It is difficult to deny that eating is a significant part of Singaporean culture. From hawker centres to fine dining, there is never a lack of places for food in Singapore. Singaporean cuisine is combination of cultures: Chinese, Malaysian, Indian, Japanese and Middle East. It’s prototypical Southeast Asian cuisine — with spices, seafood and tropical fruits. I’m really particular about food. No necessarily about when to eat, but what to eat.
I love seafood – crabs, fish, prawns and lobsters. I can have them anytime. Also I love my desserts. These two are a huge part of the Singaporean cuisine. Singaporean Chilli Crab is one of Singapore’s greatest dishes. Its rich, sweet yet aromatic sauce, of chilli and tomato electrifies and satisfies your taste buds. The tangy sauce is made deliciously fragrant with garlic and rice vinegar, while thickening flour and egg ribbons are added to give the chilli crab dish the fluffy texture it’s known for. Best eaten with mantou (toasted buns) will leave you hankering for more. If you’re a fan of seafood like me, this is one dish that you must try while you’re here in Singapore.
I am fan of flat rice noodles and Char kway teow, loosely translated as “stir-fried rice cake noodles”, is made by stir-frying flat rice noodles just like tagliatelle with soya sauce, little bit of shrimp paste, tamarind juice, bean sprouts, shell fish. The rice noodles can also be stir-fried in using crisp bits of lamb/chicken thereby giving the dish its distinctive, rich taste. The new version of the same dish with lots of vegetables makes the dish healthy, the greens and bean sprouts gives freshness and crunchy texture, to this old-time favourite.
My food is incomplete without bread, Roti Prata – It is the Singaporean evolution of the Pakistani and Indian paratha, pancake bread made of dough composed of fat, egg, flour and water. It is traditionally served with curry or, with sugar or condensed milk. The best way to sample the magic of the prata is by dunking it in the curry (usually mutton or fish-based) with fingers to enjoy “Finger licking good”. Egg lovers have the egg prata, a filling and savoury version that’s hugely popular.
I love my desserts cool. Ice Kachang is that perfect dessert. The ice kachang has jelly, red sweet corn and palm seeds as its base topped off with a mound of shaved ice, coloured syrups and condensed milk. A good ice kachang is one where the ice is cleanly shaven to very small bits; and it just melts in the mouth with the sweet tasting syrup. There is nothing like feeling the multiple textures every time you take a mouthful.
A visit to Singapore offers you an opportunity to sample dishes from the different parts of the world apart from their local cuisine. The delicious dim sum, roasted meats to double-boiled soups, the spicy dishes from Szechuan and the flavourful chicken rice with its roots from the Hainan province. And that’s far from all. Singapore also offers Thai, Korean, Vietnamese to Mongolian food. Whether you’re in the mood for a Japanese dinner, a hearty Italian meal, or a casual French bistro experience, you’ll find it all in this little red dot.