TOP 5 THINGS TO ORDER IN

Vesak Day options

Mavalli Tiffin Rooms’ Rava Idli.
Mavalli Tiffin Rooms’ Rava Idli.PHOTOS: FIREBAKE, LEVEL33, LINGZHI VEGETARIAN, LOTUS KITCHEN, MAVALLI TIFFIN ROOMS
Lingzhi Vegetarian’s ‘san Bei’ Mushroom.
Lingzhi Vegetarian’s ‘san Bei’ Mushroom.PHOTOS: FIREBAKE, LEVEL33, LINGZHI VEGETARIAN, LOTUS KITCHEN, MAVALLI TIFFIN ROOMS
Level33’s Classic Brewery Veggie Burger.
Level33’s Classic Brewery Veggie Burger.PHOTOS: FIREBAKE, LEVEL33, LINGZHI VEGETARIAN, LOTUS KITCHEN, MAVALLI TIFFIN ROOMS
Lotus Kitchen’s Stir-fried Laksa.
Lotus Kitchen’s Stir-fried Laksa. PHOTOS: FIREBAKE, LEVEL33, LINGZHI VEGETARIAN, LOTUS KITCHEN, MAVALLI TIFFIN ROOMS
Firebake Curry Vegetable Stew
Firebake Curry Vegetable Stew.PHOTOS: FIREBAKE, LEVEL33, LINGZHI VEGETARIAN, LOTUS KITCHEN, MAVALLI TIFFIN ROOMS

For Buddhists who celebrate Vesak Day on May 7 by abstaining from eating meat, there are many non-meat options available for delivery - and not just from vegetarian eateries.

These days, most restaurants - both Asian and Western - have meatless or vegan dishes on their menu. Check that they do not contain garlic or onions though if you wish to avoid the aromatics.

Here are five dishes you can order in on Vesak Day. All the restaurants listed here deliver islandwide.


1 MAVALLI TIFFIN ROOMS' RAVA IDLI

This steamed semolina cake ($4 a piece) from the South Indian restaurant may look plain, yet tastes anything but.

It is incredibly fluffy and dissolves in the mouth to release wonderful flavours from the other ingredients - yogurt, coriander, cashew nuts, curry leaves, mustard seeds and clarified butter.

And if that is still not enough to excite your palate, the idli comes with potato sagu and chutney.

I can eat a few at a go, but you could also top up your order with the restaurant's other dishes.

I like everything I have tried there, though you should perhaps avoid the crispy dosa, unless you do not mind it going a little soft during the delivery. But there are non-crispy ones, such as the Pudi Masala Dosa ($7). Get some vada (from $2.50) too.

Info: Go to mtrsingapore.com or call 6296-5800/ 9736-5800. Delivery is $10 by two-wheeler, $13 by limousine; distance-based if order is via Grab Express Delivery

2 LINGZHI VEGETARIAN'S 'SAN BEI' MUSHROOM

Inspired by the popular Taiwanese dish of "san bei" chicken or three cup chicken, this version replaces the meat with king oyster mushroom, which I like for its firm, slightly springy bite.

LingZhi's dish ($21.40) also takes the rice wine out of the recipe and uses Japanese vinegar instead. The rest of the three cups making up the sauce are sesame oil and Taiwanese soya sauce.

The pieces of mushroom are sauteed with red and green capsicum and purple cabbage. These are then braised with the sauce till everything is cooked nicely, with the vegetables still retaining some crunch. The dish is best eaten with rice.

Info: For the full delivery menu, go to lingzhivegetarian.oddle.me. Minimum order is $50. Delivery is $8

3 LEVEL33'S CLASSIC BREWERY VEGGIE BURGER

Unlike many meatless burgers from non-vegetarian restaurants, this does not have a patty made with plant-based meat. Instead, what you get between the bun is made in-house with vegetables and grains ($18).

There are duxelles made with white button mushrooms, garlic and onions, as well as sweet potatoes, corn, sweet paprika, espelette pepper and spent grain, which is a by-product from the restaurant's microbrewery that gives a unique flavour to the patty.

Piled on top are cheddar cheese, gherkins, caramelised onions and house-made chipotle-roasted yeast mayo.

Everything is packed in a brioche burger bun with puffed beer malt on top.

Info: WhatsApp 8511-4613 or go to shop-level33.company.site Delivery is $15; free within 500m and for orders of $80 and above

4 LOTUS KITCHEN'S STIR-FRIED LAKSA

There are no cockles in this laksa ($7.90). Or fishcake. And the gravy is not flavoured with pounded dried shrimp.

Still, it is a rather good version of the hawker dish, with enough of a spicy kick to please fans.

The thick beehoon is tossed with a reduced, aromatic laksa gravy cooked with beancurd puffs and crunchy pieces of mock seafood. There are straw mushrooms as well.

The portion is good for one person. If you need to meet the minimum order, try the Spicy Grilled Veg Cod Fish ($16.20), another favourite of mine, and the Claypot Brinjal With Salted Soya ($13.50).

Info: Go to lotusvegetarian.oddle.me. Minimum order is $39. Delivery is $8; free for orders within 3km

5 FIREBAKE CURRY VEGETABLE STEW

This non-vegetarian restaurant in East Coast Road, known for its sourdough breads and Western cooking, came up with this Asian-inspired dish ($20) for diners who eschew meat.

Made with vegetables such as zucchini, cabbage, carrots and tomatoes, the stew comes with herb-butter pilaf rice and is topped with sultanas and toasted almonds. There are onions and garlic in the mix too, so take note if you are avoiding them.

The restaurant also has a Wild Mushroom Soup ($10) that comes with a slice of toasted white sourdough buttered with smoked-paprika butter.

And since you are already paying for delivery, get a loaf of the sourdough too. It keeps very well in the freezer. There are many versions, with prices ranging from $8 to $13.

Info: WhatsApp or call 9784-2950. For the full menu, go to facebook.com/pg/firebakesg/posts. Delivery is $10; free for orders above $80

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on May 03, 2020, with the headline 'Vesak Day options'. Print Edition | Subscribe