SINGAPORE (THE NEW PAPER) - With the weather-induced disasters happening around the world at such alarming frequency, the need to protect the environment becomes more urgent.
At this point, we all already should be doing something to reduce the impact of global warming.
One way to help is by eating less meat.
According to the United Nations, the meat industry alone accounts for nearly 20 per cent of global greenhouse gas emissions.
My religion requires non-meat days.
When my religiosity surges, I usually end up with a meal of mock meats, which eventually ends with me asking: why bother?
That was how I ended up at vegetarian restaurant Lotus Kitchen. I wanted to see if I would leave wondering why I bothered.
I mentally mapped a route to the nearest KFC just in case. Well, that trip did not happen. I left Lotus Kitchen satisfied.
One of my favourite dishes there is the taro mee sua cake ($6.80).
This stomach-filler is savoury, crispy yet almost creamy, and inexpensive.
Most importantly, you are not even aware that you are eating a vegetarian dish.
Another winner is the signature homemade satay ($15.80) made of marinated soya slices. The texture does not feel like meat but is firm and crunchy.
The homemade sauce is traditional and works well with the satay.
The signature stir-fried laksa ($9.80) looks mild, but it is potent in the lemak department. It is heavy on spices, which whets the appetite, and it does feel heavy going down.
If you can forget that laksa tastes best with fresh cockles, you will be happy with this.
High on the spice level is the braised mushroom in hot stone pot ($18.80).
This robust dish hits me in all the right places.
I also like the addition of crunchy bamboo shoots, which made chomping into the dish so pleasurable.
And if you are into spicy food, you must try the tongue-numbing spicy grilled oat slices on hotplate ($18.80).
I don't like it as the chilli overwhelms everything, but I seem to be the only one who thinks so. Try it if you can handle the fire.
There are many dishes deemed signatures here, but this is worth its name - the signature crispy summer wrap with passion fruit ($35.80). It is Lotus Kitchen's version of Peking duck.
A thick, crispy slice of soya is wrapped in an egg skin and you add the slivers of turnips doused in passion fruit.
The mix of sweet, tart and salty is enjoyable.
Lotus Kitchen is at 01-01/02 Chinatown Point, open: 11.30am to 3pm; 5.30pm to 10pm daily, tel: 6538-1068.