Thursday, November 13, 2008

Traveling Chomps: The Singapore Ritual - Katong Laksa

I'm in Singapore for a couple days and this is the ONE dish I absolutely have to eat every time I'm in town: Katong Laksa!

You may have seen it on the menus of some Southeast Asian restaurants in the Boston area. More recently Lisa from Top Chef also attempted to make laksa and failed miserably (*snigger*). But IMO, none of them get it right.

Singapore is where you need to have this dish. Laksa originates from South East Asia, more specifically Singapore and Malaysia. It grew out of local Malay cooking mixed with Chinese elements brought by the influx of merchants in the 1800s and the intertwining of cultures.

Now back to the food. Laksa is most easily described as a curry noodle dish, but it is so much more than that. The broth is rich, coconut-y, sweet yet savory, and served with rice noodles, bean sprouts, shrimp and fish cake.

I may be biased, but the best Laksa is from 328 Katong Laksa. A quirk is that the dish is served only with a spoon and no chopsticks. You see, the cook wants you to taste the broth with every bite. Something chopsticks will not allow!

Mmmmmm divine! Careful though, it's spicy ...

Chomp Meter
Five Chomps of course. How could I give any less? This hawker stall is a quick 20 minute cab ride from the city center but if you want authentic, this is absolutely worth the journey. Hawker food in Singapore is cheap too. A bowl of laksa will set you back only US$2.50. Oh and did I mention being a Katong home girl ;)

Bookmark this store for your next South East Asian vacation!

328 Famous Katong Laksa

216 East Coast Rd., Singapore
9732 8163
9 a.m.-9 p.m.


Anonymous said...

Of course you've got to have Hainan Chicken rice!

I've never been to Singapore but I guess they're as fanatic about the dish as any other place.

I'm jealous!

mini said...

Singapore is the best place for food. I haven't had the chicken rice yet but it's next on the list!