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Lee Kui has been around for a long time and to date is still a popular dining destination for families seeking out Teochew food.
The interior is nothing to hark about, coming across as simple with fold-able steel frame chairs that hark back to the 70s and 80s. Reservations are necessary unless you want to show up really early at maybe 530pm?
Stir Fried Kailan with Deep Fried Sole Fish - We started off with this simple but delicious dish. The vegetables had a nice tinge of wok hei without being overcooked while the sole fish were crisp and came in rather big pieces. Nice!
Braised Duck - The braised duck was served in large slices which I personally liked but it did come across as a tad too dry and lacking in fragrance. Kudos to the addition of braised peanuts though, which I thought was nicely tender and well simmered.
Prawn Balls - The heh zhors were decent - lean meat with prawns that wasn't excessively oily. Good for many bites! However I wouldn't rate it fantastic as I've had much better ones.
Yam Paste - One of the hallmarks of Teochew cuisine, the yam paste or orh nee, was smooth but inconsistencies could be made out in the texture, which probably meant it was hand made and not machine produced. Fragrant, topped with a huge chunk of pumpkin and didn't come across as overly sweet. Nice!
Dinner for the 3 of us including 3 coconut drinks cost almost $81, which is on the high side if you ask me. Food quality is above average but at this price point, I can easily have more portions of equally good food, if not better food, at other Teochew restaurants. And do note that this place is cash only. I probably won't be back, not when there are better and cheaper Teochew restaurants around.
See all my pictures here.
A typical Teochew farewell can never do without a farewell dinner at an authentic Teochew restaurant. Made famous by the Dad, who has since passed away, the son has since took over the reins of the restaurant and vowed to continue the tradition of churning out bona fide Teochew dishes to loyal customers like my family, who have frequent this place for years.
Located at Mosque Street, Lee Kui Restaurant, or better known as Ah Hoi, or Crab in Teochew is famous for its Cold Crab. These meaty crabs are first steamed and then kept in the freezer giving the meat a firm texture.
Full of roe, a typical way to eat these crabs is to dip it into the sweet orange sauce. Next up was a controversial delicacy known to be served in special occasions - Shark Fin Soup, which has to be pre-ordered one day in advance.
The fins in themselves are said to be tasteless, but prized for its texture rather than flavour, noticed that these first grade fins are priced simply because it came as a whole fin and not in strands you get from lousy banquet dinner.
This was followed by my nephew’s favourite dish of the night – Assorted Deep Fried Dish – consisting of Seafood Cake, Spring Roll, Yam with Prawn Roll, and the best of all the Prawn Ball – flavoursome and fried to perfection, everyone on the table were commenting how good it was.
A personal favourite dish was up next, and at Lee Kui, you simply has to try the Oyster Egg – generous serving of oyster, the egg was wet on the inside and crisp on the outside – perfect complement for your plain rice.
The Vegetables were also surprisingly tasty that night – especially the refreshing Mock Abalones that really tasted like the real stuff. The Fish with Black Bean Sauce though a bit spicy, was very fresh.
In additional, the gravy went fantastically well with the porridge that we ordered. Sensing that we were still pretty hungry, Dad ordered a plate of Fried Noodles with Shrimps and Pork Slices. A pity that it was pretty oily, if not I was pretty sure everyone would had an additional serving of it.
This was because we were all saving the best for last, and what Teochew dinner would it be, if it did not end off with the authentic O-Nee, or Yam Paste with Pumpkin and Ginkgo Nuts - Sinfully Oily, Sinfully Good - a pity that it would be sometime before our family could gather again for such a sumptuous dinner.
You can view the photos and other reviews @ His Food Blog.
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