Awesome crabs in the heartland neighborhood
Last Sunday my family celebrates Mother’s day and for big occasions like this you need a fancy meal, at least one that screams “special”. We decided to get chili crab (of course) and if you are Singaporean, you don’t go to expensive, overrated popular touristy crab’s joints. Those are reserved for overseas friends. For celebrations like Mother’s day, you go to your favourite back alley kind of Crab Joint.
Mother’s Day Takeaway Deals
My brother saw a promotion on Facebook and he WhatsApp me (strange that you need to WhatsApp each other when you are sitting opposite each other. Social distancing they say. Strange times indeed) $70 for 2 crabs! What a steal! Moreover it is at Seletar which is near my place. In a heartbeat, we decided to take a chance, to try a crab joint that is new! You will be surprise how this stirs excitement in us. In a time like circuit breaker where you eat, sleep and work in the same place for 24 hours a day, trying a new crab place is like taking a vacation to Tokyo-There is something to look forward to.
5 Dishes: Crabs (Chili & White Pepper), Tofu, Prawn Rolls, Sweet & Sour Pork and Chicken Wings
Lao Hero Kitchen
The new Crab Joint Place is called Old Hero. Weird but memorable name. Moreover it matches the WhatsApp profile of the guy that takes my order. The menu is extensive-ranging from crabs, prawns, seafood, vegetables, tofu and even (gasp) si chuan food! For self-collection, they even offer free milk tea with grass jelly.
Lao Hero Kitchen
267 Jln Kayu, Singapore 799495
We ordered total of 5 dishes- Crabs-chili and white pepper, self-made tofu, prawn rolls, sweet and sour pork and prawn paste chicken wings. After making the order on WhatsApp and chatting the easy going “old hero” who assured me that the order is well taken care of, I announced to my family in a cheery tone- We are going to have crabs!
On the day of collection, we drove to Old Hero Restaurant. It is conveniently located behind a bus stop. As expected, there is already a string of people waiting to collect their orders. The restaurant is sparkling clean, with the warm lighting hue calming the impatient crowd waiting. Everything was smooth and in a minute we will be enjoying the sumptuous meal!
It’s All About the Flavor!
We don’t even have the patience to unbox the food before we tuck in. The self-made tofu is a classic on its own. Unexpectedly soft tofu drizzled with soya sauce that has an umami fragrance. Didn’t expect a humble looking restaurant that can cooked up such an excellent meal. The prawn rolls is under par and we suspect it is one of those out-sourced dishes. The sweet and sour pork is another winner. Rightly fried to a crispiness that balances the sweet sauce, it is unbelievable that such a simple dish can be transformed and elevated to a next level type of exquisiteness. The chicken wings has an unpalatable orangey-yellowish paste that coats it. Contrary to its looks, it tastes perfect! It is another example of how if the dish is cook to a right temperature with the right ingredients it no longer gets ordinary.
And last but not least, the crabs! Crumped up in plastic boxes, the crabs looks kind of tiny. However, when we scoop it up, the crab’s claws is big and juicy! The chef has cracked the shelf of the crab so that it is easy for us to eat. The chili sauce crab is yum! Not the kind of tomato paste that disguised as chili, the chili sauce crab has a tangy sambal taste that coats the tongue even after you devour the crabs.
Who is the Winner? White Pepper Crab or Chili Crab?
The white pepper crab is my favourite-It is very spicy, so spicy that even after my niece drank two cups of milk the spiciness didn’t get away. Fried with garlic and leeks, which brings out the flavour of the crabs, the white pepper sauce that coats the crab evenly is peppery and warms the throat. It is a mixed feeling-you feels that your nose is choking up with the spiciness yet the fragrance of the perfectly cooked white pepper sauce lingers in your mouth. I forgot to add that the milk tea beats any bubble tea in a punch. The tea is so fragrant and smooth you think it should deserve a spot on the regular menu and not be one of the freebies.
All in all it is a wonderful meal and a very affordable price. The whole meal cost us $118. Probably can only eat one crab in a swanky restaurant. The best testimonial to a restaurant? Our family is going to order another crab meal from Old Hero restaurant next week end.