The most amazing thing about Singapore is that it is an Asian melting pot. This country features a mix of cultures, including Chinese, Indian, and Malay, which makes this a truly fascinating and multicultural place to visit. It is of course, also one of the finest shopping places in Asia—but that unique mix of cultures also makes Singapore a great place for food lovers.
Food here, there, and Everywhere
When you approach one of the native Singaporeans to ask about food, you’ll almost always get a smile in return. That’s because Singaporeans are proud of their cuisine, and truly love to enjoy their food. So in response to your question about where you should go to eat, the answer is almost always, “right here.” That’s because you’re never far away from something tasty, whether it’s in a fine restaurant, or a street hawker stall.
If you’ve spent much time in Southeast Asia, you know satay. It is a dish that features small pieces of meat, placed on a stick and grilled. It’s simple but very tasty, and usually accompanied by a spicy peanut sauce, and you can find it everywhere. You can order it at restaurants, and you’ll also find street hawkers with portable grills set up, where you can watch it being made right in front of you. You will definitely want to enjoy this traditional dish, but you have to know how to say it. Americans tend to say it with a soft ending, but the correct way is to say each syllable with a hard stop, almost as if there is a hard “k” at the end of each (sa’ – teh’).
Chinese and Indian Food
Another thing you’ll see on the menu is fried carrot cake, but this is nothing like the sweet American favorite made with cream cheese icing topped with an orange cream cheese carrot. This dish is actually made from a base of flour, radish and turnip fried with a sweet sauce, and covered with spring onions.
The Chinese influence is seen in the many noodle dishes available, including char kway teow, which is mildly spicy and cooked with lard and a sweet sauce. For a taste of India, give roti prata a try. This common dish is a type of thin flour pancake with a variety of fillings, often served with a curry sauce on top.
Heavy Hawker Meal
Singapore features many wonderful restaurants, and it’s easy to get an affordable meal here. The hawker centers are the best place for a bargain, and these are kept clean and sanitary, so feel free to indulge to your heart’s content. You can get a good hawker meal for three or four dollars.
If you’re really looking for a true taste of Asia, Singaporean food will give you a taste of many countries in one.