It’s no secret that Singapore is one of the culinary capitals of Asia. And, with that comes a food obsessed nation that typically greet each other with the expression ‘Have you eaten yet?’
So a visit to this colourful island city-state should always involve some time indulging in the nation’s favourites. The cuisine is a fusion of Malay, Chinese, Indonesian, Indian and Western influences, creating a melting pot of unique flavours.
Below are just some of the dishes you have to try:
A blend of Chinese and Malay flavours create a big, hearty bowl of laksa. With many versions found throughout Asia, the classic Singapore style soup has a coconut curry base with shrimp, fish cake, egg and chicken. The noodles are cut short so no chopsticks are required. Simply grab a spoon and dig in. Singapore food at its best.
Where to try it: 328 Katong Laksa, 51 East Coast Road
In 2013 founder Lim and her son Ryan Goh beat celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay in a Hawker Hero challenge.
Char Kuay Teow
A popular dish throughout Asia, char kuay teow literally translates to ‘stir-fried rice cake strips’. Made using flat rice noodles fried in black soy sauce, and garnished with bean sprouts, prawns, clams, Chinese sausage and egg. The perfect dish balances sweet with salty, crunchy and chewy, and is judged by the flavours infused by the wok.
Where to try it: Meng Kee Char located at Wei Xuan Eating House on Havelock Road
Serving this local favourite for more than 30 years, Meng Kee Char are known for being generous with the sweet sauce.
Brown Line Route, Stop: Havelock Road
Fish head curry
Not one for the squeamish, this dish is served exactly as promised. A huge red snapper fish head sits in a curry with vegetables, mopped up with bread or rice. Served with a glass of local lime juice (calamansi) for extra zing. A south Indian dish with Chinese and Malay influences, just close your eyes and open wide.
Where to try it: The Banana Leaf Apolo, 54 Race Course Road
Located in Little India, this restaurant has won Bronze in the Best Restaurants Awards 2018 - need we say more…
Red Line Route, Stop: Broadway Hotel
A dish recognised around the world, skewered meat is grilled and served with rice cake, hot peanut sauce and cucumber chilli relish. You’ll find pork, chicken, beef and mutton variations, with the key ingredient being turmeric. Often considered a starter or party platter dish in Singapore food terms, it’s one still worth seeking out on a visit to this city.
Where to try it: Kwong Satay at Geylang Road
This well-known satay stall has had much coverage over the years, featured on TV and The Straits Times newspaper.
You’ll either love it or hate it, but either way we think you should try it. The oyster omelette is a staple in Singapore, and there are many views on how it should look and taste. Starch is mixed with an egg batter and fried to create a fluffy yet crisp omelette, then a generous helping of juicy oysters are thrown in. What’s not to love?
Where to try it: Lim’s Fried Oyster, 166 Jalan Besar, Berseh Food Centre
One of the longest established oyster stalls, the Lim couple have been serving Korean oyster omelette for over 30 years.
Blue Line Route, Stop: Veerasamy
And that’s just for starters. For a truly authentic culinary experience in Singapore, visit some of the many hawker centres dotted around the city, pull up a chair at a shared table, and delve into dishes enjoyed by the locals. Enjoy! And when you're done indulging, follow our guide to the Top Things to do in Singapore to work up an appetite for your next meal.