5 foods to try in Singapore
Eating is a national pastime in Singapore, and dining options are unlimited, from cheap eats at hawker stalls/food courts to high-end brunches at top hotels. The tiny island nation enjoys a food history rich in traditions from its Chinese, Malay and Indian populations. Being presented with so much choice can be overwhelming, so here are 5 crowd-pleasers to try on your next trip.
1. Hainanese Chicken Rice
Silky, juicy, delicate chicken served on a dome of fluffy rice that has been cooked in chicken stock, served with a side of chicken broth, a garlic chilli condiment and a ginger spring onion condiment. For me this is the ULTIMATE Singaporean dish, and also one of my all-time comfort foods. Ask for breast meat with no skin, and no bones, and do as my kids do and dip a spoonful of rice into the hot broth before devouring!
2. Roti Prata
Roti is a South Indian flatbread, delicious on its own but most often served with a mild curry. It’s fascinating to watch roti being made, as the dough requires much kneading and flipping to achieve the perfect consistency; flaky, chewy and crispy! My kids love the egg version, and for those with a sweet tooth, you can have it with a scoop of ice cream, a drizzle of condensed milk or a sprinkle of sugar.
Satay is originally from Indonesia, but found at most hawker food centre’s throughout Singapore. They are meat (beef, chicken, lamb or pork) marinated in a combo of spices including turmeric, galangal and lemongrass, skewered and cooked over charcoal. Condiments include a rich peanut dipping sauce (which can sometimes be on the spicy side) as well as cucumbers, onions and compressed rice cakes.
4. Kaya Toast
Want to eat breakfast like a local whilst in Singapore? Eat Kaya toast! Kaya is jam made from coconut milk, sugar, eggs, scented with Pandan (a fragrant almost vanilla flavor) and is served spread on thick fluffy white toast over wedges of butter. Traditionally served with googy soft boiled eggs with soy alongside a strong cup of coffee, it’s a winning sweet and savoury combination.
5. Milo Dinosaur
It’s not just Aussies who are obsessed with Milo; Singaporeans are too! A milo dinosaur is milo, with milk, on ice, topped with a garnish of dry milo. Go crazy and upgrade/upsize to a Milo Godzilla; a Milo dinosaur with a scoop of ice cream!
All of the foods above are easy to come by at outdoor hawker food centres and indoor food halls, (Kaya toast is from coffee shops). With so much on offer, stalls are fiercely competitive, and health inspections force out anyone below acceptable hygiene levels.
Georgie Watts is hopelessly addicted to travel. Her favourite travel companion is her partner, Merrick (Triple M radio host/comedian/sometime actor and media guy) and her two junior frequent flyers, Wolfie (8) and Kinga (5). When she’s not scheming, plotting and planning her next trip, she’s blogging about her family travels at The Window Seat.