rice cake confessional

adventures in eating

pagi sore (pah-ghee so-reh)

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I had my first Indonesian meal at lunch today. Pagi Sore (morning afternoon in Indonesian) is a short 3 block walk from the office at the PWC building in the Central Business District. It’s a little fancier than most places and is def more expensive then your usual lunch fare. The outside has a newspaper posting that shows the restaurant was named one of the Top 50 in all of Singapore. Sweet!

I started with guyabano juice (that’s what we call it in the Philippines, in English it’s called soursop). Green skin on the outside, sometimes bumpy or scaly, sweet/sour white flesh inside, big black seeds that you spit out. Kinda looks likes the sugar apple’s big, friendly cousin. The juice was yummy – not too sweet with a few pieces of soursop (with seed!) at the bottom. I enjoyed them for dessert.

The awesome thing about work is that since there are so many different ethnicities you can ask someone who’s actually from that country to do all of the ordering. This time around it was Erika, our resident Indonesian (who ps is planning a wedding in Bali!).

This was one of my faves tahu telor, fried beancurd with egg, carrots, and lots of garlic. There’s also what tastes like a sweet soy based sauce with chilis on it as well. The outside was nice and crispy (the beancurd had folded over in some places resulting in extra crispiness) and the inside was softer a la firm tofu. Jlin I think you would heart this.

Ayam bali is Balinese chicken. It’s not too different from other bbq chicken – you can taste a little bit of citrus with a little bit of sweetness combined with that nice charcoaly flavor from the blackened skin. I had plenty of this one. Note that the servings were quite small and we had to get 3 to share amongst 6 people.

This looks so unassuming, so innocent. You probably think those are soybeans. You would be wrong. So, so wrong. Soybeans are nearly tastless. They are harmless and healthy and great as appetizers. These, my dear friends, are petai beans aka stink beans aka wow those are more bitter than bittermelon. Actually, they are more bitter than about 3 bittermelons put together and left to bitterfy overnight. I didn’t notice too much of the stink (I looked it up though, they are supposed to be way stinky) but WOW the taste. It’s saliva-inducing, makes your eyes crinkle, reach for your drink, wow wth is that, how do you make the taste go away bitter. I didn’t bother trying the shrimp. This one is done up with sambal btw. Shudder.

This looked like a pile of beans but was actually rendang – think beef curry. This was good, spicy, more fragrant than regular curry. Tasty enough but probably won’t spring for it again.

Ikan goreng balado or fried fish with chili sauce. This came out last and I was already grubbing on everything else. I tried a bit though and thought it was good. Very crispy with a thin coating of salty batter.

Each table also gets appetizers of chips with sambal and kalamansi. Singaporeans call kalamansi ‘limes’ which I found a bit confusing. Rice is served in single serving pyramids made of banana leaves and sealed with a toothpick. The entire bill for 6 people including tip and fruit drinks for everyone was SGD 133 (roughly USD 100). Not so so bad but def not an everyday thing.

The resident Indonesian thought the food was okay (and def liked the petai) but didn’t think things were spicy enough. A little too Chinese/Singaporean was the verdict. I liked it and if you come visit me, I might even take you there. 🙂

Pagi Sore: No. 88-90 Telok Ayer Street, Far East Square (Opp PWC Bldg) Singapore 048470


Written by joann

July 30, 2008 at 10:23 pm

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