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Sunday, September 14, 2014
Crystal Jade Steamboat Kitchen @ Plaza Singapura
Crystal Jade started its restaurant operations at Plaza Singapura in 1999 as Crystal Jade Kitchen. In recent years, due to growing demand, it also offered steamboat during dinner time. This outlet had recently been revamped to "Crystal Jade Steamboat Kitchen" whereby you can find all-you-can-eat steamboat with free flow drinks and soft ice-cream. How about their usual Cantonese ala-carte dishes and dim sum? Good news for their die-hard fans. Traditional Cantonese favourites such as dim sum, roasted meats, congee etc will still be served for lunch and dinner so that you can have best of both worlds.
Crystal Jade Steamboat Kitchen offers a wholesome spread of more than 35 ingredients including sliced meat (beef/ chicken/ pork), mussels, mushrooms and vegetables.
The sliced meat here were for display purposes only. Those that you order are kept refrigerated and will only be served to you upon orders. This is to ensure freshness of the meat. :)
Let us walk through the buffet section...
There are many different types of condiments for buffet diners to create their own dipping sauces. Looking at the colourful bowls here make everything so appetizing. For me, I took a bit of each condiment and mixed them together. I like the sesame sauce and their housemade special sauce, so I put more of these 2 sauces into my dipping bowl. Other condiments include Sambal Belacan, Thai dipping sauce, fresh cilantro, spring onions, garlic etc.
To make the steamboat buffet even more value-for-money, you can also find free flow of drinks (Soft drinks or hot beverages such as coffee and tea) and soft ice-cream here. All are included in the buffet!
As we were happily chatting away, we didn't realize that the induction cooker was actually embedded in our table until Samantha showed us. See! It was nicely camouflaged in the table.
For this tasting session, we were served with two different types of soup bases, namely pork's bones soup (left) and curry soup (right). Crystal Jade Steamboat Kitchen offers diners six different soup bases. The other soup bases include Tomato Soup, Miso Soup, Superior Soup and Spicy Mala soup.
The temperature control was found underneath at one side of the table. It is really easy to operate, just need to press either the "up" or "down" button to control the temperature.
While waiting for our soup bases to boil, we enjoyed their cooked items such as Deep Fried Fish Skin, Deep Fried Chicken Skin and Deep Fried Mushroom Stems that were offered at the buffet line. They served as pretty good snacks, crunchy and not oily.
We were served with some of their popular ala-carte roasted combination platter and dim sums before we dipped into the steamboat.
Roasted Combination Platter ($25.80/ per serving)
This is one of your "must-order" dishes if you are here at Crystal Jade. As I was typing this post, just by looking at this photo of the roasted combination platter, made me drool and want to go back so much to the restaurant. The roasted duck meat was tender and I loved the caramelised crispy duck skin. The duck meat had a rich flavour as it was seasoned with various Chinese herbs stuffed in the stomach before being roasted. The roasted pork belly was juicy with a crisp pork-crackling. The quality pork belly was seasoned with salt and five spice powder and roasted for 1.5 to 2 hours. Last but not least, the honey barbecued pork, with fats that melt in your mouth, was flavourful and tender too.
Plum and mustard sauce were served with the platter as dips. It is recommended to dip the roasted duck meat with the plum sauce and the roasted pork belly with mustard sauce.
Dim sums served at Crystal Jade definitely are of a certain good standard.
Steamed Shrimp Dumpling "Ha-Kau" ($4.60/per serving of 3 pieces)
Deep-fried Yam Puff with Minced Meat ($4/ per serving of 3 pieces)
Generous minced meat fillings inside.
Steamed Pork and Shrimp with Crab Roe Dumpling "Siew Mai" ($4.20/per serving of 3 pieces)
Pan-Fried Fish Cake with Radish ($4/ per serving of 3 pieces)
This dish was something new to us. We were introduced to this old-school dim sum in Hong Kong that is now difficult to find and of course, I have not seen this in Singapore so far. This dim sum is made by stuffing minced fresh fish cake and radish between two layers of wonton skin.
After feasting on the roasted meat platter and dim sums, let us get back to our steamboat.
Beef slices - note that they are all very thinly sliced so they will be cooked easily.
Home-made Minced Pork Paste and Home-made Minced Chicken Paste were served in small square trays. Diners can try to scoop them and shape them into meatballs to cook them in the soup.
I tried the pork bones' soup first as I was afraid the curry would numb my taste-bud. In fact, I love the pork bones' soup so much that I had several bowls of it until I was too full to really try the curry soup. The soup was light and sweet.
Will be great to end off your meal with a sweet note by having some soft ice-cream.
It was an enjoyable meal at Crystal Jade Steamboat Kitchen. Sam and I had a great steamboat dining experience in a very cosy and comfortable setting. Thanks Joh Ju from Pinstripes Communications for this invitation and of course, Samantha from Crystal Jade for hosting the dinner.