The highly-anticipated Hairy Crabs are back at Pan Pacific Singapore's Hai Tien Lo today - from 17 October 2016 to 27 November 2016, savour these highly-prized crustaceans which are well-known for their creamy golden roe. Enjoy a selection of delicacies prepared by Executive Chef Lai Tong Ping through a special prix fixe menu or order them from the a la carte menu to find out why these crabs are regarded as one of the most premium crustaceans around!
If you are not willing to get your hands dirty but you still want to savour the best of the hairy crab in one convenient bite, opt for the ridiculously delicious Steamed Minced Pork Dumplings with Hairy Crab Meat and Roe (蟹粉灌汤小籠包) here are Hai Tien Lo. Filled with generous servings of hairy crab meat and roe that has been mixed into the minced pork, these little gems are just bursting with flavours!
For the Cantonese soup lovers, the Double-boiled Chicken Soup with Abalone, Sea Conch and Chinese Herbs (鲜淮山鲍鱼響螺炖鸡汤) will not disappoint you - the Chinese Herbs (or more specially 鲜淮山) gives the soup a slight sweetness but the chicken soup and the umami flavours from the abalone and sea conch helps to balance that sweetness out.
While the famous Hairy Crabs are traditionally steamed in perilla leaves, Hai Tien Lo offers an alternative version to this popular dish - Sautéed Hairy Crab with Ginger Spring Onion in Chinese Black Vinegar Sauce (烏醋汁姜蔥炒大閘蟹). As you may already notice from the photo above, the most difficult part about eating this crab has already been done for you and getting to the prized roe (and meat!) is relatively easy. I did like the Chinese Black Vinegar Sauce a lot but I did think that it drowned out quite a lot of the delicate flavours from the hairy crab roe - I would much prefer to have the roe on its own (like how I did in 2015 here!).
You may already know this but Hai Tien Lo is one of my favourite Chinese restaurants in Singapore - the weekend dim sum buffet is also my family's favourite and we go back from time to time. If you are looking for something special, try the Japanese Style Sea Perch Fillet in Sake Sauce served with Fresh Scallops in Pepper and Salt (椒鹽鮮元貝伴日式鱸魚) - while it looks seemingly simple, the fresh scallops are seasoned beautifully and that sea perch is just delicious!
If you are a lazy hairy crab eater like me, the Braised Hong Kong Kai Lan with Wild Mushrooms in Hairy Crab Meat and Roe (蟹粉野菌扒港芥蘭) allows you to savour the creaminess of the golden roe without having to make a mess yourself. While I did like the sauce a lot, I thought that the braised bean curd version from last year was better but hey I may just be biased because braised bean curd in general is the best Chinese dish in the whole world in my opinion.
For your choice of carbohydrates, opt for the Stewed Udon Noodles with Fresh Prawns, Hairy Crab Meat and Roe (蟹粉鮮蝦仁福建烏冬麵). I love the rich consistency and the flavourful hairy crab roe that went with it but it may be a little too much for some people. If you are looking for something a little lighter, give the Stewed Fragrant Rice with Hairy Crab Meat and Roe (蟹粉撈稻香絲苗飯) a try.
Finally for the sweetest ending to this immensely-satisfying meal, the Chilled Bean Curd Pudding with Bird’s Nest and Avocado Cream (官燕牛油果豆花布甸) was the perfect way to end the lunch. For dining reservations or enquiries, please speak with the team at +65 6826 8240, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
This was an invited Media Tasting session, though all views expressed are my own.