel prawns that evening so I settled for Lobster King Pao Fan’s Iberico Pork King Pao Fan ($8.80 nett). Four slices of Iberico pork done ramen chashu style lay atop a boiling bowl of prawn soup which conceals its contents of rice, cabbage and a trio of clams.⠀

While the ingredients list in the bowl is surprisingly short, they band together to form a delicious dish that’s greater than the sum of its parts. This is mostly thanks to the piquant prawn broth, which has assimilated all the desirable umami flavours from the prawn heads & shells during the boiling of the broth. It’s a deeply & superbly savoury broth, and it might’ve been fortified with some pork bones as the broth is fuller bodied than most other prawn broths out there.⠀

The Iberico pork was tender and extra tasty, and pretty delectably fatty to boot to. The clams were nice and fresh, and there’s a hearty helping of rice submerged in that scalding broth to sate the hungry folks. I really appreciated that Lobster King were thoughtful enough to separate the crunchy deep fried rice & egg floss bits from the soup, keeping the crunchy elements that way until ready to eat. Oh, and their Secret Chili Sauce is absolutely addictive. Spicy, sweet, slightly sour and satisfyingly salty, Lobster King’s pride in their chili is well placed.⠀

For $8.80 flat, I can’t really complain about this competently crafted bowl of soupy bliss.

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