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Vegetarian Friendly Factor –
Kid Friendly Factor –
The name Jamie Oliver needs no introduction. One of the most famous chefs in the world, Jamie Oliver is an advocate of cooking meals from scratch. He is also known for sourcing sustainable and free-range products. My ‘little fussy eaters’ are in love with Jamie’s food – and I cannot stress this enough – even more than I am.
We usually frequent the outlet at Forum shopping mall, which is always abuzz and where we have always experienced excellent, friendly staff and service. And as good as the food is, I also love the décor and the ambience. Be it the terracotta tiled flooring, or the eclectic mix of reclaimed church chairs and upholstered armchairs, everything says style. Also noteworthy is the bar, which features an antique brass counter top and hand-painted decorative tiles.
So we’ve tried several vegetarian dishes at Jamie’s and below is a lowdown on my favourite ones, that end up on our table time and again – the Top 8 Vegetarian Dishes at Jamie’s Italian (in no particular order).
1. The Kid-me-not Choices
Jamie’s Italian recently refreshed their Kids’ Menu and there are now two vegetarian dishes on there (as opposed to 1 earlier). Luckily for us, those 2 dishes are pasta and pizza, which are pretty much the only 2 things my trio eats happily, so we’re covered. We tried the new Jamie’s Italian Kids’ Menu (S$12 ++) recently and my youngest happily lapped up the Secret Seven Gnocchi, while the twins gorged on the Margherita Pizza. Both dishes are made using Jamie’s Seven-Veg Sauce, which is a tomato sauce with 7 hidden veggies inside. Victory! The kids’ dishes are accompanied by drink and a shake-me salad.
Wait, it gets better! The restaurant also ranks high on my child-friendly meter, thanks in part to the goody bag (with colouring sheets and games), which keeps the kids busy till the meal arrives.
Now, for the best! The kids’ desserts, which at S$3.50++ a pop, are a steal. Who are we kidding, right? Toddlers and pre-schoolers might not eat much food but when it comes to desserts, they can easily give grown-ups a run for their money. My daughter is a chocolate-girl and absolutely loves the Gooey Chocolate Brownie (which comes with vanilla ice cream, crunch toffee popcorn & chocolate sauce), while the boys go for Ice Creams (which are served with an Italian cookie & chocolate sauce).
2. The Not-to Miss Nachos
The starters at Jamie’s Italian, Singapore offer quite a few vegetarian options – the Crunchy Italian Nachos (S$12) are the ones that get ordered at almost every visit. Fried to a crisp, this three-cheese ravioli is served with a spicy and tasty tomato sauce. My kids love the nachos too. There is a sprinkling of red chilli powder on top, ask for your nachos without the chilli sprinkle for kids.
Also worth a mention (in starters) are their fresh home-made breads. Kids love the Ultimate Garlic Bread; and the music bread and black olive & sun-dried tomato tapenade that are served with World’s Best Olives.
3. The Guilt-free Super Salad
The Classic Super Food Salad (S$26.50++) is probably my top pick at Jamie’s Italian. The salad is a mix of lentils, quinoa, black rice, fennel, parsley, mint and roasted beets dressed in sherry vinegar and olive oil. Topped with char-grilled avocado, a dollop of cottage cheese, tender stem broccoli and a drizzle of harissa, the salad is finished with a sprinkle of pomegranate seeds and Jamie’s seed mix (black sesame, sesame, linseed and pumpkin seed). Healthy, yummy and highly recommended! And don’t think of it as just a salad, the portion is quite big and I have it as a main (and still can’t finish it on my own).
4. The Mandatory Pizza
The Pimped Margherita (Image credit: Jamie’s Italian)
The Pimped Margherita (S$24.50++) gets my vote here. I love that the emphasis is not on the cheese but on the sauce, the base and freshness. Instead of being loaded with cheese, the pizza has smatterings of mozzarella and fresh crushed tomatoes, and the sauce has a nice texture. Furthermore, the pizzas at Jamie’s are served on a special stoneware plate which retains the heat and crispness of the pizza for longer. They also serve the Funghi Misti for vegetarians – I’ve heard its good but I’m not a fan of mushrooms so never tried it. Plus, the kids love the Margherita.
5. The Ravioli Recommendation
The Truffle Ravioli (S$26.50) is sumptuous all the way. It features freshly minced black winter truffle and is topped with a combination of butter & Parmesan. Highly recommended! (According to the menu, this isn’t available at Vivo).
6. The Fave Pumpkin & Spinach Rotolo
The Pumpkin and Spinach Rotolo (S$26.00) seems to have been recently introduced into the menu, we just had it on our last visit (and it isn’t on the Vivo menu either). A wonderful dish, it balances flavours of tomatoes, ricotta and basil. The dish is topped with flavourful herby breadcrumbs and rich parmesan.
7. The Perfect Pasta
This is a new addition to my list, it’s not something I would normally order at an Italian restaurant but I’m glad I did. Jamie’s Penne Arrabiata (S$16.50 / S$24.50++) definitely has to be one of the best I’ve had. The secret, it would seem was in the pangrattato that was beautifully served on the side as a garnish and made a world of difference to the dish. For those who might not know, pangrattato is a crunchy Italian breadcrumb topping, Jamie’s seemed to have been done with herbs and was quite flavoursome. This might also be a nice option if you go for the weekday Set Lunch which has limited choice.
8. The Sweet Endings
My top pick would probably be the Tiramisu. It’s flavoured with Kahlua instead of the usual rum and I love the citrus notes. Chocoholics though, might prefer the Epic Chocolate Brownie, which is served with chocolate sauce, amaretto ice cream & caramelised popcorn and is full of chocolate-y goodness. The Lemon Meringue Cheesecake (S$14++) is also good – its a velvety mascarpone and lemon cheesecake, served on a digestive biscuit base topped with Italian meringue. The cheesecake is served with lemon curd (made with free range egg yolks) and a blackcurrant compote (which I love more than the cheesecake itself) and looks really appealing too.
Jamie’s Italian, Forum: 583 Orchard Road, #01 01-04 Forum, Singapore 238884 P: +65 6655 7676
Jamie’s Italian, Vivo City: 1 HarbourFront Walk, #01 165-167 Vivo City, Singapore 098585 P: +65 6733 5500
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