Tag Archives: pork

Le Chasseur

Claypot chicken rice

In the never-ending hunt to find good local food, I went on a recommendation of an ieatishootipost post to Le Chasseur on North Beach Road, just opposite the Central Shopping Centre.

For a place where the main write up was about claypot chicken rice, the restaurant itself is simple (and not at all what I expected from a claypot restaurant) and there is only one claypot dish amongst two walls where the entire menu is printed out, every dish with pictures.  It’s essentially a Singaporean cuisine cafe/restaurant.

Pork hock and ginger in soya sauce

I was impressed that this place advertised no MSG as well as no artificial additives and is testimony to the fact that you can get food that tastes great, that isn’t overly seasoned or with MSG added.

Between the four of us, we ordered far too much, but the portions are small, which means you can get away with tasting more dishes – always a good thing.

Chicken curry

The service is pretty appalling, but the food turned up all at once, which I was pretty impressed with, especially as I know the claypot rice is made fresh and takes 20 minutes whereas the rest (like the pork and curries) would have been made much earlier in advance.

Duck with salted vegetable soup

We had claypot chicken rice (which I have decided I cannot taste the difference between a good one and a bad one and don’t like it enough to continue the search), sambal eggplant, which was tender and not too oily nor smothered in sambal sauce, curry chicken, which D mopped up with toasted bread, pork hock in dark soya sauce with ginger, fall-off-the-bone sweet and sour pork ribs and a duck and preserved vegetable soup.

Sweet and sour pork ribs

All solidly good dishes and despite the number of dishes, we did the chef justice and finished everything on the table.  My favourites were the pork ribs, which certainly had a sweet and sour taste to them, but lacked the eye-squinting punch and ruby red colour that I am used to seeing in other Chinese restaurants, and the soup which was simple and delicious.

I’m very much looking forward to going back again to sample the rest of the food on the menu…walls.  Stay tuned.

Le Chassuer
31 North Beach Road
Tel: 63377677
11am to 11pm daily


Christmas roast

Roasted pork belly

Last year I roasted a turkey for the first and last time. Not that I didn’t like the finished product, there was just so much of it leftover, and with just D and I, turkey leftovers get a little boring, no matter how you try to dress them up.

This year, D will have to do without turkey, as I have the special present of my parents visiting, and I’m reverting to a family tradition of making roast pork for my family.

I’m lucky to live in Singapore where I have easy access to lots and lots of pork belly, my favourite cut of pork to roast.  It’s such a tasty cut of meat, due to the layers of fat between the meat that seem to almost melt once roasted, just basting the meat in tasty goodness and keeping the meat tender and moist.

A little preparation can also give you brilliantly crispy crackling.  Simply pat the meat dry and score the skin every 1 cm (you can also ask your butcher to do this for you).  A great trick is to use a stanley knife – it’s a bit rudimentary, but it works a treat in giving you evenly deep cuts into the skin without any stress at all.

Coat the entire cut of meat in oil, and then rub a liberal amount of salt into the skin, making sure you get salt into the scores.  Then pop into the fridge, uncovered, for a few hours or overnight if you can.  Both the salt and the fridge draw the moisture out of the skin to ensure a really cracking crackling.

Bring the meat out of the oven an hour or two before roasting to bring it to room temperature.

Brush off the excess salt, and then season the entire cut on all sides, above and below with salt and pepper.

Pop onto a roasting tray, and into a hot oven at 230C for 30 minutes to get the crackling going.  Then lower the temperature to 180C for an hour – an hour and a half if you’ve got a huge piece of pork belly.  Because pork belly is a thin-ish cut of meat, it doesn’t take a long time in the oven, but also because of the layers of fat, it’s a forgiving meat to leave in the oven for longer at a low temperature.

Leave out to rest for at least 30 minutes before tucking in.  This will give you time to make gravy with the juices in the tray.

Haricot vert, potatoes roasted in duck fat, honey-glazed carrots

Serve with roasted potatoes (I’m doing mine in duck fat for a more festive touch – if only I could find goose fat !), roasted onions, garlic, leeks and any other vegetables that you can find in your fridge.


Home made sausage rolls

Well, sort of.

With the silly season in full swing, in my house, there is a need for comfort food.  A lot of it.  Without the need to shop or cook, just take out of the fridge or freezer, heat and eat.

Tonight I decided to make home-made sausage rolls – the easy way.  Great fresh out of the oven, and easy to freeze wrapped tightly in clingwrap and reheat in the oven to enjoy again another night.  They are even good cold !

Ingredients

  • 6 pork sausages – or about 350g of good quality pork sausage meat from your butcher
  • large handful of fresh sage, finely chopped or 2 tbs of dried rubbed sage
  • 1 brown onion, finely minced
  • 4 rashers streaky bacon, chopped
  • 2 sheets of puff pastry
  • 1 egg, beaten

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 220C (200C for fan-forced oven)
  2. Squeeze the pork out of the sausage casing, then throw in the sage, onion and bacon and get your hands in the bowl to combine and mix well
  3. Lay a roll of the sausage meat mixture on to the puff pastry, leaving some space at the ends for the meat to expand when it cooks
  4. Roll the pastry over the sausage meat, brush some of the beaten egg on the edge to seal the pastry
  5. Brush the tops of the sausage rolls with more beaten egg and place on a wire rack to cook.  This is important so that the hot air can circulate around the entire pastry and avoids a soggy base
  6. Pop into a preheated oven and immediately turn down the temperature to 200C (180C for fan-forced).  This is to make sure the heat hits the puff pastry when it first goes in to that oven and helps to keep the pastry light and flaky.
  7. Take out after 15 minutes or until they are golden brown.
  8. Serve while still hot with peas and corn or whatever vegetables you fancy !

Pappardelle with braised pork belly in red wine

I spoke to my friend about this last night and wanted to remember this as one of my all-time favourite dishes to serve to friends at dinner.  It’s impressively delicious, and really easy to make – the slow cooker really does it all for you.

This dish was inspired by Oso’s wild boar braised in red wine.  Not having easy access to wild boar, I decided to try it with the more readily-available pork belly.

Brown the pork belly strips (I use one strip per person) in a frying pan until brown and crispy, about 3 minutes each side.

Pop the browned pork belly strips into your slow cooker along with a few cloves of garlic, some thyme and about a bottle of red wine (for four).  It will reduce down, so don’t worry that there seems to be a lot of wine in the cooker.  I put the slow cooker on high for an hour or two and then reduce it to low for the next 6 hours, but guess you could even pop it all in the cooker in the morning and leave it on slow for the day to have a wonderful pasta sauce by dinnertime.

While the pasta is cooking, take out any large pieces of the pork belly, shred into large chunks and then add back into the sauce.  Season to taste.

When you’re ready to eat, cook your pappardelle in salted water (the flavour of the water should be how salty you want your pasta to be) to just before al dente, then drain and transfer to a large frying pan with a few spoons of the cooking water (just so that the sauce can coat the pasta and make it silky) and add the sauce.

Serve with freshly grated parmesan and a few drops of good olive oil.


One of my most favourite things in the world

Pork.

You can pretty much serve pork to me any way and I’ll eat it with gusto. Roast it, so you get crispy, crunchy crackling, stewed pork belly so that it melts in your mouth, grill it with hoi sin sauce, give it to me as ham, or as everyone’s favourite (religious persuasion excepted) BACON.

I went to The Butcher in Holland Village yesterday en route to visiting a friend to watch the Bledisloe Cup (please note here that I used it as a good excuse to pop in to say hi, rather than actually going to watch the game, but I’m glad the All Blacks won, for Luke’s sake). I like The Butcher over the Swiss Butcher, not only because a) The Butcher is near where our friends live and so gives us an excuse to buy meat whilst visiting them (or vice versa), and b) because it’s good old fasioned Aussie meat. Makes me feel all homely and comfortable buying meat that I know grew up breathing the same air in the same country that I did (morbid, I know).

So I get the butcher to cut me a generous piece of pork loin, bone out. It comes to me all juicy and fat, and is currently seasoned with finely chopped rosemary, crushed fennel seeds, salt and pepper, and roasting happily in the oven with potatoes and onion roasted in balsamic vinegar. Can’t wait for dinner-time !