Crocodile King Makes a Comeback for Ultimate Hawker Fest 2014!
Many of us know that the crocodile skin is used to make branded bags in the fashion industry. But do you know that it actually has health benefits? I know I know, the word crocodile will make you think of the angry scaly animal and you probably think it is hardly palatable. But hor, cccording to Health Promotion Board, the crocodile meat is high in protein and low in saturated fats. Some parts of the skin has collagen (ladies hear that!) and it is quite tasty!
TCM practitioners classify crocodile meat as “heaty” food, which warms up your body. In the Chinese culture, it is believed that crocodile soup can cure asthma. Stewing it with herbs and spices usually enhances the delicate flavour of croc crunch. That is what Singapore Crocodile King, Tony Tee, is going to be preparing for Ultimate Hawker Festival 2014.
Tony used to run SgKingCroc in Old Airport Road Food Centre, specializes in cooked crocodile meat served in a variety of ways – from herbal soup to spring onion crocodile meat, sambal kang kong crocodile meat etc. Unfortunately, due to rental issues, he had to close the shop. But if you miss his crocodile soup, he is making a comeback specially for this festival!
Typically, crocodiles are only slaughtered at 5 years old. But for the Ultimate Hawker Fest, Tony is using 4-year-old crocodile meat in the soup, which has super tender meat. His Ultimate Herbal Crocodile Soup, using 15 different chinese medicinal herbs, crocodile joints (for the gelatine) and meat bones (for the calcium and protein) for the broth and tail meat (protein), hornstrip (collagen) and fins (collagen) as the serving.
I was privileged to have a tasting of Tony’s Ultimate Herbal Crocodile Soup at The Eureka Cooking Lab a few weeks ago. How does crocodile meat taste like? I feel it tastes like pork, melting in the mouth as you chew. He told us that the broth takes 6 hours with absolutely NO MSG. Drizzled with a special blend of Chinese wines, it is a very appealing and enticing bowl of soup. It is very easy to drink with only a mild herbal taste. Honestly speaking, this will be the first dish I would queue for during the festival. I AM SO EXCITED!
Thank you Tony for agreeing to make a comeback specially for Ultimate Hawker Fest. No words can express how grateful I am for all the hawkers’ participation and their willingness to do a part for charity. If you wish to have a taste of his amazing crocodile soup, see you at the Ultimate Hawker Fest on 22 November 2014! Who knows when we will get to savour his crocodile soup again?
Here’s a short interview with Tony, edited entirely on the iPhone 5S by Ian. Special thanks to the Eureka Cooking Lab(8 Jalan Kuras, Singapore 577725, Tel: +65 6456 4322) for the use of their premises for the cooking demonstration and the filming of the video.