It’s Mee Time
By KF Seetoh | Friday, Aug 28, 2020
Admittedly, a lot of us have some extra time this Covid season. All those pubbing, large gathering parties and travels, even to Johor Bahru, among others, are turned into spare hours. Clever alternative ideas abound- be a local tourist and go see and do things you’ve never tried or heard of. Hotels are offering staycation packages and of course, whether you take a trishaw ride around the civic district or rediscover old charms with a stroll about the Seletar Reservoir and take selfies with the retro “space age” rocket structure of a look-our tower, you still need to makan. And do so in style or make them conversation exercises. Eat something same-same, yet not the stuff you get “downstairs” from your housing block. Hear me out on this 3 noodle items.

  1. Shaker Lakers, 01-24, Yishun Park Hawker Cte, Yishun Ave 11, 01-24, 11.30am-8.30pm closed Monday

    This is a western stall par excellence. Their offer steaks and fries and their burgers are very imaginative. Its run by an ex-banker Ms Gillian Pua and her Irish chef Michael Quinn who had headlined restaurants in New York and Marche here. The come up with stunning beef burgers with slices of kong bak sitting atop and “since we have quite a bit of sambal for our dishes”, they created this Sambal Prawn Linguine ($8). It’s simple, just huge succulent prawns over linguine tossed in their special sambal, which is not at all catered to tourist. It’s done upon order so you know it comes hot and fresh.

  2. Do Rae Mee, Gluttons Bay, 8 Raffles Ave, next to the Esplanade Theatre. Tuesday to Friday: 3pm to 10.30pm. Saturday & Sunday: 1pm-10.30pm. Closed Monday. (https://order.makansutra.com)

    The folks at this noodle stall recently came up with an edge to their top selling Fried Hokkien Prawn Mee or Cha Hae Mee. They topped it with garlic seared Korean oysters in a silky seafood sauce ($7). It makes sense- the extra garlicky oyster seafood sauce add a another layer of ocean bottom goodness to the roasty shrimp stock fried noodles. Chef Ah Tong cooks it in a way many don’t anymore, he steam braise the noodle for a good 10-15 seconds to lock in flavours and then seperately sears the oysters to top it over with. It all comes moist, well fried and that saucy ladle of huge seared oysters over it lends another sensation to it, along with the shrimps and squid. 

  3. 林玉梅 Sarawak Kolo Mee and Laksa, 01-33, Haig Road Hawker Cte. 11am-9pm, closed on Tuesday.

    The minute they open not long after they arrive, a line forms and one wonders if they use pre made sauces and paste with such a short prep time. But these folks blend their unique curry laksa paste and rest it a day before and boil them in stock the next day when they show up. Their Sarawak laksa ($6) is nothing like our Katong style and it is redolent with both Indian and Malaysian spices like star anise and nutmeg with no hints of coconut milk. It has a gentle masala base and when infused with the stock, it is very scrummy. The use of beehoon is on point as it absorbs the curry very well, much better than the thick udon like versions. The prawns atop are fresh but secondary and the bean sprouts lend such a nice crunch to the show. Their Kolo Mee ($4) is so easy in- mee kia is tossed with a porky sauce and shallot oil and some umami magic. To spice it up, you just douse it with the plate of chilli sauce provided. 

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