If there is one thing I tell our guests when they come to Singapore is that they must try the food at the hawker centers. You can find cheap and delicious local food at these food courts and most of the time the quality of the dishes in hawker centers even surpass those in restaurants. Just look for the hawker stall with a long line and most likely this place sells the best food in the area.
We’ve moved to Chinatown and I must say that I love it here. Everything we need is only a few blocks away. The best thing about moving to a developed estate is having tons of food options. We decided to create a series of posts about what to eat when you’re in this area. We’re foodies but our palates are not as sophisticated as compared to Singaporeans in judging local cuisine. These are just the dishes we prefer over those we’ve tried. Take our advice with a grain of salt.
Note: We will updating this post whenever we find other dishes we like at the Smith Street Hawker Centre
Where: Chinatown Food Centre ( Block 355 Smith Street )
There is a huge hawker centre right beside the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple at Sago Lane. The Chinatown Complex Smith Street Food Centre has over 100 hawker stalls.
Entry 2: May 6
Terry Katong Laksa (Stall #02-004 )
Is this the best laksa in Singapore?
This place is supposed to sell the best laksa in Singapore since they use coconut milk and not evaporated milk. There is even an article on display comparing their laksa and those sold by other famous laksa places and theirs is hailed as the best.
Laksa with Coconut Milk ($3)
Well we’d hate to disagree but we don’t think so. Their laksa is great but not the best. The broth is favourful but it is too thin for our liking. We were talking about the laksa during our entire meal and we’ve compared it with those we’ve had in the Katong area and we still think that the Famous 49 Katong Laksa is the best because the broth was so creamy and the flavourful was very roboust.
Hong Kong Mongkok Tim Sum (Stall #02-135 )
Take a queue number and wait for it to be called so they will get your order
So I guess it is pretty obvious that we are dim sum fans. Since we were craving dimsum and our favorite xiao long bao place was closed we decided to try this stall.
Siew Mai (3 pcs for $2.30) and Prawn Har Gao (3 pcs for $2.30)
The siew mai was ok. It tastes slightly better than most siew mais sold in Singapore. We loved the prawn har gao since it was cooked well, tasted fresh and the prawn was succulent.
Prawn Chee Cheong Fun ($2.30)
I’ve always loved Chee Cheong Fun and Lex doesn’t really like them which is odd since he’s not a picky eater like I am. The prawn were cooked well and the black sauce was delicious. This shop really knows how to cook prawn. He did love the this version of the dish and even mentioned he would love to have it again.
Char Siew Buns (3 pcs for $2.30)
We’ve tried so many char siew buns and most are disappointing since they look good but taste so bland. We were so glad that we tried their char siew buns. The filling was dark and savoury while the dough was fluffy. This now our go to char siew buns place.
Entry 1: April 16
Zhong Guo La Mian Steamed Mini-Buns (Stall #02-135 ) – closed on Mondays
Made fresh daily
We were so happy to find that my favorite Xiao Long Bao or Steamed Mini-Buns stall at Alexandra Food Centre had a branch here. We actually go to Alexandra Food Centre from Ang Mo Kio just to get our dumpling fix every month or so. Honestly I prefer their soupy dumplings over those at Din Tai Fung.
Soupy Dumplings with Chinese Black Vinegar (10 pcs for $5)
The broth of the dumplings and the filling is tasty and the skin is not too thick. Most xiao long bao in hawker centers are pretty bland but this one hits the spot. The price is another plus. You get 10 dumplings for $5. Be careful when biting into the dumpling as the soup has the tendency to drip or squirt out of the dumpling. This is served with black vinegar and shredded ginger which compliments this dish well. We also recommend their Pan Fried Dumpling and the Szechuan Spicy Wonton.
Shi Xiang Satay (Stall #02-079) – closed on Wednesdays & Thursdays
Our favorite pork satay stall
This Chinese Satay stall comes highly recommended by Makansutra. This stall is try to find since it is located in a secluded area in the hawker center. Just look for the sign that says “More Stalls”. The lady who sells the satay didn’t speak English and a customer was kind enough to translate my order. She only sells one pressed rice cake every $5 order and she usually runs out of rice at around 7 pm.
10 pieces of Pork Satay for $5
The stall sold pork and chicken satay but we only ordered pork. The satay itself is very flavourful and the accompanying peanut sauce is tasty but I must say that I had better sauce elsewhere. That said, the satay is still a must try because of how well seasoned and marinated the satay is.