Thursday, March 15, 2012

My Favourite Hawker Stalls: Chen Ji's Char Siew & Roast Pork

I love eating (don’t be fooled by my size!) and good food makes me happy. Especially during cold, wet weather like now. It makes me feel warm and cozy after a hearty meal.

And when it comes to good food, I believe that it’s not just limited to those whipped up by chefs in some fancy restaurants. There are some real gems to be discovered among the ‘humble’ local hawker fare.

Just the other day, I was going through my photos and saw some of my favourite hawker food. I thought why don’t I start sharing about them too? Instead of only reviewing restaurants and cafés. Boring.

So today, I’ll start with my favourite char siew and roast pork stall at Alexandra Village Food Centre: 陈记烧腊 Chen Ji Shao La (no English name).

 My hubby and I chanced upon this stall by accident. We were there on a weekend with the intention of satisfying our craving for claypot laksa but it was closed.  We spotted a short queue at this stall and decided to give it a try.

Boy! We were thrilled by what we tasted.

In my previous post, I shared about how I’m a huge fan of the char siew and roast pork at Restoran Oversea in Kuala Lumpur. I was excited when they opened up a branch here. But we were a tad disappointed as they didn’t replicate the exact same taste and texture as what they serve in KL (most likely too fat and oily for most Singaporeans but I love it!), and it’s more expensive here.

So you can imagine our delight when we found something that we think is good enough as a substitute and at such affordable prices too.

So what’s so nice about this stall’s food?

First, the char siew. It’s sweeter, stickier than most char siew you’ll find in Singapore. It’s beautifully caramelized with a shiny glaze and has a little fat so that when you put it into your mouth and start chewing, it will be sweet, juicy and tender (not dry and hard like what you get at some other stalls). 

Next, the roast pork. What I really love about this roast pork is how crispy the skin is (think crunch, crunch, crunch...). Like the char siew, the meat is considered tender and very flavourful.

Oh yes, the gravy they give is very nice too. 

And from what I can observe, both items are made right in the stall – as fresh as it can ever get. They also sell roast duck. We've not tried that yet though, despite having gone there about three times now. Perhaps that's how much we enjoy their char siew and roast pork.

Chen Ji Shao La
Alexandra Village Food Centre
Blk 120 Bukit Merah Lane 1

For all my other food reviews, click here.


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