Shiok Food At Blk 86 Bedok North Street 4

Exactly one week ago, Mark invited me to join Alvin and himself for lunch. I had been asking around and have heard that Fei Lao’s horfun has one of the most intense wok hei in Singapore and that was where we were headed!

Mark gave me the address but I had no idea then that it was the same kopitiam I had gone to with Benny and Ricky. The taxi brought me to the back of the estate and when I arrived, I realised the cze char stall is located within the same coffee shop as Western Food 85 where I had the deep-fried version of German pork knuckles. The knuckles were so good, I brought Sam and Vanessa there a few days later and on a different occasion bought 3 pieces, one for Cynthia and Dominic to consume at Ho Tit Coffee Factory and the other two to be stewed with assam pedas gravy at home.

I saw Mark at the table but Alvin was no where in sight. I suppose Al was at the stall placing orders for our horfun but he returned with a bowl of curry chicken wings and a neat plate of mess.

Blk 86 Bedok Hainanese Curry Png

Hainanese Curry Png and Curry Chicken Wings – $6.50.
Alvin had no idea of the breakdown but we’re guessing the curry chicken to be $3.50 and the plate of rice containing breaded pork cutlets, sunny side egg buried under the meat and cabbage to be S$3.

“I saw Hainanese Curry Png and thought we give it a try.”

“Sam said the pork knuckle is good, wanna try or not?”

“I ordered horfun, fish head and pork liver. Now with these two extra items, still can stomach the pork knuckles meh?”

“Can la.”

And they both look at me!

“Erm… We eat first?” I offered.

I don’t know why. I shouldn’t refused. It was very unlike me. But maybe it was a premonition for since that lunch till now, I have been down with flu through the weekend, followed by hacking cough and am still sick.

Mark and Alvin will be eating the pork knuckles soon but I can’t join them. Better not pass them my germs. The venue reminded me of our last meal which I have yet to post so I dragged my lifeless shell and started to work on this post. It is 3.15am!

Western Food 85

Western Food 85 German Pork Knuckle Set – S$16.50.
Alvin and Mark will be enjoying this dish of deep-fried German Pork Knuckles at Western Food 85 later!

I digressed. Back on track…

86 Bedok North

Hainanese Curry Png is a very unique cuisine on its own.
I guess you can say it is one of the earliest fusion dishes found in Singapore.
The main components are rice, breaded pork cutlets (probably from the cook boys days where Hainanese men worked for the British homes and army canteens during the 50s), plain stir-fried cabbage and the gravy.
The gravy is made of two sauces: 1) curry that has been slurried with tapioca starch and 2) the braising liquid from Tau Yew Lor Bak (dark soy braised pork).

We started with the Hainanese Curry Png (png = rice in Hokkien dialect). The curry chicken wings were ordinary, maybe even slightly below standard according to my personal preference as I found it to be watered down. And if one were to argue, it could jolly well be the correct Hainanese-style consistency but this Hainanese lady here, that’s moi, prefers “lemak” (Malay for rich texture in food) when it comes to curries.

The sambal looked very different from the standard Hainanese Curry Png also. To me, it looked more Indonesian/Malay style but I am not complaining. I am not documenting heritage food so there’s no need for authenticity in my food. I am looking for tastes, fusion or otherwise that suited me and this ferocious looking red mound suited me fine! Looking back, that sambal could have irritated my sore throat but I loved it and will definitely go back for more!

Allow me to side track here a bit. We were taking photos and the kopi uncle (we call all the servers/owners of coffee shops kopi uncle or kopi aunty as a sign of respect since we do not know their names) asked if we were going to post on Facebook. He was amused 3 diners shooting with dslr (most uses handphones). Later, he told Alvin the history of the Hainanese Curry Rice stall. We had thought the owner to be away from his stall leaving his foreign-probably-domestic-helper ladies to man the stall. Turns out one of them, the Indonesian lady, is the wife of the late stallholder. He had passed on but she managed to learn from him and kept his standard of cooking! Except for the sambal (which is great btw) you will never guessed they’re not Hainanese-cooked. Is there such a thing that one can taste ethnicity in food? I think so. Because for some, if not all food, you just won’t get it right if you are not immersed in its culture.

Blk 86 Bedok Hainanese Curry Png

The most delicious mess one can eat!
It has been a long time since I have eaten any Hainanese Curry Png with its address worth sharing.

There are no words to describe the above heap of gooey looking meal. That’s because I forgot how it tasted. I only remember how I felt after eating it… *Shiok!

I used to wait every night till the clock strikes 1.30am and drive to Upper Serangoon to eat Hougang Curry Png. The shop opens only at 2am exactly, not a minute earlier (could be some fengshui thingy). That was my nightly supper routine for many years until the old man died. The new owners did not cook well. They even used lousy grade rice as I chewed on sandy grits. I have tried many curry png after that – some were good and others, bleh! Not sure if it was sudden nostalgia or something else. I can’t put my finger on it but this one happened to excite me.

86 Bedok North

Seafood Horfun – S$15.

86 Bedok North

Stewed Fish Head – S$10

86 Bedok North

Quick-fried Pork Liver – S$8.

86 Bedok North

Total cost S$33.

86 Bedok North

The infamous Horfun known for its robust breath of wok!
Horfun, in Cantonese, is broad noodles made of rice.
The charred parts of the cooked noodles were obtained through pan-frying, either with some dark soy to “dye” or very high heat to scorch.
Needless to say, it is the latter method which produces “wok hei” that foodies go for!

I am really behind time when it comes to food cost in Singapore. I need to reconcile with current market prices. I’m still calculating in terms before I left Singapore and keep getting alarmed each time I asked for bill breakdowns.  No doubt there was a few sea cucumber (not a normal inclusion in horfun) but they weren’t top grade. My raised brows and opened jaws betrayed me when the lady said the horfun was $15. I felt that price to be a bit extravagant for a cze char noodle dish served in kopitiam but I must admit it was very delicious!

Will I eat this horfun again? Yes! But next time, I will ask for takeaway even when dining at the coffeeshop because it would be wrapped in **Opeh Leaf which will impregnate an awesome fragrance into the rice noodles.

By the way, did you noticed that the Horfun does not have egg ribbons in it? That’s because it is Singapore style! Wak Dan Horfun (滑蛋河粉 -the ones with egg) is said to be Malaysian style. We have it because most of our cze char cooks hail from Malaysia! I do not think Hong Kong Horfun has soft egg in it, too!

The Fish Head dish was not good. I had the last piece as the guys were filled and that piece was not cooked through. Yikes!

The Pork Liver was so so to Alvin. It was good to me as I could taste the “sweetness” of Huatiao (wine) and “powdery” texture of the organ but I would prefer them to be sliced slightly thicker for more hearty mouthfeel.

Blk 86 Bedok Western Food 85-Stall

Western Food 85

Blk 86 Bedok Hainanese Curry Png-Stall

Hainanese Curry Png (the one with red banner).

Blk 86 Bedok Fei Lao-Stall

Fei Lao (Mandarin) means Fatty!
In the past, maybe still applicable, the saying goes, “Do not trust a skinny chef!” and most cze char stall cooks are known as “fei lou” (fatty in Cantonese).
As the name suggested, it used to be at Changi Lor 108.

You must wonder why I didn’t review the German Pork Knuckles. I have had it in 2 consecutive days and dabao-ed one for my friends and bought 2 home to cook. What do you think, nice or not? But best to eat there for the shiokadoonz crunch!

If you’re in the neighbourhood, just head up for Shiok Food at Blk 86 Bedok North Street 4!

Changi Lorong 108 Fei Lao Seafood 樟宜108巷肥老煮炒
Address: Blk 86 Bedok North Street 4,
Singapore 460086.

Tel:6346 4116

Operating hours: (Closed on Tuesdays)
Lunch: 11am – 2pm
Dinner: 5pm – 9pm

Western Food 85
Address: Blk 86 Bedok North Street 4.
Singapore 460085.

Tel: +65 90070531

Operating hours: (Closed on 1st & 3rd Wed of Month)
Daily: 12pm – 11pm

Hainanese Curry Rice
Operating hours: 10am – 3pm but I do not know their day of rest.

All the stalls mentioned in this post are located inside the same kopitiam.

Happy eating and bonding 🙂

Click here for Pork Knuckles Stewed In Assam Pedas Recipe using the pork knuckles I bought from Western Food 85.

“Bedok is a neighbourhood in the eastern part of Singapore. Bedok New Town is the fifth Housing and Development Board (HDB) new town.” – Wikipedia

*Shiok – is it Malay? It is likened to the state of perfect peace that comes when a craving is eliminated.

**Opeh Leaf or ‘upih’ in Malay language is actually the leaf-sheath of the Pinang tree (betel nut palm, the areca catechu). The pale whitish-yellow fibrous sheet was used traditionally as food wrapper before the introduction of plastic and styrofoam carriers in modern Singapore. Its come-back is making umami waves in our street food scene as foodies believed that wok-fried food packed in it is further enhanced with a slightly sour (good sour) and woody aroma.

Example of Opeh Leaf as food wrapper:

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Comments
4 Responses to “Shiok Food At Blk 86 Bedok North Street 4”
  1. Great post considering that you are not feeling well.
    Hope you are felling better soon.
    ME

  2. The Mouse says:

    As always, awesome photography!

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