Being a true blue Cantonese, nothing warms my heart and palate quite the way Cantonese food does. This hearty, rich, flavorful cuisine pairs perfectly with fragrant Jasmine rice… danger zone if you’re watching your carbs… but soooo satisfying! There are hundreds of Cantonese eateries in town, but I have written about so few for the mere fact that so many do not live up to the hype. However, a recent recommendation in the East left a deep impression on me. It is unfancy, undecorated, uncreative, and certainly unfashionable! Despite all that, this no frills, casual kitchen cooks up a storm of home style comfort dishes, without compromising quality, quantity and freshness! The restaurant sits barely 80 people but packs it in most nights with 2 turnovers. They have a menu of 15 items including plain rice! The four of us ordered 6 (including the all important white rice!) out of the 15, and they were all good. Watercress Pork Rib Soup- The portion had lots of watercress and spare ribs in the sweet clear soup. Not that I’m complaining since this nutritious vegetable is high in antioxidants, Vitamin C, fiber, and calcium. Simmered til soft and tender, so even toothless Grandparents could enjoy! The steamed Fish Head (S$25) featured a meaty snake fish head. If you are a good bone picker like myself, you’d be thrilled. Seasoning was spot on. Fermented yellow bean paste for a good dose of flavor, fresh spring onion for zing, chilis for a teeny bit of heat and covered in irresistible crispy pork rinds! Sweet & Pork Sour- the international Chinese dish after fried rice! EVERYBODY makes this… it’s really not so hard either.. but what stood out with Eat First’s is their use of lean pork loin instead of a fatty cut like in most other places. The fat-less loin remains tender and soft coupled with a super crispy exterior. They’re accompanied generously by crunchy bell peppers, onions and cucumbers. The sweet-sour tomato based sauce is perfectly measured, unlike many cloyingly sweet versions that’s all sugar and starch.Bitter Gourd With Pork Ribs- Thick chunks of bitter gourd stir fried with tender spare ribs in a black bean sauce. I liked that the chef does not overcook the gourd. Its still got a good bite without the “raw” aftertaste. And it is well flavored with the salty bean sauce without losing its natural bitterness, an acquired taste that makes this an unpopular vegetable! The spare ribs were juicy albeit boney! Such a great dish!Our last dish, a giant portion of Bean Curd with Prawns! Love the charred skin of the soft tofu, giving it a smokey flavor. The prawns were jumbo! Huge, firm and juicy! Braised in a lovely sticky brown sauce that penetrates deep into both bean curd and prawns! A perfect meal on its own with some plain rice!
I am eager to return for the other handful of dishes on the menu. Have heard only good things about them all! Oh yes, you can count on an update when I do 😉!
Eat First 食之为鮮 @ 891 East Coast Road, Singapore 459094 Phone: 6443 8434
Disclaimer- This is not a sponsored post.
🙏🏼Many thanks to foodie buddies, Fantha, for the awesome recommendation!