Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Christmas Comes to Maru-Ten Udon @ United Square

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Udon is one of my absolute favourite Japanese dishes. There’s just something about the taste and texture of good and authentic udon. I love slurping and chewing those pale thick wheat noodles. I guess that’s why the casual and comfortable setting of Maru-Ten Udon makes it a great place to emit those slurping noises and the occasional “oishii”!

Maru-Ten Udon is the latest udon concept in Singapore and it’s known to serve authentic Japanese udon at an affordable price. The brand has been boldly expanding this year and now can be found at four locations: Junction 8, Marina Bay Sands, Parkway Parade and United Square.

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Maru-Ten’s signature Sanuki udon (characterised by its square cross-section and flat edges) is produced from flour that meet high stringent standards and its dashi soup is prepared fresh daily using its own recipe.

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Kake Udon - S : $3.80, R : $5.60, L : $7.40
One of the simplest dishes offered, kake udon is essentially udon in a bowl of dashi broth. As udon is pretty neutral in taste, the dish is mainly contingent on the broth. The broth is flavourful due to the seaweed and bonito flakes but not too intense which makes it easy going.

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Curry Udon - S: $6.80, R: $8.60, L: $10.40
Maru-Ten serves curry udon with bits of chicken meat. The Japanese curry was not spicy but fragrant with carrot slices, potato chunks and Japanese red pickles added in the mix. The beef slices do not come with the curry udon but may be added at an additional charge, of course.

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Kama-age Udon - S : $4.80, R : $6.60, L : $8.40
Kama-age udon is served straight from the boiler and doesn't go through a cooling process making the noodles more texturised all around. It is served with a hot dipping sauce (bukkake sauce) which is more flavourful than kake broth.

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Beef Udon - S : $7.80, R : $9.60, L : $11.40
The beef udon is essentially kake udon with slices of beef. The quality beef was stringy but easy to chew and made the broth richer. I added some toppings for extra flavour though it was good just by itself.

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Christmas Udon - S : $11.80, R : $13.80, L : $15.80
Maru-Ten Udon has introduced a limited edition Christmas udon which will only be available from December 1st to 25th! This festive dish features an al dente version of Maru-Ten’s signature Sanuki udon infused with matcha. Yes, you saw it right, green tea infused udon! The unique noodles are topped with the kitchen’s in-house tangy tomato sauce. These come together with a crispy arancino (a rice ball coated with breadcrumbs then fried) that is stuffed with shrimp, tempura shiso and sweet pumpkin slices. The ensemble definitely looked the part of Christmas: the matcha udon and shiso look like a Christmas tree, the arancino looked like an ornament, the tomato sauce added the festive red and the grated parmesan resembled flakes of snow. Overall, it felt like an Italian meal just that the egg flour pasta was replaced with a matcha udon!

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Of course another highlight at Maru-Ten Udon would be the assorted tempura! Similar to the Yong Tau Foo concept, one can grab the different types of tempura to go with his or her udon but different types of tempura have different prices as well. The tempura is crispy and cooked well but you may want to be kiasu a bit and pick those freshly fried ones!

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Soup Ten-Don - S : $2.80; R : $3.80, L: $4.80
Soup Ten-Don is essentially cooked Japanese rice with a bit of dashi broth. Your own choice of tempura is then added (at your own cost, of course). The staff will add a sweet tendon sauce to compliment the saltiness of the broth and tempura and finally, kake broth is added to soak the rice to give it a nice porridge texture. This is really comfort food for me but the idea of paying about $3 to $5 for rice may deter some people.

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Managing Director of Maru-Ten Udon, Mr Yuji Katayanagi

Maru-Ten Udon is the place to satisfy my udon and tempura cravings. The service is quick and easy and the restaurant has so many options of toppings to go with your udon that there would be something for everyone.

United Square
101 Thomson Road #B1-07
Daily: 11am to 10pm (Last order 9:30pm)


Love, Kenneth

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