Stir-fried pork with scallion and ginger - could have been more flavourful and the sauce further reduced.
(The order’s enough for two already!)
We get this all the time from the wait staff or captain. Most said it with a smile while some looked suspicious, perhaps thinking that we’re just fooling around. We’re not embarrassed about ordering more than what is expected of us. The rule is to not waste, and I can proudly say that unless the food has been contaminated or belongs to another table or if I’d mistakenly ordered the durian, we'll wipe the plates clean, every time. Take our last dinner on Monday at Crystal Jade Kitchen, for example. We had the ala carte steamboat buffet and ticked close to 30 dishes on the list. Oh, PLUS an extra bowl of congee with preserved eggs for the sick one. What’s left in the pot as we asked for the bill were the boiling stocks, disintegrated bits of unidentifiable ingredients and a plate of diseased cabbage. That's all.
Sweet and sour pork - I like.
Honestly, it makes perfect sense to go overboard at tze chars. You need your meat, vegetables, egg, noodles and soup. And perhaps the stall’s specialty too. That’s more than five dishes already, right?
Fried hor fun - wok hei-deprived.
How did we end up at Hup Choon? It all started when I saw the photo of a promising plate of sweet and sour pork on LiquidShaDow's blog and alerted XLB, who would sacrifice anything (except Flor's Waguri Millefeuille and the Kyo-Machiya cake) for the perfect sweet and sour pork. What we've gotten that evening was not any offset from that photo that got us all excited. The result of sufficient heat for deep-frying was easily recognized - a lightly battered, crispy, golden skin with moisture inside the meat well-retained. We liked it but Moonstone Cafe's take still remains as her favourite. I think it was the fruity sauce there that scored the extra point for her.
Stir-fried sweet potato leaves - a CHORE to peel the fibrous outer layers of the stem at home, so have it at a tze char.
Hotplate tofu - pleasant but we should have asked for a signature instead.
As the evening went on, the turnout at Hup Choon grew to a suffocating number. Expatriates (I would assume, considering that they must have lived here long enough to learn the art of reserving a table by standing really close to one that has just settled the bill) and locals were eagerly trying to catch the attention of the wait staff to be seated. Some were seen carrying boxes of takeouts that perhaps were ordered in advance. Besides the decent dishes, we wondered what makes Hup Choon a hive. The reasonable prices must be a major attraction here. I vaguely remember receiving enough change to buy ourselves a large cup of those ice cream/yoghurt thingy at Sogurt, Coronation Plaza. The extensive menu and good service must be part of the winning formula too, I'm sure.
Hup Choon Eating House
1 Binjai Park
Tel: (+65) 64684081