Review: Verde Kitchen Serves Up Some Excellent Healthy Asian Food

Review: Verde Kitchen Serves Up Some Excellent Healthy Asian Food

A great take on Asian cuisine, Verde Kitchen’s locally farmed ingredients and fresh flavours are a treat for both the tastebuds and body

Opened in March 2018, Verde Kitchen is a small eatery tucked away on the second floor of Hilton Singapore. With 50% of their menu utilising locally farmed ingredients such as organic vegetables, floating fish farms and lacto chicken, you can rest assured that your meal won’t take as much a toll on the environment as well. What’s more, 60% of their seafood dishes are made from sustainable seafood sources!

The menu changes quarterly, and this menu was launched in February to celebrate Earth Hour on 28 March, and Earth Day on 22 April. 

Starting off with the Seared Scallop Salad ($14/$24), you’ll notice the U.S. scallops with a beautifully seared crust and sprinkling of sesame seeds all over. The scallops are tender, sweet and perfectly cooked with the middle still slightly translucent.

It’s a gorgeous dish, with plenty of colour from the watercress and the slices of capsicum. With the watercress, you get a slight hint of bitterness that’s offset by the sweetness from the capsicum.

There’s plenty of crunch as well, with snow peas and asparagus chunks adding to the dish. The miso dressing is incredibly light, adding an earthiness while ensuring that the dish doesn’t feel too heavy.

If you’re looking for something with a bit of bite, the Kerabu Salad ($20) is a winner. Made with lacto chicken, ginger flower, cabbage, lemongrass, carrot and spices, this tangy and spicy salad is insanely appetising. You get tender strips of chicken that came from the Kee Song Brothers’ farm in Malaysia, crunch from the carrots and onions as well as a nutty flavour from the chopped peanuts sprinkled atop.

Cleanse your palate with the Peranakan “Itek Tim” Soup ($12) made with locally farmed lacto duck. You get that immediate hit of saltiness from the preserved vegetables, which subsides into a savouriness from the duck as well as a hit of acidity from the cubed tomatoes. I found myself scraping the bottom of the bowl with my spoon to get every last drop.

There are a few options for mains, but let’s start with the Grilled Tandoori Organic Lacto Chicken Wrap ($27). Wrapped in a tortilla, you get chunks of chicken that hold a good amount of flavour thanks to the spices that were usedto marinade it. There’s also great texture thanks to the addition of cucumbers and onions, as well as some freshness from pickled vegetables to cut through the spice of the chicken.

The dish comes with a yoghurt mint dressing, which I found more tangy than minty, but it did help to add some moisture to the wrap. It might have been better if the dressing was already incorporated with the wrap, although I can see that it might make the tortilla soggy if not eaten in time. Diners also get a choice of salad or sweet potato chips with the wrap.

But the standout dish was truly the Vietnamese Pho ($28). Once the bowl of piping hot pho is set in front of you, just pick up the spoon and take a sip of the broth. Possibly one of the most flavourful broths I’ve tried, I found the soup depleting at a much faster rate than the noodles. There’s definitely a reason why this dish is one of Verde Kitchen’s signatures.

Aside from the absolutely delectable soup, the noodles were springy and not overcooked. The slices of beef were tender and had a strong beef flavour which complemented the soup. The beef meatballs were bouncy, and contrasted well against the snap of the beansprouts.

If you’re in the mood for seafood though, the Almond-crusted Salmon ($34) is gluten-free andhas a wealth of flavours. The flakey fillet of salmon is crusted generously with crushed almonds, before being browned on top. You get an intense nuttiness from the almonds, but also a slight sweetness. The fish sits on top of a green pea mash, which is creamy and adds a beautiful, vibrant pop of colour.

On the side, you get an arugula salad topped with crumbled feta cheese, which provides that herbaceous freshness and spice to brighten up the dish. The salad is dressed with coconut oil which contains plenty of healthy saturated fats and definitely is a better option for the health-conscious.

Finish off the meal with a dessert, but even the desserts here don’t make you feel as if you’re restricting yourself. The Flourless Chocolate Cake ($14) might sound as if it won’t be as satisfying, but it’s surprisingly rich and moist, while never feeling as if it’s too dense. The cake itself isn’t too sweet either, but mix in the dollops of jam sitting on top and you’ll get a fruity sweetness that brings the whole dish together.

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