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Eight upmarket takes on the traditional bak chang

We pick out the strangest, most luxurious and 'atas'-est bak chang (rice dumplings) to enjoy during the Dragon Boat Festival in Singapore

Dumpling Festival Treats from Resorts World Sentosa
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Dumpling Festival Treats from Resorts World Sentosa

The integrated resort is offering a set of five dumplings ($78), created by five of its restaurants: Tangerine, Feng Shui Inn, Forest, Osia Steak and Seafood Grill, and Syun.

Tangerine’s version, with organic barley and quinoa, is ideal for vegetarians while Feng Shui Inn will sate the health-conscious with its great pyramid. There’s Australian wild abalone alongside five grains: soya beans, wheat, broomcorn, foxtail millet and – duh – rice. Meanwhile, Forest scours the sea for its bak chang of sea whelk, dried oysters and unagi and Osia caters to carnivores with its five-spiced Berkshire pork dumpling. And for something a little left-field, Syun’s Japanese dessert dumpling is loaded with azuki beans.

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Harbourfront
Black rice and abalone dumpling from Crystal Jade
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Black rice and abalone dumpling from Crystal Jade

It sounds simple enough, but Crystal Jade’s black rice dumpling ($12.90) is studded with roast duck pieces, chestnuts, salted egg yolk and mung beans – oh, and baby abalone, of course.

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Orchard
Pork trotter dumpling from Hua Ting Restaurant
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Pork trotter dumpling from Hua Ting Restaurant

Pork trotters and peanuts, both braised, are the familiar flavours in this bak chang ($14.80). But then this Orchard Hotel restaurant throws a curveball by including dried bonito flakes for umami, an ingredient more commonly found in takoyaki than dumplings.

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Orchard
Black truffle and pork belly dumpling from Wan Hao Chinese Restaurant
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Black truffle and pork belly dumpling from Wan Hao Chinese Restaurant

For hardened truffle addicts, this fancy bak chang ($18) is stuffed with chopped bits of the fungus. Marinated pork belly shares the stage alongside the truffle, and cordyceps flower – a fungus the Chinese believe to promote good health – accents the other, heavier flavours.

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Orchard
Chilli crab dumpling from Golden Peony
Photo: Miss Tam Chiak
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Chilli crab dumpling from Golden Peony

For a local-’til-you-die kick, try this bak chang ($28) from the Chinese restaurant in Conrad Centennial. A hefty chunk of pincer meat sits inside, and to up the ante, it’s also served with a homemade chilli crab sauce on the side.

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Promenade
Truffle and foie gras dumpling from Xin Cuisine Chinese Restaurant
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Truffle and foie gras dumpling from Xin Cuisine Chinese Restaurant

Boy is Xin Cuisine going all out this bak chang season. The restaurant hops on the truffle-infused craze with this unctuous and indulgent dumpling ($28.80) whose fillings elevate the humble dish to levels of luxury.

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Duck, fish maw and abalone dumpling from Xin Cuisine Chinese Restaurant
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Duck, fish maw and abalone dumpling from Xin Cuisine Chinese Restaurant

Topping our list for priciest bak chang is this beauty from the Holiday Inn Singapore restaurant. For $38 a pop, you get fish maw, abalone and the star of the show: smoked tea leaves roasted with duck.

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Abalone and scallop dumpling from Yan Ting Restaurant
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Abalone and scallop dumpling from Yan Ting Restaurant

Given its home in the plush St Regis, you’d expect Yan Ting’s bak chang ($33) to be a five-star treat. And with its fillings of roast duck, abalone, dried scallops, pork belly, chestnuts, salted egg yolk, shiitake mushroom and lotus seeds, it’d be pretty hard to deny. For something pocket-friendlier, go for the Glutinous Rice Dumpling Gift Set ($49). Choose from three types of bak chang, including one with pork belly and salted egg yolk, as well as a vegetarian option, with black glutinous rice and mixed grains.

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Orchard

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