Mon, February 16, 2009
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CW dining editor digs her chopsticks into some crocodile at Sun Palace

2009-02-16 08:27:55 GMT2009-02-16 16:27:55 (Beijing Time)  City Weekend

CW dining editor digs her chopsticks into some crocodile at Sun Palace

Despite growing up on Cantonese cuisine and double boiled soups, I'm not one with an exotic palate who take pleasure in eating strange wild beasts. Anyhow, I'm open to venture out of conventional eating habits. I agreed to try out the croco menu at Sun Palace.

The Cantonese chefs cooked each part of the reptile in various ways with different herbs and the whole dismembered reptile tasted like bits of fish, chicken and pork respectively, in every different dish. An Australian friend told me that wild crocodiles tasted like fish, while farmed ones tasted like chicken because the taste of the meat depended on their diet. I was pleasantly surprised and happy to report that the meat I had braised in Chinese herbs tasted like chicken, fish and pork in different dishes.

Before we began our meal, they brought a live baby croc to show us, but assured us that it was merely for show and would be returned to the farm that provides the meat.

I was nervous about the whole endeavor, but felt more Chinese than ever when I was (guiltily) enjoying the braised crocodile belly that tasted exactly like Hong Kong style roast pork—full of flavor, with a thin layer of slightly crunchy skin and layers of lean meat sandwiched between a fine layer of fat. It had a great texture, which is of utmost importance in Chinese cuisine, since it’s all about the mouth feel 口感, where squishy, slithery textures are considered delicacies.

The croco menu was a very enlightening experience and if you're up for something different, grab some friends to try out the crocodile meat promotion at Sun Palace at Crowne Plaza hotel.

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