For those of us hooked on sashimi, it’s always a constant struggle between angling for that prized cut, and the tug on our heartstrings when we see the dip in our bank accounts. Economics bites sometimes, doesn’t it?
The crown jewel of the sashimi selection is undoubtedly the Otoro Sashimi. Derived from the fattiest part of the Bluefin Tuna belly, this is literally a cut above the rest.
Delicately marbled and sinfully thick, each mouthful melts so quickly on your tongue, it leaves you wanting to eat at a slower pace to savour it fully.
Prefer to munch on some rice with your sashimi? Try their Bara Chirashi Don instead. Cubes of salmon, tuna, and other fresh seafood rest atop a bed of Japanese rice. The subtly sweet taste of tamago chunks mingled with the savouriness of the fish, with the crunch of diced cucumber adding a refreshing layer of texture.
Enhancing the texture even more is a liberal sprinkle of tobiko (fish roe) – popping these in your mouth is always fun.
But as much as sashimi abounds in Japanese cuisine, raw fish might not be for everyone. Not to worry; you can always try their variety of grilled appetisers.
A grilled appetiser to try is their Fugu Mirin Boshi — yes, fugu as in puffer fish. The dish is served with a dollop of mayonnaise – the sour flavour complementing the saltiness of the pufferfish.
For a more substantial appetiser that's bound to appease fans of mentaiko. A combination of smelt and cod fish roe, this dish is served in small cubes of briny goodness. The burst of flavour from the roe lingers on your palate, and as rich as it is, you just might find yourself finishing the entire dish on your own!
Delectable as their dishes are, you won’t want to leave without dessert – particularly, their ice cream. Smooth, with the consistency of sorbet, the ice cream here comes in three flavours: Yuzu, Goma, and Matcha.
LOS ANGELES - A baking heatwave that has gripped the US South-west for three days spread eastward to Iowa and Missouri on Thursday (June 17), while punishing the hardest-hit areas with record high temperatures that have strained power systems.
The National Weather Service has issued excessive heat warnings for much of the South-west, including Arizona, southern Nevada, much of California and southern Utah.
Heat advisories were issued for parts of the Central Plains, including Kansas, Nebraska, Iowa and Missouri.
"It's a pretty big impact with respect to where the record heat is," National Weather Service meteorologist Bob Oravec said from the Weather Prediction Centre in College Park, Maryland.
A high-pressure system has been parked for three days over the South-west, a region used to temperatures of around 38 deg C between now and September.
"But now the temperatures in the last several days, especially today, are going anywhere from 10 to 20 degrees Fahrenheit above average," Mr Oravec said.
Salt Lake City, Utah, on Tuesday tied its all-time high temperature since record-keeping began in 1894, at 42 deg C.
Forecasters say more records could fall on Thursday, where by late-afternoon temperatures could hit 47 deg C in Phoenix, and 45 deg C in Las Vegas.
California's Death Valley National Park, typically one of the hottest spots in the world, recorded 54 deg C on Wednesday.
"Up to a certain temperature it's OK, like maybe 120, but once it gets above that is when it really gets hard," said Mr Willo Alford, who runs a general store in Death Valley Village and has lived there most of her life.
With air conditioners cranked up in homes and businesses, Texas and California urged consumers to conserve energy during peak times to avoid blackouts.
"The public's help is essential when extreme weather or other factors beyond our control put undue stress on the electric grid," said Mr Elliot Mainzer, chief executive of the California ISO, which operates the grid in most of California.
The Electric Reliability Council of Texas (Ercot), the state's grid operator, expects Thursday's demand to break the June record set on Monday.
Both states have previously imposed rotating or controlled outages to prevent more widespread collapses of their power systems - California during a heat wave in August 2020 and Texas during a brutal freeze in February 2021.
The National Weather Service has issued red flag warnings across the South-west to warn of fire dangers and major blazes were burning across the region, although most of them were more than 50 per cent contained as of Thursday afternoon.
"Mother Nature, please bring on a productive monsoon. Be gone: #heat wave #wildfires," Ms Monica Surfaro of Tuscan, Arizona, wrote on Twitter.
A cold front is expected to bring relief to the midsection of the country on Sunday as temperatures in the South-west slowly moderate as well.
"The heat wave, at least the record portions of the heat wave, looks like it will be coming to them this weekend,"Mr Oravec said.
VANCOUVER - A Canadian couple who drew widespread criticism for flying to a small Indigenous community in January to get vaccinated pleaded guilty Wednesday (June 16) to violating local coronavirus restrictions, according to court records.
The couple, Rodney and Ekaterina Baker of Vancouver, British Columbia, appeared virtually in Yukon Territorial Court and pleaded guilty to charges under the territory's Civil Emergency Measures Act, which was enacted during the pandemic and required people to isolate themselves for 14 days after entering Yukon, records show.
While the Bakers will not face jail time, they were each fined US$1,000 (S$1,341) plus a US$150 surcharge, totalling US$2,300 for the couple.
"Fortunately, nothing physical happened in this case; no one got Covid as a result," Judge Michael Cozens said during court proceedings, according to the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. "There was harm, but the harm wasn't anyone catching Covid. It was certainly psychological."
The Bakers travelled about 1,200 miles (1,900km) to Whitehorse, Yukon's capital, on Jan 19.
Two days later, bypassing the required two weeks of quarantine, the couple chartered a flight to Beaver Creek, about 300 miles north-west of Whitehorse, and posed as motel workers in the area and received vaccinations. Later that day, the couple returned to Whitehorse, where authorities found them.
Within days, Rodney Baker, who had been the chief executive of the Great Canadian Gaming Corp, which operates casinos and hotels across Canada, resigned from his position. Ekaterina Baker is an actress.
Ms Kelly McGill, who prosecuted the case as part of Yukon's legal services branch, did not immediately respond to a request for comment Thursday.
Beaver Creek, which relies heavily on traffic from the Alaska Highway, has suffered economically amid travel restrictions during the pandemic. The community was made a priority for vaccinations in part because of its remoteness, and shots were made available to adults of all ages. Yukon identification cards were not required.
The couple's actions highlighted both the complexities of a global vaccine rollout and the inequities in vaccine distribution, made all the more complicated by the disproportionately high rates of infection and death among poor people and people of color. These issues were especially fraught amid vaccine shortages and distribution problems.
Ms Jennifer Cunningham, the couple's lawyer, did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Thursday.
Mr John Streicker, Yukon's community services minister, said at the time that he was "outraged" by the couple's "selfish behaviour."
Similarly, Ms Angela Demit, the chief of the White River First Nation, called the Bakers "privileged multimillionaires."
"It's clear to me that because we are a predominantly Indigenous community, that they assumed we were naive," she said. "There must be a clear signal sent that this behavior is unacceptable."
SINGAPORE - The first of the Sinovac Covid-19 vaccinations will be administered at some private clinics on Friday afternoon (June 18), following the authorities' approval of 24 private healthcare clinics to draw on the Government's existing stock of the vaccine.
As not all the clinics have received the vials yet, many have turned away walk-in requests from the public or placed them on registration wait lists. According to some clinics approached by The Straits Times, the waiting time for those who register successfully could be two weeks or more.
Several clinics told reporters they have been inundated with calls since the Ministry of Health's (MOH) announcement on Wednesday on the 24 selected providers.
Among clinics ready to administer the first jabs on Friday is the Rophi Clinic and HeartlandHealth's Bedok South outlet.
A spokesman for Rophi Clinic said it has received "thousands of sign-ups who have registered their interest, but all slots are booked". It will be giving out 20 jabs this afternoon.
The Rophi Clinic spokesman said that vaccination will be conducted on non-clinic days to segregate those receiving vaccines from regular patients. The clinic is encouraging individuals to make bookings online instead of walking in to the clinic.
HeartlandHealth's Bedok South outlet received 200 vials, and so have Icon Cancer Centre and Pinnacle Family Clinic.
HeartlandHealth is expecting to receive the vials by noon, and will start administering jabs later today. "We will screen every patient’s eligibility and suitability to receive the vaccines before we administer them," said a spokesman.
A spokesman for Icon Cancer Centre said it has received "close to 1,000 expressions of interest". Those receiving their jabs will be segregated from their regular patients, and placed in a separate area for observation. Priority will be given to patients who cannot take the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines for medical reasons over people who opt to take Sinovac out of personal preference.
Pinnacle Family Clinic's resident physician Dr Ho Kok On said the clinic will only start vaccinations on Monday. It needs time to set up an observation area for those who have just been vaccinated. At least 480 patients have left their contact details with the clinic since this morning.
On Friday morning, there was a queue of about 10 people outside Little Cross Family Clinic in Tampines St 91 making inquiries about the vaccine. They were told to send their details to a WhatsApp number so they can be contacted when the vaccines are available, as the clinic has not received them yet.
Part-time administrator Phuah C.K., 72, was among those making inquiries as he has a medical history of hypertension, high cholesterol, liver cirrhosis and other problems. "I fear the side effects of other vaccines," said Mr Phuah. "So far I haven't seen many reports about the side effects of the Sinovac vaccine".
Similarly, Ms Sherry Cheong, 44, was present with her father Cheong Poo Fon, 72, who has a severe allergy to aspirin. She decided to go to the clinic directly as the phone lines were engaged all of Thursday.
She hopes he can get vaccinated as soon as possible as he works in a high-risk environment.
"My dad is still working as a hawker and it's pretty dangerous for him to be exposed, so the family is worried," said Ms Cheong. "I feel they should prioritise older individuals first, over the young ones, depending on who needs it first."
Others who have attempted to book a vaccination slot include a 63-year-old who wanted to be known only as Madam Chan.
Self-employed Madam Chan called Elisa Koh Clinic & Surgery For Women, located at Mount Elizabeth Novena Specialist Centre, as it offered one of the cheapest prices for the vaccine at $10.70, and it is relatively close to her home.
The charge for Sinovac's vaccine by the 24 approved providers ranges from $10 to $25.
MOH had earlier said that as the doses are being provided to the institutions for free, they should not charge people anything other than a vaccination administration fee, which is inclusive of consultation and a 7 per cent goods and services tax.
However, Madam Chan was told to wait for more details as the clinic had not started its vaccine roll-out yet.
Madam Chan said that she was not intending to get vaccinated initially, as she felt she could deal with the risks by taking other precautions, such as going out less often and exercising regularly.
But she has since chosen to get the Sinovac jab as "it is a traditional vaccine, just like the ones we took when we were children, so I feel more comfortable taking it".
"Now that the situation has taken a turn for the worse, I felt that I should get the vaccine to protect myself and others around me," she said.
SINGAPORE - A 20-year-old Singaporean man was charged in court on Friday (June 18) for abetting the breach of stay-home notice (SHN) requirements by a person on SHN and trespassing into the premises of an SHN dedicated facility.
The court heard that he intends to admit to the charges. He will be back in court on July 29.
On Nov 28 last year at about 3pm, Sow Kaiser visited his friend who was serving the notice at a hotel and spent about an hour in the room before leaving.
Sow allegedly took a lift and entered the hotel's restricted area, where he then used a service lift to get to the room.
He was subsequently spotted by the hotel's security guard but left the hotel before he could be apprehended.
The Immigration and Checkpoints Authority said on Friday that those who fail to comply with SHN requirements will be liable to prosecution under the Infectious Diseases (Covid-19 - Stay Orders) Regulations 2020.
The penalty may be a fine of up to $10,000, or a jail term of up to six months, or both.
In addition, those found guilty of trespassing will receive a jail term of up to three months, or a fine of up to $1,500, or both.
Members of the public can provide information about anyone who fails to comply with SHN requirements to ICA at this link or call 6812 5555.
More information on the prevailing SHN and swab requirements for travellers can be found on the SafeTravel website.
SINGAPORE - A woman caught on video making purportedly racist remarks appeared in a district court on Friday (June 18) and was handed two charges over alleged acts "prejudicial to the maintenance of harmony between different racial groups".
Tan Beow Hiong, 57, was also charged with one count of being a public nuisance.
In April, the Singaporean is said to have maintained a channel on YouTube comprising multiple videos alleging racism or harassment by persons of other races.
She was in an MRT train on April 21 when she allegedly singled out the other passengers and made derogatory remarks about them.
Tan is accused of being a public nuisance on another occasion in an MRT train on May 11.
This time, she allegedly spoke loudly in a carriage, stating that she was not racist. She is also said to have made statements such as: "We are very different."
Tan made the headlines earlier this year after she was recorded grilling passengers about their race on an MRT train.
Both her YouTube channel and employment as a property agent have been terminated.
In an earlier post on Facebook, property consultancy Knight Frank Singapore said her conduct had been brought to its attention. It added that one of its core values is to be "a responsible business to people and the community" and that it "maintains zero tolerance for hate speech and racism that threaten the foundations on which Singapore is built".
Tan, who was an associate with the company, has been delisted from the Council for Estate Agencies' public register.
In an earlier statement to reporters, YouTube said her channel was removed due to violations of its harassment and cyber bullying policies.
"We have strict policies that prohibit harassment on YouTube, including content that maliciously insults someone based on their race, gender expression or sexual orientation," said its spokesman.
"We quickly remove content that violates these policies when flagged."
Tan will be remanded at the Institute of Mental Health for psychiatric observation, and her case has been adjourned to July 2.
For each count of committing an act prejudicial to the maintenance of harmony between different racial groups, an offender can be jailed for up to three years and fined.
For being a public nuisance, a person can be jailed for up to three months and fined up to $2,000.
Here’s your chance to show your gratitude and affection for the special men in your life this Father’s Day by indulging them with a healthy yet scrumptious meal! Miso Salmon is celebrating this special day with a special promotion for the weekend; offering 20% off their Inaniwa Udon Bowls.
Miso Salmon is Singapore’s first Inaniwa udon speciality restaurant. Unlike other udon noodles, Inaniwa udon can be distinguished by the thin and chewy yet silky smooth texture. Miso Salmon also prides themselves on using fresh and wholesome ingredients, customers may choose from an assortment of seafood such as salmon, crayfish meat and Japanese boiled scallop - all at affordable prices to nourish your body.
Included in this Father’s Day promotion are their Speciality Inaniwa Udon Bowls along with their Inaniwa Udon Premium Bowls. The Speciality Inaniwa Udon Bowls are a combination of bowls with different miso soup flavours topped with a myriad of nutritious toppings. Taste the ocean with their Seafood Miso Bowl, which is part of the Speciality Inaniwa Udon Bowl collection. Filled to the brim with seafood - from succulent salmon slices to Japanese boiled scallops and asari clams. Served in their original Shiro miso broth, this bowl is a hearty meal with other ingredients such as tofu, wakame seaweed and Japanese fish cake.
On the other hand, their Inaniwa Udon Premium Bowls are served dry with protein choices such as tiger prawns, unagi and scallops. Order the Unagi Bowl for Dad; sweet and savoury unagi that’s grilled to perfection, it’s served atop their signature Inaniwa udon along with everyone’s favourite onsen egg, and garnished with shredded nori, cherry tomatoes, broccoli and spring onion.
Miso Salmon aims to have every customer satisfied with their good quality and premium selection at affordable prices, and we’re sure that this is one Father’s Day deal Udon want to miss!
For more information on MISO SALMON, please visit:
Location: 60 Peck Seah Street, Singapore 079323
About Miso Salmon
Miso Salmon focuses on providing quality Japanese comfort food for customers. The restaurant incorporates miso into dishes, with exclusive flavours like truffle and fish collagen. The menu itself revolves around Inaniwa udon, a type of Japanese noodle that is characterised by its thin and highly elegant taste, and chewy yet silky smooth texture. Miso Salmon also uses fresh and wholesome ingredients, such as salmon, crayfish meat and Japanese boiled scallop - all prepared to serve you beyond expectations at affordable prices.
Miso Salmon integrates the concept of fun and personalisation to the masses. Customers can mixand match their preferred add-ons from the array of varieties tailoring to their taste buds. Apart from serving quality food, Miso Salmon also prides itself in taking care of customers by providing pleasant dining experiences in a comfortable and affable ambience.
Mandatory Covid-19 testing under way for 130 stallholders, cleaners at Telok Blangah Drive Food Centre
SINGAPORE - Testing for Covid-19 was quick and smooth at the void deck of Block 80D Telok Blangah Street 31, as stallholders and cleaners from the Telok Blangah Drive Food Centre and Market turned up for mandatory swabbing on Thursday (June 17) morning.
The temporary test site was set up after a second worker at the food centre was confirmed to be infected on Wednesday.
When reporters visited the site, there was some crowding at the entrance as hawkers showed up early for appointments scheduled from 9am, but it cleared quickly as testing commenced. The testing was to go on till 4pm.
West Coast GRC MP Rachel Ong, who was present, told reporters that around 100 stallholders and 30 cleaners were expected to be swabbed.
The hawker centre is closed for deep cleaning and disinfection, from Wednesday afternoon till Friday.
Ms Ong told reporters that the community has been understanding and supportive.
"I think everyone knows that this is the correct thing to do, and there was a lot of support," she said.
Would there be further support for stallholders and hawkers?
"The hawkers... were very thankful with the recent rental rebates," she said. "We are (discussing it) with our grassroots volunteers, and the president of our shopkeepers and stallholders association... So if we can help, we will do our best."
Among those tested was 76-year-old hawker Lim Kwang How, who operates a yong tau foo stall at the market. He arrived around 9am to get swabbed.
"The swab test was done quickly and smoothly and I did not experience any discomfort," Mr Lim said in Mandarin, adding that there were no queues inside the swab centre.
Another hawker, Madam Ng Guek Eng, 56, who arrived early for her 10am appointment, expressed concerns about having to close for longer than three days.
Madam Ng, who has operated a carrot cake stall at the food centre for 26 years, said in Mandarin: "We are also not sure when it will open, and hopefully there will not be a lot of cases. If there is an increase in cases, there will be a need to lock down or close for longer."
Already, she will have to dispose of unused ingredients like eggs, which have been delivered. "We will definitely face a loss of income," she added.
The most recently detected case at the Telok Blangah Drive Food Centre was a 33-year-old Singaporean woman, who works there part time. She is a household contact of an earlier case, confirmed on Monday, a 42-year-old Singaporean man who is a hawker at the Telok Blangah Drive Food Centre. He has been linked to the cluster at the Bukit Merah View market.
A 12 year-old Singaporean girl who attends CHIJ St Theresa's Convent, who tested positive on Tuesday, is a family member and household contact of these two. All three were already in quarantine from Monday.
There were 39 cases in the Bukit Merah View food centre cluster as at Thursday.
SINGAPORE - Ngee Ann Polytechnic (NP) is in the process of sacking senior lecturer Tan Boon Lee for serious misconduct.
This comes after a video posted on June 6 of Mr Tan making racist remarks to an interracial couple in Orchard Road went viral online. This was followed by an Instagram post on June 9 by NP alumna Nurul Fatimah Iskandar, who alleged that Mr Tan made Islamophobic comments in a class in 2017.
NP said it made the decision after completing its internal investigations into both incidents. It has charged Mr Tan – a lecturer at the School of Engineering – with a serious breach of its staff code of conduct, and “is proceeding to terminate his service”.
"Our staff members are expected to respect cultural, ethnic and religious differences in our society. They must uphold secularity and impartiality at all times... The disciplinary action meted out against the staff in question reflects our commitment to provide a safe, inclusive and respectful environment for our campus community," said NP in a statement on Thursday (June 17).
Police investigations into both incidents are ongoing.
In her Instagram post, Ms Nurul, now 22 and a student at the National University of Singapore, said she had reported Mr Tan’s insensitive comments to NP at the time.
NP said it has been unable to locate any records of her feedback after searching its various feedback channels and checking Ms Nurul’s NP mailbox archives.
“In our conversation with her, she indicated that she could not recall whether she had e-mailed her feedback on the incident or raised it during a post-course focus group discussion (FGD) in 2017,” it added. FGDs are typically held at the end of every semester to seek students’ feedback on courses and lecturers.
“Nonetheless, we are committed to preventing a similar incident from occurring again, and will ensure that students are made aware of the appropriate channels for them to provide feedback in a safe manner,” it said.
“We will also advise our staff on how to manage and report feedback that they may receive outside of these channels, as appropriate.”
NP also apologised for the distress that Mr Tan’s comments caused Ms Nurul, and said it has offered her counselling support.
Last Thursday, Ms Nurul told reporters
that Mr Tan had used lesson time to initiate an offensive discussion about Islam.
“He opened websites about Islam and explained why he didn’t agree with certain Quranic verses. He then singled me out, and tried to start a debate on the topic. It didn’t help that I was the only Muslim student in class and I sat in the front row,” she said.
NP said that it will make all feedback channels for students more accessible and visible on its website, and publicise them on its campus digital screens.
These channels include a whistle-blowing e-mail address for students – email@example.com, a general inquiry AskNP e-mail address, course experience dialogues and student surveys.
“In addition, students can share their feedback with their staff advisers at any time. We would like to assure students that all feedback will be taken seriously and handled in confidence,” the polytechnic said.
NP added that it would be reviewing its internal feedback monitoring processes to identify and resolve gaps.
“We also remind all staff to strictly adhere to the staff code of conduct and create a safe learning environment for all in NP,” it said.
Rise in workplace injuries from slips, trips and falls a concern and needs to be addressed: Zaqy Mohamad
SINGAPORE - Workplace injuries caused by slips, trips and falls in the food and beverage (F&B) industry have risen by an average of 12 per cent a year in the four years before the pandemic, and have been the main driver of injuries in the sector, said Senior Minister of State for Manpower Zaqy Mohamad on Thursday (June 17).
Overall, work injuries in the sector have also been rising at an average rate of 9 per cent a year from 2016 to 2019, tapering down slightly last year, as many workplaces were forced to shut due to Covid-19.
Last year, there were 985 work injuries in the F&B sector. In 2019, there were 1,167 injuries in the sector, and 932 in 2018.
These trends are becoming a concern and need to be addressed, Mr Zaqy said at a virtual forum for the F&B sector organised by the Workplace Safety and Health (WSH) Council.
He said: "Good workplace safety and health makes good business sense... No one wants to work in an accident-prone industry...
"For owners, a safe workplace and a healthy workforce means higher productivity, less time lost due to sick leave, better staff retention, and even lower costs from avoiding work injury insurance premium hikes due to injury claims.
"For employees, good workplace safety and health sense means protecting their lives and livelihoods."
Across all sectors, major injuries caused by slips, trips and falls are on the rise.
In the first three months of this year, there were 61 major injuries caused by slips, trips and falls across all industries, up from 37 during the same period last year.
Slips, trips and falls are also the top cause of non-fatal work injuries, said Mr Zaqy.
Hence, in conjunction with Thursday's virtual forum, a new year-long Slips, Trips and Falls (STF) campaign has been launched to raise awareness of such injuries.
This year's campaign is the third such campaign in as many years, and is the second one being led by the food service sector.
The WSH Council told reporters that this year's campaign will target employers and workers from the F&B, logistics and transport, and facilities management sectors. It identifies four common hazardous areas in workplaces - slippery areas, slopes, uneven areas and cluttered areas.
The campaign will call on companies to establish a year-long STF commitment, and implement five key actions that require them to set aside time to check for hazards, clean up work areas, and share safety messages with their workers on a regular basis.
The five actions are:
- Displaying warning signs in areas with STF risks;
- Wearing of non-slip footwear when there is wet or oily flooring;
- Holding on to railings at non-level ground;
- Removing clutter; and
- Cleaning spills promptly
The WSH Council said it aims to reach out to 14 associations across the three sectors, whose members comprise more than 6,000 companies.
Said Mr Zaqy: "The intent here is to commit to do specific actions to address and tackle STFs, and prevent future injuries from occurring."
As part of the campaign, the authorities will also be organising "learning journeys" for companies in high-risk sectors, with the first such journey to start in August. These learning journeys encourage the sharing and learning of best practices across various industries.
Mr Zaqy said workers also need to be trained to be safe and this has to be done systematically. For example, segments on preventing slips, trips and falls are now included in the basic mandatory training course for all food handlers.
Singapore Hotel Association president Kwee Weilin, who chairs the WSH Council's hospitality and entertainment industries committee, said the F&B industry has been grappling with acute manpower constraints amid the pandemic and workers in the sector have had to bear the brunt of this shortage.
One way to work around manpower constraints is to adopt technology to maintain productivity and workplace safety standards, Ms Kwee said.
"When made to work longer hours and complete more tasks, our F&B workers are more likely to experience fatigue. Their day-to-day struggle at work may take a toll on their health and increase the likelihood of injuries," she added.
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