The Geylang Serai Ramadan Bazaar 2017 is back and bigger (and pricier) than ever! Amidst the high rentals, controversial Halal certified food stalls & illegal workers arrest, we present to you 8 hyped items we tried and tell you what’s yay what’s nay! We are looking to do another segment on the true blue traditional foods in Bazaar, so be sure to stay tune for that!
Stall Name: The Raclette Factory ( Stall No. 78, near end of Blk 12 Haig Road)
Price: $12 (Raclette Set), $40 (Family Platter)
Pro : The trending warm gooey melting Cheese from France & the pan fried potatoes
Con: The sky-high price & insane queue (be prepared to wait 20 mins or more)
UNICORN STARLITE DRINK
Stall Name: Rainbow Works (Stall No. 29, opposite Tanjong Katong Complex, Engku Aman Rd)
Pro : Definitely Insta-worthy & you get a free pink balloon !
Con: The inflated price tag and the amount of sugars / calories in this drink
Verdict: 2/10 (if you are health conscious) , 7/10 (if you a social media aficionado)
ROASTED MARSHMALLOW ON A STICK
Stall Name: The Wicked Cream Co (Stall No. 26, opposite Tanjong Katong Complex, Engku Aman Rd)
Price: $4 for 3 cubes on a stick , add on for premium flavours
Pro : Taste as good as it looks (We recommend the Salted Egg & Charcoal Lemonade Marshmallow, Gula Melaka is the hot fav!)
Con: Nothing except don't spend too much time taking pictures like we did or they'll fall apart haha
THAI MILK TEA SOFT SERVE
Stall Name: Loco Loco (Stall No. 7, opposite Tanjong Katong Complex, Engku Aman Rd)
Pro : Darn solid Thai Milk Tea Softserve topped with crusty cornflakes. As authentic as it can get!
Con: None except we wish there were more
Stall Name: Loco Loco (Stall No. 7, opposite Tanjong Katong Complex, Engku Aman Rd)
Price: $5.50 (Chicken or Beef)
Pro : Perfect molten egg yolk centre! Crispy goodness, best eaten fried
Con: Too little meat on our scotcheggs, at time it felt we were just eating eggs ; Meat to Egg ratio can be improved
Stall Name: Happy Rollies (Stall 130, 131, 132 opposite Blk 12 Haig Road, Mini-Sou)
Pro : Can't think of any
Con: Melts in an instant, below average tasting & texture plus the swirls needs major work. Miles apart from those Rainbow Tower Softserve you get in Japan/Korea.
Verdict: 2/10 (Disclaimer : Opinions are made based on the day where the machine was not working well, we paid $4 instead of $7 for missing flavours)
Stall Name: Happy Rollies (Stall 130, 131, 132 opposite Blk 12 Haig Road, Mini-Sou)
Price: $6.90 (medium), $12.90 (large)
Pro : Great thirst quencher to beat the heat and crowd!
Con: A little passe (2016 food fad)
THAI MILK / EARL GREY / MATCHA TEA
Stall Name: Broti (Stall 27, opposite Tanjong Katong Complex, Engku Aman Rd)
Price: $4 for a large cup
Pro : Value for money! We all loved the Earl Grey the best! Plus it’s not overly sweet!
Con: Not enough ice, we like it ice cold!
Verdict: 7/10 (for Thai Milk Tea) 7.5 /10 (for Earl Grey
Other interesting looking creations (we saw but did not try) :
RAINBOW “HANDSOME BURGER’
Stall Name: WORD (Stall 30, opposite Tanjong Katong Complex, Engku Aman Rd, Stall 50 near end of Blk 12 Haig)
What other people are saying about the burger: ‘Overly Seasoned’, ‘Cute’, ‘Thick juicy quite salty patty’,’Abit salty’
Geylang Serai Ramadan Bazaar is happening from 26 May 2017 (Fri) to 24 June 2017 (Sun)
Nearest MRT: Paya Lebar MRT
For a list of stalls which are halal or not, please do refer to this website!
@Casuarina Curry Restaurant and Catering: 187 Macpherson Road, Singapore 348545
It was a Monday and come on, who says we need TGIFs to celebrate?
We headed down to the Casuarina Curry outlet down the road from our workplace and its wonderful because it is open till midnight daily! Everyone had a different craving that evening so we got to try (even though we know how each tastes like) a little from everyone else. Roti prata (aka roti canai) is a hot favourite as a breakfast or supper option. The all-important dough kneaded and fried on a hot plate with ghee needs flipping and tossing skills to give a light, flaky prata with that bit of crisp. Ooo~! Because every local would know a good prata or dish when he sees one, every dish led to exclamations of "oohs" and "ahhs" when the food was served. The pratas at Casurina Curry failed us not! Curry gravy is a must to go with pratas - fish curry or dhal curry is usually served on the side, but you could request for mutton curry if you prefer.
The perfect prata ally - teh tarik, which is 'pulled' milk tea, poured between two cups a distance apart. This repeated action makes the tea smoother to drink, and creates a nice froth that mounts the top of the glass.
At $0.80 to $4 for a prata in Singapore, (pick your filling, from egg, cheese, mushroom, banana.......), just take my money!
What makes Pearl happier is thosai - a flat, large, thin, crisp 'pancake' folded like a loose wrap, made with a light batter spread evenly across a hot stove, scraped off, and folded. When stuffed with soft potatoes cooked in a blend of spices, you get masala thosai. It comes served with a series of dips like a coconut dip, that enhances the simple yet comforting flavour of thosai.
Our friend Alain, who's usually the life of a dinner conversation, was really focused on his plate of fried Maggie noodles. It must have been really good. Usually shops or stalls selling pratas also offer noodle and rice dishes, together with a range of different protein options cooked in different curries.
Watching myself eat in this video actually makes me want to pay another visit, and yes, that fried Maggie noodles is on my to-order list.
@ Delicious Boneless Chicken Rice. 865 Mountbatten Road, #B1-85/87, Katong Shopping Centre, Singapore 437844.
What an apt name for the stall. Although I used patronise this chicken rice stall at least once a week in my secondary school days, I've never actually knew the name of it! Lol. What I love about this stall is the rich and dense lotus root pork bone soup, which reminds me of the Cantonese broths my grandma prepared in my years growing up. The alternate cabbage soup also has a homely feel to it, compared to the soups served at other chicken rice stalls, which usually tastes pretty much of water and some salt. Soup's on the house too!
O yes, back to the main - chicken. Just looking at the plump chickens roasted or steamed hanging behind the glass display is enough to whet my appetite and I would gladly stand in line to place my order. The chicken is chopped in pieces, drizzled in sauce (salty but yummy!), and topped with chives and fried garlic bits.
The colour of the rice is pale yellow in colour and if you've had enough chicken rice to last a year, you could tell the rice tastes just a tad less flavourful than those served at most stalls, well but the chicken more than makes up for it.
I'm not a fan of ah char (a composition of pineapple, cucumber, carrot onions, red chilli, some condiments like sugar, doused in vinegar), but those who are love the version that is served here, and even more so because this side dish is free of charge!
If you are having a meal with friends, you can choose to order half a chicken, or a whole chicken, and have it come in a mix of roasted and steamed meat. It may be just chicken and rice, but so much hard work and skill go into perfecting each half.
While my friends consumed saucer after saucer of chilli sauce and ginger paste to go with the meal, I wouldn't do without black sauce to go with chicken rice! What's your must-have chicken rice condiment?
If you are looking for a café that is away from the hustle and bustle of town area; Foxhole Café is probably for you. The owners aptly named the café ‘Foxhole’ because they thought the location was just likened to the definition of Fox Hole – A hole in the ground. Indeed, this 2 storey café facing a green field, it is the perfect quiet place to chill and spend your afternoons. A gorgeous Unicorn-galaxy mural wall on the sitting area on 2nd level is the perfect spot to take some OOTD or Instagram-worthy shots! <3
One of their signature items is the Signature Croissant with Chilli Crab Meat with Raspberry Chips ($14.90). For those who do not take spicy food, you need not worry; the chilli crab filling has just a hint of spiciness which is balanced with the sweet crab meat & egg mayo; . Best of it all, it comes with the very special Raspberry Chips (YES!!!) from Spain which is unlike anything I have tried before, in a good way!
We also ordered the Bread Pudding with Vanilla Sauce & Sea Salt Malt Ice cream which took us by surprise! One of my friends said it is one of the best bread pudding he has ever tasted , definitely a winner among us. The bread pudding was crispy on the edges while the inside was fluffy and not too jer-lat. However being priced at $11.90, we were expecting the portion to be larger.
If you are really into coffee (unlike me), do try one of their Pourover Bar specialites. Foxhole café is the only café in Singapore to carry NinetyPlus coffee beans from Melbourne and during the visit, we witnessed foreigners coming to the café for a taste of their specialty coffee. For the record, The Pourover Bar used to share the same space with Ollella at Petain Road before moving over here.
For drinks, we settled on latte & mocha. The mocha had more coffee and less chocolatey flavor which coffee purist may appreciate. My preference would be for more chocolatey flavor because Mocha is ordered by those who are not hardcore coffee lovers right?
All in all, Foxhole Café is a beautiful space with potential; serving good coffee but limited selection of food and bakes. Hope they will be able to attract more coffee lovers & expand their food menu in time to come.
The open-air back-alley JB Ah Meng in Lorong 23 that most are familiar with has shifted early Jan 2017! Good news, it is now located at a brighter, semi air-conditioned location in Lorong 30, more spacious and cooler yay!!
Well in case you have been wondering, JB Ah Meng is locally owned and not originated from JB (Johor Bahru – Malaysia). The chefs, however, are from across the causeway and the restaurant does serve JB inspired dishes like San Lou Bee Hoon. Ahhh.. now we know!
The menu at JB Ah Meng may not be as sizeable when compared other Zi Char / Restaurants; but I love that their dishes are not quite the usual Har Cheong Gai (Prawn Paste Chicken), Pai Gu Wang (Pork Ribs), Sambal Kang Kong (Morning Glory) we get elsewhere.
A great ‘snack’ to begin the feast will be the Deep-Fried Fermented Bean with Pork Belly (S$18 - Medium) dish. Nicely marinated with a subtle hint of the red fermented beancurd and 5 spice powder, these crunchy bites are rather addictive!
The Fried Garlic Chili Clams ($24 – Medium) seemed to be on many on the patron’s table, so we decided to jump onto the bandwagon too! Fresh plump clams evenly coated with fragrant garlicky sauce, personally I would have liked more kick from the chili but no doubt the zup (sauce) goes perfectly on top of a bowl of rice!
I’ll be honest, vegetables dishes are usually to balance or less the guilt of a feast and it isn’t often that I will think much of these ‘side kicks’. Over here, the Salted Black Bean Fish with Vegetable [Indian Leaf Lettuce) (S$15 – Medium) & Brinjal Potato with Chilli (S$12 – Small) looked unassuming but were both very flavorsome and had us stunned like vegetables! Only wished the Salted Black Bean Fish Vegetable dish used a little less oil.
Over at JB Ah Meng, they added some twist to the already very popular Salted Egg Prawn Ball (S$20 - Small). Crispy corn kernels are added to the Salted Egg Prawns to give it a nice crunch and bite, overall an enjoyable dish especially so for Salted Egg lovers.
Another crowd’s favourite will be the famous White Pepper Crab (2 Medium Crabs at S$84). I don’t know if the auntie loved us or what, but we got two meaty crabs with chunks and chunks of roes! The crabs were tossed in power buttery white pepper sauce & lotsa spring onions but you could still taste the sweetness of the crab meat! Mmm lip-smackin' deliciousness with some heat!
JB San Lou Mee Hoon (S$14 – Large) was tasty but did not wow. Having read reviews of the dish being crispy-charred and bursting with Wok-Hei flavor, we did not experience any of the said. In all fairness, the 'flattened' noodles were moist and they were not stingy on the ingredients.
Even though the place was super crowded, the staff were never rude but extremely quick! Auntie who took our orders was not pushy and she gave us great recommendations (not just dishes but the size we should order). The other staff members remembered every single of our requests each time. Kudos!
Is it worth the hype? I say YES, in fact I am looking forward to my next visit. Extremely reasonably priced Michelin Bib Gourmand venue, and please remember to call to make the reservation to avoid disappointment!
JB Ah Meng
Address: 534 Geylang Road Lorong 30, Singapore 389490
Opening Hours: 5.30pm – 2.30am Daily
@ Prince Coffee House: 249 Beach Road #01-249, 189757. Opening hours: 11am to 9.30pm.
Our usual Sunday lunch gathering led us to Prince Coffee House along Beach Road. Seeing how our friend Alain was chummy with the boss himself, it’s clear he’s a regular at this old school eating house. The old photos on the wall are photos of famous singers and actors in the past that have patrionised the humble eatery – as we learnt from those in their 40s amongst us over lunch. :P
With a history of more than 40 years, Prince Coffee House was first situated at Shaw House at Beach Road for 13 years, before moving to Coronation Plaza serving their classic eats for another 21 years. Now, the eatery is back along Beach Road.
Alain highly recommended us the beef hor fun. You could request to switch the noodle from hor fun (thick flat noodles) to bee hoon (vermicelli) if you wish to. Why the beef hor fun is so good is because of the distinct ‘wok hei’ fragrance, which is plays a large part in defining any good beef hor fun. ‘Wok hei’ is a Cantonese phrase, which is the charred taste that’s infused in the food as a result of cooking in a wok over large flames. Alain's also a fan of the oxtail stew, which was coated in more of a paste, rather than a thick broth.
Prince Coffee House also serves ‘western food’. In Singapore, ‘western food’ food’ usually means a piece of grilled meat drizzled with the classic mushroom or black pepper gravy, some fries on the side, 2 spoons of baked beans and some coleslaw. Fried options are available too. You can find western food stalls too at hawker centres and coffee shops where you could get a hearty western meal from $5 to $7, just a few dollars more would get you a steak.
Surrounded by an area of hipster cafes, Prince Coffee House is a classic eatery to dine at for a feel of the good old days.
If the name Super Loco sounds a tiny weeny bit familiar, that's because this is sister outlet of Duxton Hill's Mexican taqueria, Lucha Loco! Both are equally popular with expats, just that this has a more casual and fun vibe! This is how our brunch looks like from top view! The birthday girl ordered the Big Mexican which consists of chorizo, free- range sunny side up eggs, toasted sourdough, roasted tomatoes, mexican beans, avocado, bacon & mushrooms. Sounds like mouthful eh? Reasonably priced at $25! The portion of the kids size pancake ($7) was quite generous and can easily pass off as the adults one. The pancake was not exactly my type, cakey and not very fluffy but no doubt it may appeal to others.
Our drinks: Fresh Young Coconut ($8), Wildberry Smoothie ($11), Sparkling Sangria ($60 for a jug which gave us approx 3.5 glasses).
The most popular item among us was probably the Pulled Pork Torta ($15), a Mexican sandwich which looks more like a burger simply. Juicy slow cooked pull pork, super slaw, Mexican beans, Apple and habernero mayo sandwiched between two toasted buttery buns. Though it was nicely put together, I find the Tortas a little small in size and was disappointed to know the only side were a small serving of pickled carrots and jalapeños.
All in all, Super Loco is a great place to chill and relax with friends on a weekend afternoon. A matter of time before I go back, dinner next time, maybe!
Address: The Quayside, #01-13, 60 Robertson Quay, Singapore 238252
FB Page: www.facebook.com/superloco
Tues - Fri : 5pm - 12am
Saturday & Sunday: 10am - 12am
@ Tampines Round Market - 137A Tampines Street 11, Singapore 522137
Hai Chang Fish Head Steamboat (opening hours: 5-9pm, closed on Mondays)
It had rained half the day earlier. When that happens, usually a nice comforting bowl of porridge or soup would come to mind. We decided to pop over at Hai Chang Fish Head Steamboat at Tampines Round Market. The hawker area is mostly alive in the day where almost every stall is open because of the wet market just next to it. In the evenings, apart from the few drink stalls that remain open, Hai Chang Fish Head Steamboat is the main stall to get food from. What we like about the hotpot is the burning coals that not only keep the soup not only hot, but also give a ‘charred’ tinge to the soup – just like the how the special ‘wok’ fragrance is to fried rice cooked over a huge flame.
You can get pick the type of fish you would like in your soup. Typically, snapper, seabass, garoupa and promfret. The fish – head and all, together with a whole bunch of cabbage, tofu and yam slices are thrown in. Some recipes involve some plums and seaweed too which gives the extra oomph on the tastebuds. The staff comes around every now and then and you can request for them to fill up your pot with more soup.
Friends who are used to eating fish fillets might be unfamiliar with fish slices with bones (and the fish head staring at you) so take extra caution when eating. To most locals, gnawing the meat off the bones is a pleasure, and an art, especially off the head. It’s like having eating chicken wings!
You will find fish head steamboat hot pots available in most coffee shops in Singapore. This is usually one of the dishes offered at the tze char stall (the stall which fries you your vegetables, meat, rice, noodles and everything else). A tze char stall has a wide menu which sometimes is displayed on the wall with pictures. At other times, it’s just a small counter table located at the side of coffeeshops. A good way to identify it is to spot clothes pegs line against the table edge (used to mark orders), or small cages with live crabs in them.
Oh yes! We ordered the salted egg yolk prawns as well at Hai Chang Fish Head Steamboat. The shrimps were decently large, lightly fried and coated with a moist and flavourful salted egg yolk paste – loved it!
Other places to get a comforting fish head steamboat meal:
@ Warong Nasi Pariaman: 736 North Bridge Road, Singapore 198704
It was our usual Sunday lunch gathering and our friend Jeremy recommended us having Nasi (rice) Padang! Nasi Padang hails from West Sumatra (where the city is known as Padang) in Indonesia. A host of curry and chilli based dishes are displayed behind a glass display and choose which you would like to have to go with steamed rice. Some key padang dishes include beef rendang and gulai nangka (curry jackfruit).
The food is served on small dishes and good for sharing. If you have a bigger crowd, just ask for a double or triple serving.
Warong Nasi Pariaman being an old and renowned eatery, we paid about $10 per person for our meal.
Nasi Campur (campur means to mix in Malay) is also similar to Nasi Padang, where you get to choose from at least 10 to 15 Malay style meat and vegetable dishes. These stalls can be found island wide in Singapore in coffee shops and hawker centres as it's a staple for lunch or dinner. People usually pick 3 dishes to go with a plate of steamed rice. The portion is good for 1 person. A filling Nasi Campur lunch should set you back at about $4 or probably up to $7 or $8 if you pick more meat/fish dishes.
Who's up for some curry and spice?
@ The Boiler - 18 Howard Road #01-06, Singapore 369585
After hearing friends talk about their experience eating seafood off the table (ewww...) with their hands at Crab in Da Bag, we decided we needed to test the level of hygiene (ya right) of eating this way. We were around Tai Seng so we decided to stop by The Boiler to give it a go.
We loved the chill feel of the interior, though noise level wise, everyone's voices seemed to echo throughout the restaurant. A large plastic sheet was set on the table - nothing else. The lovely waitress helped us with our order where we could choose the seafood mix we wanted and the level of spiciness.
Our order came in what looked like a transparent... trash bag. Lol. While Jess tried to daintily open the bag to pick out a piece of seafood, the waitress showed us how they rolled at The Boiler, because she literally rolled the food out of the bag. :) The seafood was super fresh, soaked in an awesome sauce with the distinct taste and aroma of butter and garlic.
Just as at Jumbo Seafood restaurants serving chilli crab, The Boiler provided plastic aprons to protect our clothes from getting stained with sauce. In case our mobile phones decided to join in the seafood fest, you can get plastic disposable covers to house your phone in.
If you're planning on visiting The Boiler on weekends, do call to make a reservation.Gotta try this at home to avoid having to do the dishes after! :D
Other seafood in a bag places where you can make a mess at the dinner table and eat off it: