Oldie but goodie, right? Tiong Bahru Food Centre has been in existence since the 1950s, and when something lasts that long in Singapore, you know you can count on it for quality hawker fare and an enjoyable blast from the past local experience. Many stalls still use traditional methods to prepare our most beloved local dishes so you must try them while you still can – here is our list of 12!
Jian Bo Shui Keuh
If I had to introduce someone who has never tried Chwee Kueh before, I’d bring them to Jian Bo Shui Kueh. Deliciously fragrant Chye Poh, kueh that holds its shape and most importantly a solid sambal chilli to go with it, this Chwee Kueh hits the spot. Plus when $5 gets you 10 pieces, you know you’ve hit the jackpot.
Teck Seng Soya Bean Milk
You can literally taste the authenticity of the Soya Bean Milk ($1) and Beancurd (from $0.80 for small, $1 for medium and $1.70 for large bowl) at Teck Seng. Here you get the rare opportunity to experience the art of handmade beancurd because everything is made from scratch without the aid of machines. The smoothness and delicate texture of the beancurd will make evident the difference between man and machine. Get the ever popular Soya Bean Milk with Grass Jelly for a refreshing local treat.
Teck Seng Soya Bean Milk is located at #02-69, 30 Seng Poh Road, Singapore 168898. Open Tue-Sun 5am – 12pm.
Lor Mee 178
Lor Mee 178 serves up a pretty standard Lor Mee ($3/$4) but what makes it special is their signature deep-fried Shark Nuggets ($3). Just the right amount of batter is used to give these fritters the perfect crunch. The shark meat is tasty and not at all fishy.
Lor Mee 178 is located at #02-23, 30 Seng Poh Road, Singapore 168898. Open Wed-Mon from 7am – 8pm.
Tiong Bahru Fishball 7 Original
A household name, and for good reason. Only using 100% fish meat, this fishball stall has been serving fresh fishballs like the Xi Dao Handmade Large Fishballs ($1 per piece) and fish cakes since ’62. These tasty fishballs are not the oily sort that leaves you regretting eating a bunch of them you can keep at these bad boys, especially with the delicious chilli sauce. They even deliver!
Tiong Bahru Fishball 7 Original is located at #02-20, 30 Seng Poh Road, Singapore 168898. Open Daily from 7am – 5pm.
Tiong Bahru Pau
Having expanded with branches across Singapore, a visit to the OG Tiong Bahru Pau is still very much necessary when in the area. For those new to this Singaporean institution, the Da Bao ($1.80) is a huge morsel of juicy pork encased in a soft pillow of Pao, the Char Siew Bao ($1) stands apart from other Char Siew Baos with its smokey flavour and for those not very hungry, the Siew Mai ($0.80) makes for a wonderful snack.
Tiong Bahru Pau is located at #02-18/19, 30 Seng Poh Road, Singapore 168898. Open Mon-Sat 5am-7pm Sun 5am – 3pm.
Tiong Bahru Mian Jian Kueh
While the official opening hours are 6am to 2pm, the Tiong Bahru Mian Jian Kueh usually sell out before 2pm so get here early. With a choice of delectable fillings like Cheese, Chocolate and the more traditional Red Bean and Coconut, I am still a huge fan of the signature Peanut Pancake ($0.70) which they grind and roast themselves! They even have one with 3 fillings; peanut, red bean and coconut mixed together for the adventurous among us but my all time favourite is the Crispy Peanut Pancake ($1.20 for 2).
Tiong Bahru Mian Jian Kueh is located at #02-34, 30 Seng Poh Road, Singapore 168898. Open Tue-Sun 6am – 2pm.
Tiong Bahru Hainanese Boneless Chicken Rice
If Tiong Bahru Hainanese Boneless Chicken Rice stall sounds familiar, its cos they were awarded the 2017 Bib Gourmand Award. It has been around for over 20 years but that isn’t what makes it good. Its the tender meat from both the Roasted Chicken Rice ($3) as well as the Steamed Chicken Rice ($3). The boneless chicken is convenient to eat without any messiness and is coated in a tasty sauce. The rice is flavourful and the chilli adds a kick. The combination of all these flavours makes for a solid Chicken Rice.
Tiong Bahru Hainanese Boneless Chicken Rice is located at #02-82, 30 Seng Poh Road, Singapore 168898. Open Tue-Sun 10.30am – 7pm.
Tiong Bahru Lee Hong Kee Cantonese Roasted
Tiong Bahru Lee Hong Kee Cantonese Roasted is perfect for cheat days. The Sio Bak is crunchy on the outside, tender and juicy on the inside. Not extremely fatty, this is a good option if you are a fan of less fat, more meat. Roasted in a charcoal oven, the delicious smell wafting in the air is sure to leave you salivating. A plate of Roast Pork Rice goes for $3 or switch things up with both Roast Pork and Char Siew Rice ($4) or the homerun Roasted Duck, Roasted Pork and Char Siew Rice ($7).
Tiong Bahru Lee Hong Kee Cantonese Roasted is located at #02-60, 30 Seng Poh Road, Singapore 168898. Open Fri-Wed 8.30am – 8.30pm.
Hong Heng Fried Sotong Prawn Mee
Treat yo’self to a plate of Bib Gourmand Hokkien Mee at Hong Heng Fried Sotong Prawn Mee Stall moments. With a generous amount of fish, squid and prawn along with delicious homemade chilli, this is a good plate of Hokkien Mee especially for those that prefer the drier variety. Keeping their prices at $3, $4, and $5 for award-winning Hokkien Mee, we’d say the queue is worth it.
Hong Heng Fried Sotong Prawn Mee stall is located at #02-01, 30 Seng Poh Road, Singapore 168898. Open Tue-Sun 11am – 8pm.
Chow Kee XO Fish Head Steamboat Kitchen
We tried the Fish Hor Fun ($4.50) from this stall and we were pleasantly surprised. The usual gripe with Hor Fun is the consistency of the sauce, sometimes a tad to watery, and other times too starchy. However, Chow Kee’s sauce coated the noodles beautifully and the generous amount of sliced fresh fish was a nice touch. Plus no Ajinomoto is used, just good ol natural flavour.
Chow Kee XO Fish Head Steamboat Kitchen is located at #02-37, 30 Seng Poh Road, Singapore 168898. Open Wed-Mon 11.30am – 2.30pm.
Tiong Bahru Fried Kway Teow
The availability of delicious pocket-friendly food in Singapore is not difficult to find but rarely can you still find a plate of good Char Kway Teow ($2). Look no further than Tiong Bahru Fried Kway Teow stall. Naturally, if you opt for a $3 or $4 plate, the amount of cockles, fish cake and Chinese sausage increases significantly. While I prefer my Fried Kway Teow a little wetter, this drier version still delivers taste wise.
Tiong Bahru Fried Kway Teow is located at #02-11, 30 Seng Poh Road, Singapore 168898. Open Thu-Tue 11am – 10.30pm.
Nyonya Kueh is a painstaking process. Almost too painful since more and more stalls are tweaking the process to make it less laborious. Not this stall. Serving interesting flavours like the Japanese Taro Kueh ($2.60) salat and a packet of assorted Ondeh-Ondeh ($2.80 for 6 glutinous balls) filled with flavours like the classic gula melaka black sesame, and even matcha. It adds some fun and excitement to the kueh eating process. I especially enjoyed the pretty Pink Fairy Kueh ($1.10 per piece) which has a delicious coconut cream layer and a layer of Azuki Beans that adds an interesting textural element.
Harriann’s Delights is located at #02-25, 30 Seng Poh Road, Singapore 168898. Open Tue-Sun 6.30am – 3pm.