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Putien: The authentic taste of Fujian

Putien’s Pen Cai serves the freshest ingredients straight from Putian, China
Putien’s Pen Cai serves the freshest ingredients straight from Putian, China
Putien’s Pen Cai serves the freshest ingredients straight from Putian, China

Savour authentic dishes from a little town called Putian, in the Fujian province of China, here in Singapore

By Brandon Era

Nestled along the shop houses of Kitchener Road, a quaint little restaurant beckoned to me, standing apart from the rest of the shops along the busy lane.

With a posh interior and friendly staff to show me to my seat, my culinary journey at Putien was just about to begin.

Abundant Pot of Goodies

I was first introduced to the head chef, Billy, and the philosophy behind the cuisine at Putien.

With a humble beginning in the year 2000, Putien serves cuisine from the Fujian Province in China – characteristically light, down-to-earth and flavourful food with an emphasis on fresh ingredients.

This last point really shone in the dish we sampled, which was the “Pot of Goodies” (ranging from $228 to $468, depending on the size and ingredients), or more widely known as Pen Cai.

With fresh ingredients from Putian, China, this delectable dish consists of fish maw, sea cucumber, dried clams, dried scallops and, of course, abalone.

Each of the ingredients, as we were told by the head chef, was individually cooked before being carefully layered in a clay pot to be simmered in stock for eight hours.

With the amount of preparation and dedication that went into the dish, it was by no means a let-down. Now, I must confess that I’m no expert when it comes to Chinese cuisine but the flavour and the taste of the food was excellent to me.

I enjoyed the fact that the seafood was cooked thoroughly, removing the grainy and sandy feeling I usually associate with shellfish.

A Prosperous Start

With the Lunar New Year upon us, I’ve had my fair share of Yu Sheng, or Lo Hei, but the one at Putien had a slight twist to it.

The Prosperity Yu Sheng (ranging from $26.80 to $49.80, depending on size) had the signature Putien seaweed adorning the dish, along with the usual raw fish (salmon in this dish) and shredded carrots.

It added an invigorating and different texture to the dish on the whole and I feel that it’s worth a taste this Lunar New Year.

Putien Restaurant, 127 Kitchener Road, Singapore 208514, Tel: 6749 6338