While the debate rages around the world, in Singapore, it is without a doubt that people live to eat. Often on business trips, travelers lack the time to take in the local delights. Not in Singapore though - with restaurants, buffet lines, eateries and more lining the streets around the clock
As country built by immigrants, the original dishes from India, China, Malaysia and more inspired the local food options. Yet, that is not to say that they are not original, these dishes are not found anywhere else. It is extremely popular with visitors as it is a colorful as its people and heritage.
Here are some that you must not miss out on your next trip:
Mud crabs are commonly used and are stir-fried in a semi-thick, sweet and savoury tomato and chilli based sauce. Despite its name, chilli crab is not a very spicy dish. It is listed at number 35 on World's 50 most delicious foods compiled by CNN Go in 2011.
There are plenty of places that serve up this delicacy but the best restaurant for the busy traveler is undoubtedly Jumbo Seafood @ Clarke Quay, 20 Upper Circular Road #B1-48, Riverwalk. It is easy to get to by taxi, train, bus or by foot.
Situated on the Singapore River, it is a serene environment with a great view for an indulgent meal of chilli crabs. The dish will be served with small deep-fried bread bun to dip in the sauce and it is recommended to drink the local Tiger beer to wash it all down.
It is a dish adapted from early Chinese immigrants originally from southern China. The chicken is cooked by steeping in water flavoured with garlic and ginger, with the resulting stock used in the preparation of the rice and soup. It is served with hot chilli sauce, dark soy souce, pounded ginger and fresh cucumber. It also listed at number 45 on World's 50 most delicious foods complied by CNN Go in 2011
It is exactly as advertised - chicken and rice. It is hard to go wrong with two elements that are beloved by most. Once again, there are plenty of outlets offering this dish, yet the undisputed best one can be found at Chatterbox, Level 5 Mandarin Orchard Hotel, 333 Orchard Road.
Once upon a time, it was served on the 38th floor of the hotel, which revolved to give a 360 panoramic view of the city. After the recent renovations, it was moved to the 5th floor. While it lost its ambience, it still retained its amazing flavor and stunning presentation.
Fish head curry
It is a dish in Singaporean cuisine with Chinese and Indian origins. The head of a red snapper is semi-stewed in a Kerala-style curry with assorted vegetables such as eggplants. It is usually served with either rice or bread.
Red snapper fish heads are usually quite big so this dish is best when it is shared. The best kitchen for this dish is Muthu's Curry, 3 Temasek Boulevard, Suntec City Mall #B1-1019. Muthu's also serves up a wide variety of curries that can be an accompaniment to the fish head.
This dish is definitely spicy so be prepared for it. The heat from the chillies can be tamed with fragrant white rice or an ice-cold Kingfisher beer from India.
Also known by its modern Indonesian and Malay spelling sate, is a dish of seasoned, skewered and grilled meat, served with a sauce. Pork, Chicken, Beef or Lamb are skewered by bamboo sticks and barbecued over fire, then served with various spicy seasonings.
This dish is best experienced in its natural habitat - the streets of Lau Pa Sat,18 Raffles Quay. Satay is a dish to be enjoyed by the eyes, the nose, and of course the tongue. From far away, you will see the high flames, the unmistakeable aroma and when presented with a platter, the delicious taste.
Served with fresh cucumbers, onions, ketupat (rice cake) and a peanut sauce, the skewers are made to ordered. They are served quicky and likely to be consumed rapidly as well.
Business travelers who are sent to Singapore should rejoice for their palates will try some of the most unique dishes ever. All these dishes and venues can be found within close proximity of the city. Hence, immerse one's self in the quintessential Singaporean activity - eating.