Any sane person might simply hop onto bus 10 or 14 from Tanah Merah MRT station and head towards Dann’s Daily located opposite Bedok Food Centre. But no, I chose to walk all the way in for a good 20 minutes in that lovely sunny weather which was surprising me with a heat wave as compared to last month’s severe deluge. I knew I simply had to take it positively. Its just a little bit of a work out.
After trekking past rows of private residences, I arrived at Dann’s Daily Pescetarian Cafe. I guess the first thing that many would do is to google up the word “Pescetarian”. To what I found out, being Pescetarian simply means enjoying a diet of vegetables and seafood. At Dann’s Daily Pescetarian Cafe, the dishes are revolved around this specific cuisine choice with emphasis strongly centered on bringing out the natural flavours of the ingredients.
The cafe is named after Dann, the sprightly 6 year old boy who simply couldn’t stop moving. And after meeting Christina and Xing, parents of Dann and chef-owners of the quaint establishment, their cuisine choice was strongly motivated by their young son who enjoys everything green and from the sea but meat. To Christina’s belief, a little more selective eating daily makes a difference, and for that little difference a person’s day is made. And to my tastebuds after the spread, I was definitely well sated, and definitely delighted.
A very interesting choice to start off with would be the Chef’s Mood of the Day. You simply will never know what is the latest creation Christina has up her sleeve. And it is one choice that changes constantly. Sunday’s Chef’s Mood by Christina brought out a dish of Chilled Rice Vermicelli Salad. I took the first bite, and was wowed. The taste was surprisingly complex, in the manner of chilled noodles with that selective crunch and firm bite. The flavours are evenly spread in areas of the creamy, the nutty, the savoury, and the sweet. Refreshing and bright, this was almost perfection after that long walk in the sun. And, I have to admit, that though every dish by any chef is subjective, if you can feel the heart that went into the creation, you will be able to truly enjoy the entire experience be it from the flavours, the textures, the temperature, and the ingredients.
For something a little more traditional, there is the selection of Potato Apple Salad which is also nicely created and served chilled. Sweet, with full bodied texture from the potatoes, this makes an excellent starter.
Another Chef’s Mood of the Day was the Chicky Rice Christina was experimenting with. Meant to recreate the experience from having Chicken Rice, a combination of brown and wild rice, garlic, ginger, olive oil, japanese cucumbers were used. Fluffy, with a well deserved bite throughout, this was an apt choice for a light flavourful introduction.
Two Thumbs up go for the Vegetable and Tofu Curry at Dann’s Daily. Today curry is made from Tau Kwa, Tau Pok, Tau Kee. The Beancurd, the beancurd puff, and the beancurd sheets. I admire the way in which the beancurd sheets were first soaked and then knotted before cooking. It gave a very thorough meaty texture with a slight salty taste that was very palatable. The curry itself was slightly spicy with a hint of sweetness embracing it. A set of Brown and Wild Rice with a serving of Curry goes for $10. Very nice I say.
And if you prefer to go for something to munch while enjoying the afternoon sun while cozying up to a very good book, there are Toasties to have. The Prawn Avocado Toasties ($5) is made using fresh prawns, with slices of avocado, sour cream in between pieces of wholemeal bread and toasted to that nice brown perfection. Simple satisfaction.
For something a little more savoury and spicy, this is the Otah Toasties. Fresh otah stuffed between slices of wholemeal bread and layered with japanese cucumber. Yummy!
I must marvel at the Fish Soup ($8) from Dann’s Daily. The fish stock is left to simmer overnight, allowing a tasty combination of savoury seafood rich flavours well spread all over. Before serve, slices of mackerel (I had salmon as they ran out of mackerel) are cooked with a portion of the stock.
And for a textural contrast and taste highlight, fresh greens are also cooked and served with the soup. It is perhaps this bright light tasting flavours of leaves and the earthy mushrooms which compel this serving of Fish Soup to be an enjoyable experience through and through.
When I first entered the cafe, it was hard not to notice the tray of steamed cupcakes in three different colours sitting patiently under a cover waiting to be eaten.
I started off my dessert list with the Gula Melaka Steamed Cupcake with Gula Melaka Frosting ($4). This is one indulgent muffin that screams to be had. The frosting tantalizes tastebuds with the first touch of gula melaka fragrance, followed by the shavings of fresh coconut and lastly the muffin itself – almost too good to resist. For every fork that went into the cupcake, a waft of palm sugar aroma leaves. Mmmm.
For a classic, there is the Chocolate Banana Steamed Cupcake ($3). Traditional, not too sweet tasting, and with a chocolate topping that melts its way beautifully down the sides.
If the first two cupcakes bore you, and there is an itching to get creative, you never know if you might get inspired from Dann’s cupcake of the day – Dragonfruit Steamed Cupcake ($3.50). Naturally light tasting with bits of dragonfruit seeds scattered randomly throughout, it is the texture and colour which really gets to me.
A replacement for Ice Cream was interestingly dished up as a serving of Chilled Steamed Tapioca with Gula Melaka. Very traditional, and something I believe my grandma will enjoy.
In the husband and wife team, Christina cooks the food, and Xing whips up the drinks. Xing, being the coffee lover, recently discovered this coffee free creation called Teecino. It is non acidic, caffeine free and a herbal coffee alternative as it is neither tea or coffee but an alkaline drink. I had the Teecino with Vanilla and that is in addition to the Teecino itself being Creamy Vanilla accented by golden roasted almonds, dates and figs. A drink with simply No Coffee Beans used at all.
Christina recommended from the start that I should have a go at the Soy Chia Chia ($7). The plant Chia is grown commercially for its seeds which is rich in Omega 3 fatty acids. The seeds when soaked become gelatinous with a texture akin to that of the selasih seed. Christina made the Soy Chia Chia with a combination of soy milk, chia seeds, and with sweetness accented from Nectar and Karob. A cool refreshing drink that can be a meal replacement as it is very filling. Tasting portion depicted above.
But for the traditionalists who love their fruit juices, I had the Pear Calamansi ($6.50) Juice which is all natural with no added ingredients. Refreshingly tart with the subtle pear sweetness, this must be enjoyed quick.
Dann’s Daily is located in the quiet suburbs of Eastwood Centre at Eastwood Road. An afternoon tea, to even settling in for a late brunch or dinner party would definitely be ideal. And for the four month old cafe, there is surprisingly a very rich history behind it. Be it from the love story of the couple, to the very dishes created, each creation is a product of passion for what the two believe in. There is a philosophy behind the cafe and it is A little Daily Makes A Difference, A little Difference Makes Your Day. For a gourmet adventure of unique creations.
Many Thanks to Hazel from Thox for the invitation. Thank you Christina and Xing from Dann’s Daily for hosting the dining experience.
|Dann’s Daily Pescetarian Cafe
20 Eastwood Road
#01-06 Eastwood Centre
(opposite Bedok Food Centre)Opens from : 9am
Closed on Mondays
Travel By bus : 10,14,45,531