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HAWKER 💯

HAWKER 💯

Local delights that satisfy your tummies without leaving a hole in your wallet
Anne Wong
Anne Wong
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Recently, we went back again for old times sake and saw that the famous International Nasi Lemak had relocated to another part of the hawker centre. As it used to have a snaking long queue in the past, I decided to see what the hype is all about.
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Upon receiving my plate of nasi lemak, what I saw and smelled was a scrumptious medley of what you expect to find in a typical plate of nasi lemak - fragrant rice, crispy ikan billis, an egg, and a chicken wing. I have to admit, the quality of ingredients is definitely there. Given the price point of $3.50, it is definitely a value-for-money meal. I was lucky enough to get the chicken wing fresh from the fryer. Hence, it was piping hot and crispy when I bit into it.
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That being said, I personally felt that the flavours didn't seem to combine well together. Instead of a wholesome feeling which I get from eating nasi lemak elsewhere, I felt that I was merely eating individual ingredients here. Maybe the sambal chilli could have done more to bring the flavours together?
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Perhaps I had high expectations of it. Not lipsmackingly good, but maybe just enough to satisfy a craving ☺
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The ANTicipated scale ⚖
👅Flavour: 6.5 ants
💰Value: 8 ants
📍Convenience: 5.5 ants

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However, few places can get this spicy soupy goodness right.
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Priced at $3, Sungei Road Laksa serves a mouthwatering bowl of rice noodles soaked in a creamy orange-red gravy. The gravy possesses a subtle hint of smokiness as a result of simmering in a huge cauldron over a charcoal stove. Like any other laksa dish, the coriander atop acts as a garnish as well as a herb which slightly elevates the flavour of the broth.
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That being said, it was a unanimous view that the gravy could have been richer, as it lacks the waves of umami which we were expecting from the rempah. My guess? It's probably due to an excessive amount of coconut milk which reduced the depth of the flavour. The portion of noodles is pretty small as well, but was compensated with a generous amount of cockles. Do order some sides for sharing if you are still hungry! If you are a fan of something that is not too intense, this bowl is perfect for you - do brace yourself for the queue though as it gets prettyyyy long 😕
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The ANTicipated scale ⚖
👅Flavour: 6.5 ants
💰Value: 8 ants
📍Convenience: 6.5 ants

1 Like

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Since young, I have always preferred carrot cake over orh luak as orh luak tends to be overly starchy and greasy. However, this stall has changed my perception towards this comforting Singaporean delight. Well-balanced between crispy and gooey, the good ratio of egg batter and starch totally won over my tastebuds. Moist but not greasy, this golden brown perfection was crisp to the right amount without being overly starchy and oily. I have to admit that I don't usually eat oysters but these tender pieces are really fresh and plump! The chilli embedded in the dish definitely packed a punch by adding an extra dimension of zest. A drooling combination, it is simply irresistible and unforgettable.
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The carrot cake was aromatic and came with a generous portion of egg. Admittedly, it was not as good as its counterpart as it's more bland and lacked the oomph factor.
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Though these dishes may not be the best in Singapore, they are definitely fantastic accompaniments to the Sungei Road Laksa.
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The ANTicipated scale ⚖
👅Flavour: 7.5 ants
💰Value: 8 ants
📍Convenience: 6.5 ants (Gourmet Street Hawker Centre, 27 Jalan Berseh)

Experience all 4 worlds with their platter for two ($22) which consists of soy sauce chicken, roasted duck, charsiew, and roasted pork (in no order of favourites) 😂
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Bursting with flavour in each bite, the meat was pretty tender. If I had to pick favourites, I would say that the charsiew and roasted duck stood out among the rest. The charsiew was caramelised nicely, achieving the golden ratio of meat-to-fat. Albeit a teeny bit tough to pry the meat from the bones, the duck was flavourful and had just the right amount of oil. The flavour of the soy sauce chicken and roasted pork belly were lacklustre as compared to their counterparts.
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Ravaged this whole platter within record time as we were just so hungry. It is a decent platter of glistening meat, but definitely not the best that I have tried. Nevertheless, it makes for a good meaty and hearty meal if you are craving for something filling without burning a hole in your pocket ☺
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The ANTicipated scale ⚖
👅Flavour: 7 ants
💰Value: 8.5 ants
📍Convenience: 7 ants

1 Like

Would totally choose this bowl of curry chicken noodle over laksa any day 👌
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Opted for the $5 portion and was rewarded with a warm bowl brimming with tender slices of steamed chicken, fish maw (YES), fishcakes, potato chunks, cockles, and beansprouts. The star of this dish is definitely the fluffy taupok which soaks up all the goodness and oozes with every bite.
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The picture accurately depicts how rich the curry is. Infused with mild curry spices, the gravy wasn't overwhelming at all! The generosity of ingredients and savouriness of the curry is the perfect combination which made me slurp the bowl up with relish.
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The ANTicipated scale ⚖
👅Flavour: 8 ants
💰Value: 9 ants
📍Convenience: 7.5 ants

1 Like

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Just imagine kway teow doused in a flavourful sweet gravy with a savoury herbal note 😊 I opted for their braised duck leg which consisted of tender and succulent slices of duck meat. For the full experience, toss it together with the fried scallions, beansprouts and chilli for a velvety and crunchy experience.
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My only gripe was that the kway teow has a slight alkaline taste 😂 Would have enjoyed it more if they used a thinner version of kway teow used normally in Ipoh hor fun!
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The ANTicipated scale ⚖
👅Flavour: 7.5 ants
💰Value: 7 ants
📍Convenience: 7 ants

Bathed in a soupy tangy vinegar sauce, I gave the ultra smooth noodles a good toss to coat every strand. What sets this stall apart from the rest is their soup. What is alluring about their soup is the umami flavour thickened with their ba chor, and egg. Pairing it with the al dente noodles which were firm to the bite, each slurp was robust and multidimensional. ☺

The ANTicipated scale ⚖
👅Flavour: 9 ants
💰Value: 8 ants
📍Convenience: 6.5 ants

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I would easily rate it as the best fish soup in the CBD as their broth definitely wins hands down as compared to other fish soup stalls in the area. What makes their broth so unique is the preserved vegetables and the addition of the fried garlic, as these ingredients help to elevate the flavour profile of their broth!

If you usually go for the fried fish option, you will realise that the meat would would to become soggy after a while. In this particular bowl of fried fish soup, the chunks of meat actually soaked up all the tasty broth and they are infused with both sweetness and savouriness. Each bite leaves me wanting more and my bowl was empty before I knew it 😂

To be very honest, I would crave for this from time to time, but I would strongly advise the takeaway option as it can become a real sweatfest with the huge crowd and poorly-ventilated dining area. 🤔

The ANTicipated scale ⚖
👅Flavour: 9 ants
💰Value: 8 ants
📍Convenience: 8 ants

1 Like

Interestingly, this plate of shredded chicken hor fun ($3.5) has a very distinct star anise flavour which is embedded in their gravy, giving it a good mix of savoury and spiciness. The slippery soft noodles, extremely tender chicken slices, and huge juicy are all drenched in the glistening gravy - needless to say, each bite was simply divine!

As much as it is very tasty and makes you forget about the rest of the world during the slurping session, it is highly recommended to slurp everything up CAREFULLY to prevent "messy splatters" 😂

The ANTicipated scale ⚖
👅Flavour: 8.5 ants
💰Value: 9 ants
📍Convenience: 8 ants

2 Likes

Touted as being one of Singapore's best ban mian, I can safely proclaim that it does truly live up to its name. Their broth is concentrated with so much goodness from the ingredients which they used in the boiling process - ikan billis, pork bones, and prawns!

I have to admit that sheng mian (or any other forms of yellow noodle) is not exactly my top choice of noodles, and I would usually go for you mian. But, I would gladly make an exception for this store. Being freshly handmade, their sheng mian is al dante and springy. Encompassed in their rich broth, every single bite bursts with umami without it being overly salty.

Each bowl also comes with a large fresh prawn, lean pork slices, vegetables, and the two most important toppings - the egg and crispy anchovies which help to bring the whole dish together and add an extra oomph to it.

Located in Lorong 8 Toa Payoh, their snaking long queue makes this stall hard to miss. I would usually go for the soup version as it feels more satisfying to me. Even on a hot day, this bowl of noodles still feels extremely shiok🔥That's how amazing it is - definitely worth every drop of sweat and penny!

The ANTicipated scale ⚖
👅Flavour: 9 ants
💰Value: 8 ants
📍Convenience: 6.5 ants

2 Likes

I have never been a huge fan of black carrot cake as I prefer the white version, but this stall converted me with the sweet black soy sauce which caramelised during the cooking process. The dish was cooked in a wok on high heat which accentuated the charred taste and sweet chye poh flavour 🔥

This store is arguably one of the best I have tried! Wish I could just have this everyday 😂

The ANTicipated scale ⚖
👅Flavour: 9.5 ants
💰Value: 8 ants
📍Convenience: 6.5 ants

1 Like

Served piping hot in claypot filled with dark savoury sauce with strong ginger fragrance, and topped with a fistful of spring onion, the frog meat is extremely tender and sweet! We mixed the dark gravy sauce with the porridge, giving it a nice velvety texture 😋

Also, as it is situated in a hawker centre, you could also order other varieties of food such as Mala or beer to complement the frog porridge 😉 Will definitely be back for this!

The ANTicipated scale ⚖
👅Flavour: 8.5 ants
💰Value: 8 ants
📍Convenience: 9 ants

2 Likes

A balanced diet is chocolate in both hands 👐 Instagram: @the.anne.eater

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