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Home / Chinese Cuisine / Sungei Road Laksa – Still only $2!
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Sungei Road Laksa – Still only $2!
By Alfred November 11, 2009
Readers' Rating
9.60
(5 rated)
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Editor's Rating
7.30
Overall
Sungei Road Laksa – Still only $2!
Fast Facts
Food:
Laksa
Type:
Chinese Cuisine
Setting:
Coffee Shop
Price Range:
S$1 - S$5
Rating Range:
7 to 7.9
Location:
Jalan Besar
Food Centre:
N/A
Recommended For:
Breakfast Brunch Lunch
Reviewed by:
Alfred

Do you know what Singapore and Morroco have in common?

Both countries have a dish named Laksa.

“The laksa (also spelt tajine) is a dish originating in Morocco named after the pot in which it is cooked. Laksas are essentially a slow cooked stew braised at low temperatures to create tender meat and flavoursome vegetables.

Traditionally Moroccan laksas combine lamb or chicken with a range of exotic spices like ras el hanout, cinnamon and cumin with and a variety of ingredients which can include olives, apples, pears, prunes, apricots, dates, almonds, preserved lemons and honey.

Laksas are usually cooked in the laksa pot which are half glazed clay pots. The base of the laksa is both a cooking and serving dish while the cone shaped cover acts like a closed chimney trapping the moisture in the pot during the slow cook. Although a laksa pot is ideal, the same effect can be achieved with any heavy casserole dish or use of a dutch oven is also another popular choice.

Traditionally laksas are cooked over open flame however with the introduction of cast iron bottoms, laksas can now be cooked on a stove top, gas or electric, or in the oven.”
Lifted from http://www.laksanow.com/laksa-history.html

Aiya, after the ‘food fight’ with Malaysia over some food origin, now there is potentially a ‘name fight’ waiting for us.

The history of our Laksa can stretch as far back to those days when people were doing a lot of migration. First of all, the word Laksa is actually referring to a type of Hindi vermicelli. As we all know that Laksa is a peranakan dish so there’s no surprise that it has an influence of the Indonesian flavour. But yet the leaf which is used in Laksa is something that is widely eaten in countries like Vietnam and Thailand. So you see, Laksa is a dish that was created using ingredients from many different cultures and it was only possible because we were the “Crossroads Of The East”.

Then, as people moved, they brought along Laksa and that’s how we have different variations of Laksas like Johor Laksa, Kedah Laksa, Penang Laksa, Bogor Laksa, etcetera. The styles of Laksa in different places are all tweaked to cater to the taste of the local people, for example further north it goes a little sour because it’s near to Thailand and those people whom are more exposed to Thai food would naturally prefer a whiff of sourness in their meals as is synonymous with Thai cuisine while our Katong area was where the Peranakan people lived in enclaves and so that’s how the Katong Laksa version has more of the coconut cream flavour.

For those who are familiar with “Gek Sng Kio”, that area used to be the holy grail of many good food. From Kelantan Lane to Sim Lim Tower, a few kopitiams used to line up the street and my father’s favourite heng hua mee sua was from a stall in one of those kopitiams back then. Now of course everything is gone and the only thing people go to “Gek Sng Kio” for is the famous Sungei Road Laksa.


Sungei Road Laksa $2

Sungei Road Laksa is said to be started by a Hainanese in the year 1956 selling from a push-cart and in those days, customers had to stand and eat by the side of the stall. It is common sense that many food stalls in the past were also operated like that but have you wondered why have those stall’s legacy ended but not Sungei Road Laksa? This “last man is standing” because the food is really shiok or because others have simply given up without fighting? Anthony Bourdain has once famously advocated Sungei Road Laksa to be seriously good but do you think an Ang Mo’s words can be trusted when comes to Asian food? Heck, if you go to Europe, every pizzas that can be bought from any corner surely can WOW you but an Italian might be what it takes to be a better judge, agree?

Just when I thought it would be quite an expensive meal, it turned out that you only need to have $2 to enjoy a bowl of Sungei Road laksa. I seriously can’t remember the last time I ate laksa for $2 so it’s good to know that here is where I can. For that, Sungei Road Laksa deserves full marks for value and they are possibly the only famous food stall I know that did not take advantage of their fame to make more money. I mean it’s already a norm today, to pay $4 for a bowl of Bak Chor Mee or Hae Mee but you know what, for $2 I thought the laksa here is quite a big bowl with generous harm and sliced fishcakes.

Though Sungei Road Laksa is very famous and $2 per bowl is seriously cheap, I find that Katong Laksa still tastes better. I guess it’s just my personal preference to have the gravy a little sweeter. Here it tasted very much like a mix between the common laksa and Katong one so the flavour is a little diluted for me. Having said that, I didn’t grow up eating this so in a way I can’t really relate to it like how I can to Katong Laksa but I’m sure for those who did, this will be the best laksa in the world.


Sungei Road Laksa $2

Price: $2

Conclusion: Definitely not bad but other than it’s cheap, nothing much to rave. Unique for sure but Katong version is still my favourite.

Likes: Cheap, ingredients are generous.

Dislikes: A little sweeter will be better for me, flavour less intense than Katong version.

Address Overall Rating

sungei3
Sungei Road Laksa (Kelantan Lane)
Blk 31 Kelantan Lane #01-12
9am to 6pm
Off: 1st wed of the month


Food:
7/10 ★★★★★★★☆☆☆ 

Authenticity:
8/10 ★★★★★★★★☆☆ 

Value:
8/10 ★★★★★★★★☆☆ 

Service:
7/10 ★★★★★★★☆☆☆ 

Ambience:
7/10 ★★★★★★★☆☆☆ 

Cleanliness:
7/10 ★★★★★★★☆☆☆ 

Overall:
7.25/10 ★★★★★★★¼☆☆ 

Location


Readers' Comment(s) : 7
Sam says:

Off 1st wed of the month.. Haha.. Going to buy Big Sweep…

Posted November 11, 2009
Michelle says:

I love Laksa but have never tried this stall. Looks good in the pic.

Posted November 11, 2009
Yum says:

You should get the otah to go with your laksa. It goes very well tgether.

Posted November 11, 2009
Jolly says:

This laksa used to sold at 1.50 only when others were selling at $2.

Posted November 11, 2009
Eddie says:

That day is big sweep result release lah, you can buy anytime mah.

Posted November 11, 2009
Andy says:

You had eaten the wrong stall, the original one is at blk 27.

Posted November 12, 2009
Alfred says:

Realised it. Thanks. I have eaten at the ‘genuine’ stall already. A review coming up.

Posted December 1, 2009
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