The latest salvo in the arsenal of restaurants to cover the shortfall in business during the circuit breaker period is DIY meal kits.
Unlike with takeaway and delivery where the dishes are ready to eat, customers are expected to finish the cooking themselves at home with these kits.
This way, they get to enjoy freshly whipped-up restaurant fare – and take pride in playing a part in its completion.
The eatery provides the ingredients – already measured out – and takes care of difficult things like pastes, marinades and sauces. They are not about to disclose the entire recipe, after all.
The diner follows simple instructions for the final cooking steps on the stove or in the oven.
Among the latest to offer such kits is Italian restaurant Amo in Hongkong Street. It launched three pizza kits priced from $20 to $28 and four pasta kits priced from $16.40 to $18.60 two weeks ago.
Another Italian restaurant, Buona Terra in Scotts Road, also launched pasta kits two weeks ago, with housemade fresh pastas at $8 and a kit with a choice of pasta and sauce costing $32 to $38.
Bar Cicheti near Keong Saik Road also sells three DIY pasta meals priced from $15 to $21, while Open Farm Community in Dempsey has three pastas priced from $29.96 to $34.30.
Pasta kits seem to be the most popular because they are easy to put together and diners can customise the flavours by adding their own ingredients to the sauce.
But some Asian restaurants have dishes that can be cooked easily too. Eurasian restaurant Quentin’s, for example, sells Cook-It-Yourself kits of its popular dishes such as chicken curry devil ($20.80). And Ajumma’s Korean Restaurant has dishes such as army base stew ($17.90) and beef kalbi ($17.90).
Fairmont Singapore offers dishes from tandoori lamb chops ($38) to veal ossobucco ($42).
Other restaurants with DIY kits include Morton’s The Steakhouse, Preludio and Summer Hill, which recently launched single-serving kits on top of its regular family-size meals.