You haven’t tasted Peranakan cuisine if you haven’t eaten at Straits Chinese restaurant.
Most Baba, Bibiks or Nyonyas in Singapore avoid Peranakan restaurants. And for good reason. As authentic as these restaurants are, most dishes lack the flavour, fragrance and complexity of authentic Peranakan dishes. And to Peranakans, nothing’s more important than the taste of tradition.
No one cooks better than my late mama
But a visit to the Straits Chinese Restaurant made me eat my words. It was more than the familiar taste, or the comfort of eating my favourite babi ponteh, it was as though my late grandmother was at the dinner table heaping her signature dishes on to my plate. The best thing about this restaurant: It’s every kiasu Singaporeans’ favourite – BUFFET STYLE.
When you think of Peranakan food, food descriptions don’t do it justice. There aren’t enough adjectives like, “rich”, “creamy”, “decadent”, “delectable”, “spicy”, “unique” or party-in-your-mouth phrases to fully describe it.
Between trying to impress you with my Peranakan heritage and showing you the amateurish food photography, I think you’d prefer the latter. ‘Nuff talk, let’s check out the dishes!
Fresh home-made appetiser platter: Deep-fried spring rolls, Kueh Pie Tee and Ngoh Hiong
Kueh Pie Tee – Pop this in your mouth for an explosion of juicy goodness
Ngoh Hiong – Golden brown perfection with plump and juicy fillings
Bak Wan Kerpiting – Succulent meatballs and divine soup
Babi Ponteh – I’ve tried various Babi Ponteh dishes and many aren’t flavourful but this is pretty good
Otak-Otak – Rich, creamy, coconut-infused otah. Don’t get it confused with your ordinary otak-otak
Chap Chye – A must have dish for all occasions. This Chap Chye is as close to the one my mama cooks
Succulent and tender Satay Babi (pork in satay sauce). Peranakan’s interpretation of the local satay dish is definitely a must-try. You’ll be delightfully surprised
Ayam Buah Keluak – A unique dish that has been mellowed to suit the taste of those who have never tried it. From a Nynoya’s point of view, it could do with a little more Buah Keluak
Sayur Lodeh – I haven’t heard anyone that could resist this creamy coconut milk-infused vegetable dish
Itek Tim – Not many know how to cook this dish of fish maw, duck and meat concoction, but this blows me away
Ikan Assam Nanas Pedas – Copious amount of Tamarind juice combined with their special blend of chilli makes this a must-order
Chendol – Creamy, decandent delicacy of coconut milk, gula melaka, red beans and green glutinous noodles.
Durian Pangat – So good that you’re only allowed one.
Straits Chinese Restaurant
34 Craig Road
Today 11:00 – 22:00
Phone 6534 7328
This is an incognito review, meal is paid by reviewer.
Written by our very hungry, Peranakan contributor.
You can find the original article + his website here edbotak.