Kopitiams and Hawker Centres!

Kopitiams and Hawker Centres!

Celebrating the gems that can only be found in the distinct places that marks our local food culture!
Shaun Sim
Shaun Sim

After countless attempts, we finally managed to try this highly raved Malaysian style Nasi Lemak. We opted for the Nasi Lemak with Ayam Goreng Berempah ($8.70/whole leg) and boy was it worth the wait.

The rice was very fragrant and coconutty, and even when mixed with the chilli, that packs quite a punch, the coconutty goodness can still be detected! Definitely one of the best lemak rice I have had!

The chicken leg was also very well seasoned and executed. Even though it was crisp outside, the moisture was locked in and each bite of the chicken was tender and flavourful. I also love the crispy bits that came atop it. Will definitely be back again!

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We also had the Prawn Paste Chicken Wings on the side and boy, was this good. Fried upon order, this came piping hot! The chicken was crisp on the outside yet juicy on the inside. The prawn paste that coated the wings were well done too, not overly salty as I feared from the many prawn paste dishes that I have had. Get this alongside your fried rice, you won't regret it!

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DTF quality fried rice at kopitiam prices? Say no more! It seems like these days, Yishun folks are no longer just experiencing exciting happenings around their hood but also getting to tantalise their tastebuds at friendly prices.

I recently got to try Smoked Duck Breast Fried Rice and their signature Pepper Pork Chop Fried Rice. In terms of presentation, fans of Ding Tai Fung would find the Pepper Pork Chop Fried Rice to be extremely familiar. This is because @firericepengxiang is un by two ex-DTF chefs with a combined experience of over 30 years. Taste wise, I found this to be as good too. I like that there is a subtle touch of wok hei in the dish and that the fried rice was not overly greasy. And at $7, the cut of pork chop served on top of the fried rice is value for money! Thick and well seasoned, this made me a very happy boy. The smoked duck breast were succulent and tender too, and although a pairing that is not seen very often, it works!

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Everything on this plate of chicken rice is super well executed; fragrant rice, tender chicken meat, black sauce with a hint of smokiness, chilli was bomb too. I think I might have just found my favourite chicken rice stall. Definitely will be back for more!

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This is Goreng pisang in the way that I like it! Crisp on the outside with just a thin layer of batter and super soft inside.

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The Hokkien mee of the OG FoodKing fame but I would only rate it 4/5 stars. This is of the dry version but is super rich in flavours, with lingering wok hei. However I find that the chilli is a bit lacking and I might be bias because I generally prefer the wet version.

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SG First Zichar to sell East-Meets-West Pork Knuckles! Never knew pork knuckles can become a zichar dish too so I was excited to try @siang_garden Family set dinner, with the pork knuckles a highlight, when I first heard of it! The knuckles comes with a good balance of lean and fat meat. I also love the sizzle on the hot plate when the black pepper sauce was drizzled on top of the knuckles when it was served, super satisfying!

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You may have had plenty of Nasi Lemak but have you had its sister dish, Nasi Kukus? Lesser known but tasty nonetheless, the star of the dish is the rice that is steamed individually in aluminium cups.

The result of steaming the rice individually is the fluffy texture you get from each grain of rice. The curry makes sure that the rice grains aren’t too dry and paired really well with the special chilli sauce. Fiery! 🔥

The fried chicken thigh was to shout for as well! It’s huge, thick and juicy and remains crisp even though I dabao-ed this to my friend’s place a short walk away. Each bite was filled with the juicy, tenderness of the chicken thigh that came with lingering notes of its spice rub.

If you ever find yourself in the northern parts of Singapore, why not give this a try? I shall go for the Nasi Dagang next ◡̈

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It’s quite ironic how my wedding preparations took me to places where I continue to indulge in good food 😅

This stall way up in the north has been saved on my to-go list for a while now but it’s extremely remote location meant that I didn’t bother visiting it until recently when I went to get my shirts altered.

I have read good things about the char siu here on multiple blogs and was really excited to find myself here. Being a sio bak fan, I had to try their version as well.

But really, the char siu here is the main star of the place. I think I was really lucky too, to get a cut that came with a good fat to meat ratio. The sauce was great as well, not overly sweet to mask the taste of the meat. I love that the rice that came with it is the seasoned rice, those that is served when you order chicken rice. So that’s a win already.

I would definitely see myself coming back here again and I would go so far as to say that don’t be like me, make a purposeful trip here to try this for yourself. No regrets!

Hokkien Mee cooked by a ex-limousine driver; Chef Goo Red Sea Prawns Fried Hokkien Mee was born out of the Covid pandemic when the owner’s driving livelihood was affected.

The stall specialises in a variety of seafood centric dishes, including Clams Hokkien Mee and it’s signature Red Sea Prawns Fried Hokkien Mee, which I ordered but without prawns 😅

Upon receiving my meal, I was surprised at how generous the portion was and the amount of ingredients that came with it. The broth that the noodles were cooked in was really rich; prawn lovers would love this. But thankfully for me, I managed to hide it with the generous dollop of chilli given. The pork lard, sotong and thick strips of pork belly that topped off the dish gave it a rich flavour and you can clearly taste the distinct flavour of each of the ingredients through this umami-laden mess.

No trip to AVHC is complete without an avocado drink. My choice of poison has always been Mr Avocado although standards seem to have dipped a little. Guess I would give King Avocado a shot next time!

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Carrying on from my previous post about the newly revamped Plaza Singapura's Kopitiam, this time I tried one of the bigger names here, Michelin Bib Gourmand recipient for 4 consecutive years (2016 – 2019) @shihuiyuan.sg.

The first thing that I realised about the Hor Fun here is that it is not the kind that I envision it to be, the noodles here are thinner and longer, reminiscent of those seen in a bowl of Ipoh Hor Fun. The gravy is also less thick, making it easy to drink, akin to a soup that is packed full of flavours. This is due to a recipe containing over 30 herbs and chicken and duck meat and bones. The gravy is supposedly brewed for over 30 years. I opted for the duck drumstick hor fun and it was super good! The meat is fall off the bone kind of tender and soaked up the gravy really well. This also came with a side of mushrooms and vegetables and even though the mushrooms are a side here, they are so good that they are a star in their own right; you can order a mushroom hor fun instead if mushrooms are your kind of poison. To elevate the dish, try it with some of their homemade chilli as well.

I would recommend that you give this stall a try if you are a hor fun fan and if you are not, I urge you to give this a try too. It might just change your mind about the dish!

Have you visited the revamped Kopitiam at Plaza Singapura? It’s filled with a collection of Michelin food stalls and some familiar favourites. Amongst them is Ah Ma Chi Mian, which have taken the Singaporean hawker scene by storm, with at least 9 outlets today.

I ordered the Specialty Pork Liver (Dry) since this is one of my favourite dishes and I have heard good things about it! Each piece of liver was cooked to perfection! I have seen it being compared to the texture of foie gras online and this description isn’t an overstatement. It has to be said this a bit pricey though for a kopitiam meal but it is worth every cent, with its flavour and texture on point as well as the sheer amount of ingredients contained within. Order an additional bowl of to complete your meal ◡̈

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Educator by day, sgfoodie by night Follow me on IG: @helloshaunsim

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