Singapore has earned the reputation as a food haven – rightly so as it has all the ingredients to make it so. Not only because of its choice and price factors, more importantly is the accessibility – everywhere you turn, there is food, food, and more glorious food! From a simple hawker centre dish to the most exquisite cuisine, a local staple to an exotic culinary, one will be able to eat to his or her heart’s content without burning a hole in the pocket, so to speak.
Eating is national pastime for the locals as evident in the humongous number of food outlets to cater to this obsession. Thankfully, strict government regulations ensure consistent hygiene even at low-cost eating places.
For local, inexpensive food, find a nearby hawker centre, kopi tiam (coffeeshop) or food court. One can literally, "follow your nose!". It is possible to eat like a king for $5 with a drink thrown in. Many such eating-places are opened till late, some even up to 24 hours. Singapore attracts a vast variety of fast food chains and they are in shopping malls and residential estates.
After a frantic shopping spree, take a break and relax at a cafe for a cuppa and dessert. Designer coffee places like Starbucks and Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf or local cafes can be found in all shopping malls and business district.
For an unforgettable dinning experience combining taste, sight, scent and cultural experience, head down to a restaurant. With its diverse cultures and influences, Singapore offers the widest variety, ranging from the hip and the posh, to the value-for-money, noisy local hangouts.
Food to die for
Top 10 all-time favourites:
Hainanese Chicken Rice
Char Kway Teow (broad noodles fried with sweet soy sauce)
Hokkien Mee (yellow wheat noodles fried with seafood, eggs and meat - it may have dark brown sauce added)
Bak Kut Teh (pork ribs in Chinese herbs)
Curry Fish Head
Laksa (noodles in a spicy coconut soup)
Satay (barbequed chicken, beef, pork or lamb served with peanut sauce)
Mee Rebus (yellow noodles in sweet potato gravy)
Must-try Desserts & Drinks
Top 10 true blue Singaporean favourites:
Singapore Sling (cocktail)
Rojak (mixed vegetable & fruit salad in peanut sauce)
Roti Prata (Indian bread served with curry)
Pisang Goreng (fried banana fritters)
Fried Carrot Cake
Kaya Roti (toast with rich coconut jam and butter)
Ban Jian Kway (peanut pancake)
Ice Kacang (nuts & corn in ice)
Bubur Cha-Cha (yam & sweet potato dessert)
Teh Tarik (“pulled” tea)
Refreshing Tropical Fruits
Top 10 fresh, succulent, exotic, nutricious, mouth-watering, thirst-quenching must-haves in this tropic region:
Durian (King of fruits)
Mangosteen (Queen of fruits)
Do it yourself
When you have fallen in love with a local delight, why not bring back this tasty memory with you? Fresh and inexpensive ingredients are readily available at the local wet markets as well as supermarkets. Recipes with different twists and preferences are in abundance from cook books written by established chefs to family secrets made available in the internet. Check out some recipes here.