Do you need coffee to get you going in the morning?
Coffee is the best thing to douse the sunrise with. The morning cup of coffee has an exhilaration effect which no afternoon or evening cup of coffee can reproduce.
Ah Seng (Hai Nam) Coffee sells pretty good coffee. It used to be located in Lau Pa Sat Festival Market but moved to the current Amoy Street Food Centre in 1997. Since young, the owner has been helping his father to run the coffee stall business, hence he has picked up the skills and techniques in brewing traditional Hainanese coffee and toasting bread with charcoal.
This stall served one of the nicest coffee in town at $0.80. The coffee is nicely thick with the right balanced of sugar and milk. When you bring it close to your nose and take a deep breath, you can smell the distint aromatic coffee smell.
Kaya and hainanese has a close connection. During the olden days, most of the coffee shops are opened by hainanese. During that time, the hainanese have to learn make coffee, toast bread and cook kaya. In the past, duck eggs were used to make kaya because it is thick and more fragrant. It is only when duck eggs become more expensive,t hen they started to use chicken eggs.
The kaya toast bread ($1.60) is a signature dish that cannot be missed. Crispy bread with tasty butter and kaya plus two half-boiled eggs is the best choice for a good starting day. They make their own kaya, not too sweet and not greasy. You can also try their French toast ($3) which is another signature dish. The bread is coated entirely by eggs and toasted with charcoal.
It is nice to find a coffee place with strong hainanese roots. Remember to order the toast, eggs and coffee as a set because it is cheaper.
A good breakfast is a great start. Have a lovely Monday!
This plate of wantoon noodles, some people love it, some people don't. But you will definitely see the crowd queueing during dinner. And this queue is never ending. Whatever it is, I want to try it myself!
I guess the magic of Kok Kee wanton mee lies in the special soup that is poured on top of the cooked noodles. It complemented the noodles very well and is light and gives a sweet taste. If you are wondering, they don't make their own noodles.
Prices are $4 or $5. We paid $5 for the plate of wanton noodle above. It is not worth it, so expensive! And the old uncle who took the order made me feel like I owe him some money.
Kok Kee Wan Ton Noodle (Lavender)
Address: 380 Jalan Besar, Lavender Food Square #01-06
Opening hours: 12pm to 2am, Closed every 3 weeks on Wed & Thu
Ang Mo Kio is my hometown. This is where I lived since birth and I am very glad that there are many good food around. After my post on "Best of Kebun Baru Food Centre", I have finally found the time to complete another massive one, that is, My Best 5 at Ang Mo Kio Central Market & Food Centre.
Because of its location, this food centre is always crowded. The 45 stalls there still sell very affordable hawker dishes, and you can complete your meal with $2.50! Of course, there are alot of newcomers to the food centre and I did not try all of them. So if you know of something worth trying, please drop me a mail.
Xi Xiang Feng (喜相逢)
Opening hours: 7am to 7pm, closed on Sunday
Price: Every piece from $0.30 to $1, minimum $2.50 every bowl
There are close to 40 food items for you to pick (read my previous post). Not only the deep fried items are crunchy, they are very tasty too. I also like their silky soft tofu. Xi Xiang Feng's bee hoon is slightly different from the bee hoon in other noodle stalls. It is abit thicker and firmer, which gives the bite. Pairing it with chilli and sweet sauce is a wonderful combination. When some sesame seeds are sprinkled over, it tastes even better!
If it is your first time eating this Yong Tau Foo, please do not join the queue blindly. You have to pick the ingredients you want first BEFORE joining the queue. What is interesting here is they also serve chee cheong fun (to replace noodles) at $0.80 and laksa at $3.
Been in the business for more than 30 years (read my previous post), they only do white carrot cake and not the black ones. They manufacture their own carrot cakes and it is very moist. It is cut into small pieces and fried with a generous amount of egg and preserved radish.
When fried, it is crispy on the outside, and still soft inside. I do agree that their standard has dropped over the years, but if you eat it when the aunty has just finished frying, it tastes the best. What is interesting is, they spray their fish sauce over the carrot cake to ensure that every piece is well coated.
Used to manage by two brothers (read my previous post), but they fell out and now the younger sister took over. She is a rude and they no longer delivers the noodles to your table. But their noodles are generally well liked by many of us, so I am still willing to queue for the noodles and face the grumpy sister.
The noodles used at Hup Hup are of the more starchy and has a very springy texture. Even if you ordered noodles with chilli, they will still add some ketchup into it, which gives it a sweet aftertaste. No vinegar is added so it is not like typical Teochew bak chor mee. The portion is laced with slices of pork liver and lean meat. Go for the dry version, I recommend. It comes with two crispy fried wanton skin discs.
Fried Hokkien Prawn Noodle (炒福建虾面)
Opening Hours: 10.30am - 9pm
Price: $3／$4／$5, takeaway (with opel leaves) $4／$5／$6
Nestled in a quiet corner of food center, I coincidentally tried it one night after my dental operation and fell in love with it. The owners have replaced thick bee hoon with thinner version. Together with yellow noodles, they are nicely braised in flavorful prawn broth and cooked with egg, pork belly, sotong and prawns to enhance the flavor.
The noodles have absorbed the flavour of the fragrant soup. Opeh leaf is only available for take-away. Be sure to grab more sambal chilli and slice lime to further enhance your meal. This may not be the best testing fried hokkien prawn mee but it is good enough to satisfy a craving.
This is one stall that is always having long queues during meal times. The boss started doing business when he was 15 years old. Besides selling chicken rice, he also has a porridge and dessert stall right beside (read here for my previous post). I ordered a mixture of chicken drumstick and chicken breast. The chicken breast is moist and tender, not like the usual tough and dry texture.
Because everyone is being very health conscious, the boss replaces chicken oil with vegetable oil to cook the rice. Hence, the rice here is not as oily. The star of this chicken rice stall is actually their green onions ginger sauce. It has robust flavours. Simply spread it over the chicken for added flavour and fragrance.
The quest for my bak kut teh adventure continues. And this time, I visited Sheng Fa Bak Kut Teh at Havelock Road!
Opened by David and his partner, Ken, both of them decided to venture into business because of their love for bak kut teh.
David's father used to own a bak kut teh stall, so he used to help him out when he was young.
But because they have to move, his dad decided to close the shop and David went into technician line. But he wanted to do business, so his uncle, who is the owner of Founders Bak Kut Teh offered him to work in the kitchen to learn the skills, so that's where he picked it up again. And after staying in Founders for about a year, he decided to venture start his own bak kut teh business.
We skipped the normal version of the Pork Ribs Soup ($6/pax), and go for the premium Spare Ribs Soup ($8/pax). First sip of the clear soup, it is robust, peppery, and you get the sweet after taste. Then I dived into the prime ribs. Its over 10cm long pork ribs is tender, not that fatty.
We also had a bowl of Pig's Kidney Soup ($7/pax). I like how the medium-rare kidney retained its tinge of pink, and the robust flavour of the kidney.
Braised Pig's Trotters ($7/pax) has well balanced flavours and not too salty. It goes well with a bowl of rice.
Braised Pig's Intestines ($6/pax) is the ultimate winner. I never really like to order pig's intestines when I eat bak kut teh because a typical bowl will contain the lor (sauce) and pig's intestines, which is nothing special. But Sheng Fa's Pig's Intestines is worth trying because they added fried shallots, raw garlic and fried garlic into the lor (sauce) which gives it a nice aroma and flavour. The pig intestines is wonderfully smooth and tender, yet chewy in texture.
We also ate the Salted Vegetables ($2 small) and Braised Dao Gi ($2 small).
A good bowl of bak kut teh especially for cold weather. With delicious and unlimited soup, good pig's intestines, Bak Kut Teh in Sheng Fa Bak Kut Teh will satisfy most of the fans of Bak Kut Teh. There is no GST and service charge.