Thursday, March 29, 2007

JW Marriott's Floral Theme in Celebration of Spring

SPRING is in the air at JW Marriott Hotel’s Shanghai Restaurant, which is serving 15 spring dishes – those made with ingredients harvested only in springtime and best savoured during this time of the year – until April 1.

Spring in the air: The swanky Shanghai Restaurant at JW Marriott Hotel Kuala Lumpur.
And, the floral theme has been adopted for this promotion, so each of the dishes either looks like flower, or has a flower as an ingredient to intensify the spring mood.

The man behind the feast is master chef Wong Wing Yeuk from Shanghai.

“Most of the ingredients are from China. Some are sourced locally – if they meet the required standard; otherwise, we will insist on getting them from China, no matter how expensive,” said Wong, who has been in the industry for 25 years.

“The dishes we present are trendy and innovative, while at the same time retaining the characteristics of Shanghainese cuisine,” he added.

According to him, the Chinese phrase “rich oil, red sauce” is used to describe the nature of Shanghainese dishes, which are often very oily and have sauces so concentrated that they are in crimson tones.

“We have cut down on the amount of oil and condiments to cater to the health-conscious and the preferences of local diners,” he said.

The Chilled Sliced Meat with Shrimp Roe and Jelly Fish is a good appetiser with which to start the meal. Not only is the dish sprinkled with crispy shrimp roe, it comes with a dip that is a special sauce made of the roe, which is at its freshest during springtime.

Follow that with Braised Soup with Dried Scallop, Ham and Tofu that showcases the chef’s artistry. The tofu is cut into shreds as fine as toothpicks so that they ‘open’ up to look like flowers when boiled.

Floral delights: (clockwise from bottom) Baked Assorted Nut Biscuit, Stuffed Lotus Roots with Osmanthus Chinese Wine and Beancurd Stuffed with Snow Pea and Scallop Paste.
And, do take note of the only vegetable of this soup, which is young lotus leaves plucked as soon as the frozen lake thaws after winter.

The Deep Fried Garoupa Fillets with Salt and Pepper is appealing in its presentation that looks like a bed of blooming chrysanthemums.

The Beancurd Stuffed with Snow Pea and Scallop Paste resembles a large bloom, too. The pieces of tofu, cut to look like petals, are embedded in steamed egg and moistened with translucent dried scallop gravy.

Master chef in action: Wong at work.
Shanghai Braised Pork with Champagne Sauce is an East-meets-West item. “It is completely different from the normal braised pork that is cooked with black sauce. It derives its flavour from the champagne sauce and its colour from red rice,” Wong explained.

Served with the small chunk of pork is a dainty heart-shaped piece of toast, which replaces the usual Chinese buns (man tou).

The Dim Sum menu embraces spring, too. Baked Assorted Nut Biscuit is a traditional goodie, while Baked Minced Pork Pie and Steamed Dumpling with Mandarin Fish Paste are two modern creations that have become must-haves at many upmarket restaurants in Shanghai.

The desserts, Stuffed Lotus Roots with Osmanthus Chinese Wine and Chilled Chrysanthemum Cake with Wolfberry Seeds, bring the spring celebration to a fitting finale, as they are time-honoured exquisite delights mentioned even in the Chinese classic, Dream of the Red Chamber.

To ensure that patrons fully experience the joy of spring, the restaurant has arranged for the Huang Cheng Music Group to render modern and classical Chinese numbers throughout the promotion period.

  • SHANGHAI RESTAURANT, Level 1, JW Marriott Hotel Kuala Lumpur, 183 Jalan Bukit Bintang, Kuala Lumpur (Tel: 03-2719 8288). Business hours: Monday-Saturday, noon-2.30pm (lunch) and 6.30pm-10.30pm (dinner); Sundays and public holidays, 10.30am-2.30pm (lunch) and 6.30pm-10.30pm (dinner). Non-halal.

  • Source : STAR
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