$400 for a 6-course puffer fish meal?

We all know about the horrors of fugu, better known as the puffer fish. This fish is more poisonous than cyanide – now, is it worth the risk?

Fuku stands amid a stretch of eateries along Mohammad Sultan Road. It looked unassuming and homely, with dim lighting and lighthearted music playing as we walked into the establishment. Each of the dishes in our meal featured the fugu but prepared differently.

Deep Fried Fugu
The most savoury of all the dishes served, the Deep Fried Fugu was a welcome appetizer to the bland course after

The dependable deep-fry

A favourite for most, the Deep Fried Fugu is crispy and fragrant on the outside while maintaining a meaty fleshy bite inside. The bland taste of fugu makes this form of preparation well-liked by most seasoned taste buds. It was the tastiest on the menu, as the rest of the dishes had little to no memorable flavour.

Lightly Boiled Fugu Skin
The Lightly Boiled Fugu Skin was quite tasteless, dipping it in any sauce would overpower its taste entirely

A taste barely there

The Lightly Boiled Fugu Skin was tasteless. When we dipped it on the complementing sauces, it got overpowered and it felt as if we were simply sauce-tasting instead.

By now, four courses of fugu have passed and each left a weaker impression than the last. It led my dining partner to conclude that it could be the risk of fugu that people seek, not so much the taste. I suppose taste is secondary when you get to try a dish that skirts with death.

Thinly Sliced Fugu Sashimi
The most dangerous dish of all, the Thinly Sliced Fugu Sashimi promises to be extremely well-prepared and safe for consumption

The best for last

Now for the famous – we were served the thinly sliced Fugu sashimi, once referred to as gun-powder because of its instantaneous death if not prepared right. The thin slices were presented in a blossom atop an intricately presented on a patterned plate, making it a beautiful translucent yet detailed arrangement.

For this dish, it was vital to pair it with the complementing ingredients. There is a selection of strips of blanched fugu skin, Japanese spring onion, ponzu sauce with spicy radish and shoyu sauce with wasabi. These condiments are much-needed enhancers to the otherwise limply bland fugu.

By Nicole Lee

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