wafuken

Wafuken – Insta-Worthy, Tastebud-Worthy and Health-Worthy Eats in CBD

As a foodie dietitian, I get super excited whenever I visit food outlets offering healthy and delicious foods! Win-win! Dosirak is one of them, and I’ve recently discovered Wafuken as another great-tasting healthy food shop. They have two outlets, and I visited the one at Asia Square Tower 2. Their concept of ordering is much like you would at a mixed veg rice store / salad store: choose the protein, add on any extras you fancy like carbs, veggies and sauces. There are six proteins for selection (from $4), including Wagyu Rump ($20 half steak), Flank Steak ($7 half steak), and Salmon ($10). It’s a thoughtful touch to offer half portions for some proteins which is perfect for smaller eaters.
They have a neat history behind their name:

WAFU – Japanese style of western cuisine
KEN – Kenko, which means wellness in Japanese

And their food indeed lives up to their name, marrying tastebud-delight with natural wholesome ingredients.

The owners definitely walk the talk. Edmund has a hospitality background, having graduated from Shatec Institute and Jake is a self-taught home cook who was able to lose a lot of weight from his own diet changes.

Wafuken’s meats are all cooked using sous vide technique; a cooking technique typically offered mainly in expensive gourmet restaurants, but made affordable at their outlet here.

Sous vide (which is French for “under vacuum”) is when ingredients are placed in vacuum-sealed packs and cooked over a long duration in a temperature-controlled water bath. The end result is an awesomely flavourful, juicy, nutrient-packed protein with no added fats. Wafuken only uses brine (water and salt, with a bit of canola oil) to cook the meats, nothing else. I spoke to Edmund, one of the co-founders of Wafuken, to get further insights on the ingredients and portions used so I could run a full nutritional analysis.

Chicken Donburi

Sing Yi tried the half chicken breast brown rice donburi – Japanese brown rice served with onsen egg and daikon pickles – ($8). It was quite delectable. The chicken breast was nothing like the usual dry texture you get; it was melt-in-the-mouth and moist, as expected from the sous vide cooking.
Considering no other seasoning other than brine and a little canola oil was added in the vacuum pack during cooking, it was surprisingly flavourful and the plainness actually let the natural chicken fragrance shine through. Wafuken grills/blow torches their chicken and salmon to brown the meat for nice caramelisation. I was equally impressed by the brown sushi rice. It tasted similar to Australian brown rice (calrose/medium-grain), with a nice bite, slight stickiness and nuttiness. Wafuken is of the few places in Singapore that offer this very unique ingredient. The onsen egg provided a nice slippery base to coat the rice, and the pickled daikon, spring onion and furikake garnishing brought it all together with the distinctive saltiness.
 
Nutrient Energy Protein Total fat Saturated fat Carbs Fibre Sodium
Amount 501.6kcal 44.2g 13.2g 3.2g 49.4g 3.9g 1102.4mg
Nutritional Profile

Nutritionally speaking, the analysis shows a generally good picture. This bowl contains 500 calories, which is perfect for a meal. It also has 45g protein, which packs a punch! There’s 2 teaspoons fat in the meal, and most of it is the healthy type. If you have diabetes or watching your carb intake, you’ll be pleased to know the carbohydrate portion is well-controlled at 50g (~3 carb exchanges). The only drawbacks are that the fibre is rather low at 4g (but not bad, considering there’s wholegrains in the meal!), which can be easily fixed by adding a vegetable side. The sodium content is also rather high, providing ~50% of your daily allowance. You could improve on this by switching the pickles with fresh veggies instead, as the rest of the ingredients are all relatively low in sodium.

Salmon, Soba and Wafu Salad

The second dish we tried was the salmon with soba noodles and wafu salad ($14). Sous vide salmon must be one of the most delicious proteins in the world! Imagine the beautifully rich taste of salmon in a soft and oozy oh-so-tender fillet. The aburi touch at the end and umami chewy kombu pieces top it all off. I like the thoughtful inclusion of a wedge of lemon to cut through if the salmon’s oiliness becomes too jelat. Additionally, tsuyu sauce and seaweed nicely sesaoned the soba noodles, while the wafu salad was really lovely with a zing from the carrot wafu sauce. It was slightly on the salty side, but you can always request for less dressing (of both noodles + salad) or on the side.

wafuken 2

Nutritional Profile
Nutrient Energy Protein Total fat Saturated fat Carbs Fibre Sodium
Amount 555.1kcal 41.9g 24g 3.4g 37.4g 3.7g 734.2mg
This salmon plate packs a chockfull of omega-3 fatty acids that are great for the heart, so the fat content is a bit high (at 5 teaspoons). But it’s definitely the healthy fats so it’s perfectly fine! This plate of goodness has quite little saturated fat inside. Despite the high fat content, the calories is still a good amount at 555, and it provides a sizeable chunk of protein at 41g. It’s a bit lower carbs than the chicken donburi. It also falls a bit short in terms of fibre content, but not bad at providing ~4g (~20% of one’s minimum fibre requirements). Lettuce tends to be one of the lower fibre veggies, so try mixing it up with or adding other options like steamed vegetables, beansprouts, steamed broccoli, grilled asparagus or edamame.

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Wafuken

Asia Square Outlet

Address: 12 Marina View, Asia Square Tower 2, #02-05 Singapore 018961
Opening hours: 11am-8pm (Mon-Fri). Closed weekends

WAFUKEN OUE Downtown outlet

Address: 6A Shenton Way, OUE Downtown Gallery #02-23, Singapore 068815
Opening hours: 11am-8pm (Mon-Fri), 11am-3pm (Sat). Closed Sun.

Facebook: https://facebook.com/WafukenSG/