After a few days of Christmas parties and festive feasting, Sunday lunch was kept simple and light. After church, we met up with Ah Gong and headed to near-by Imperial Treasure Nan Bei Restaurant.
We decided on the more familiar and simple items over their Nan Bei specialties.
The Soup of the Day ($18) turned out to be one of my favourite soups- lotus roots and pork ribs soup. The soup was cooked over slow fire (hence the name 'old fire soup') and was sweet with the goodness of pork and dried octopus. I thought I did taste a bit of MSG but if anything, it was used appropriately to enhance the flavours.
The wait staff kindly ladled out the soup into individual bowls and then dug out the goodies on a plate. There you have the backbone of the soup- lotus roots, pork and dried octopus.
We opted for two vegetable dishes.
The Poached Spinach with Assorted Eggs ($12) was a bed of spinach cooked till slightly soft but retaining some bite. My favourite part of this dish was the tasty stock that surrounds the spinach. The mix of chicken egg, salted duck egg and century egg, together with garlic provided much flavour to this dish.
Veg #2 was Fried Hong Kong Kai Lan with Ginger & Wine ($12). This looks really simple but was really delicious! I loved how the gentle chewing of the crunchy stems brought out the aromatic flavours of ginger juice and Chinese cooking wine. A big bonus was the absence of tough vegetal fibres!
The "main" dish was the Braised Garouper Head & Belly with Beancurd($20). The grouper head chunks were meaty, fast-fried and coated with a thin layer of cornstarch to make it smooth. Rectangular pieces of fried beancurd and slices of mushrooms made up the rest of the dish. The supporting act of the whole cloves of garlic was good- akin to sweet, soft, roasted garlic.
Red Dates Paste Pan Cake ($6) was a different variation from the more common red bean pancake. I like that the red date filling was less sweet and had a slightly nice tart touch to it. Sticky and moist, it snug between the pan-fried sides of the pancake. Oddly though, sesame seeds are not part of this pancake. A generous amount of it was added at our request upon ordering.
A pretty good and virtuous-feeling lunch. :)
Imperial Treasure Nan Bei Restaurant
Tel: 6339 3118
Chew On This: There's a 10% discount for UOB cards BUT only for 3 selected cards....seems rather strange seeing that this wasn't some high-end restaurant out to woo an exclusive group.