After ranting out my anger on the previous post, it is time for some inner peace. So how bout going for vegetarian cuisine? As a food lover, I shall make it clear that taking a vegetarian meal won't associate you to any religion or any belief and it does not imply that my faith is shaken. If you are cool with this, let's read on. Its the 9th Day of the 9 Emperor God Festival, so for the past 2 weeks, business has been brisk for vegetarian restaurants. If you are not really exposed to Chinese vegetarian cuisine, its no longer bounded by the stereotype dishes. Take for example, the Cantonese Style Yee Mee. Its just like your usual item from your stir fry noodle shop, minus the meat, and most likely replaced with mock meats (normally made from gluten or beancurd or beanskin)
Fu Tien is one of the more fusion based vegetarian cuisine, which offer decent individual meals at affordable price. They have bento sets too, ranging from RM4-RM6. This is the Tempura Set Bento, its like the Chap Fan style of vegetarian rice but served nicely in a bento with box. But from RM4, apa mau lagi kan? =p
This is the Marmite Lotus Root. Portion is kinda small but good as an appetizer or a finger food. Lotus roots is pan fried with Marmite (I think they use some Maggi seasoning sauce too) and futher caramelized with sugar glaze. They should go less with the sugar coating to make this dish more.... savoury as the Marmite taste is not taking the centre stage.
This is the Mango Roll? Oh crap! I forgot the actual name but I remember its RM7 per serving. Its normal sushi with tempura coating batter fritters and carrots at the centre. The mango on top is sweet but a bit over ripe, causing it to be a little "puree" mouthfeel. This dish looks like a caterpillar right?
And this is my Hainanese Chicken Rice! (RM5) I actually had the Bento on my last visit so I decided how well can they execute a dish which is so common in a working class typical staple diet. The rice is fluffy and fragrant. The "chicken" somehow tasted like.... fried fishcake, but they are actually beanskin (fu chook) going layer after layer. The Char Siew is... "Char Siew". Hahaaa... I can't describe the mock meats further, but definitely a lot of effort has been put in to make it taste closely to the real thing.
Since I didn not order my favourite Fish Bento, I had an ala carte serving of the fried mock fish in sweet and sour sauce (RM9). The skin of the "fish" is made from seaweed, thus giving it a fishy (hanyir) smell while the flesh is actually chopped/minced fu chook. A better version tasted is the one in Yi Shen, which uses fermented bean sauce which gives a good umami flavour. Never expect a vegetarian meal to be cheap as this meal for 3 cost around RM15/person inclusive of drinks. But I have to admit, although they are not meat, vegetarian "mock meats" takes a lot of processing steps and effort to make it resemble the real meat. And... they carry high calories as well. =p