A Day In Tiong Bahru

Walking through the streets of this old-estate brings back all the fondest childhood memories where a little girl is seen tugging her grandmother's hand. Many has changed over the years but most of the buildings have been retained. Over the years, many cafes and restaurants have sprouted at several corners in Tiong Bahru. But the real essence of this historical place still lies in the old hawker stalls which has been there for decades. 

Most of you might have known or even grow up eating the famous Tiong Bahru Baos and Chwee Kueh. Tiong Bahru Food Market is one of the most popular food centre in Singapore. Today, i will be bringing you some other yummy food you cannot miss if you are at Tiong Bahru.

1. Yuan Ji Fishball Noodles
Yuan Ji Fishball Noodles ( $2.50 for small and $3 for large)
I tried this because i have tried the rest. Just felt i should give a better overview by criticising fairly on the several stalls selling similar food here at Tiong Bahru Food Centre. 
If you're looking for the fishball noodles with the orange-coloured fishcake, this is probably not the right stall. But this stall sells BakChor Mee as well. It was reasonably good, however, there was not much taste to it and the noodles lack the punch. The soup was also average. However, the pork liver and mushroom were fresh and quite generous. I guess the chilli is not homemade and some dried sole fish would be nice. 

The other stalls which is worth trying: 'Teochew Fishball Noodle Dry/Soup' and ' Hui Ji Fishball Noodle. Yong Tau Fu'( handmade fishballs). They are the famous ones :) You might also notice the stall name are quite similar, therefore.. misleading.

2. Tiong Bahru Lor Mee

Tiong Bahru Lor Mee ( $2.50 for small and $3 for large)
Hidden at the corner, this stall might be easily missed. Luckily for the queue, we found it fast. The homemade fried fish was not just dough, there was plenty of fish meat in it. The large bowl comes with around 3 pieces of it. Together with ngoh hiang, fish cakes, stewed pork belly, and half a soya braised egg, fried dumpling, the whole dish is served hot by pouring over the gravy before and after it is topped with the ingredients. The gravy is not too glooey and there are visible bits of egg stirred into it. Add lots of red chilli and black vinegar for a more robust taste.

Also Try: Lor Mee 178, i heard they have fried shark's meat nuggets, though their business is not as good as the one above. 

3. Tiong Bahru Mian Jian Kueh
Tiong Bahru Mian Jian Kueh ( One for 70 cents) 
Some call this Mee Jiang Kueh, or Peanut Pancake, but they all mean the same thing. This kueh is filled with a plentiful of coconut/ peanut/ red bean and served warm. I like how the corners of the piece of mee jiang kueh remain a little crunchy despite it being cold. The kueh is soft and moist and most importantly, not too thick. 

4. Original Tiong Bahru Golden Pig & Roasted
You might have a tough time deciding which stall to buy from because there is at least 3 roasted meat stalls in the food centre. We finally bought from this stall because its the largest unit and we thought it should be really the 'original' we are searching for. 

As you can see from the photo below, they made the pig from scratch. Hence, the marinate and roasting is all done within the stall itself. 

'Not many stalls do that these days as it is simply too much work', the stall auntie told us. 

The charsiew and roast pork were very tasty and the skin on the roast pork was crispy and do not have a visible layer of oil underneath, while the juicy charsiew was a little charred at the corners. We were disappointed by the pork ribs because there was very little meat! Our $10 portion could not even fill 10% of one's tummy. All the meats here are charged by weight, hence our bony ribs was so not worth it at all! Perhaps it is not their specialty to begin with. So next time i know what i should and should not be ordering.


5. Loo's Hainanese Curry Rice
#01-88, Tai Kwang Huat Coffee Shop, 57 Eng Hoon Street
Loo's Hainanese Curry Rice ( bottom right: $4.20)
Located just across the 2-storey market, it is easy to spot because of the consistent queue. 

         
We could not resist despite eating the Bakchor Mee, Lor Mee and Mee Jiang Kueh. I still needed my rice! And so, we tabao a packet of the curry rice home. Have you ever tried the curry rice taken away and eating it slightly after? If you haven't, you might want to give it a try. Not saying that eating there fresh is not nice, it is just a different experience i would say. The deep-fried pork chop was tender and not too oily while the vegetables still remain a must in all my curry rice orders, finally the egg was a little salty but probably because it was soaked in the curry sauce for a while by the time we ate it. Ask for as much curry gravy and chilli as you like. I prefer my rice swimming in the gravy, what about you? :D
6. Tiong Bahru Bakery
#01-70, 56 Eng Hoon Street

                 The array of pastries/bread              
The tantalising desserts
We were only standing outside the shop, a whiff of freshly baked cakes and pastries welcomed us as we pushed open the heavy rotating door. There was not a single table left, our hopes of having a cuppa coffee and to rest our legs were dashed. Most of the seats were taken by office workers chatting away over the lovely cakes and bread.

It is going to be hard to decide on just a few items if you are there for the first time. This is like the 4th time i'm buying so i knew which i liked or not. The molten lava cake is actually darn good! A layer of crystallised crust at the base blends well with the dense and chocolatey cake. And of course, it is best eaten warm. I also tried the crumbles before. They are giant rectangular pieces and can be eaten at room temperature or slightly warmed. The crumbles have a nutty crunch to it.

I also had a go at most of the pastries but my all-time favourite goes to.. ALMOND CROISSANT. Why is it so good? It is baked to perfection with some icing sugar dusted over the croissant. Sink your teeth into this average-looking but definitely decadent pastry and you will fall in love with it immediately. The inside is filled with almond filling, therefore it is soft and goes perfectly with the buttery and flaky outer layer.

It's been a long day... Look forward to my upcoming posts!^^
       



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