Friday, November 30, 2007

Redhill Market Food Centre

What's good in the food centre next to the Redhill Market? As with any other eateries, the queue will (usually) provide a good indication. As I browsed through the many rows of stalls in this bustling hawker centre on a Friday evening, a few caught my attention (with the long queues, of course).

One of them was Redhill Curry Rice. Situated in the front row, facing the main road (Redhill Close), the queue seemed endless. Service was efficient despite the numbered workers. Who would have though that a simple stall with a simple name (and a worn out signboard) that serves mixed rice can attract such a huge crowd? It has to be the food, good food, I convinced myself as I joined in the queue. The array of dishes to complement the white rice seemed aplenty and diversed, ranging from stir-fried cabbage to braised pork belly to omelette. However, all looked rather simple to me.

I chose the pork in curry sauce, fried pork fillet and a sunny side up egg. The slices of pork in curry were smooth and tender. The onions added crunchiness and sweetness to the curry sauce. The breaded fried pork fillet was crispy as it came straight off the wok. There was no hint of marinate in the thinly sliced fillet but was still rather flavourful, perhaps due to the freshness of the fillet. Apparently, everyone orders this fillet. The main attraction was the extra curry gravy that topped the whole ensemble. Eventhough there was neither overwhelming amount of coconut milk nor pungent aroma of curry spices, it was still very interesting. The magic lies in the gooey texture of this Chinese-style curry, which complemented the fluffy white rice very well. However, to me, the best ingredient on my plate was the free-of-charge, tad spicy sambal or chili paste. It was the sweetness that aroused my palate. The sweetness came from the generous amount of finely chopped onions added to the sambal, which also gave it an extra crunch. For S$3.30, there was nothing that I could complain about.

Another stall that was generating a long queue was Bak Kee Teochew Satay Bee Hon. Now, this dish was something new to me. Eventhough they serve other dishes such as cuttlefish & kangkung, it’s the satay bee hoon that keeps the crowd thronging in. Feeling rather gastronomically adventurous that evening, I joined in the queue too. From the display, I could see the many ingredients that will be included in the satay bee hon such as cuttlefish, tau pok (fried beancurd), kangkung (water spinach), pork and my personal favourite, cockles! Two men were in-charged of poaching and assembling the ingredients while another man took orders. Service was efficient and without realising it, I was already second in line.

One sip of the sweet and mildly spiced gravy revealed an amazingly rich taste that made up of mainly sesame seeds and peanuts. Definitely pleasing, but personally, I would have preferred a less dense taste as I would also want to taste the other ingredients. Despite the many fresh ingredients thrown into the dish, I found some of them quite unnecessary such as pork liver and pork slices. The cuttlefish was also rather tough while the kangkung was so minimal, it was almost non-existent. I love the cockles as it was cooked just right. That explained the toughness/rawness of the cuttlefish as all the raw ingredients were poached simultaneously. Cuttlefish needs more time to cook. Despite the grouses, it was quite an interesting dish with lots of flavours and textures. By the way, I chose the large portion which cost S$3.00.

I could only afford to eat that much in a night. I even scrapped the plan to make my doughnut debut at Donut Factory (Raffles City) after that. The good news is, there are still many interesting unexplored stalls, which also generated long queues. Looking forward to the dessert, fried radish cake and fish ball noodles stalls!

Redhill Curry Rice
Redhill Lane Block 85 Food Centre
85, Redhill Lane (S)150085

Bak Kee Teochew Satay Bee Hon
Redhill Lane Block 85 Food Centre
85, Redhill Lane (S)150085


Big Boys Oven said...

hi Nic, i heard there is a dessert call sticky puff in Sg, I heard this sticky is good, really?

~Christine~Leng said...

pork fillet with curry gravy! what a combination ;) surely satisfying!?

wenching & esiong said...

Haha! A long queue always give us the hint that the food would be good. The food looks good, sounded delicious from the way you described it, feel like trying it out!

Nic (KHKL) said...

Big Boys Oven - Are you referring to Tau Suan? I've sent a link with pic n review of this dessert. Let me know if this is what you refer to, ok? :)

Christine - yeah, especially on a rainy day! very sinful but delicious..hehe

wenching & esiong - yupe, we all love a queue, hehe..i tried to find satay bee hon in kl but cant get...come on over to sg! :>

ling239 said...

satay beehoon ? o_O
wonder if they will have a branch here soon...

Nic (KHKL) said...

ling239 - hehe...i'm also asking the same question too.. :>