Fifteen days to go before I hit the streets (well, the street food stalls) of one of the world’s most famous foodie cities – Singapore!
And while the list of must-eats is pretty long in this case, I’ve managed to whittle it down – albeit with much difficulty – to my top 5 picks.
I must admit I have deferred to the (spoken and blogged) opinion of Singapore fashion and foodie gurus Bonjour Singapore and Chubby Hubby (check out his list of Top 10 Singapore must-eats here) to help me arrive at my Singapore Dish List, so here goes:
Singapore Pepper Crab
I have no qualms admitting that I am a crabby person – well, when it comes to food anyway :) I love this fleshy crustacean with a passion. Boiled, stuffed, smothered in bechamel sauce and gratinated, in soup, sushi rolls, curried… I’ll eat it all. Nothing however appeals to me more than sweet crab flesh doused in a fiery sauce, and that is exactly what I have been promised in Singapore. I’ve never tried this before so am hoping it’s something like the mouth-searingly flavoursome pepper crab we eat back home in Goa (Martin's Corner is the place to try it). I’ve been assured that the Singapore version is so much better! My expectations have been set high indeed :)
I’ve heard quite a few people sing the praises of Singapore’s quintessential curried noodle broth. I’ve been a fan of this dish no matter where I’ve eaten it so I’m guessing the authentic Singapore version will not leave me disappointed. How could it when it has a list of ingredients that create one of the most delicious flavour profiles ever. Coconut. Check. Kaffir Lime. Check. Seafood. Check. Chilli. Check. Need I go on?
Fried Durian Icecream
I have to admit, my one run-in with this notoriously stinky fruit was memorable for all the wrong reasons. But I’m hoping to correct that impression in Singapore. An entire nation (and several of its South East Asian neighbours) can’t really be wrong after all. Apparently August is durian season so I’m taking it as a sign from the gods that this is definitely the trip to put my durian fears to rest. I’m going to be a bit sneaky though and try it deep-fried, at the New Majestic Hotel which is famous for this dessert. I’m hoping the battering and frying process will rid the fruit of its rotting-flesh stink, leaving behind only its famed creamy, custardy goodness. This is one dish that will definitely deserve a follow up post :)
Ok, so it’s all very cliched and yes I’ve already had more than a few Singapore Slings in my day, but how can you not sip one in the place where it was first created? I definitely intend heading to Long Bar at Raffles Singapore, downing this quenching cocktail and tossing my share of peanut shells onto the floor.
Hainanese Chicken Rice Balls
This might come across as sacriligious to hard-core Singapore foodies, but I’m not quite tempted by one the city’s most famous dishes – Hainanese Chicken Rice. I have to clarify that I am basing this purely on the visual aspect – the dish looks like slightly slimy boiled chicken to me in every form I’ve seen it in. Now, the mini versions – Hainanese chicken rice balls – look a lot more appealing, mainly because I can’t see the slimy chicken. So that’s where I intend starting. I’m guessing I’ll be very easily swayed to try the dish in its more traditional form. But then, I’m guessing, I’ll also have the faculties of smell and taste to put to use :)
So that’s my Singapore dish list! If anyone has any suggestions to add (or their top picks for the best restaurants/ hawker stalls to try any of the above), I’m
definitely taking notes.
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