I was on a treasure hunt one day after receiving a heads-up from The Silverchef about a certain char kway teow man in an old coffeeshop around the area. Unfortunately, he didn't give me an address nor did I remember who it was that told me about it at that time. I just remembered vaguely that someone had told me about an old school char kway teow man in a coffeeshop close to Sungei Road Laksa and The Beef House.
Ang Mo Kio 107 Carrot Cake: Friendliest Hawker Award!
So what do you do when the boss just won't get off your back, the goldfish is starting to swim sideways and you just found out that your brand new smartphone has just gone missing? Well, it's time to look on the bright side of life, get something good to eat and let yourself be infected with a contagious smile.
From Hokkien mee to Hainan chicken rice; murtabak to mee siam; you won't find a Singaporean who doesn't reminisce about our local hawker food. When we entertain guests from overseas, these are the dishes which we want them to experience so that they understand who we are.
Simon Road Oyster Omelette: Back at the same spot!
Today we pay tribute to the late Mr Lim Seng Hong who passed away during Chinese New Year this year. I first met him in 2009 at the corner coffeeshop along Simon Road and was at once mesmerized by his frying technique. His pan is tilted so that the oil drains to one side while the eggs crisp up on the elevated side. Once the starch is crispy, the oysters are added and the pan bursts into tongues of fire that lick the luscious bivalves with its smokey aroma!
My quest for the origins of Singapore hawker dishes has brought me to this BBQ seafood stall at Yuhua Village Food Centre where I met the lady who claimed to be one of the first hawkers to serve BBQ Stingray in Singapore!
The couple behind Si Yang Steam Soup have been diligently serving their steam soup since 1982 and had built quite a good business at Ang Mo Kio Blk 728 before the coffeeshop was sold and they had to move to their present location. Since then, their business has dropped by so much that they are considering retirement!
The first thing that strikes you about the lapis is how many layers there are. Then as you peel the layers, just how stretchy they are. Then when you eat them, how chewy and yummy they are. The guys were having fun peeling off each layer, then twirling each layer around the finger before popping the whole finger into the mouth!
Soon Heng Hot and Cold Desserts: Hawkers we grow up with
I get a lot of different reactions whenever I pull out my DSLR camera. Some hawkers ask why I am taking photos. Others continue to work as if I wasn't there. But when Mrs Yang saw my camera, she quickly struck up her kawaii pose!
Liang Zhao Ji has been around since the 1960's and started off as a roadside stall outside of the Hoover theatre in Balestier. The stall moved to its current location at the Whampoa Drive Food Centre in 1978 as part of the government's initiative to clear the hawkers off the streets.
The Original Katong Laksa: It really is the Original!
We are living in the days of fake news, fake food, fake brands and fake accolades. I don't know about you, but it really irks me when new restaurants pop up claiming to trace their lineage back to the 60s or to be the original one from Tiong Bahru or Toa Payoh or Queenstown. But if you try to dig a little deeper, you hit bottom pretty soon, because the claims turn out to be as shallow as the soup in a fine dining establishment.
I have been a fan of Wah Kee since the earliest days of the blog. In those days, I was quite crazy and would identify all of Singapore's most famous prawn mee stalls and go blog about them. I was on a quest for the best and after the first round of tasting in 2007, I already felt that Wah Kee was the winner.