When you see succulent cooked chicken hanging neatly in a row at a food stall, you are looking at one of the nation’s favourite dishes—Hainanese Chicken Rice.
A ubiquitous sight in hawker centres across the country, it is also on the menu in many major restaurants and even hotel cafés. All offer the same dish at varying prices: bite-sized slices of chicken—or a whole chicken if you’re eating as a big group—served with fragrant rice, spicy chilli and ginger paste.
[Read more about this local delight and find out where to taste it for yourself at Visit Singapore’s website]
Crispy on the outside, soft on the inside, roti prata hits the spot every time. A South-Indian flat bread made by frying stretched dough flavoured with ghee (Indian clarified butter), it is usually served with fish or mutton curry.
Roti means ‘bread’, and prata or paratha means ‘flat’ in Hindi. Some believe the dish evolved from original pancake recipes from Punjab in India, but across the causeway in Malaysia, the flat bread is called roti canai, which some say is a nod to its origins from Chennai.
No matter where it comes from, roti prata is a satisfying meal for any hour of the day. While the classic versions are served plain or with eggs as a filling, local menus now feature a variety of modern variations such as cheese, chocolate, ice-cream, and even durians – turning it from a main course to a dessert.
[Read more about this delectable dish at Visit Singapore’s website]
Translate nasi lemak from Malay to English, and you will get ‘rich rice’. The ‘rich’ refers not to wealth, but the coconut cream that makes it oh-so sinfully scrumptious.
This dish is a perfect mix of flavours: aromatic rice infused with coconut milk and pandan leaves, eaten with deep-fried fish or chicken wings, otah (grilled fish paste), fried ikan bilis (local anchovies) and peanuts, eggs, cucumber slices, and sambal (spicy chilli paste).
It is a hearty meal that is adored by the Malays as well as non-Malays who have their own version of nasi lemak. The rice is the same, although some have a greenish hue owing to the pandan leaves, but it is the side dishes that set each other apart.
The Chinese version, for instance, can come with anything from deep fried drumstick, chicken franks and fish cake to curried vegetables and luncheon meat.
[Read more about the delicious Malay cuisine in Singapore at Visit Singapore’s website]
Rojak means an “eclectic mix” in colloquial Malays, and the dish sure lives up to its name. Its ingredients reflect the cultural diversity of Singapore, bringing together disparate items with strong flavours into a harmoniously tasty blend.
It is a local salad of mixed vegetables, fruits, and dough fritters that is covered in a sticky black sauce and garnished with chopped peanuts and finely-cut fragrant ginger flowers for a piquant taste.
The mark of a good rojak is its sauce, made up of fermented prawn paste, sugar, lime and chilli paste. It must be an appetising mix of sweet, sour and spicy.
[Read more about this unique culinary blend on Visit Singapore’s website]