Saturday, 18 November 2017

Good Food on Budget

If you were following the previous article, you probably read that I tried living on $400 for the month, but after trying for 2 weeks I've decided to call it quits. Too miserable. It's quite difficult to do when you factor in petrol and cashcard top ups. In any case, this experiment wasn't in vain. I discovered that there's a good number of budget food around Singapore if you want to eat something better but keep the cost low.

Chicken Murtabak ($7.50) - Springleaf Prata Place

One of the perks of my job is running around Singapore which means I get to try food from every part of the country. So I was at the East in Bedok wondering what nice food was nearby which I could keep below $10. Springleaf Prata Place springs to mind and I've written a full article about them previously. Awesome for their prata. Having been wanting to try Murtabak for the longest time, I finally ordered it this visit. The prata skin was great as usual and the minced chicken was generous. I found the chicken to be a little on the dry side but it tasted good when it was still pipping hot.

Springleaf Prata Place
57B Jalan Tua Kong, S457253
(there's 2 more outlets at Thomson and Bukit Timah)

Pork Koka Noodles 可口面 ($3.50 w/egg) - Hai Xian Zhu Zho

This is honestly my favourite food for the year. I don't care if you are judging me for loving instant noodles so much. I've craved for it for close to a year and finally got to eat it when I discovered they have a branch in Yishun that works at earthly hours. The original outlet in Bukit Panjang opens at 3am and sometimes closes by early morning. (Are you kidding me? Business so good can close by 10am?!) It's basically Koka noodles cooked with pork, vegetables and an egg thrown in with fried onions to top it off. It sounds simple and ordinary but it taste like heaven for instant noodle lovers. The broth is really flavourful, the meat well marinated. The noodles felt a tad too salty but the rest of the dish balances it out.

Hai Xian Zhu Zhou
#01-472 Choh Dee Place, Blk 233 Yishun Street 21, S760233

Bak Kut Teh ($9.30 w/rice) - Ng Ah Sio Bak Kut Teh

I was wandering around Marina Bay Sands after a not very pleasant appointment and wondering what can I eat that is affordable. A quick look at the food court reflects unknown hawker food at cafe prices. So expensive! Then I saw Ng Ah Sio Bak Kut Teh and I actually heard of this stall while researching for nice Bak Kut Teh! The bigger bonus was that it was under $10. I took the middle option which consisted of one sirloin pork rib and two short ribs. I totally enjoyed my meal so much so I want to eat it again! The ribs fell off the bones easily and the fats melts in your mouth. I found the meat of the short ribs more pleasurable to eat that the sirloin pork rib. Perhaps I'll just opt for the $6.60 option next time. Save even more!

Ng Ah Sio Bak Kut Teh
Rasapura Masters, 2 Bayfront Avenue, #B2-50, Stall 11, The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands, S018972

Claypot Laksa ($5) - Depot Road Zhen Shan Mei Claypot Laksa

This was awarded the Michelin Bib Gourmand in 2016. My hawker food savvy colleague pointed this stall out to me and I ordered the medium size version to try. Apparently, this recipe was bought over from the original owners.. The laksa broth is really thick and very rich in taste. Ingredients were well infused with the tangy gravy making the dish highly addictive. My only gripe was that at $5 and medium size, I felt like the only reasonable size meal to last the day is actually large. Be warned, the gravy splatters easily so do not wear white ordering this. It is otherwise an awesome laksa dish even though I heard the standard has dropped!

Depot Road Zhen Shan Mei Claypot Laksa
Blk 120 Bukit Merah Lane, #01-75, Alexander Village, S150120

Penang Hokkien Mee ($5) - Traditional Penang Food

I love black hokkien mee although good ones are really hard to find in Singapore. I found the one at Traditional Penang Food to be one of the more well cooked ones with a generous serving to match. The sauce thickness was just right and I enjoyed the ingredients provided which wasn't excessive or too stingy. While I believe this isn't the best Hokkien Mee in Singapore, this is definitely comfort food in a neighbourhood, certainly better than my neighbourhood's hokkien mee!

Traditional Penang Food
Blk 768 Woodlands Avenue 6 #01-12, Woodlands Mart, S730768

This pretty much sums up my budget post. If you wish to keep more in the loop about my day to day food you can follow me on Instagram @bluntandfussyeater