Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Norwegian Seafood Fest

I have a dream, a song to help me cope, with anything.....I believe in angels, something good in everything I see.... - Scandinavian Pop Group of the 70s.

Yeah, unlike SOME JETSETTERS, I can only dream of this scene.

(Photo courtesy of Gard, friend of AWOL)

Alas, the closest thing I've come to Norway is probably Ikea, and the closest glacial experience I've had was an old refrigerator with no frost free function. Such is the life of a peasant. So, you can imagine my delight, when Hooi Khaw (what would I do without this dear lady? My life would have a dearth of worthy eating invitation) invited us to the Annual Norwegian Seafood Fest at the Mandarin Oriental. Us meaning Masak Masak, who couldn't make it, AWHIFFOFLEMONGRASS (Voted for her yet or not? If not, too late, forever hold your piss), CUMI& CIKI, and ME, the FBB.

The mother of all seafood buffets, she said it was going to be. And boy, was she right.

Sometimes, it pays not to pay attention to details. I don on a casual shirt, and slacks, and brave the Friday evening traffic jam headed into town, and arrive 10 minutes late, but obviously, the Europeans are very punctual, and the foyer of the ballroom was already packed (like canned salmon) to the brim with gentlemen in suits and tuxedos, and ladies in ballgowns. FORTUNATELY, Cumi& Ciki were also dressed like me, ie, the rabble. Why it pays is, as Ciki pointed out, it would look odd if I were in a suit with a camera, snapping away. So twas a blessing that we were casually dressed, and looked the part of PRESS. AWOL of course is always dressed for a ball, so she fitted in quite well with the rest of the ladida.

As part of the PRESS, (actually, we were very blessed, out of 600 odd guests, there were only us 4 motley food bloggers), we were allowed into the ballroom to photograph the untouched buffet. Time spent on reconnaisance is never wasted, says the old army adage.

A shrimp platter that could have fed a hungry Orca. When we did eventually get to demolishing this hemisphere of prawny delight, yeah, it was good, and went well with the sour cream dressing.

Samples of Norwegian seafood produce on display. These were the raw ingredients, but all of them had been used in some way or other in the huge array of stuff that laid before us. If I was a piscetarian, I think I might have thought I was in Paradise. Heck, I WAS IN PARADISE.

We were to discover that salmon can take on many forms. Sashimi, obviously....

Lots of interesting decorative items. The Indian elephants hung above the Salmon Tandoori.

Salmon Tandoori. Yup, no Asian cuisine was spared in the fusioning of Salmon. There was even Salmon Satay, which I forgot to photograph.

I wonder who first thought of serving these horse divorce (hors douvres?) in little chinese soup spoons. Very quaint, but what a nightmare to wash up. At least its environmentally friend and recyclable. These were topped with a gorgeous sauce made with liquid nitrogen. Made by these chappies. Whom Ciki wasted no time in getting acquainted with.

The flying culinary circus. Apparently this troupe of chefs travel the world to perform their culinary magic.

Its not a pizza. Some salmon tartare dish. Lovely tangy sauce.

Platters and platters of Salmon. I began to feel like spawning.

Salmon with Olives

Salmon smoked in more ways that you can say Dunhill.

Some vegetables for the non fish eaters.

Sushi galore.

My vocabulary has run out for ways to describe salmon, but I actually think this was herring. Not so red.

Lobster salad. Or very large crayfish.

Poached quails eggs in salad. How lovely is that! I simply must try poaching quails eggs. Oh wait, too much work.

Copied from the Press Release

Chef Frank Naesheim’s seafood dinners have become the annual highlight of the Norwegian business community in Malaysia and Singapore. He has worked in two and three-star Michelin restaurants in France and was chef de cuisine at the Bagatelle in Oslo when it was awarded a Michelin star, the first restaurant in Norway to be honoured this way. Known as the Salmon King in Asia, Naesheim first came to work as executive chef at the Vikings Restaurant in Singapore in 1987. A few years later, he established Snorre Food Pte Ltd, to import quality Norwegian seafood and focused on promoting it in Asia. He launched cooking competitions, focusing on salmon, as part of the Salon Culinaire, a high-profiled Asian culinary event in Singapore. Naesheim’s Salmon King title is well deserved. He has written a cookbook, Norwegian Salmon in Asia, produced recipe booklets for salmon and organised the Salmon Buffet of the Century in Singapore. He has been guest chef in numerous food promotions in Asia and Norway. Naesheim has been serving on the Singapore Bocouse D’or committee since 2000 and is the director of Continental WACS Asia (World Association of Chefs Societies).

A lot of work goes into these events. I wonder if these sculptors have to sit in a freezing cold room to chisel away on these ice blocks. OR, are they made in moulds?

Just look at the ship....even complete with Poseidon's trident in the background.

Caviar, and lots of it. Okay, so it's not Beluga or Sevruga, but hey, a lot of baby fishies had to still give their lives okay.

Ciki was arguing with me if the dish at the buffet was crab or lobster. I insisted it was crab, but she said it was lobster. Ahem, I won. It was actually King Crab, similar to the Alaskan or Hokkaido deep water King Crab, and OH SOOOOOO DELICIOUS!!!!! It was done chinese style, ie, with salted egg yolk. YARMEEE. Forgot to take pics!

My first round.

They even had foie gras (free flow) on pieces of white fish. Halibut I think. I really should start taking notes if I aspire to be like Anton Ego.

Plump Juicy Scallops. I love scallops.

And there's always room for dessert.

Norwegian donuts.

Waffles. At this stage, one chooses unique desserts that do not occupy a lot of stomach space, so waffles wasn't high on the MUST TRY list.

Chocolate Lollipops, with a lovely mint filling. Had a few of these. Dark Choc, of course. I hate white choc, and milk is just too sweet.

Riskrem, a traditional Norwegian dessert, that is a bit like rice pudding. Very nice. Oh, and not photographed, but very yummy too was the cloudberry ice cream.

I dunno what these last two items are. Talk about slack blogging.

Anyway, I had a lovely time, but couldn't stay on for the rest of the proceedings, which included a performance by a norwegian diva, awards ceremony for best brand, (Digi won I think).

But really, it WAS the mother of all buffets. Again a special note of thanks to Hooi Khaw for so kindly inviting me. Meanwhile, I think I shall stay away from salmon for a few months. But let's keep spawning ya.


Lyrical Lemongrass said...

The first pic is too funny lah! You da woman, tangecheee!!

superwilson said...

Reading this before lunch is a big mistake!

Hungry de.... Salmon feast TT

"Joe" who is constantly craving said...

aiyoh how can u write a comedy about food, i always wonder..

so did u bring ur wet market shopping bag and sneak in a few fishies, u knw like any peasant?

Kiran said...

Droolicious-nya! I can't tahan. Have to balik soon to Malaysia to sample some yummyness. What's up with salmon? So many dishes!!!!! Is it a Norwegian staple?

HairyBerry said...

WAHHHHHHHH!!!! omega-3 party or what, eh? like u, i also can only dream of the scene AND this kinda mother of all buffets.

*back to fruits for lunch now*

J said...

A feast indeed!
(Although it's a borderline overload of salmon, don't you think? Haha...)
(At least you know you're good in terms of Omega 3 for at least a month!)

Rebecca Saw said...

Yup, tht's a lot of fish. ONE kind of fish!
But the desserts looks good too!

Man..I need a salmon sandwich.. *runs off to Subway*

Ciki said...

aiyoh chengs! ur shots are amazing.. marian gonna faint! coolest ahpa in the haus.. :P

forevah hold your pisssss! u crazy boy! hahahaha :P

UnkaLeong said...

Wah...Salmon overload. So when is the next harajuku salmon party? *guffaws*

J2Kfm said...

squatting by the cliff, hoping for solitude, FBB?
hahahah ....
nvm ... here also got hills and mounts, where people fell and erm, got their halos.

qwazymonkey said...

Damn I'm all fished out. I can hear McC asking "Where's the chicken?"

That first pic is too funny!

kampungboycitygal said...

such a feast! bet you all overdose on seafood hehe

PureGlutton said...

This is what seafood paradise/heaven would look like - certainly the grandmother of all seafood buffet, man!

Ciki said...

i had to google this anton ego.. YIN-LOI HAI CARTOON LEI GEH :P

what la u .. ahpa i fear you are losing it:P

Argus Lou said...

Hohoho! You made me guffaw again - felt like spawning indeed. :D