14 (Fri) April 2017
Black Pepper Crab
at HK Street Old Chun Kee
-Marina Bay, Singapore-
with the Family
Holy Week Family Vacation to Malaysia-Singapore, Day 5 (see previously 8.098 Deep-Fried Min Buns with Chilli Sauce).
Monday to Wednesday in Johor. For Legoland. Thursday to Friday in Singapore. For food. Back to Manila tomorrow.
Our first order of business: lunch at Tian Tian Hainanese Chicken Rice in Maxwell Food Centre (see most recently 4.267 Hainanese Chicken Rice).
Our second order of business: dinner at HK Street Old Chun Kee at Makansutra Gluttons Bay (see most recently 4.265 Chilli Crab).
Mindful that this was the same hawker center where I’d first tried chilli crab back in 2013, only to be disappointed, but fresh from the kick-ass chilli sauce that we had last night – and appreciating how much everyone else loves crab – I agreed to give it another shot, as well as black pepper crab, albeit from a different vendor.
Black pepper crab is the other most popular method of preparing crab in Singaporean cuisine, along with chilli crab.
On-line recipes vary widely (see for example black pepper crab), but I was surprised to discover that the 6 common key ingredients for the black pepper sauce would appear to be: coarsely ground black pepper, sugar, soy sauce, oyster sauce, minced garlic, and … butter, which at long last explains the goopy texture and the odd umami aftertaste, as noted in yesterday’s post. Despite the name, I always felt that black pepper was overwhelmed by something else lurking in the background – and this is that something. I should try developing a butterless version, and using it for shellfish other than crab.
Alas, the chilli crab was also meh. Sauce like watery spicy ketchup. So, I go back to my prior stance that this really isn’t a dish for me.
So, even though Singaporean cuisine overall ranks in my top five, I guess I don’t like two of their most famous dishes.
In any case, we had a blast.
So blessed to share such experiences with the family. Whether they appreciate it now, hopefully someday they’ll look back on it – via GMTD – and will.
(See also FOOD GLOSSARY)
(See also SINGAPORE RESTAURANTS)