- Singapore Press Holdings
Pineapple tarts, love letter wafer biscuits, yusheng and endless questions about when you’re going to get married. For some people, the excitement of the Chinese New Year (CNY) festivities has been watered down by repetitive routines (and nosy relatives) over the years.
Here’s an idea. To change things up this year, why not inject some fun with unusual CNY snacks found only in Singapore?
These unique CNY goodies sold at Singapore’s bakeries and restaurants are guaranteed to get your relatives talking about something other than your relationship status this year.
1. Gigantic pineapple tart
- Goodwood Park Hotel
If you thought there was nothing that could be better than your favourite pineapple tarts, try these insanely gigantic versions of the CNY snack.
Goodwood Park Hotel is offering giant 6.5-inch pineapple tarts named “The Huat! Tart” for the second year running.
Weighing 500g each, the tart is filled with homemade pineapple jam and topped off with the Mandarin character “發” (fa) – colloquially pronounced as “huat” – which means good fortune.
This pineapple tart rendition – priced at S$48 nett – is available for takeaway at the hotel’s pastry and cake shop The Deli.
2. Foie gras pineapple tarts
- Facebook / Sofitel Singapore City Centre
Talk about fancy.
In anticipation of the Lunar New Year, Sofitel Singapore City Centre is offering pineapple tarts handcrafted by its executive pastry chef Sam Leong.
They come in two flavours – Malibu Pineapple Tart and Light Foie Gras Pineapple Tart – both priced at S$38 (excluding GST), and there are 30 tarts in each box.
To get them, you’ll have to place an order on the hotel’s website and collect them yourself at the hotel any time between Jan 21 and Feb 22.
3. Black pepper crab and baked prawn peanuts
- Sean Lim / Business Insider
The Nutkins, a new Singapore snack start-up, just launched these flavoured peanut snacks inspired by local flavours.
There’s no need to remove any peanut shell and leave a mess on the table when eating the two new flavours – black pepper crab and baked prawn – priced at S$5 each.
According to the The Nutkins, the products were officially launched on Jan 1 this year and are being sold via retailers such as Redmart and Honestbee.
- Sean Lim / Business Insider
4. Lion dance cake
There’s a cake for every occasion – and CNY is no exception.
Swensen’s – a restaurant chain well-loved for its ice cream and cake – just launched a new CNY-themed ice cream cake “Tong Tong Qiang”.
Available from Jan 15 to Feb 19, the 1kg cake costs S$68.80 and is recommended for 10 to 12 persons.
The cake is available in limited quantities – 88 to be exact – and is available for purchase in stores or online.
5. Unicorn yusheng
Yusheng – also known as lo hei – made to look like Chinese Zodiac animals has been rising in popularity over the years. But Habitat – Honestbee’s grocery and dining supermarket – is taking it up a notch by making yusheng that looks like the mythical unicorn.
It’s made up of an assortment of ingredients – shredded greens, carrot, red cabbage, pickled sweet winter melon, pickled red ginger, pickled silver onion, mochi, lotus root chips, crispy yam, pok chui crackers and candied bacon – and comes with chopsticks explaining the meaning behind the lo hei process.
The yusheng is sold at Habitat’s Fresh Beets stall at prices starting from S$38.80 to S$80.80, depending on size and bundle category.
But you’ll have to be quick. It is only available for pre-order – which can be done in person or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org – until Feb 18, 5pm.
If unicorns are too otherworldly for you, there is also a piglet yusheng for sale.
6. Salted egg crab and chilli crab tempura
- Facebook / The Golden Duck Co. – Singapore
Is this an upgrade of Singapore’s well-loved salted egg yolk potato chips and fish skins?
In September last year, Singapore-based The Golden Duck (TGD) added two new items to its collection – Singapore Chilli Crab Seaweed Tempura and Singapore Salted Egg Crab Seaweed Tempura.
These new snacks have been described by TGD co-founder Chris Hwang as “bold squares of tempura-coated seaweed”.
In a statement provided to Business Insider, the company, which is barely three years old, said that it took a whole year to “refine and perfect” the recipes.
According to TGD, the snacks have “bits and pieces containing actual crab meat”.
They are priced at S$7 each and available at The Golden Duck’s eight retail outlets.
A quick check on The Golden Duck’s website shows that both snacks are already sold out online. So if you’re interested, you might want to submit your email address to be notified when they are in stock.
Otherwise, you can get them through TGD’s Chinese New Year gift set, priced at S$50 without a plushie and S$68 with a plushie.
7. Dragon fruit bread
If you live for carbs, this hongbao (red packet) might just be better than the real one.
This year, restaurant Antoinette is selling dragon fruit-flavoured bread filled with a whole bunch of stuffings such as black sugar mochi, pork floss, salted egg, candied sweet potatoes, candied yam and fried shallots.
The Lunar New Year bread is made using a French poolish and Japanese water roux method, and costs S$10 for in small and S$25 for a large version.
8. Golden egg yusheng
Antoinette’s S$88 Queen’s Yu Sheng is like a piñata – except you’re breaking a golden egg that hides a delectable fruit yusheng within its shell.
Instead of shredded vegetables and raw fish, opening the chocolate egg reveals honey pineapple, Thai green mango, red dragon fruit, pomelo and mandarin orange.
All of this sits on a variety of fanciful accompaniments – gold chocolate ingots and coins, almonds and cashews, mandarin orange butter cake, meringue kisses, and yam and sweet potato chips. Drizzle these ingredients with the provided dressing of mandarin orange, plum and gula melaka for a unique dessert yusheng.
You will also get a wooden hammer for dramatic effect.
9. Drum of Fortune cake
- Goodwood Park Hotel
Goodwood Park Hotel’s Drum of Fortune cake really does cost quite a fortune, but based on looks alone, we reckon it’s totally worth it.
For S$108, you’ll get a 1.3kg chocolate marble cake coated with fondant and eight Mandarin oranges and mini chocolate ingots on top.
Just like the giant pineapple tart, this cake is available for takeaways at The Deli as well.
10. Bak kwa cookies and pineapple tarts
Bak kwa and cookies are two sinful food items many can’t resist – but what would it taste like when the two are combined?
Old Seng Choong, which calls itself the “home of Singaporean inspired cookies” is offering a tin of Smokey Bakwa Cookies for S$17.82.
This snack is made with smokey and sweet BBQ sauce, garlic and coriander.
Other unique Singapore-inspired cookie flavours you can get here include goreng pisang, cereal prawn, hae bee hiam, satay, laksa, bak kut teh, putu mayam and curry.
Also on its Chinese New Year menu is Yuzu Pineapple Tarts, Salted Egg Yolk Pineapple Tarts and Chargold Bakwa Pineapple Tarts. Yes, you read that right – bak kwa in a pineapple tart.
This glittery sweet treat contains pineapple jam mixed with slivers of bak kwa and costs S$23.84 for a box of 10.
11. Irvins Salted Egg crunchy rolls and pineapple tart
- Facebook / Irvins Salted Egg
No matter how many different iterations, salted egg yolk will always have a special place in the hearts of Singaporeans.
Irvins’ new Salted Egg Crunchy Rolls are made by deep-frying layers of popiah skin which the company promises will produce “the ultimate crunch so IG worthy”.
Another new product – Salted Egg Pineapple Tart – is meant to be popped inside a microwave for eight seconds so it produces a salted egg ooze.
According to Irvins Salted Egg’s Facebook page, the rolls are available at all Singapore outlets except pop-ups at Jurong Point, Waterway Point & Tampines Mall. But the pineapple tarts are only available exclusively at Plaza Singapura, Raffles Xchange, Takashimaya Sqaure and Orchard Gateway.
- Looking for new banknotes for CNY? You can now reserve them online
- Starbucks Singapore’s new CNY merchandise is so cute, fans will want to hog them all
- Tribecar is opening its S$2 car rental service to new drivers, just in time for Chinese New Year
- Singaporeans spent 2 million hours watching CNY-related videos on YouTube last year, Google says
- Lazada Malaysia selling CNY dates with handsome bachelors for RM8,888.88 – and they’ve all been snapped up within two days
- Planning to travel during CNY? Now’s the best time to book your tickets, Expedia says
Find out what else is happening for Chinese New Year 2019 here.