The story of Patisserie Cle is both humbling and inspiring, two Singaporean ladies who learnt the art of making French patisserie in Paris, and return home to Singapore to set up their own online pastry shop, specialising in tarts, cakes and more.

I first heard about Patisserie Cle online because one of the two founders was from my school. It’s been exciting to watch the success of their confectionery journey (their seasonal fig tarts were really gorgeous!)

Over the weekend, I had the opportunity to try four of Patisserie Cle’s original tart creations.

The Tart Gift Box (Petite) consists of 4 flavours: Earl Grey Apple, Orh Blanc Tart, Cognac Caramel Chocolate Tart and the Passion Sesame Tart.

1. Earl Grey Apple Tart

This pretty tart was the first one that we tried. There was a generous amount of apple, almonds and a heavenly filling that tasted like frangipane. Although the earl grey flavour didn’t shine through and we thought the almonds could be baked a little longer, the tart tasted like comfort food, like a delicious almond croissant in tart form. Yum!

2. Passion Sesame Tart

I loved this classic lemony tart! The elegant flower-shaped part is made of a heavenly, creamy, pillowy and zesty mousse with an intense passionfruit centre. Under the yellow citrusy filling of the tart is a thin, slightly crunchy sesame base. I didn’t really taste the sesame until the last mouthful but that’s probably a good thing, otherwise the sesame might have detracted from the overall deliciousness of the tart’s citrus flavour. A winning tart for sure!

3. Cognac Caramel Chocolate Tart

This tart was heavenly. We ate it the next day but it was still fresh! The tart crust is coated in a thick, gratifying and generous salted caramel. And above, some sinfully good old chocolate. Nothing too sweet or overpowering, this tart goes down well with tea. I totally appreciate the effort that Patisserie Cle invested in creating this unique, pretty tart.

4. Orh Blanc Tart

This tart is beyond beautiful. Inspired by orh nee (a traditional Teochew yam paste dessert), it consists of fresh yam orh nee, coconut cream, vanilla chantilly and gingko nuts. It tastes just like something you’ll get from a French pastry shop. The tart was very creamy and nutty, like a twist to the classic Mont Blanc.

(On a side note, when I went to collect my tarts from Patisserie Clé in River Valley, I met two other customers in that short span of time – a testament to how good their desserts are! The second lady could not stop raving about her love for the Orh Blanc Tart.)

Now that you’ve read my review, discover and try out Patisserie Clé’s amazing tarts and cakes for yourself at www.patisserie-cle.com.

Many thanks again to Patisserie Clé for letting me have a taster of their delicious goodies!

Limited Edition Riz Labo Strawberry Soufflé Pancakes with Ice Cream, Whipped Cream and Strawberry Sauce [$20++]

Today’s my first time trying these pretty Japanese soufflé pancakes! I shared these with my mum 🍓 Decided to pay a visit after reading reviews of various new soufflé pancake places in Singapore and seeing Riz Labo being voted as the best in town.

Riz Labo Kitchen hails from Omotesando in Tokyo, Japan, some Japanese people work there so you know it’s pretty legit.

It’s located on level 4 within Japan Food Town at Wisma Atria, near the escalators. It’s taken over what was previously Bar Nippon, so the ambience is very bar-like and dark.

The pancakes are made fresh when you order, so we waited about 20 min for the pancakes.

The menu mentioned that the soufflé pancakes are made with egg whites, and Japanese organic, gluten-free rice flour which was promising! We did find that the pancakes were pretty eggy in terms of taste, colour and smell so there are probably lots of egg yolks involved 🤷🏻‍♀️ To me, the pancakes kind of taste like chiffon cake meets pancakes.

We thought the whipped cream would have been better if it was fresh, cold + real not artificial whipped cream. The vanilla ice cream (not strawberry as stated in the menu) went really well with the pancakes.

Personally, I thought the price of the pancakes was pretty steep for the ingredients involved and also it wasn’t that satisfying. Perhaps it’s the labour costs involved in making the pancakes that explains the price 🤷🏻‍♀️

PS. They don’t serve tap water. Recommend ordering the $3 refillable English tea if you don’t have any water.

There’s a new Taiwanese bubble tea store in town, and it’s called The Moment. Each cup has a very philosophical saying printed on: “We remember the moments not the days”.

Located just outside Telok Ayer MRT Exit B (formerly the now-defunct poke place, Pololi Singapore).

I ordered the Matcha Latte with Red Bean and Pearls [$5.90].

I was contemplating getting the famous bamboo charcoal grey milk tea, but after reading reviews saying it was expensive and bland, I decided to go with my gut and ordered this instead with pearls.

It’s a really good combo, I love the delicious, generous amount of chewy red bean and pearls. I had no complaints! Let me know in the comments what’s your favourite drink at The Moment ☺️

Took me 7 days to finish this massive 471-page tome! The Night Tiger is a unique mystery novel set in 1930s Perak, Malaysia during the colonial era. The main plot involves 11 year old Chinese servant boy Ren’s secret mission to find and return a missing disembodied finger to his master’s grave within 49 days, or else his spirit will roam the earth for eternity. Intertwined with Ren’s story is the story of our protagonist, Ji Lin, a young woman who moonlights as a dancehall hostess to pay off her mother’s mahjong debts and her misadventures in love. Throughout the book, deaths occur under mysterious circumstances.

While Yangsze Choo expertly weaves in Chinese and Malay myths of weretigers and dream-eating tapirs, we see dual worlds in this book converge: the worlds of the living and the dead, the worlds of the masters and the servants, the worlds of boys and girls, the worlds of what is taboo and what is socially acceptable, and the worlds of dreams and reality.

One of my favourite lines is: “The European werewolf is a man who, when the moon is full, turns his skin inside out and becomes a beast. He then leaves the village and goes into the forest to kill. But for the natives here, the weretiger is not a man, but a beast who, when he chooses, puts on human skin and comes from the jungle into the village to prey on humans. It’s almost exactly the reverse situation, and in some ways more disturbing.”

The Night Tiger is very much historical fiction mixed with magical realism. I’m not the most patient reader so the book felt like a long, occasionally confusing and repetitive, meandering trek through a forest with no end in sight, observing every leaf and investigating every sound along the way.. I felt that the characters were better written than the plot which felt a little thin at times.

The story was a lot slower in pace than anticipated and at times, most of the book could have been better edited for conciseness. Having said that, Yangsze Choo is a hardworking storyteller with a vivid imagination and admirable ability to write.

Some books that remind me of The Night Tiger are: Life of Pi, Midnight’s Children and Crazy Rich Asians.

First and foremost, They Told Us To Move is an important piece of Singapore history.

They Told Us to Move is a collection of interviews, reflections and short essays about many elderly Singaporean residents who had to relocate from Dakota (one of Singapore’s oldest public housing estates) to Cassia Crescent and the volunteers from the Cassia Resettlement Team who provided support during this relocation process.

This book gives a voice to a segment of society whose opinions are often unheard and ignored – the elderly.

It provides clear insight into how the elderly are not sickly and frail people we can just cast aside and forget about.

The older generation like us have their own vivid lives and memories and connections to the community. Their lived experiences and stories are just as important as ours. And in the face of adversity, change and loneliness, they prove to be really resilient in character and are pretty hopeful and optimistic about their new lives and memories, even when their important ties to the community around them are removed, and their homes in which they have lived in for so many decades are pulled down to make way for economic redevelopment.

They Told Us to Move is a bittersweet call to arms, to think about what we want Singapore society to be, and to acknowledge and embrace the community around us and to extend a helping hand to our neighbours.

They Told Us to Move: Dakota—Cassia edited by Ng Kok Hoe and the Cassia Resettlement Team published by Ethos Books (2019)

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