Ate My Way Around Singapore

I absolutely enjoyed Singapore's food. Everything suited my palate, from the coffee, kaya toast, and soft-boiled eggs breakfast at Killiney Kopitiam on my first day, up to the sumptuous steak lunch at Marche's on my last. (That's everything except for KFC's hot and spicy chicken, because ours taste better).

KILLINEY KOPITIAM

Breakfast was the first order of the day. A few blocks away from the hotel was Killiney Kopitiam. An unassuming, traditional coffee shop lined up with the other restaurants along Killiney Road. The ambiance reminded us of Bacolod's Kaffe Sadtu
At 9 in the morning, all the tables were occupied by Singaporeans and foreigners alike, all dressed for work. We shared a table with a lady who was poring over the morning's paper.
The usual order was coffee or tea, with 4 slices of kaya (coconut egg jam) toast, and two soft-boiled eggs. I had to figure out how to eat a soft-boiled egg. Apparently, you crack the egg and put it in a bowl, add seasoning, and eat it like porridge.

GOLDILOCKS AT USS

Our first lunch was in Goldilocks, one of the food joints at Universal Studios. Thanks to MasterCard, we had SGD12 coupon for food. Who knew that even the normal food joint served great fried chicken? The chicken tasted like it was drenched in herbs before frying.
My Mama Bear order - 2-pc chicken with mashed potatoes and Aaron's chicken burger and crisscross fries
Photo from here

AH-TAI CHICKEN RICE

The timing was great because we were able to luckily witness interesting turn of events in Singapore's chicken rice industry. The top chicken rice in Maxwell Food Center, Tian Tian Chicken Rice, lost its chef due to a falling out with the owner.  Just recently, the chef opened his own chicken rice business, named Ah-Tai Hainanese Chicken Rice, just two stalls away from his previous employer. See newspaper article here.

It was fun watching the lunch time queue grow longer in front of both stalls. I usually don't like chicken unless it's fried crisp and golden plus the hainanese chicken I've tried here in Manila were not too enjoyable for my taste buds. However, Singapore's authentic chicken rice looked too good to pass up. It was hard choosing where to get my first chicken rice but since the queue was longer in front of Ah-Tai, we joined the crowd and fell in line.

 Tian-Tian chicken rice located two stalls away- Ah-Tai even had a different take on the white and blue combination
Displaying their triumph in front of the stall - Ah-Tai still wins!

The chicken had a special sauce poured on top and the rice was fragrant and delicious, I think it could actually be eaten on its own. Now, the chicken. The chicken strips were tender, boneless, and tasty up to the last bite. Aaron said that it was better than the one he tried near his hotel. Could it be that I just tasted the best chicken rice in the whole of Singapore? Up to now, the chicken rice war continues.

An order of chicken rice and veggies plus a mug of soya drink = filling lunch!

LAO BAN SOYA BEANCURD

Walking around Maxwell Food Center, we found another long queue in front of Lao Ban Soya Beancurd. Full as we were, we still had some room for what looked like dessert. We had doubts if we still wanted to line up, but seeing locals buy 10 containers each of beancurd, we were sold.

It was a cold soy pudding with the sweetness just enough to make you want to eat more.  That explains why the locals were buying in bulk.

LAU PA SAT

Another must-visit place is Lau Pa Sat, the hawker center along Raffles Quay. We had char kway teo, pulled noodles with chicken strips, and sticks of chicken and mutton satay for lunch. Lau Pa Sat had a variety of food stalls to choose from, so we based our selections from newspaper clippings posted on their stalls and who was named best in their category (based from our Ah-Tai experience!). If you suddenly find yourself craving for Filipino food (which I did not), you can find familiar Pinoy dining experience at Baliwag, Tapa King, and other Pinoy food stalls.

NO SIGNBOARD SEAFOOD RESTAURANT

For dinner, we went all the way to Singapore's red light district, Geylang. Not too see where the red light is though, but to dine at No Signboard Seafood Restaurant. We had no other thing in mind but to order their version of chili crab. 

Yang chow fried rice with crispy shrimp bits on top
Chili crab = King crab swimming in curry! I know it looks small in the photo, but the serving is for  4 people
We seriously doubted our ability to finish the whole thing. When someone asked if we wanted to get fried buns, we said no. Who eats rice and crab with fried buns? Well, that was the biggest mistake of the night!! Do not make the same mistake. We have been told that the best part of eating chili crab is dipping the fried buns in the curry sauce. Too bad we did not know.
Nevertheless, we finished everything more than an hour later. I love seafood and No Signboard's chili crab was the best crab dish I ever had.  It was better than Red Crab and Seaside and all the seafood paluto joints combined. I have to say thank you to Aaron for taking me here and letting me indulge in cracking and poking and sucking every bit of crab flesh.

MAKANSUTRA

On Saturday night, we met friends Veng and Caloy, and had dinner at the buzzing Makansutra, near Marina Bay Sands. We were told that it was difficult to get a table especially on a Saturday night, but we must have been lucky (or just really quick to dodge and grab a table) because we got ours in less than a few minutes. It was a big dinner of crispy prawns, mussels, chicken, and a huge plate of fried rice.  We were all damp and sweaty, but who cares when you're eating good greasy food? Haha.

CHIJMES

For drinks and my dose of music, we found our way to Chijmes. We walked from Marina Bay Sands, used the GPS, and literally found our way to Chijmes. I felt weird entering a huge convent, and what's even weirder, is drinking a beer beneath a huge cross! Thanks to Veng and Caloy for dragging us to Chijmes! After 2 buckets of beer, we ended the night, again finding our way but this time to the hotel. It is a walkable city, and I just love doing long walks.

MARCHé

On my last day, we met another good friend Sha for her birthday lunch. Thanks to Sha for taking us to Marché at 313Somerset along Orchard Road. Entering Marché was like entering a playground, where your eyes glimmer at the sight of fresh food ingredients and you just don't know where to start.  We went around a couple of times before finally deciding what to get. It is so very easy to fall prey to the habit of getting more than what you can actually eat.

I finally decided to get a Swiss Cervelat sausage, Aaron had a sirloin steak, and we also ordered a couple of bread varieties while Sha had her usual Swiss Rosti. Do come in early if you plan to have lunch here since the line tends to get quite long. The lunch at Marché was a break from all the Asian dishes I had from the previous days.

And that ends my lengthy 4-day food journal.  Looking at the photos makes my mouth water again. I think I gained a couple of pounds (again!) when I got back.

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