Singapore Char Kway Teow 新加坡炒粿條


Singapore Char Kway Teow 新加坡炒粿條.

I said I had eaten oodles of noodles since I posted the Bak Chor Mee and One Tonne Mee, the day before Mother’s Day and have kept pushing off the noodles publications for fear you may nauseate with carbohydrates but noodles (and rice) are a big part of my diet so I have no choice but to do some variation of noodles I may have blogged before.

CKT is not the initials of my boyfriend’s name but stands for Char Kway Teow 炒粿条 in Singapore, we like to abbreviate names of food i.e. Bah Kut Teh as BKT, Hainanese Chicken Rice as HCR, Chee Cheong Fun as CCF… you get the point.

CKT in Singapore is slightly different from Malaysia’s infamous Penang Char Kway Teow. The latter version uses only Kway Teow (flat rice sheets) while Singapore’s version has the addition of Yellow Noodles to the Kway Teow, is often much darker in colour due the usage of more sweet dark soy and usually without prawns.

Singaporeans call rice noodles Kway Teow, literal dialect translation from the Hokkiens while Hor Fun is Cantonese. There are more Hokkien dialect speaking Chinese citizens in Singapore and thus many street food item that is known in their respective language are translated dialectally for the English menu.

The Singapore Kway Teow itself is much broader than the slim version of Malaysia’s Kway Teow (Ipoh Hor Fun or Sa Hor Fun) or Thai’s Pad Thai but not as thick as our local Hor Fun which you can see in Uncle Leong’s Signature Hor Fun or Kok Sen’s Big Prawn Hor Fun. Confusing isn’t it?

Perhaps my KOAT (Knower Of All Things) Wikipedia can explain better:

Char Kway Teow, literally “stir-fried ricecake strips”, is a popular noodle dish in Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore. The dish was (and still is in some places in Malaysia), especially in Singapore, can be best enjoyed at Hawker Centers and Food Courts. It is one of the favorite National Dishes in Singapore.

It is made from flat rice noodles (河粉 hé fěn in Chinese) of approximately 1 cm or (in the north of Malaysia) about 0.5 cm in width, stir-fried over very high heat with light and dark soy sauce, chilli, a small quantity of belachan, whole prawns, deshelled cockles, bean sprouts and chopped Chinese chives. The dish is commonly stir-fried with egg, slices of Chinese sausage and fishcake, and less commonly with other ingredients. Char Kway Teow is traditionally stir-fried in pork fat, with crisp croutons of pork lard, and commonly served on a piece of banana leaf on a plate.

Char Kway Teow has a reputation of being unhealthy due to its high saturated fat content. However, when the dish was first invented, it was mainly served to labourers. The high fat content and low cost of the dish made it attractive to these people as it was a cheap source of energy and nutrients. When the dish was first served, it was often sold by fishermen, farmers and cockle-gatherers who doubled as char kway teow hawkers in the evening to supplement their income.


CKT from Block 210 Hougang Street 21 – so far the best I have tasted since my return.

Below are some pictures of CKT I ate recently in search of the best “underdogs” but there’s plenty more places to cover…

Few other stalls that I have tried that did not win my vote. They were stalls from ABC Market (behind Ikea), Food Republic Wisma Atria and Circuit Road FC.

There are several more places I have heard and would like to visit over the next few weeks or months. As mentioned, CKT is not the healthiest of food so I would like to pace myself in this adventure of finding the best of the lesser known. I have also not tasted the well known ones and so maybe it’s time I do in order to have better perpspective.

Happy CKT hunting 🙂

16 Responses to “Singapore Char Kway Teow 新加坡炒粿條”
  1. Sofia says:

    Oh yum! I need to learn how to make it myself replicate the flavour as I cant find it here!

    • Sam Han says:

      Perhaps you might like to try the Penang style which I find tastier. Click on my link in the post on Penang Char Kway Teow and modify the ingredients and seasonings to your liking 😀

  2. Sofia says:

    Bookmarked 🙂

    • Sam Han says:

      Let me know the outcome and if you’ve modified, what you did to make it better. We’re always looking for good better best don’t we? Lol… 😀

      • Sofia says:

        Exactly! 🙂 Like soon I’ll be making jam again… better and better I hope!

        • Sam Han says:

          I think once we know the basics, we can always improve on our previous recipes and tailor them according to our taste and needs. Mr. P did a vegetarian CKT! Wonder if he’d posted it.

          • Sofia says:

            Yeah I’m always analyzing my dishes and wondering what I can do to improve. Often when I eat something in restaurants I sort of analyze it and guess how I could make it. I hope Mr P does post it 🙂

          • Sam Han says:

            I’ll be hearing about your improved jams and restaurant dishes. You must be having a lot of fun with your new camera 😀

          • Sofia says:

            Oh I’ll post the jam in honour of you hehe.. and the camera is lovely!

          • Sam Han says:

            Miranti from The High Heel Gourmet recently did a fantastic dual jam post. They are so lovely to look at and I’m sure all her recipes taste great! Have you seen it?

          • Sofia says:

            I havent seen that one but all her posts are great 🙂

          • Sam Han says:

            Agree! She’s so meticulous, lol… She even labelled them and they looked ready to be on sale. Delicious! Go see 😀

  3. daniellajoe says:

    i love rice too, i grew up eating rice almost everyday…and the noodles looks delicioso 🙂

  4. Key point is the width of the noodles, and the egg has to be just right.

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