Thai-Teochew Yaowarat CNY Creations at TAO Seafood Asia
Located in the densely populated Phra Nakorn and Samphanthawong districts of Bangkok, Yaowarat road (ถนนเยาวราช) is every bit vibrant. It is the busy city’s culinary hotspot with lanes decorated with street food vendors and Chinese Thai-Teochew restaurants.
To pay tribute to his teacher and mentor, chef Preecha Jangsombatsiri (Ping), Chef Lee Tong Kuon and his team have set the stage to bring Yaowarat to its fans with a selection of Yaowarat’s CNY classics. Before the media tasting began, we were munching on the deep fried fish skin coated with salted egg yolk.
Chinese new year celebrations are never complete without loh hei or commonly known as, yu sheng – raw fish salad and it is always the first dish to be served. Though it was created in Singapore, the colourful and pretty festive must-have is fast gaining legions of followings in Bangkok.
TAO Supreme Prosperity Yu Sheng earns its name with its 18 ingredients from consisting of seafood, greens, fruits and nuts! The Thai people adore peanuts and fried fish skins, thus these choice goodies found its rightful place in TAO’s Thai yu sheng. The beautifully plated yu sheng, together with the thai basil leaves, plum sauce, pepper and cooked oil, gives its an uplifting flavour that is sweet, sour, zesty and most importantly, refreshingly crunchy.
From the abalone, salmon roe, crispy deep-fried fish skin to the fresh slices of mango, blueberries, strawberries, each ingredient lends a distinctive taste and aroma that perks up the appetite and sizzles the taste buds. TAO Supreme Prosperity Yu Sheng is priced at S$128++, it is recommended for 8 to 10 guests. 1-day advance reservation for dine-in and takeaway is required.
Another CNY classic is the pen cai (pot of vegetables). During Chinese New Year, this extravagant pot has replaced its greens with premium seafood such as the whole abalone, premium sea cucumber, conpoy, sea prawns, dried oysters and fish maw, together with other must-haves like black moss, mushroom, radish, roasted pork and mustard greens. TAO’s House of Golden Riches Yaowarat Pen Cai is unique because of its addictive green chili blend which is a clear Thai-influence dish. House of Golden Riches Yaowarat Pen Cai is priced at S$318++, recommended for 6 guests, and S$488++, recommended for 10 guests. 2-day advance reservation for dine-in and takeaway is required.
Seafood lover should not miss the Golden Soon Hock with Mango Slices ($9.80++ per 100g, recommended for 3 to 4 guests). The farmed marble goby (soon hock) was chosen for its quality texture that makes it the ideal choice for the Thai sweet, sour and spicy style of cooking. It is deep fried to a golden crisp, and meticulously dressed with TAO’s specially concocted fruity sauce with a dash of Thai nam pla (fish sauce), topped with slices of mango, green apple and onions.
For something different from our usual chilli crab, you can try TAO Thai-Teochew Curry Crab ($6++ per 100g). Using Thai basil leaves, small green and red chilies, coriander, kaffir lime leaves, raw palm sugar, and coconut milk for its curry, it is cooked with fresh Sri Lankan crabs. Yes the gravy is layered with spices, but slightly too oily for my liking.
The Thai-Teochew Yaowarat Chinese New Year creations at TAO Seafood Asia are available from 3 February to 5 March 2015. Prices start from S$32++ for ala carte dine-in creations and S$48++ for takeaways.
TAO Seafood Asia
Address: 12 Marina View, Asia Square Tower 2 #02-10, Singapore 018961
Tel: +65 68449969
Opening Hours: Mondays to Sundays 11:30am to 2:30pm and 6:00pm to 10:00pm. Last order by 9:30pm