Food picks: Pork belly winner

In a sea of cookie-cutter cafes, all of which seem to offer matcha lattes, waffles and Eggs Benedict or, indeed, all three, it is a relief to find none of these things on the menu of The Daily Press.

This new cafe in Toa Payoh has a small menu of well-curated sandwiches toasted in a panini press, which explains the name.

Babi Pongteh ($12, right) is the one that calls out my name. Slices of belly pork braised in tau cheo or fermented soya beans are sandwiched between ciabatta and garnished with carrot, cucumber, lettuce and sprigs of coriander.

The cafe's take on this classic Peranakan dish is a winner. It is hard to go wrong with pork belly, but the slices of meat are thoroughly infused with the flavour of the tau cheo without being too salty. Crunchy vegetables and hits of coriander just make it even better.

Also on the menu are three dishes for sharing, all priced at $9.

Brussel sprouts, shaping up to be this year's kale, are roasted with miso, honey mustard and tossed with hazelnuts. It is an unusual offering in a cafe, but delicious and healthy to boot.

I can't imagine why anyone would want to share the Baked Egg, since it is perfect for one.

Eggplant and tomatoes are cooked together, with cubes of feta added. An egg is baked on top of the dish and it is served with polenta sticks. This is a rib-sticking meal at any time of the day.

Where: The Daily Press, Block 126 Toa Payoh Lorong 1, 01-561

MRT: Braddell Tel: 6258-0167

Open: 10.30am - 9.30pm (Tue - Sun), closed on Mon


This article was first published on Jan 9, 2015.
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