Another Signature Chinese Bites dinner! Although the second Chinese Bites dinner was at Fatty Cow Seafood Restaurant, an AYCE Hot Pot, I missed it and we haven't done a hot pot revisit until today!
I've never had this type of Sesame Pancake before, and certainly not at a Hot Pot restaurant. The inside had bits of green onion in it and was actually really soft and chewy, reminiscent of a sour dough bread. But it just doesn't make sense to eat a load of carbs when you've got unlimited protein on the way! I found out later that you are supposed to dip the pancake into your soup.
What? More carbs? This time, it was in the form of a Chinese Donut. Good but still, not entirely sure why this was being served to us. Maybe it was leftover from lunch service?? Although they were a touch oily, I still couldn't resist taking a few bites.
We also got some Beef Skewers as appetizers, while we waited for the soup to come to a boil. These were simply marinated with some cumin and chli powder, but ended up a bit overcooked and slightly jerky-like. But it doesn't matter, we were here for Hot Pot!
This is the Half and Half Soup, one side is the original style and the other is a super spicy chili style. These dried chilies give off a lot of heat, especially if you rehydrate them in the soup!
The Cuttlefish balls and the Shrimp balls both had a good bounce to them. They weren't frozen and cooked fairly quickly, so be sure to keep an eye on these as you cook other items.
We also got some Lamb and Beef balls, but I wasn't a huge fan of there. I found them a bit dense and actually prefer slices of the meats instead of balls.
Yes, this is definitely how I prefer my meats for hotpot. These Lamb Slices cooked up fairly quickly and had just the right amount of marbling to make a tender. The flavours of the spicy soup clung nicely onto the meat as well.
We also got a Seafood Platter with fish, shrimp, calamari, scallop, mussels and more. I used the traditional soup for this one, I didn't want the delicate flavours of the seafood to be completely overpowered by the chilies.
Along with some traditional greens, we also got a platter of Mushrooms, giant oyster ones and the more common enoki mushroom. These add a nice contrast to the platters of meat and fish we were having. These can also stay in the broth a bit longer and add a sweetness to the soup when you're all done.
Okay, not this might be a bit scary for the less adventurous types. On the upper left, we have Pork Liver, to the right is Pig's Blood. Underneath is Tripe Two Ways (Bible and Honeycomb). The 6 o'clock position is owned by Beef Tendon. All these cuts need to cook for quite some time, slowly simmer them for a while, don't be impatient.
So far, all of the meats and seafood that we have enjoyed have not been marinated. So we decided to try one dish that came with seasoning, the Garlic Beef. This was a thicker cut of beef but it seems like the marinade had the desired effect and made the beef quite tender. I think I still prefer my meats plain, but it's a nice option to have.
This is the aftermath of our two soups. We scooped out lots of chilies to add to our own individual sauces. Oh, yes, the sauces, they are actually in a communal area in the middle of the restaurant. The good side? You can take as much as you want, refill as needed. The bad side? It can get a bit messy if people aren't careful. The broth was tasty, although a bit salty. This is where the sesame pancake would have come in handy!
**Little Sheep Mongolian Hot Pot hosted Chinese Bites for this tasting but my opinions are my own.**
More reviews available here for Signature Dishes Tour Dinners.