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Desert Desserts? Never!

Desert Desserts? Never!

Mostly raves, plus a couple of rants about the assortment of sweet treats I have tried.
Veronica Phua
Veronica Phua

The moment I saw Chef Fiona Ting post about the new popsicles she had created for Andaz Singapore, I was dying to have them. As luck would have it, I had received an invitation to try the new Mala dishes at “Auntie’s Wok & Steam” which is part of the same hotel too. So yes, dessert was pretty much sorted and it couldn’t be more perfect as they helped me to cool down after all the spiciness.
I thought both popsicles were really good in their own way.
The Pulut Hitam flavour, inspired by our local dessert of black glutinous rice, is the slightly heavier one. What I think is particularly clever is the touch of salt in the coconut ice-cream within. Its savouriness pairs deliciously with the layer of sweetish, slightly chewy pulut hitam and gula melaka. Chef Fiona shared that the chocolate used to create the crisp shell coating was chosen because it tastes a little like coconut. Wow - talk about paying attention to the details.
Served with honeycomb from Iran, the Honey Passionfruit flavoured popsicle has osmanthus as well as a layer of compressed pineapple within the passionfruit ice-cream. If you find yourself yearning for something sweet, tart and fruity, this would be the ideal choice.

Fiona Ting who is a fellow Burppler, works as a Pastry Chef at Andaz Singapore and being the very generous soul that she is, insisted on treating Gail and I to some desserts after we had finished our dinner at “Auntie’s Wok & Steam” (we were there for an invited tasting of their new Mala menu). This Pandan Mousse Cake was one of those. It had been recommended to Gail by a friend of hers who said it’s the best pandan cake she has eaten, so naturally, we had to give it a try. We shared the medium size version and enjoyed it very much. Coated in a thin gelatin layer, the core of chiffon cake was surrounded by an airy-light mousse, so every bite was multi-textural and infused through and through with the perfume of pandan.
There are a total of four flavour options for the Pandan Mousse Cake. We had the Original but you can choose to have it in Chocolate, Coconut or Bandung (a traditional concoction of rose syrup and evaporated milk).

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Choosing one dessert here is nigh impossible because everything in the menu sounds like
something I would enjoy. However, I did eventually decide on the “Fragola e Pistachio alla Napoletana” and boy did it make me happy!
The pistachio ice-cream itself was extremely full-bodied, creamy and intense in pistachio-ness, and the plentiful strawberries tasted sweet like nobody’s business. Highly recommended to end your meal with this.

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A worldwide exclusive to CUT at Marina Bay Sands, the Kaya “Baked Alaska” is an inspired interpretation of Singapore’s favourite “kaya toast set” that happens to hit the dessert jackpot big time.
This bestseller has our local all-day delight re-imagined as a stunningly scrumptious creation of coconut cake, pandan ice-cream and coconut sorbet clad in meringue. The accompanying coffee crumble and egg sabayon with a little sugar and butter are the respective representations of the cup of “kopi” and half boiled eggs one always has as part of the kaya toast set.
I love the fact that this wonderfully fragrant and none-too-sweet dessert is very light. So however stuffed you may be feeling by this point in your meal, you can still order one to inhale.

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As our next booking at @mustardseed_sg approaches in the first week of September, my excitement to have Chef-owner Ming Kiat’s new menu is already building. At the same time though, I can’t help but think of this dessert I had on my last visit with wistfulness.
A tribute to the humble soya bean, the bowl holds its different incarnations in an ice-cream, as a silky yuba (Japanese beancurd skin), crunchy chips of #tempeh (fermented soya beans) and even a housemade kinako sauce, all orchestrated to harmonise beautifully when enjoyed together.
I feel it takes a great deal of sensitivity and creativity in a chef to fathom the potential of the humble bean in order to be able to execute to such sublime results. Obviously, Chef Ming Kiat has both qualities in spades.

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It’s funny that it took an American dude to introduce me to an ice-cream shop opened by three young Singaporeans that happens to specialise in locally-inspired flavours.
Nine-months-old @the.humblescoop is situated in the basement of Katong Shopping Centre, very close to the food court with the famous chicken rice stall. They don’t have that many seats in there but based on what I saw, most customers do take-away anyway.
Before making my final pick, I could not resist sampling a few of the other flavours because the descriptions were too tempting and the names, cute enough to elicit chuckles.
Overall, I found their ice-cream good - it’s thick, smooth, rich and creamy, and the flavours did not lack in robustness.
I enjoyed my eventual choice - a single scoop of “In-Kueh-Dible” (salted coconut and #gulamelaka) but was more than happy to steal some of @timtimtokyo’s “Black Sesame Paste” too because that one really rocks!
Another flavour that impressed me a lot which I feel is worth getting is the “Sugar Cane with Lemon”. It tastes just like the real thing because well, it’s made from the actual drink.

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H O S T E D
A couple of weeks have passed since I attended the tasting at The Black Swan (thanks @bydanieleng for the invitation) but this indecently good Twix Tart by new Head Chef Alysia Chan is still stuck on my mind. There is something about it that has EVEREEEETHING right on the button.
For starters, she does not stinge on the voluptuous chantilly cream. That in my books, already makes it a winner. I really love how it gives each bite of the buttery, crunchy pastry lined with sea salt caramel and filled with almost-solid, cool dark chocolate ganache, cookie crumble and juicy cherries a pillow of softness to ride on.
I guess when a chef creates a dessert based on her favourite candy bar, the force of inspiration is strong.

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H O S T E D
Don’t ignore the desserts here. They definitely deserve some real estate in your belly.
If you prefer a substantial and sweet ending, or are a fan of all things nutty, the Tequila Pecan Pie is the one to get. Served à la mode with housemade cinnamon flavoured ice-cream, it stars larger-than-usual, crunchy and very fresh tasting pecan nuts from North Mexico in a mix of glucose, eggs, sugar and a splash of 1800 Anejo Tequila.

H O S T E D
Here is an excellent choice for when you want a bright and refreshing dessert.
The Braised Pineapple at “El Mero Mero” is probably my favourite pineapple dessert of the moment in Singapore. Those thick slices of fruit are sweet, incredibly juicy and unusually fiber-less thanks to it having undergone the multi-step process of being blanched, frozen, sous vide with “piloncillo” (cane sugar melted with butter) at 70O degrees Celsius for 45 minutes before finally being grilled in the Josper oven. Even the vanilla ice cream that is sprinkled with fresh lime zest, is also made in-house.

Season after season, Group Pastry Chef of Les Amis, Cheryl Koh, never fails to impress everyone with her desserts. This is one of her latest creations showcasing a white peach from Rousillon since summer is when stone fruits have their moment in the sun.
Hidden within the sliced fruit (probably done by a ninja seeing how insanely perfectly those cuts are) is a core of light peach cream. The granité beneath is a lemon verbena in flavour, which explains the plant on the table (it is the verbena itself). The sweet and juicy peach becomes all the lovelier with the aromatic refreshing note and iciness it brings.

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If you are like me and have a thing for orange zest, this new flavour developed by owner Travis Goh and his team is something you need to try.

Inspired by his recent trip to Melbourne, it tastes like beams of sunshine in a cup. Naturally like the rest of the well thought-out creations at this popular ice-cream joint, it isn’t one-dimensional nor too sweet - definitely not with those tiny crunchy bits of almond and dark chocolate chip frolicking in the bright bed of zested orange ice-cream.

This is a flavour you’ll want to enjoy at a leisurely pace. And even if you happen to be feeling very full after a meal (like I was when I walked into Apiary that night), the refreshing note allows you to savour it really comfortably.

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M E D I A T A S T I N G
The first person to taste Celebrity Chef Sam Leong’s “Cold and Hot Avocado Coconut, with Black Sesame Glutinous Rice Ball” was none other than world-famous Spanish Chef Ferran Adrià of El Bulli fame. This took place when he visited Singapore in 2008. Chef Sam had, on the spur of the moment, decided to put a twist on a traditional Chinese dessert by switching out the hot “soup” with a refreshing cool blend of blitzed coconut water, coconut flesh and avocado sweetened lightly with a bit of gula melaka. The cool, refreshing and delicate creaminess turned out to be a surprisingly good match with warm handmade glutinous rice ball that’s filled with hot black sesame paste and coated in crushed peanuts.
You can now indulge in this fusion dessert at Forest森 (located in Equarius Hotel, Resorts World Sentosa) along with the other seven dishes that form the “I Am Sam” menu. They have been chosen for their significance in Chef Sam’s life journey as he has been just conferred the World Gourmet Summit’s Lifetime Achievement Award for 2019.

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Can't cook to save my life but boy, can I eat! 😄 (I pay for all my meals unless otherwise stated)

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