So having tried most everything on my list, today's brunch was at Serangoon Gardens, 5 minutes from the house we are staying in. Once we got to the roundabout, Ming and I were at a lost where to go, so we went into this corner shop that had a few stalls.
Roasted pork and chicken rice.
We ordered roasted pork and chicken rice from a stall called Posin, if I'm not mistaken, and it was not worthy (rice was hoong/stale) for my princess mouth so I ordered Sing laksa from the next stall, one last time. And what do you know, it was the closest to the Sing laksa of my childhood ('youth' being too telling) days when I visited Sing. That is the main reason I like Sing laksa, Bryan, that they remind me of my early teen years. Plus Sing laksa is delicious, if cooked well.
Although oily, the santan was not terribly thick. There were fried tofu puffs, bean sprouts and even fish slices, and I'm happy because that's quite close to fishballs. Best of all were the raw cockles (which I pushed into the soup after taking this photo) which were big, sweet and crunchy versus the tiny, bland and tough (overcooked) cockles we get in Sabah. Each time I eat cockles, it is like a step of faith and thrill, like how eating fugu would feel like I suppose. Faith in that they won't give me food poisoning or hepatitis A. Hub wouldn't touch them; he's a very careful person whereas I'm a risk-taker. And a glutton. But I don't eat cockles when I'm in Sabah, because I imagine that they are harvested from under some stilt-houses where the toilet is a hole in the wooden floor. Maybe that's why in Sabah cockles are cooked until they are tough. Ming likes cockles but finds them rather fishy and bloody. Strange isn't it, that these bivalves have blood?
We ended up on Orchard again. Really, Singapore still has such a looonnngg way to go before it gets to the shopping status of Hong Kong. The whole 8/9 days I was there, I think we went to Orchard 6/7 times. And each time it's either Takashimaya or Tang's or Centrepoint or Paragon. We avoid Lucky Plaza because it's a conmen's den. But go to HK and you'd panic as each day goes by because you haven't even covered half the malls or 0.0005% of the eateries in a week.
For kitchenware, I really like Tang's and Robinsons' but I noticed there's less variety, or is it because I'm comparing them with Oz? Oh, Ming snacked on some yummy yakitori in Tang's basement food market, of all places, and I followed suit, tucking this in for tea, standing at a tall table without chairs:
Bacon asparagus rolls (9.5/10), pork belly yakitori (9.5/10) and unagi yakitori (8/10) on rice. No full marks because they were too salty but still, one of my best meals. Sometimes the simplest is the best, don't you agree?
As you can imagine, we were really quite sick of eating out by then. We went to the Chomp Chomp foodcourt on the way home but nothing appealed to us. I was appalled by the filth and wet floors (it was drizzling and when I slipped on the pavement, all I was concerned about was that I didn't get spit on my jeans or sweater...) while Ming felt everything was too greasy. We ended up cooking instant noodles with lots of spinach, mushrooms and beef. Man, it was great.
This is an ice-cream parlor in Raffles' Link. Unfortunately we were too full, but I think the ice cream must really be heavenly. They have a large array of fresh & dried fruits and other pretty toppings and upon your order, they slap the ice cream on a piece of ice-cold stone and mix in your choice of flavors and toppings using a metal blade. Must try next trip.
Singapore has so many areas where we Malaysians can learn from. It is probably the greenest city around. There are big trees everywhere, all well-manicured and healthy. The trees keep the air fresh and cools the city. Here in KK, baldness is not just on men over 40. Most of our roads are bare on both sides, and if they do plant anything, it'd be small bushes or palm trees that give no shade. Another thing is the cleanliness (no litter or spit), the safety (most houses do not have iron grilles; we walk home at hight never feeling any fear), taxis are everywhere and they run efficiently. Makes me wish Sabah had joined Sing instead (agree with you Greg). Talking of taxis, we always chat with taxi drivers every place we go and Singapore taxi drivers seem to sing the same anti-gov't song. They'll always start with "Singapore is better than Malaysia, no need to argue about that." And we don't. Then they get bolder ("We have nothing here, even our sand and water need to be bought from Malaysia!") and angrier ("Who dares say anything against the gov't?! You never heard of Temasek and Hutchinson?") They like their PM though ("Good guy, not involved in business.") Hmm. I need to talk to the taxi drivers of KL. I bet they are an angry lot too.
The only thing we shouldn't learn from Singapore is English (I'm on dangerous ground I know). They are proud of their 'Singlish' so they will go on saying " Bok" (pork) and "Lor" (an emphasis). But then to be fair, will the Malays stop saying "bing" for pink and Chinese-Malaysians "Wan doo tree" for 1 2 3? Just kidding lah, don't get too upset.