Monday, October 17, 2011

Guest Post: Top 5 Must Try Singaporean Food

Dear Seoul Eats Readers,

Miss Tam Chiak was kind enough to post an article that I wrote about recommended foods for Singaporeans visiting Seoul. ( So I then asked her to recommend dishes that she would recommend for people in Korea visiting Singapore. These dishes look and sound mouthwatering. I can't wait until I make a trip there.
Daniel Gray

Hello Korean readers, 안녕하세요! I am Maureen, a true blue Singaporean living in the sunny island of Asia. By day, I work as a reporter in a daily newspaper. By night, I manage my personal food blog: 

 “Tam Chiak” is actually a dialect translation for “greedy”. I love to eat, be it hawker or restaurant. One of the best things about being in Sjingapore, is the food. Our ulti-cultural diversity is reflected in the variety of local cuisine it has to offer, from Chinese to Malay, Indian to Peranakan.

I am truly honored to write a guest post for Daniel from Seoul Eats on something which I am very passionate about: hawker food. Here is my list to 5 must try hawker food in Singapore. These food are very common in our hawker centres and some restaurants. If it is your first time visiting Singapore, forget about the restaurants. Immerge yourself into the Singapore culture and I am sure you will have a very different experience.

1. Chicken Rice
Chicken Rice Recommended by Miss Tam Chiak
Chicken Rice is the most unique iconic Singaporean dish. It is a dish of Chinese origin most commonly associated with Hainanese and Singaporean cuisine, although it is also commonly sold in neighbouring Thailand and Malaysia. The chicken is usually boiled and the stock is used for rice preparation, producing an oily and flavorful rice. The succulent steamed white chicken is then cut into bite-size pieces and served with the fragrant rice. It is often drizzled over with light soy sauce and sesame oil, topped with sprigs of coriander leaf, sliced cucumber or achar (spicy pickles).

Variants include roasted chicken or soy sauce chicken. The dish is usually served with several dips, including premium dark soy sauce, chilli sauce and pounded ginger. Play around with different combinations to discover new tastes.

Where to eat? 
1. Chatterbox: Meritus Mandarin Singapore Level 5, 333 Orchard Road, Tel: +65 6831 6288/91
2. Boon Tong Kee: 399/401/403 Balestier Road, Tel: +65 6254 3937 3. Yet Con: 25 Purvis Street, Tel: +65 6337 6819

2. Chili Crab 
Chili Crab recommended by Miss Tam Chiak
Another national signature, chili crab is one of the most requested dishes for anyone who comes to Singapore. It is listed at number 45 on World's 50 most delicious foods complied by CNN Go in 2011.

Despite its name, chili crab is not a very spicy dish. The crabs are cooked with thick tomato and chilli based gravy and usually eaten with fried ‘man-tou” (fried buns). But there are more ways to do the crab now. If you aren't a fan of chilli, you can choose to cook the crabs with black pepper, salted egg yolk, steamed with wine etc.

 Where to eat? 
1. Roland Restaurant: Block 89 Marine Parade Central #06-750. Tel +65 6440 8205
2. Jumbo Seafood: Blk 1206 East Coast Parkway, East Coast Seafood Centre #01-07/08, Tel: +65 64423435 3. Mellben Seafood: Blk 232 Ang Mo Kio Avenue 3 #01-1222, Tel: +65 6285 6762

3. Katong Laksa

Katong Laksa Recommened by Miss Tam Chiak

Laksa is a popular spicy noodle soup from the Peranakan culture, which is a merger of Chinese and Malay elements found in Malaysia and Singapore. It consists of thick rice vermicelli in a rich, spicy coconut gravy. Katong Laksa is a variant of lakes from the Katong area of Singapore.

So what's so special? The noodles in Katong Laksa are normally cut up into smaller pieces so that the entire dish can be eaten with a spoon alone (that is, without chopsticks or a fork). The soup is thick and made from ground dried shrimp. Stir in the dollop of sambal and fragrant laksa leaves and enjoy!

Where to eat? 
1. 328 Katong Laksa: 51 East Coast Road, tel +65 9732 8163
2. 1 Telok Kurau Road. Tel: +65 9023 7360

4. Kaya Toast
Kaya Toast Recommended by Miss Tam Chiak
Kaya is a coconut custard jam that is sweet and fragrant. When slathered onto thin slices of warm toast with ample butter, paired with a cup of thick coffee, the toast is simply divine. Many locals here have this for breakfast supplemented by two soft-boiled eggs.

 In the olden days, the workers who served the British ships started selling the food they prepared for the British when they settled in Singapore and Malaysia. The only difference is, they replaced the western jams with Kaya.

Where to eat? 
1. Chin Mee Chin Coffee Shop: 204 East Coast Road, Tel: +65 6345 0419
2. Good Morning Nanyang Cafe: 133 New Bridge Road, Chinatown Point #03-01, Tel: +65 8133 1882
3. Tong Ah Coffee Shop: 36 Keong Saik Road, Tel: +65 6223 5083

5. Bak Chor Mee
Bak Chor Mee
Bak chor mee is actually a dialect for minced pork noodles. A good rendition of this popular Teochew dish will have fluffy minced pork, succulent stewed mushrooms, springy noodles in a dark vinegary sauce. Let the hawker know if you wish to omit the sliced liver pieces.

Where to eat?
1. Lai Heng Mushroom Minced Meat Noodle: Blk 51 Lorong 6 Toa Payoh #01-62, Tel: +65 9620 2074
2. Hill Street Tai Hwa Pork Noodle: Block 466 Crawford Lane #01-12, Tel: +65 6292 7477 3. Chai Chee Noodle Village Pte Ltd: Blk 727 Ang Mo Kio Avenue 6 #01-15