George Bernard Shaw
said that there is no love sincerer than the love of food
and I agree. In my house, food has always been an elaborate affair. In fact, while I was growing up, not a day went by without there being at least 2 to 3 dishes each for lunch and dinner; sometimes even more. And it had to be something really good; not just good but really good. I think it had a lot to do with my mom being a fussy eater. Of-course, now I’m too lazy to cook more than one dish a day but the love for food remains.
“Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.” - Hippocrates
Dad introduced us to different cuisines during our growing up years. And this fascination to try something different stuck on. Going out to our favorite restaurant for dinner was a much loved family tradition. Being sculpted in a food loving home, I too developed an affinity to try different cuisines, to eat basically, though how much I really eat is a different matter altogether. My mother often says that most days my eyes eat more than my mouth does. Well, whatever the case, I really do love my food. There’s not a sliver of doubt about that.
Every time I visit a new city or country, trying out the local cuisine is a must on my list. In fact, I discovered some of my favorite dishes during my travels. Travel without food, in my view, is no travel at all.
Do you know though that the food capital
of the world is actually in our neck of the woods, so close? I didn't and sad part is I’ve only been there on transit. Looks like that has to be rectified soon. But, yes, the food capital of the world, do you know where it is? No? Well, don't fret, I'll tell you.
The food capital of the world, wait for it, is the city state of Singapore. Yes, and it’s not really surprising either what with it being the melting pot of ethnicity and traditions. And would you believe me that during one of my sojourns, to Australia actually, I discovered Singaporean cuisine for the very first time? Yes and it all began with the Laksa.
Being the amalgamation of several cultures, Singapore, naturally has a diverse and rich palate. Moreover, it being a place where food is much more than, well, just food, leaves no doubt in your mind, or rather stomach, either.
Singapore is in many ways Asia's New Culinary Capital as well.
Hence, you cannot plan a visit there and not be taken in by the intensity with which Singaporeans make, sell or eat their food. From upscale restaurants to hawker fares, it has them all. Influenced by the native Malay, Indonesian, Peranakan, Chinese, Indian, English and Portuguese traditions Singaporean food is multicultural, very diverse
. And Singaporeans really
love their food. And I, well, love Singaporean food as well. It is believed that people there can go to any lengths for their favorite food. Just my kind of people I should say.
"Laksa...Prawns, dried shrimp, chicken or fishcakes added to flavored coconut milk and soup stock with the noodles cut into shorter pieces, for me make food heaven."
If you ask me which my favorite Singaporean food is, I would truly end up in a pickle. There are so many dishes that I love that it is but a herculean task to pick one. Bak hor Mee Sua (minced meat noodles), cereal prawns, chicken rice or chilli crab?
I love all and more. But the laksa
does occupy a special place in my heart. Maybe because it introduced me to Singaporean food as such.
If you want the perfect combination or rather balance of coconut milk and spice, laksa is the dish for you. It works for me precisely for the very reason. I especially like the Katong laksa. Why? Well, I think it’s the ingredients mostly. Prawns, dried shrimp, chicken or fishcakes added to flavored coconut milk and soup stock with the noodles cut into shorter pieces, for me make food heaven. From the first time I ever had it in Sydney to sampling it in the Singapore airport and even around the world, not one time have I found it to not be delectable. So Singaporean food for me begins with laksa especially the Katong laksa. A food fact for you, Katong is actually an area where you’ll find some of the most popular laksa stores of the world.
If you are food mad then Singapore is the destination for you. And remember in Singapore first you eat and then do everything else. For a connoisseur of food, Singapore is truly a paradise with laksa being its royalty.
Before you go though , tell me, what’s your favorite Singaporean dish? Go on!