Friday, September 5, 2008

Yin & Yang

"My passionate hunger for food is fed by my greedy nature ."
And when I say greedy I mean I choose to eat alot. At times I feel guilty for my indulgences - and this was the case yesterday when I grabbed lunch at the Amoy Street Food Centre in Singapore's Tanjong Pagar district - an area that is rich in its mix of the old and the new. There are many offices within this area which still houses many heritage shop houses. And so you get an eclectic mix of the office crowd as well as the older generation locals at lunchtime. Faced with the overwhelming choice in this area, I realised that there was no way I could make do with just sampling one dish in this hawker centre - and what better way to overcome this by having two lunches in one?
Of course, being the philisophical glutton that I am, I decide to ease the guilt of my greed by applying the principles of the yin and the yang to my choice of grub. And so I started with something healthy - a roasted chicken and pumpkin wholemeal tortilla wrap from All Natural Kitchen. This relative newcomer stands out from the sea of sodium and cholesterol in the hawker centre by offering all natural ingredients in low fat, low carb, low everything meals. The wrap was filled with very moist roast chicken, sweet roasted pumpkin, cos lettuce, fresh tomatoes and a yoghurt dressing. Fresh, generous and well priced (S$5.50) fare for those craving for a lunch that does less damage to your arteries.

Still feeling peckish, I decided on the other extreme for the second course of my lunch - a glistening plate of Singapore char kway teow (from one of the oldest stalls in the food centre that was simply named after the dish itself) - flash fried flat rice noodles with egg, bean sprouts, lup cheong and fish cake. This popular local dish had a good charred flavour (or "wok hei" which the Chinese refer to as the unique taste that can only be achieved by a strong stove fire and a well seasoned wok) but was overly greasy. Still, I lapped it up fervently, with guilt lingering at the back of my mind which I eased with thoughts of my starter to the meal.
I finished my lunch satisfied - and surprisingly not as full as the amount of food would suggest. Yes, I over indulged again - and I probably could have only had one of the two meals. But my lunch embodied everything about a delicately balanced meal... from the new age wrap to the old school char kway teow, from guilt free eating to guilt laden decadence.
"And anyway, everybody knows that there is no yin without a good dose of yang."


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