Authentic Turkish food can be found in the new Bedok Mall adding spice and sweetness to the heartland
As if the East side isn’t already filled with enough good food, Ottoman Kebab & Grill opened in Bedok Mall. Yes, you are hearing envy from a very jealous Westie.
The restaurant is helmed by a native Turkish chef with over ten years of culinary experience, Chef Ali Kose. He worked as a sous-chef in Gordon Ramsay’s Michelin-starred restaurant, Maze, in London. Now, he serves his hometown specials at Ottoman.
A Turkish Treat
The cheery setting of the restaurant is illuminated by tinted blown-glass lights. There is also a large wood and white marble table that helps toconvey a convivial feeling.
The food is decidedly authentic, with an excellent Homous ($6). The chef’s chickpea dip is creamy but not overly so with a good balance of tahini – ground sesame paste, lime juice and garlic, perfect for mopping up with the homemade Pide Flat Bread ($2). The flat bread is cooked over lava stones for a char-grilled aroma before serving.
My favourite was the humble Falafel ($5 for three). I am quite often disappointed by the falafels I get in Singapore, because most of them are stale and oily, but not the one at Ottoman. It was fresh and a good texture from the ground chickpeas and fava beans.
If you like spring rolls you could try the Cheese Borek ($6 for six), which is essentially a fried popiah filled with cheese.
Kebabs & More Delights
What’s Turkish cuisine without a mutton dish? The Iskender Mutton Kebab ($18.50) is, surprisingly, not as gamey as expected and can be shared by two to three people.
The minced mutton patties are grilled before they are placed atop pide bread croutons and slathered with a sauce made from sun-dried tomatoes, celery, carrots, shallots and dried mint before being topped with yoghurt.
Should you have a large number of people in your group, you could share the Ottoman Shish Platter ($29), which comes with chicken, beef and seafood, with pilav rice and pide bread.
Ottoman also carries an array of authentic Turkish desserts such as the Kunefe ($8.50), a bee hoon-like dish with stretchy nabulsi goat cheese in a shredded filo pastry, pan fried with butter and drizzled with sugar syrup and crushed pistachios. There is no scent from the goat cheese whatsoever; take it from someone who hates goat cheese.
End the meal with a strong cup of Turkish Coffee ($4) or sweet Apple Tea ($3) for a proper close to a Turkish meal.
Ottoman Kebab & Grill, Bedok Mall, 311 New Upper Changi Road, #01-75, Singapore 467360, Tel: 6702 4031
By Cheryl Chia