Recently I had the opportunity to include Singapore again on a trip to the far east, and yes I admit I jumped for joy at the mere thought of the wonderful dishes I’d be reunited with…
For those who aren’t familiar with Singapore, the population of just under 5 million is made up by Chinese, Malay, Indians and some of Arab and western descent (primarily English from the colonial period but also expats from all over the world). No wonder I feel so much at home there, everyone’s an immigrant ;-) Being just a small island state, this diverse mix of cultures (who all love to eat) inevitably led to a mixture of cuisines next to traditional Asian dishes. Whether it’s Cantonese dim sum, Malaysian satay or Indian tandoori, you only need to walk a couple of steps before finding a fine place for a great meal.
One Singaporean ‘institute’ must be the hawker centres, found all over the city. These traditionally outdoor food courts were once opened to battle unlicensed street hawkers who paid little attention to food hygiene. Nowadays, hawker centres are the best places to have a good value meal and everyone from working class to expats can be found there daily for their dinners. There are even awards for best hawker stalls, and people will go from one to another if they can prepare better laksa or chilli crab.
As a young child and every time I’ve been to Singapore since, I always make sure I visit a couple of hawker centres. Why? Because one of my favourite meals ever can be best enjoyed there – Hainanese chicken rice. This dish, in which chicken with ginger are at its best together with rice cooked in stock with soy sauce on the side, is one of the most famous examples of the mix that makes up Singaporean cuisine. I nagged my mum to make this all the time, and you can still wake me up for a plate – it’s the business! Best of all, it’s pretty healthy as well.
Is there anything else to do in Singapore besides eating? Yes, however this is a food blog so I won’t waste space here talking about why you should visit and sights you need to see; I can go on for hours if I’d start! If you want more information, typical recipes or that last little push before booking a ticket – the links above point to the official Singapore visitor’s site where you can find all the information you need.
* as all photos unless stated across this website, all pictures unless stated are taken by myself. Use only after permission and acknoledgement :-)