Tag Archives: truffle oil

Oooh…Kinki…@ Customs House

Snapper carpaccio with truffle oil 

Having a drink at Oyster Bar on a Monday night, a friend and I decided to try our luck at Kinki without a reservation.

It’s at Customs House with entry via an elevator at street level. A hostess greeted us, asking us if we had a reservation and then escorted us up to the second floor where another waiter asked if we had a reservation.  A bit of overkill ?  Perhaps, but then Kinki isn’t the sort of establishment that is understated, starting from the crazy Japanese graffiti on the floor and walls as you enter, to the grand view of Marina Bay Sands as you walk to your table.

We had prime position at the counter, and the friendly chefs recommended what was a stunning dish – thinly sliced snapper carpaccio with ponzu sauce and drizzled with truffle oil.  He actually asked “do you like truffle oil” – is there anyone that doesn’t ??? 🙂

The snapper came sliced so thin you could see the glass plate it was served on.  Wonderfully fragranced with the truffle oil, the fish was sweet and delicious.

As for the rest of the meal…I have to say that they do try hard in terms of presentation, but for the price that you are paying, I have come to expect a much higher standard.

Sashimi plate – kingfish, sea urchin, salmon, swordfish and tuna

We started with a selection of sashimi – what sort of fish we left to the chef, which usually means you get the best of what they have that day. There was kingfish, uni (sea urchin), salmon, swordfish and tuna (which was hidden behind the shiso leaf) and whilst the uni, salmon and kingfish were freshly firm and sweet, the swordfish and tuna, which I expect to taste rich and almost creamy, had a disappointingly watery texture.

Perhaps then the dish we had after was poorly ordered but we ordered a dragon roll and a spicy tuna roll, and I almost felt like I could have ordered the same thing from a sushi chain like Sushi Tei.  Nothing special at all about it, and the rolls were very loosely rolled so everything fell as you tried to navigate it from plate to mouth.

The place is buzzy and fun, and the chefs behind the counter are all friendly and chatty but I got a feeling that this place lacked authenticity – perhaps I am more accustomed to Japanese sushi chefs who are almost sombre when they are preparing their food – their concentration is so great.  Add that with the sashimi dish, I am glad I finally went, but think it will be a once off for me.


potato gratin dauphinois

You can pretty much serve me potatoes any way and I’ll love them – mash them, bake them, chip and fry them, or coat them in cream and cheese and bake them.  After not having cooked for a week and with a whole Saturday afternoon and evening ahead of me, I decided to make my-friend-Christine-inspired potato gratin dauphinois with truffle oil as a side dish to the free-range chicken I picked up from the butcher downstairs at Great World City this morning, and was roasting for dinner (wow that’s a long sentence).

I was trying to find a recipe for it in the Larousse Gastranomique that D had bought me for Christmas, and was surprised that under the many many potato recipes, there was none to be found for potatoe dauphinois.

So, I improvised, and I have to say that the potatoes beat the chicken by a long shot !

Potatoe gratin dauphinois:

Smash a clove of garlic and pop in into a saucepan of 200ml heavy cream and 100ml full cream milk and heat until there are bubbles around the edges of the saucepan.

Remove the garlic, and add in a cup of grated Gruyere cheese and stir till it’s melted into the cream/milk mixture.  Add in a few drops of truffle oil at this stage.  Season with salt and pepper to taste and add some freshly grated nutmeg.

Peel about half a kilo of potatoes (I used Russet), soak them in water so they don’t burn, pat dry, finely slice with a mandolin and add them to the cream/milk/cheese mixture to coat.

Arrange in a buttered gratin dish and top with more grated Gruyere, dot with a bit more truffle oil and bake in a preheated oven at 180C for 1 1/2 hours or until the potatoes are cooked.

Enjoy the smell of your kitchen/flat as it bakes!