Old Cathay Birthday Banquet
While other people were celebrating Halloween on the street, I was having a celebration birthday dinner with 33 inspiring people at the Old Cathay in Victoria Park. I planned the celebration back in April and I still remembered my conversation with the Manager, Aaron Seow, about a custom birthday banquetback in June as well as Jerling Wong who were both really helpful with my many emails correspondence especially closer to the big day. Before I get into any details about the 10 dishes from the banquet, let me tell you that it was a good decision to celebrate at Old Cathay and none of the guests felt any disappointment with the food that were served promptly.
Hubby and I were the first to arrive at the restaurant. I quickly made payment before any of the guests arrived and hubby put down some cute 'Be Thankful' cookies that Cathy from Bake You Smile made on each guest’s plate. The restaurant was filled with laughter as soon as everyone arrived and our first entrée soon made its way to the table.
When the first hot and cold entrée arrived, all of my friends knew that I had to take a photo of it first. So I asked them to put out their chopsticks on the prawn and they did (such good friends)! The crab balls was cooked really well, with warm filling and crispy skin. The salad was very refreshing and it was a good decision to create a platter of hot and cold entree. We finished this in no time since all of us were very hungry.
The second hot and cold entree was a very popular dish at our table especially with the delicious chewy baby octopus that was so easy to eat. All of the guests occupied 3 different round tables and we received a donation of more baby octopuses from the next door table. The mixture of mushroom, glass noodle and egg created a harmonious flavour together. The guests enjoyed both dishes and you could tell because it was finished so quickly.
Singapore Chili Style King Prawn was made using the WA Local Shark Bay’s King Prawn which was very fresh and served with generous amount of sauce. I wasn’t a huge prawn eater but this dish was very enjoyable and everyone scooped heaps of the sauce onto their rice. The sauce went really well with the rice and Hubby was very happy with the size of the prawns.
The Peking Style Pork Ribs was pretty standard. Not in a bad way but it didn't stand out from similar dishes offered at other restaurants. Needless to say, it was demolished by my hungry guests pretty quickly all the same. The Sizzling Vietnamese Style Beef was very hearty and saucy. We finished it really quickly even down to the remaining chili! We didn't get a chance to take a photo of the Braised Seasonal Vegetables with mushroom, but the dish was filled with variety of fresh vegetables.
I always order the homemade tofu when dining in at Old Cathay so I was so happy when I saw the tofu arrived. It was light, silky and soft while the skin retain the shape of the tofu. Even Hubby didn't mind it and he usually doesn't like tofu.
The seafood noodle was plentiful and by this time many we were all getting quite full. With a tiny bit of Chinese heritage that I have, eating noodle is part of the birthday celebration. The long noodle symbolises long life. Despite our full tummy, we still pressed on and enjoyed the noodles. There was a decent amount of squid in it but I don't think we managed to finish it.
Next in line was the Boneless Almond chicken with stuffed prawn paste.
The dish came with a generous amount of chicken pieces which meant diner could have multiple servings of chicken. There was plenty of almond but we barely tasted the prawn paste. While I would have preferred the skin to be a bit more crunchy, it was still tasty and enjoyable. At this point we were so satisfied with the food that we even forgot about our last dish, the crispy fresh whole fish with chef's special sauce.
The presentation of the fish blown me away especially since the whole fish was carved really well and cut up into smaller pieces before the Chef assembled everything back. I wasn’t sure about the type of the fish but everyone said the fish was really fresh, firm and mixed very well with the macadamia nuts and chef’s special sauce.
One of the surprise of the night was the cake, and the present. I actually told one of my friends, Vicky, what I wanted for the birthday and she informed all of my friends about it (yayyy!). The cake though, was really surprising. Here’s the photo of the cake:
Before you ask, no this wasn’t endorsed by Zomato (hahaha). Some good friends planned this cute and cheeky cake without me knowing. I love how they all know how much I love writing and taking photos of food in Zomato. The chocolate cake tasted rich without being too sweet. This beautiful cake was created by Paula Astria.
Grace upon Grace
Yes, I feel so blessed to be able to celebrate my 30th birthday with some friends and so far this year was the best birthday celebration (I might say the same thing next year ;-)). 2015 has been filled with many blessings and when I said blessings, I didn’t mean that life has been 100% perfect but it was truly because of His grace that I am still able to stand strong until today. I am looking forward to the new era of being 30!