Shelling-out Our Shellfish
Shellfish are the culinary world’s proof of why you should never judge a book by its cover. Trust me when I say this, there are people who refuse to eat shellfish just because of the way it looks. I do not blame them, though. If you think about it, shellfish do kind of look like they come from another planet. Well, it’s their loss then. Shellfish are actually some of the best seafood dishes you can find.
Here’s my argument for why shellfish is THE superior seafood, as compared to fish and others. First of all, did you know that the shell of shellfish are often cooked together with the dish, even though it may not be present in the dish at serving? Let me tell you why. Most of these shells release a sweet and umami flavour when cooked, bringing the taste of your dish up a notch. (HIGHLY DISCOURAGED FOR DESSERTS)
Shellfish are also among the most versatile of foods, as there are infinite ways you can use it in cooking. Use it as the main component, use it as a flavour enhancer, as a statement of luxury, as a staple food, or even as a decoration (think lobster shells). Bet you have never seen anyone using chicken bones as decor for food, amirite?
Finally, shellfish are abundant. Fine, maybe Singapore is an exception. After all, we are a relatively small island. But in the grand scale of things, shellfish are literally everywhere (not in the jungle though). They may very well be the next best alternative for those who want to consume meat, instead of fish.
Now, I shall relieve you of your suspense. Here are some shellfish ideas for your next trip to the seafood restaurant!
The lobster is a top-tier shellfish, second only to abalone in the pecking order. Full of meat that is a delectable blend of sweet and savoury, the lobster is more meat than shell and more value than price. Another perk of lobsters is that they are always cooked fresh since they release an enzyme that quickly decays their meat once they are no longer alive. Tian Wei Seafood has opted for garlic to go with their lobsters. The sharp taste of garlic adds a kick to the lobster meat without stealing the limelight, making for a strong yet luxurious tasting masterpiece.
Recommended dishes: Signature Garlic Lobster / Signature Chilli Lobster
Ever heard of the saying “The world is your oyster”? Now you have. There is a reason people use oysters as an adjective for something good. In fact, it is so good that people often prefer to have oysters raw. If raw oysters are too much for your palate, have it with a dash of freshly squeezed lemon juice or even Tabasco sauce for a spicier affair. In case that doesn’t intrigue you enough, oysters also apparently cause the increased production of our “happy” hormones, ensuring that you satisfy not only your taste buds but also your mind. Tian Wei Seafood puts a fruity twist on raw oysters, topping them with yuzu and wasabi, to give it a spicy tang that is sure to excite your taste buds.
Recommended dishes: Yuzu Wasabi Oyster / Pumpkin Cheese Oyster
There’s a reason chilli crab is widely considered to be Singapore’s national dish. Simply put, it’s out-of-this-world, finger-licking delicious. There are so many sauces that go well with crab, like the aforementioned chilli sauce, salted egg, black pepper, mala sauce…and the list goes on – you get the idea. Crabs are so delicious that they might even own their own restaurant somewhere deep under the sea.
Recommended dishes: Mala Crab / Chilli Crab
Now that your keyboard is soaked with drool, it’s time to do yourself a favour and satisfy yourself with some shellfish. Life is short, stop procrastinating, start shellfishing!