The diversity of the cuisine in Singapore is due to the many cultures that have a presence there. However, the influence of many other countries come together to form Singapore’s culinary scene. Let’s take a look at a few of Singapore’s popular dishes.
Its national dish is Chili Crab, prepared in various ways. The most common ingredients in the dish are black pepper sauce for one version, and spicy tomato chili sauce for another. According to locals, Chili Crab was first sold out of pushcarts in 1956. The wife of the man running the pushcart was asked to find new ways to cook crabs, rather than the traditional way of steaming them. She prepared the crabs stir-fry style, using tomato sauce and chili.
Further experimentation by an unidentified chef led to the addition of sambal sauce, a Singapore specialty, made with shrimp paste and chili. Eggs and tomato paste were added to complete the dish. To this day, that version of Chili Crab is served more than any other.
Another popular dish in the country is Hainanese Chicken. This rice dish (flavored with pandan leaves and ginger in chicken broth) includes pieces of steamed white chicken. Served on a bed of rice and soy sauce, sesame oil and cilantro top off the dish. A garlic-chili sauce is also served on the side.
Not only does Singapore have a national dish it also has a national breakfast — Kaya Toast with Kopi. This is the Singapore version of America’s classic toast and coffee breakfast. Consisting of toasted bread, kaya, and butter. Kaya is a jam made with Pandan leaves, eggs, coconut milk, and sugar. Singapore’s Kopi (coffee) is traditionally served with sugar, evaporated milk and sweetened condensed milk.
The influence of other country’s cuisines is evident in another popular dish in Singapore, Fried Hokkien Mee. Named for a Chinese province where the dish was discovered, it is also served in Malaysia. Both countries make the dish in their own unique way. The cuisine of Singapore calls for egg noodles and rice, prepared stir-fry style. The dish also includes spring onions, prawns, oysters, fresh lime, and squid. Dried prawns and fresh shrimp are combined to make the hearty sauce the dish is served with. This is another dish that comes with sambal sauce on the side.
These are just a few of the delicacies you can enjoy in Singapore, while you are taking in its breathtaking scenery. If you’ve been to Singapore, let me know what your favorite dish is or the most interesting dish you have tried there!