Posh Nosh: Kum Heong Roasted Turkey

By Tan Hsueh Yun

The Straits Times

Tuesday, Dec 17, 2013


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One thing I do at Christmas every year is collect turkey carcasses. After the festivities, the bones come out of the freezer and I turn them into flavourful stock for soups, stews and congee.

I look forward to bagging another after our Kum Heong turkey feast but I turn around and it is gone.

Yes, the table is wiped clean. That is no surprise, as the turkey from Peony Jade is a hit. Kum Heong, or "golden fragrance" in Cantonese, originated in Malaysia and the sauce includes some or all of the following: dried shrimps, chillies, curry leaves, curry powder, lemongrass, ginger and hot bean paste.

Spicy and aromatic, it is usually used as a stir-fry sauce for la la, a kind of clam; or squid, prawns, crab and chicken.

The chefs at Peony Jade use their version, which includes belacan, to turn a plain old roast turkey into a very fine addition to any Christmas table. They marinate the turkey in the sauce, steam and then roast it. In place of stuffing, there is a pile of crunchy snake beans stir-fried with the sauce. Other sides include pickled onions, achar or pickled vegetables, sliced cucumber and 12 pleasantly chewy buns.

This means guests can make their own turkey sliders with a local vibe.

I would cook some rice, too, even if it seems so prosaic for Christmas. There is no better way to fully enjoy the piquant sauce, mixed in with some beans, turkey meat and crunchy cucumber. That is what I would call a perfect Christmas lunch.

Kum Heong Roasted Turkey, $128, from Peony Jade at Keppel Club, 10 Bukit Chermin Road, and Block 3A, 02-02 Tan Tye Place, Clarke Quay. Call 6276-9138 (Keppel Club) or 6338-0305 (Clarke Quay) to order at least three days in advance. The turkey is available till Jan 2.


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