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Food

Popo Muruku spicy chicken flavour

This is an old school one. I remember when I was young, it used to be my favourite – probably because it was cheap and convenient as a snack. Even our dear Mamee noodles cannot beat it in terms of price. We are pretty poor back and as students, every cent counts right? And in the past they used to see them in small packs where you can bring them along anywhere in your pocket. So yes pretty convenient. When you need something to bite like in the class, just open one up and start snacking. I do not recall having this “spicy chicken” flavour before, so this should be a relatively new flavour option. We only had the original. Back then I didn’t even know that they were made from Tapioca and flavoured with some sort of fish sauce.

If you were to buy from the store the original Popo Muruku, it seems that most of the packs are missing some of the ingredients. They do not state the tapoica starch as an ingredient, which I find is pretty strange. How could they have missed out on such an important ingredient and it seems that the tapoica starch ingredient is still missing from lots of packs I have seen.

Nice design. That flaming chicken. And of course that crawling baby is just so iconic. Pretty sure most Singaporean or Malaysian would recognize that. This is a big pack . Around 65g of snacks for you to enjoy. And don’t worry, it is not spicy at all. I even lick my fingers after consuming them and didn’t really feel any burn. Good for anyone who likes a little kick but cannot really handle the heat. Hey, that is me as well.

Yes spicy chicken flavoured muruku. If I am not wrong, Muruku are Indian snacks that are slightly crunchier than most other snacks. Quite popular in Singapore. They are usually curled into circles and fried. From what I know, they are usually made from rice flour and sold in those Indian food stores. I have eaten some that were dipped in sugar syrup!

The back of the pack. Tons of information for users to digest.

They are made in Malaysia as would most of the local snacks in Singapore. It has been a long time since I travelled to Malaysia – this pandemic is not letting anyone travel. Yes I do miss Malaysia a lot. But I heard from my friends that Johor Bahru has completely changed and lots of businesses have closed down. But here is hoping that Johor Bahru will recover once the pandemic is over.

Some nutritional facts. That is quite a lot of fat and sodium though. However I never find it very salty, especially when compared to all those potato chips being sold in our local super markets. So where did all those “sodium” go to?

Sorry about the slightly blurred photo. The ingredients are Yellow Dhall Powder, Vegetable Oil, Tapoica Starch, Sugar, Chilli Powder, Salt, Chicken Curry Powder and MSG. That Ammonium Bicarbonate is just there to make it crispy. The texture does feel a bit like eating those fried chickpeas.

There you have one. It is actually a pretty small piece of snack. Very crispy even if you have left it out in the open for a few hours. Great as a general snack. From the looks of it, I think that this is baked. Maybe “healthier” compared to those that have been fried? As mentioned, the spicy chicken flavour is mild and nothing too special. But then this snack has always been very mild. I have eaten the original for years and never even knew it had fish sauce in it! Checked with a few of my friends and they too were surprised that it had fish sauce in it.

I have done a few other snack reviews you might like to check them out – All Like Banana Chips, Hershey’s Dark Chocolate & Natierra Japanese Spice Blend.

Categories
Food

All Like Banana Chips – Spicy Barbecue

Saw this the other way at i-Tec (supermarket) the other day and thought it would be interesting. In Singapore banana chips are quite common actually but they are usually quite sweet and can be very hard to bite into. Not a big fan myself. I am guessing it is because the type of banana being used. So when I found this that actually looks like a pack of potato chips, I just have to try it. Note that this is a little more expensive than your regular potato chips. I paid like S$3 for one relatively small pack. Around 45 grams? But I am always in to trying new stuff, especially snacks.

The All Like Banana Chips pack. Made from 100% real fruit, which makes real sense as well. I probably won’t want to buy banana chips that aren’t made from real fruit. However it is interesting that most potato chips are actually made directly from potatoes. Apparently quite a lot of manufacturers use potato starch – the white powdery stuff which you get after washing potatoes. If you look at the ingredients list, you should be able to spot this potato starch.

Flavour is Spicy Barbecue. Actually not too bad. And it does taste a lot like potato chip. Yes it can be a bit harder to bite but I am guessing since they made this so thin, you probably won’t know the difference if you never knew this was made from bananas. I guess the spicy barbecue flavour overwhelms everything. This is probably meant for those who are slightly more health conscious. I mean it is made from bananas and bananas are supposed to be healthy right?

Yes! No MSG! No Preservatives. No Cholesterol. No Artificial Colours! And it is Super thin. Although I am not too sure whether the no cholesterol claim is true or not. It has to been fried somehow right? Unless it has been baked, but the texture of the chip do not suggest it has been baked. Not that it is very oily or anything, but it is rather obvious that the banana chip has been fried in oil.

The back of the pack. Looks like it is made in Thailand. Again this makes sense as Thailand is one of the world’s biggest producer of bananas. And they are pretty creative as well.

I like the short ingredients list – just bananas, sugar, vegetable oil and BBQ seasoning. This is usually a good sign that the product is at least “genuine”. Some of those mass produced foods that we see so common in the supermarkets are packed full of whatever ingredients which I can’t even pronounce. But see, there is indeed some oil involved. Of course some people might claim that vegetable oil is still cholesterol free. Maybe it is indeed healthier to use vegetable oil rather than palm oil or whatever other oils that are higher in saturated fat.

Not too sure what Gros Michel bananas are but they certainly don’t taste like anything here. Only just a slight crunchier feel to it. The Barbecue flavouring just makes this taste like a potato chip. And I actually like it. If it was slightly (just slightly) thicker cut, I think it might be better. At least I should be able to enjoy some banana “taste” in this product.

Yes it sure looks like a potato chip. But I wonder how they get the banana chip to have a shape like that. Perhaps they cut it at an angle to have a bigger surface area? Most of the other banana chips we have here in Singapore are smaller and more circular in shape as well. Anyway kudos to them for making this feel like a potato chip. I will never spot the difference if no one told me that it is a banana chip.

Another banana chip for you guys to gawk at. Yes I ate the entire pack in just one sitting. 45 grams isn’t exactly a lot. Actually just a few pieces inside the pack which is quite disappointing. The spicy barbecue flavour is basically the normal stuff. Not really spicy anyway, even to my standards. But I think this is a very enjoyable snack and at least you will feel healthy afterwards.

Take care all. I will be looking out for more interesting food items to showcase to you guys. Check out my Hershey’s Dark Chocolate Review here. Bye for now.

Categories
Food

Hershey’s Dark Chocolate

I always love Hershey’s Chocolate bars. If I get a craving or even just for a quick snack, grabbing a pack of Hershey’s Chocolate bar has been the easiest and most tasty solution. It is easily available at most stores in Singapore. But I think it might be a good idea to get them from like 7-eleven or places with air conditioning as chocolate usually don’t do well in weather like in Singapore. I usually get from from the nearby supermarkets. It is interesting that some of my friends would place chocolate in their fridge. I usually don’t as I will finish them very quickly after purchase. And I don’t like how chocolate gets “hard” when it has been refrigerated. Like biting onto a piece of glass.

This time I am doing a review on Hershey’s Dark Chocolate Bar. Yes I love their milk chocolate but it does lack the slight bitterness I enjoy in chocolates. So if you are like me, try the Dark Chocolate ones. Both the Hershey’s Milk Chocolate and the Dark Chocolate costs the same anyway. However I think the Dark Chocolate loses the silkiness that you will usually find in milk chocolate. And Hershey’s seem to have perfected that super smooth silkiness and don’t think you can find another brand at the same price point. The texture isn’t exactly the best I have tasted but come on, this is meant for mass consumption.

This bar is made in Malaysia – just across the causeway!

The ingredients are Dark Chocolate (Sugar, Cocoa Mass, Cocoa Butter, Skim milk power), Alkalized Cocoa Powder, Milk Fat, Polyglycerol, Polyricinoleate from Castor Oil with Artificial Flavour Vanillin. No idea what some of the ingredient does. I had always thought that Dark Chocolate is basically Chocolate with less or no milk? One thing I like about Hershey’s is that it isn’t that sweet. I am getting old and I can’t stomach stuff that are too sweet anyway. Though I have heard complains that Hershey’s brand of chocolate are always on the sweeter side. And as I have mention, I love the silkiness of Hershey’s. Of course we cannot compare it to the milk chocolate version but it is still there. And as long is it not white chocolate (yucks!), I am fine with it. For those who don’t know what is white chocolate, it is basically cocoa butter and alone, that stuff tastes like flavourless butter. Not to my palate.

Another plus is that the Dark Chocolate does not melt as easily as milk chocolate, especially in Singapore’s weather. As you can see, the Dark chocolate bar stayed perfect even after half an hour walking about. And I cannot just eat one piece….very irresistible. I heard that they have a “Special Dark” bar but I am not able to find them in my nearby supermarket. However if I find one, I will be sure to do a review on it.

Take care all. And stay safe.

Categories
Food

Natierra Japanese Spice Blend (Shichimi Togarashi)

This is yet another of my “food” review. And yes I am still reviewing spice mixes. First of all I need to tell you readers that I do enjoy trying out various spice mixes out there. If you are living in Singapore, you will probably have a large variety easily available to you. Japanese, Korean, Chinese, Thai and all the different types of spices, I just love them. Anyway today I will be checking out this brand of Japanese Spice Blend. Oh, I got this from iHerb (referral code included), so I doubt that you can find this in stores around Singapore.

“Superfoods with Soul”. This is the Natierra Shichimi Togarashi basically a mix of spices and it usually comes with some sort of red pepper (hence the name Togarashi), chillis, sesame seeds, orange peel and some nori (seaweed). From what I know, it is supposed to consist of only seven ingredients but I guess most will take some liberties with the ingredients. And folks, this blend is just amazing. You will love the mix of spiciness and the different flavours. Oh, if you can’t take the heat, this isn’t actually that spicy anyway. I myself is not really into spicy foods either.

I agree completely with what they say. And I think it goes great with delicate foods as well. There is no overwhelming ingredient in the mix like most other spice mix. I had even tried it with some light salad and yes, goes great with it. So if you are wanting to add some flavour to a bland dish, this is it. Yes the heat it is there but never once did I feel the heat being too much.

Check out the ingredients list. Kibbled Nori, Sea Salt, Aji Amarillo Chile Powder, Ginger Powder, Toasted Sesame Seeds, Black Sesame Seeds, Granulated Orange Peel, Aleppo Chile and Ground Cayenne Pepper. These really packs some nice flavour with a little heat. Plus it comes in a convenient “shaker” style container. But too bad, such containers are not re-usable.

Unlike the famous S&B brand, this is a little more rustic. The S&B bottle are more finely grounded. Of course some do not like the more rustic nature of Natierra spice blend but I like it.

Added some to Char Siew BBQ pork. The great thing about this spice blend is that it does not overwhelm the dish. As the spice blend does not have any sweetness of its own, adding it to a very sweet meat dish like Char Siew is the best!

Added some to Japanese beef bowl. Very nice. Goes very well with meats.

The price is quite average though. Brought from iHerb for around S$7. In Singapore you can probably get a Japanese Shichimi Togarashi around half the amount(30-35ml) for around S$3-4. So basically the same price. But honestly iHerb prices are more often than not better than what we have here in Singapore. Well what to do? Everything in Singapore is expensive nowadays. Even the coffee served at my nearby coffee shop have risen considerably.

If you are interested, I have done a few other reviews as well – Popo Muruku Spicy Chicken Flavour, All Like Banana Chips & Hershey’s Dark Chocolate.

Categories
Food

Love Choice Dried Dipping Condiments

I am not sure whether to start a new blog about food I find interesting or to add to this blog but I guess it is best to start somewhere. I heard that it will affect Search Engine results if the topics don’t really gel together. Anyway this is just my personal blog, so not really a biggie if my SEO get wrecked. This will be my first blog post about food!

Found this at my nearby i-Tech Supermarket so I thought I get one pack for review. i-Tech Supermarket is kind of a smallish supermarket that carries a good number of items but they are general in every sense of the word. But they do carry a lot of stuff, mostly groceries and household items. If I am not wrong, most of them are open 24hrs. And sometimes you do find very interesting stuff there as well. Like this “Dry Condiment”. It is something like those Japanese Spice Mix or Shichimi Togarashi. They usually contains chilli and some other spice blend. You might have seen them in Japanese restaurants and apparently they are very popular. This “Love Choice” brand comes in convenient packs of 10, each around 10g of spice blend.

It is somehow called “Dried Dipping Condiments”. The ingredients are Dried Chilli, Vegetable Oil, White Sesame, Soybean, Peanut, MSG, Salt, Sichuan Pepper, Chicken Flavouring and Spices. Of course as a condiment, it can be used on various dishes to spice things up. If you ask me, it is especially great with rice or meats. But note that the Sichuan pepper is rather overwhelming here, so you should add in moderation if you do not want it to overwhelm your dishes. And the spice level is high though. That is why although it is very delicious, you might want to avoid adding to some delicate foods.

I think it might be a better idea to have a bottle rather than small packages. As the flavour can be quite intense, you would probably not want to use the entire 10g package. If it comes in a bottle, you can use as much as you want instead. Pretty sure such dry stuff will keep very well in a bottle container.

10g is actually more than enough for 3-4 dishes. As it is a condiment, you usually won’t need that much. If you need to add tons of condiments, then there is something very wrong with the food itself.

Some nutritional information. The good thing with such packaging is that you can easily bring them out with you. Like going for a picnic or lunch at the foodcourt. Just slip into pocket or something. But I still think I prefer it to be in a bottle.

Here I am adding it to some noodles. Again the Sichuan Pepper is very strong and it can overwhelm the food, so use in moderation. I think it goes very well with bland foods. When you open the package, you will be immediately greeted by the Sichuan Pepper smell though. Of course if you love the smell…and a caution – this can be quite salty.

Not too bad with fried fish. It will surely go well with meats and fish. Too bad I didn’t have any other meat when I was taking photos. Overall a good mix of spices – the Sichuan Pepper and chilli are still the dominant flavour in the spice mix – the “mala” sensation on your tongue is always there but you know what, I can still taste the other spices.

I bought the 100g pack for about S$3. Price is quite decent. The Shichimi I bought from the local supermarket is around half the amount and cost like S$3.50 already. So if you like strong flavours, this condiment should be right up your alley. And yes, it can be used for dipping as well.