Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Fresh Garden Cafe at Mount Elizabeth Novena Hospital #01-18 S(329563) - The Smoked Duck Salad with Honey Dijon Dressing

This is the Smoked Duck Salad with Homemade Honey Djion Dressing priced at S$10.90 & served here at Fresh Garden located at Mount Elizabeth Novena Hospital #01-18. 
About Fresh Garden 
Fresh Garden located at Mount Elizabeth Novena Hospital #01-18 is a cafe that serves up pretty decent gourmet style composed salad, healthy soup, hearty sandwich, delicious wraps, fruity parfait. Both husband & wife team of Henry Kiong, 36 & Filisa Ngoh, 34, come from Financial Banking Industry for more than 10 years. The kitchen & operations is handled by Henry Kiong. 

The Signatures include Smoked Duck Salad with Honey Djion Dressing, Grilled Honey Lime Chicken Caesar Salad, Honey Lime Grilled Chicken Salad, Egg & Mayonnaise Slider, Tuna & Cheese Slider, Ham & Egg Slider.
The Core Ingredients used in this salad includes - Smoked duck, dried Cranberries, Fusilli pasta, French beans, Romaine lettuce, Sweet potato cubes, Red & green capsicum (julienned), crispy Tortilla chips, homemade Honey Djion dressing. 
How it is prepared - The Smoked Duck salad with Honey Djion dressing is prepared by layering the core ingredients into the salad bowl ala minute as per order. 
Henry Kiong first layers the salad with base of Romaine lettuce slices, followed by the Fusilli pasta, French beans, dried Cranberries, diced sweet potatoes, red & green capsicum, and some Tortilla chips, & finally a generous dose of the Smoked Duck slices. He drizzles a generous portion of his homemade Honey Djion dressing onto the composed salad. 
Co-Founder Henry Kiong gets his smoked duck from local supplier Wang Foong Foodstuffs Suppliers Pte Ltd. (*Wang Foong Foodstuffs Suppliers Pte Ltd was incorporated in 1983 & is Singapore's leading manufacturer & distributor of ham, sausages & various delicatessen.) 

The Fusilli pasta, French beans, sweet potato are cooked & allowed to cool before the latter two are cut into smaller bite size portion in lengths & cubes. The red & green capsisum & the Romaine lettuce are  evenly julienned & served raw in the salad.
Tasting Notes - The Smoked Duck salad with Honey Djion dressing is a sweet salad that encompassed both the sweet & savoury flavors. The dried cranberry lends a tarty sweetness, the smoked duck exudes a moist tender texture with a savoury smoky flavor. 

There is a crispiness coming from the Romaine lettuce, a mild sweetness from the cubed sweet potatoes. To balance the sweet sourly flavor from the cranberries, Henry uses French beans & capsicum that lends a lightly crisp. 
The raw lettuce, raw red & green capsicum adds to give a refreshing crispy crunch & bite to the salad & a mild spicy tinge. The parboiled French beans adds to the crunchy texture of the salad & a sweet flavor. 
The Fusilli pasta is done perfectly cooked & with a not too hard texture. I am not a Tortilla lover but this Tortilla crisp does give you that extra crispy spicy texture & flavor, although it tends to dry out in the air-con pretty fast. 
The ingredient that really wow me over is definitely the smoked duck that is sliced into bite size pieces - I love its savory sweet smoky flavor, the color is a simple light pale pink hue with minimal additives & coloring, & the duck meat is so tender moist juicy, yet firm unlike those others I had tried at some cafes earlier where it was overly hard, overly salty, over done. 
The winning ingredient in this salad is the Honey Djion dressing - it sort of envelopes all the ingredients to give this sweet mustardy pungent fragrant flavor, with the honey lending a tinge of sweetness to the salad. 
So there is this overall combination of flavors & textures - the crunchiness from the capsicum, sweet from the sweet potatoes, sourly sweetness from the dried cranberries, juicy smoky flavor from smoked duck, Tortilla chips giving a crispy bite.Overall a hearty, rustic home-style salad. For someone like me who is very much into raw non-processed food,  I simply fell in love with it.

Fresh Garden Cafe is located at : 
Mount Elizabeth Novena Hospital #01-18
38 Irrawaddy Road, S(329563)
Tel : 94504579 
Tel : 66942275
Email : henrykiong@yahoo.com.sg
Nearest MRT : Novena 
Opening hours :
Mondays to Fridays  8 am to 7 pm 
Saturdays - 8.30 am to 1.30 pm
Sundays & Public Holidays (Closed) 

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