Friday, 6 July 2018

#MAKANBOLEH Epok Epok (Curry Puff) (Seah Im Food Centre)

Sardin Epok Epok $1
One evening late last year, I was scrolling through my instagram feed when I spotted a unique post about epok epok at Seah Im Food Centre that caught my attention. It was a post by Miss Ha. I searched the internet but could not find much information. I knew that I had to give it a try when I had the opportunity to. 
So I made three trips down to the stall called #MAKANBOLEH. On my first visit, I went during lunch time and was told that they only start making and selling the epok epo at 4.30pm. During my second visit, I was told that I had to wait for 1 hour! As I was in a rush, I could not afford to wait. So I made another trip and this time, I was told that the waiting time was 45 minutes. In reality, I waited for an hour.

PS: do you know that curry puff are known as epok epok by our Muslim friends? Although both terms Curry Puff and Epok Epok are used interchangeably in Singapore, their taste tend to differ. For example, curry puff tends to include curry in the fillings whereas the tradtional epok epok uses chilli sauce.
True enough when you visit after 4.30pm, you will be able to witness how the epok epok are made and cooked on the spot. From the pastry to the filling and to the frying of the epok epok. There are two varieties of Epok Epok, the Sardin Epok Epok and Potato Epok Epok. They cost $1 each.
Sardin Epok Epok $1
I have placed a one dollar coin next to the Epok Epok to illustrate the huge size of it. This Epok Epok cost just $1! Moreover, it comes pipping hot, fresh out of the stove of hot oil!

The crust of any epok epok or curry puff is always important as it needs to be thin and yet be able to hold the fillings in well, and is crisp. #MAKANBOLEH's Epok Epok crust hit all the right notes in this aspect. Moreover, it has a butter fragrance which is a plus point.
Sardin Epok Epok $1
This Sardin Epok Epok came with huge chunks of sardine meat and small pieces of onion. On the first bite, the spiciness of the chilli pasteoverwhelmed me, before the sweetness set in. The more I bite into it, the more I love it! Sedap!
Potato Epok Epok $1
The Potato Epok Epok was equally good although it tasted different. Instead of chilli paste, curry paste was used. The curry sauce was not as spicy and was sweeter, coated each chunk of potato. You can literally bite into the potatoes as they were not mashed up. A chunk of hard boiled egg was also added.

Most of the time, I prefer my Epok Epok with potato fillings. But this time, both were really good. If you are a fan of Epok Epok, wait no more! Give this a try!

#MAKANBOLEH Epok Epok (Curry Puff) (Seah Im Food Centre)
#01-36 Seah Im Food Centre 
2 Seah Im Road 
Singapore 099114 
Opening Hours: Daily 6am to 9pm
                           Closed on Mon

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Friday, 22 June 2018

Ivy's Hainanese Herbal Mutton Soup 海南药材羊肉汤 (Pasir Panjang Food Centre)

I never though that I would set foot in Pasir Panjang Food Centre due to its ulu (i.e. out of the way) location. One day, when I had the opportunity to visit the food centre, I spent a consideration amount of time searching the internet and even walking around the stalls 3 times. All this so that I can make the most out of this trip and eat the best food. 
Herbal Mutton Soup with Mee Sua and Egg 
Since I was there during the day time, there were limited choices. In the end, I settled for Ivy's Hainanese Herbal Mutton Soup 海南药材羊肉汤. This was a risky choice and the type of dish which "you would either love it or hate it". Also, it is an extremely hard dish to execute as evident from the number of such stalls in hawker centres, food courts, coffeeshop or even restaurants. 
As its name suggests, the stall specializes in Chinese style Herbal Mutton Soup, to be more specific, Hainanese style. The owner of the stall, Max has been running the stall for 9 years and it was previously located at Kim Keat Palm Market and Food Centre at Toa Payoh Lorong 7. 
 There were other dishes available such as tendon, lamb shank and tulang soup.
Herbal Mutton Soup with Rice $10.50
I settled for the the Herbal Mutton Soup with a bowl of rice $10.50. The Herbal Mutton Soup was served in clay pot. This was a smart tactic as it ensured that the ingredients and the broth were kept warm for a longer period of time. You would not like to drink your soup cold do you? Soup lovers will understand this. 

The Herbal Mutton Soup very well executed. As you can see from the photo and video, many different types of ingredients such as wolfberries, red dates, dang gui, black fungus, tau pok and beancurd skin were added. I love the flavourful, rich and robust herbal broth. Moreover, the mutton meat and ribs were tender and more importantly, had no pungent gamey taste. This was because Max had marinated the mutton with fermented red yeast and seared them in oil during the preparation stage.
Herbal Mutton Soup with Mee Sua and Egg $11
I went back again on another occasion as this was just too good. This time, I tried the Herbal Mutton Soup with Mee Sua and an egg $11. The broth quality was the same as my first visit. The inclusion of the Mee Sua was a good idea as the silky mee sua had soaked up and was coated with the broth. May be on my next visit, I should just dump my whole rice into the broth! 

Oh boy, I had no regrets eating this! This is the best mutton soup ever! Definitely a must try! If you are someone hates the gaminess taste in mutton, you should give this a try!

Ivy's Hainanese Herbal Mutton Soup 海南药材羊肉汤 (Pasir Panjang Food Centre)
121 Pasir Panjang Road 
Stall 14, Pasir Panjang Food Centre 
Singapore 118543 
Tel: +65 8452 3094 
Opening Hours: Mon to Sat 11.30am to 9pm 
                          Closed on Sun

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Wednesday, 6 June 2018

Day Night Fried Kway Teow 日夜炒粿條 (Bukit Merah Central Food Centre)

Fried Kway Teow $4
Fried Kway Teow is a popular local dish which most Singaporeans can resonate with. Despite the fact that this dish comes along with unhealthy calories, we all love it and indulge it frequent! 

There are two fried kway teow stalls in Bukit Merah Central Food Centre. Day Night Fried Kway Teow 日夜炒粿條 is the more popular one judging from the queue. Despite the queue at this stall, the turn over is fast. 
These days, it is a common practice for hawkers to divide and literally count the number of ingredients given. I would have preferred for the Chinese sausage (lap Cheong) to be fried together with the ingredients to extract its fats and flavour into the noodles. 
Fried Kway Teow $4
This plate of Fried Kway Teow $4 was delicious. It was fragrant and flavourful with a good balance of sweet and savoury. It would have been perfect if wok-hei was infused in it. The small pieces of crisp pork lard at the side provided even more flavour with each bite.

Day Night Fried Kway Teow 日夜炒粿條 (Bukit Merah Central Food Centre)
#02-41 Bukit Merah Central Market & Food Centre
163 Bukit Merah Central
Singapore 150163
Opening Hours: Daily 10am to 4pm
                          Closed on Thu

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Tuesday, 22 May 2018

Lan Xiang Handmade Noodles 兰香面粉粿•板面 (Bukit Merah Central Food Centre)

You Mian $3.50
If you have followed FoodieFC posts on Facebook or Instagram, you would have noticed that I eat Handmade Noodles (followed by Bak Chor Mee) frequently. Whenever you go, whether it is hawker centre or a food court, you will always find at least one stall selling Handmade noodles. In most case, it is cheap, tasty and healthy (unless the soup is laden with MSG and you finish it) dish.
I am glad I found another handmade noodles stall in Bukit Merah area that suits my taste. It is Lan Xiang Handmade Noodles 兰香面粉粿•板面 which is located at Bukit Merah Central Food Centre. The lunch time queue at this stall would be the best proof to this. There would always be a queue of at least 5 to 10 persons long.
You would not need to worry about long waiting time as the two person team is well-oiled. The lady would go down the line, taking orders, taking out the noodles and collecting the payment. The man would cook the noodles juggling several stove at one time. You should be able to savour the noodles within 10 minutes after ordering.
You Mian $3.50
What makes this stall stands out among the rest is their noodles. It is not a secret and obvious that some handmade noodles stalls order their noodles from factories.

Lan Xiang Handmade Noodles makes the handmade noodles themselves.Their noodles are of a thicker size compared to those that I have ate elsewhere.
Prawn You Mian $5

I have tried both You Mian $3.50 and Prawn You Mian $5. The you mian was springy, soft and flavourful. As for the soup, it was clear, robust, sweet and more importantly, it was not salty! Moreover, the minced meat was well flavoured and marinated! A very satisfying bowl of handmade noodles.
Tom Yam You Mian $4.50

Although they also sell Tom Yam handmade noodles, most people order the normal version of handmade noodles.

Lan Xiang Handmade Noodles 兰香面粉粿•板面 (Bukit Merah Central Food Centre)
#02-06 Bukit Merah Central Market & Food Centre
163 Bukit Merah Central
Singapore 150163
Opening Hours: Mon to Fri 11am - 8pm, Sat to Sun 11am - 3pm

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Wednesday, 2 May 2018

Jin Ji Teochew Braised Duck & Kway Chap 金记潮州卤鸭 (Chinatown)

Bento Braised Duck Set $6
Jin Ji Teochew Braised Duck & Kway Chap 金记潮州卤鸭 has been a stall which I  had always wanted to try. I first got to know about this stall when Melvin, the owner, dropped me an email invitation to try his food. I declined the invitation since I preferred to make an anonymous visit.
 Since I happened to be at Chinatown Complex, I decided to pop by anonymously to try the food.
Being a foodie, I had already knew what I wanted to try. I wanted to try what was unique at this stall, the Bento Braised Duck Set, a creative way to modernise and serve duck rice in a different way.
Bento Braised Duck Set $6
The Bento Braised Duck Set $6 consisted of 3 yam rice balls, radish slices, cucumber slices, salted vegetables, ajitsuke tamago (Japanese runny egg) and braised duck meat. It also came with a bowl of miso soup soup. I would give full marks for the concept, creativity and presentation! What an idea! Photos of this dish on social media would be eye catching. So instagramable!

The braised duck meat was moist and tender unlike those that you may get elsewhere, where they are  sometimes tough and hard to chew. The egg was perfectly executed. I had not expected the yolk to be runny! Wow! As for the soup, it had a very forgiving herbal taste and was amazingly addictive. What I thought could be improved was the radish slices. I would prefer my radish slices to be softer.

I did not have to opportunity to try their Combo Jumbo set $8 yet. I wonder how their kway chap ingredients taste like.

Jin Ji Teochew Braised Duck & Kway Chap 金记潮州卤鸭 (Chinatown)
#02-156 Chinatown Complex
Blk 335 Smith Street 
Singapore 005335
Tel: +65 8139 2492 
Opening Hours: Sat to Thu 10.30am - 6.30pm

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Tuesday, 17 April 2018

Yuba Hut (Northpoint City)

Champion Floss Maki $9.90
Yuba Hut is a fast causal Japanese restaurant. Interestingly, the restaurant has expanded quickly since its inception, opening its third outlet at Northpoint City, Yishun. The first two outlets are located at Heartland Mall and Hillion Mall.

Yuba Hut serves modern Japanese fusion cuisine such as Aburi-style Makis, Don and Sashimi.

Champion Floss Maki $9.90
This is its signature Aburi-style Maki; Champion Floss Maki $9.90. This Maki is full of ingredients. The sushi rolls are wrapped with aburi-styled (torched) salmon slices and topped with mayonnaise sauce, chicken floss and fish roe. With the ingredients, they provided different dimensions in taste and texture. You get to taste the crunchy roes followed creamy sauce and the soft salmon slices and sushi roll in one mouthful. Oishi!
Beef Steak Don $15.90
The Beef Steak Don $15.90 consists of beef steak slices with onsen egg on top of rice. The steak was surprisingly soft and tender although it was well done. The addition of the onsen egg enhanced the creaminess and flavour of the don.
Salmon Aburi Don $14.90
The Salmon Aburi Don $14.90 is another signature dish at Yuba Hut. It is essentially aburi-styled salmon slices with fish roe on top of the rice. Light sauce was also added into the rice bowl and also used as decoration along the sides of the bowl. I was not blown away by this don. In fact, I was disappointed that it was so salty. Even though I was cautious not to mix all the light sauce with the rice, the don was just too salty for my liking. The Beef Steak Don $15.90 definitely tasted way better.

Yuba Hut is worth a try. If you are someone like me who dislike salty dishes, I would advise you to either avoid ordering the Salmon Aburi Don or make a request for them not to add light soy sauce. 

Yuba Hut (Northpoint City)
#B1-186 Northpoint City South Wing
930 Yishun Avenue 2
Singapore 769098
Opening Hours: Daily 10am to 10pm

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Thursday, 22 March 2018

Fat Papas (Northpoint City)

Wimpy Beef Burger $15 + upgrade to Beef Chilli Cheese Fries $2
You may probably be thinking of Fat Boys when you read the post title "Fat Papas". Well, this is quite normal. Fat Papas is in a way related to Fat Boys. In fact, it is the Halal version of Fat Boys. 
If you are wondering why Fat Papas logo is so familiar, well, you are not alone too. The logo looks like Sheikh Haikel right? Well, it is Sheikh Haikel, the popular Singporean rapper and comedian! He is the one who pitched the idea of a Halal version of Fat Boys to the Bernice Tay, the owner of Fat Boys, who agreed in the joint venture after seven years, as certain recipes had to be tweaked. 

Fat Papas' offer a variety of burgers, beef ribs, steaks, pastas and milkshakes. You can even build you own burger (BYOB)!
Wimpy Beef Burger $15 + upgrade to Beef Chilli Cheese Fries $2
We ordered Fat Boy's signature dish, Wimpy Beef Burger $15 which consisted of beef patty, turkey bacon, fried egg, melted aged cheddar cheese and bbq sauce on a sesame seed bun. The burger was quite delicious. The beef patty itself was soft, moist and tender, and did not fall apart apart easily. Also, the turkey bacon was not hard and salty. 

We also topped up $2 to upgrade our fries to Beef Chilli Cheese Fries. The only issue I had with this was that the amount of sauce should have covered all the fries as it complemented the fries so well and made them so addictive! 
Country Fried Steak $19.80
One cannot walk away from Fat Papas without trying the Country Fried Steak $19.80. It is Sheikh Haikel's favourite dish at Fat Boys.

The Country Fried Steak consisted of a piece of thin breaded steak coated with cheese bechamel sauce and served on a bed of whipped potato. Though the fried steak was thin, it was huge and so crisp. This dish is best shared among at least two persons. The fried steak though decently executed would have been quite ordinary if not for the cheese bechamel sauce. This is a must try! 

Fat Papas (Northpoint City)
#01-150 Northpoint City South Wing
930 Yishun Avenue 2
Singapore 769098
Opening Hours: Daily 12pm to 11pm

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Thursday, 8 March 2018

Hansang Korean Family Restaurant (Square 2)

Jajangmyun (Black Bean Noodle)
Hansang Korean Family Restaurant is a restaurant offering authentic Korean Cuisine established by a Korean family in 2007. The Koreran family had moved to Singapore several years ago prior to 2007 and was unable to find authentic korean food in Singapore. Hence, this restaurant was started. The name of the restaurant "Hansang" means “a table full of food all the time” as the aim was to share the diverse cuisine of Korea with everyone.

Hansang Korean Family Restaurant currently has two outlets; at Square 2 and Holland Village. We visited its outlet at Square 2 in Novena. Interestingly, the restaurant also offers catering services!
Lunch Time Promotion Menu
Their lunch time promotion is value for money!
Sagol Hejang Guk (Double Boiled Beef Soup) $15
This is the Sagol Hejang Guk (Double Boiled Beef Soup) $15. This was very well executed. The broth which was spicy, was so tasty and flavourful! Moreover the beef slices were tender and the beansprout provided a crunchy texture. It was so good that we indulged endlessly into it and drank every single bit of the broth. This is a must try
A video of the dish and the side dishes.
Jajangmyun (Black Bean Noodle) $11.80
The Jajangmyun (Black Bean Noodle) $11.80, is a dish which most people are familiar with. This is the korean version of Chinese black bean noodle. You can easily get this in any Korean restaurant or food eateries, but it is hard to find one that is good. Hansang's one is damn good

When it first arrived, I was quite skeptical as the portion looks small and ordinary. But wow, I was impressed when I tasted it. The black bean sauce which is a make or break factor for this dish was perfect. The sweetness and savouriness were well-balanced. There was no bitterness after taste, which you may encounter at other eateries (the bitterness is from the black bean paste). Moreover, minced meat and caramelised onions were mixed in the sauce. This is another must try!
Samgyetang (Ginseng Chicken Soup) $17.80
On another occasion, we ordered the Samgyetang (Ginseng Chicken Soup) $17.80. This is a nourishing soup common eaten in summer in South Korea to the replenish the nutrients lost from sweating.
Samgyetang (Ginseng Chicken Soup) $17.80
The Samgyetang is my kind of comfort food. The broth was flavourful. Interestingly, inside the chicken, besides a small slice of ginseng, there was also a gingko nut. The chicken meat itself was folk tender. 
Champong (Spicy Seafood Noodle Soup) $11.80
The Champong (Spicy Seafood Noodle Soup) $11.80, is quite an interesting dish. The broth was spicy yet so addictive! Slurping down the noodles with the broth is bounded to ignite your taste buds!

I have been to Hansang Korean Family Restaurant a few times and I must say that their food sure is good! If you are looking for somewhere with delicious Korean food, look no further!

Hansang Korean Family Restaurant (Square 2)
10 Sinaran Drive
#03-33 Square 2
Singapore 307506
Opening Hours: Daily from 11.30am to 10.30pm

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Monday, 26 February 2018

Mary's Kafe - Hidden Gem!

*Edited on 5 Apr 18 as Mary's Kafe has shifted to Bendemeer
Roast Beef and Corned Beef Cutlet
Mary's Kafe is a hidden gem that is well-known among the Eurasian community in Singapore. Why is it well-known among the Eurasian community?

Well, it is because Mary's Kafe is owned by Mary Gomes, who is the best-selling author of "The Eurasian Cookbook". Also, she is the one doing the cooking in Mary's Kafe. Needless to say, it is popular for its Nonya and Eurasian food.
This no-frills cafe is hidden at a quiet corner of Queen Street at Kum Yan Methodist Church Building. I have been contemplating on whether I should type out this post after I got to know of this place in 2012. But well, I think I have procrastinated enough.. sharing is caring.
As shown in above photos, there are limited seats.The place is relatively empty as this was taken at 12 pm. Once you are ready to order, you will need to proceed to the counter to order and make payment. Only cash payment is accepted, they do not accept nets or credit card payments.

Also, do remember to collect the food, else Mary Gomes will keep ringing a bell. =P
Another photo of the place. This was taken at 12.30pm on a weekday. By this timing, the place would normally be full.
Set Lunch Menu
Set lunch is available daily, and they come with a drink and dessert at $8.50. The menu changes daily and there are limited quantities for each set. So the tip is to arrive early as the more popular set lunches may be sold out as early as 12.30 pm! The food shown below are those that I have eaten during my visits to the cafe.
Roast Beef and Corned Beef Cutlet
Since I have never tried Corned Beef Cutlet before, I added $0.60 to give it a try. It was essentially breaded grounded (grind-ed) beef meat which was then deep fried. It did not leave much of an impression.

The Roasted Beef set was served with rice and vegetable (cabbage). The cabbage was quite ordinary. Personally, I would have preferred it to be cooked a little longer so that it was softer. The cabbage was nearly always served as a side in most of my orders.
Roast Beef 
I was quite surprised that the Roasted Beef was served in a bowl, soaked in a dark brown sauce. It reminded me of Chinese braised soya sauce. But it tasted nothing like it.

Among all the dishes I tried, the Roast Beef was the best. The braising sauce was unique. It was light and flavourful with hints of sweet and savory taste which were balanced perfectly. The sliceds of roast beef was so flavourful as they had adsorbed the essence of the sauce. Also, the sauce went really well with the rice. Yummy!
Beef Curry with Tea
The Beef Curry set was again served with cabbage.
Beef Curry 
The Beef Curry was not it spicy at all. In fact, it was quite fragrance. Unlike most curry sold at outdoor eateries, this one had no powder residue. The beef chunks were tender and moist too. I liked the potato as it was cooked just right.
Chicken Meat Ball Stew with Corned Beef Cutlet
The Chicken Meat Ball Stew was not served with cabbage since the stew itself had cabbage.
Chicken Meat Ball Stew with Sugee Cake and Tea

Chicken Meat Ball Stew
The Chicken Meat Ball Stew was a stew with carrot, cabbage and chunks of chicken meat. Although the sweetness of the carrot and cabbage was evident in the stew, I felt that it could have been more robust.
Chicken Chop
The Chicken Chop set was served with cabbage (again). This was ordinary. The chicken chop size was small and the marination was forgettable. I should have ordered their other set lunch.
Signature Sugee Cake
The dessert changes daily too. This was Mary Gomes' signature Sugee Cake which was highly raved about. It sure lived up to its reputation. It had a grainy texture and was full of buttery goodness. I wish that the size was bigger as the one given can be eaten in one mouthful!
Green Bean Soup
The Green Bean Soup looked ordinary. But it was so awesome! In fact, I think that it tasted way better than the Sugee Cake. It was robust and full of flavour. Also, there was an addictive malty after taste that made me longed for more!
Appam with Caramelised Banana
On another occasion, the dessert was Appam with Caramelised Banana. I have never tried such a dessert before. It was so special! The unappealing tasteless / bland appam paired off well with the sweet and savoury caramelised banana!

I have been to Mary's Kafe several times but I still have not tried the signature devil's curry before! Although there are hits and misses, you should give Mary's Kafe a try. They sell real good Eurasian style food and who knows how much longer she will continue operating this no-frills, homely eatery. 

Mary's Kafe (Bras Basah)
20 Bendemeer Road
Singapore 339914
Tel: +65 9852 0348
Opening Hours: Mon to Fri 8am - 5pm
                         Closed on Sat and Sun

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