No matter if you are looking for the best high profile restaurants or the best buffets in Singapore, there are many places you can choose to dine. Singapore cuisine is as ethnically diverse as its peoples, a blend of Malay, Chinese, Indonesian, Indian and Western influences. A visit to one of the hawker centers or shopping mall food courts will be as eye-opening as gastronomically gratifying.
Steamed chicken served with rice cooked in chicken stock. This all-time favorite dish makes for a quick, fulfilling lunch. The quality of chicken stock is crucial to this dish, and you can tell by the steamed rice oozing with flavor and a fragrant aroma. Pour some dipping sauce over the chicken and give it a go.
Hard-shell crabs cooked in semi-thick gravy with a tomato chili base. The steamed crabs are partially cracked, then lightly stir-fried in a paste comprising of chili sauce, ketchup and eggs. Despite its name, chili crab is not all that spicy. Bread is normally ordered to soak up the gravy, so dig in with both hands!
Rice noodles in spicy coconut curry soup with shrimp, fish cakes, egg and chicken meat – a cross between Chinese and Malay cuisine. Laksa also has many variants, but the one in Singapore is katong laksa, with cut-up noodles. Cockles and tofu puffs are sometimes added. Stir-fried Hokkien noodles with prawns, slices of chicken or pork, squid and fish cake, seasoned with soy sauce, vinegar and chili. Each serving comes with sambal sauce and a lime wedge, to tone down the oily taste. The Singapore version uses thick, flat egg noodles.
Originating in the streets, barbecued stingray has become a popular seafood dish served at hawker stalls. The classic version features stingray meat slated in thick sambal sauce – a spicy condiment with diced tomatoes, chilies and shrimp paste as base ingredients – then wrapped in banana leaf to be cooked slowly on a grill.
A huge fish head and vegetables cooked in a curry and served with rice or bread. Usually accompanied by a glass of ‘calamansi’ or local lime juice. Its origins are in South Indian, with Chinese and Malay influences. In some versions, tamarind juice is added to give a sweet-sour taste.
Skewered grilled meat served with rice cake (ketupat), peanut sauce and cucumber-chili relish. This popular side dish makes an excellent starter or party platter. It has a strong turmeric scent and flavor, as this spice is the key marinade ingredient. Choose from pork, chicken, beef or mutton. Pork rib soup infused with Chinese herbs and spices, seasoned with light and dark soy sauce then simmered for hours. Usually accompanied by steamed rice and eaten as breakfast, bak kut teh comes in all kinds of variety, including the less-fatty version made with chicken and Halal version for Muslims.