It's less than 2 weeks to Chinese New Year! One of the things that many people are buying are CNY goodies. There are many brands out there and Tai Sun has sent some samples to try and comment.
I have been buying Noya's pineapple tarts for the last few years without knowing they are from Tai Sun until I got these samples. A colleague brought some to the office and I thought they were quite nice and I have been buying them. I remembered their containers were different when I first bought them last time.
There are 6 different flavours. I have seen them on sale in both Fairprice and Cold Storage since last 2 weeks, but not all 6 at the same time though. Either they are sold out or different supermarkets carry different range.
I have been serving these to friends and relatives who pop by our place and everyone has different opinions about it. Some really like it, some preferred their mum's or grandma's version. But for a mass produced brand, I think they are quite good.
Here's a short write up of what we think of it:
The open faced ball of jam pineapple tarts (380g | S$10.80/jar) are my favourite of the lot
It's not too sweet for me and I like the 'ball' of pineapple jam on top of it. I noticed they even have a faint layer of cross over it! It's something that I can pop layer after layer off the jar while watching TV.
There are two version of pineapple tarts, this is the Rolled Pineapple Tarts (380g | S$10.80/jar). I assume both pineapple tarts have the same recipe, but somehow the open faced one taste better to me.
Both are very buttery in smell and taste. The pineapple jam taste rather nice too. The open faced somehow makes it more nostalgic as you pop it in your mouth.
Mum makes two version as well! She makes her own pineapple jam too. I know what's missing from these rolled version, cloves! Mum's version has a clove on each rolled tart which makes it more fragrant. Oh well, for $10.80, this version is quite good!
The Kueh Bangkek (250g | S$6.50/jar) has two different opinions in the house and friends who came and try it. One camp says it does not immediately crumble and dissolve the moment you put it in your mouth. One camp like it because it still holds its shape and only crumble and dissolve when you slightly bit and crush it with you teeth.
From the photo above, it does hold its shape quite well right?
The consensus is that santan (coconut milk) flavour is enough thought some say a bit more would be better. It's not too sweet as well. General Singapore taste buds would like this sweetness but not the Malaysian or Indonesian tongues, they would want it sweeter!
This is the Macadamia Delight (300g | S$11.80/jar). The most expensive of the all the cookies, but to me, my favourite from this lot. When Mum and Aunt came over and saw it, they were just so impressed by the stacking of the cookies inside the container!
For me, a bite into it and I thought they tasted like Horlicks cookies! The cookie is firm but you can't press it too hard. It will crumble. It's fragrant but a little salty.
Looking almost similar to the Macadamia except without the egg wash on it, these Almond Delights (300g, | S$10.80/jar) are also quite an unstoppable.Quite fragrant and those who like Almonds would like it.
We hosted a dinner the other night and after dinner, we served these snacks and I noticed someone keep taking this. He must be an almond fan!
These pastel green cookies called Traditional Jade Delights (300g | S$8.90/jar) are made from green peas.
The wife and sis has different opinions of this. Wife think more peas are needed and sis thinks it's just nice, if too much peas are inside, they would be overpowering. I am not a green pea fan, so I have no comments.
Now I like these love letters! (400g | S$11.80/tin)
You open the nostalgic square tin and the smell of santan tingles your nose. Not every piece has the same 'tan' which means it's probably hand made. It's not too sweet as well and I have been nibbling on them! I can eat 1 layer of it at a go, and force myself to stop.
I like the fragrance which is not too strong. One of my guest commented that not too much santan is also good, she did not feel so guilty eating too much of it.
Overall impression and notes:
- It all tasted rather fresh, no rancid smell or unpleasantness.
- The pineapple tarts are good, not too expensive and size of the tarts are good too. Not too expensive per piece which you means you can serve it, and not hide your stash.
- The cookies made from nuts range are nice, but it seems to be a bit salty. That's the overall impression from almost all of the 15 people whom I have served them to over the last 2 weeks.
- The containers are pretty, easy to open too. (You can hide in the office drawers!)
- Labels says "Product of Singapore", except for the love letters which is made in Indonesia.
- Tai Sun sells quality nuts like Almond, Macademia etc, so we can trust their ingredients are of the same quality.
A note of thanks to Esther, the marketing manager of Tai Sun for sending these samples.