by Lydia Tan
For most Singaporeans, hawker centres are the one-stop place to get your meals. Not only are they extremely convenient, they also tend to be much more affordable. With such a large variety of offerings, it’s only fitting that our hawker culture has been inscribed in the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage list. However, if you have some cash to spend but don’t need the ambience of a fancy restaurant, here are our recommendations for some of the more expensive foods that you can find at classic hawker centres.
Li Yuan Mee Pok
Formerly known as Ah Hoe Mee Pok, this stall in Clementi serves up traditional mee pok with a unique twist. Run by a Japanese man called Mr Naoji Kuribara, two of the more expensive items on their menu are the Japanese Fusion Mee Pok with Char Siew and Crayfish Mee Pok, which both stand at $10. The Fusion Mee Pok has the option of either a miso or shoyu base whereas the Crayfish version is more suited for those who prefer the taste of regular mee pok but with a little extra added to it.
Location: 710 Clementi West Street 2
Think of Coffee Break as a cafe in a hawker centre. Take your pick from their wide drink selection, from flavoured lattes and mochas to traditional kopis and tehs. They even have non-dairy and non-caffeinated options for those with specific dietary requirements. If you want something to go with your cuppa, try their wide variety of toasts. Their premium drink prices are slightly more expensive than your average coffee shop offerings at about $3++ but are much cheaper than most cafes in the CBD. What’s better, you can buy their drink mixes and toast spreads to recreate at home yourself.
Location: Amoy Street Food Centre
James’ Quesadillas and Brunch
Mexican food is pretty rare at most hawkers centres so this is a unique find in itself. Located right next to Coffee Break, it specialises in Western-fusion Mexican food, namely quesadillas, burritos, and rice/salad bowls. The whole menu is pretty customisable from the variety of ingredients and add-on combinations that you can pick from. Depending on the options you choose, the prices can vary from $5 to $10.50 so you can choose what you want based on your budget and preference.
Location: Amoy Street Food Centre
This is no instant ramen — this is the real deal. While that promises higher quality ramen, that also means they carry the same restaurant prices, from $10.80 onwards. Besides their tonkotsu ramen, they also have tsukemen (dipping ramen) sets and mazemen (soupless ramen) options. If you like, you can add on sides, drinks, and a caramel pudding (known as purin in Japanese) for dessert. Whether you’re eating alone or sharing with friends, this stall ensures you get a full meal that’s definitely worth the bill.
Location: Maxwell Food Centre
Ding Hao Sugarcane
If you’re not planning to splurge too much on your main meal or dessert, why not treat your friends to drinks instead? Juice stalls tend to be more expensive, however, this stall takes the cake with its 3-litre sugarcane juice tower that goes for $15. In addition, they also sell 1.5-litre servings of sugarcane juice at a hefty $8 per mug. Its large quantity makes it great for sharing with a group of friends or family so if you’re looking to try this out, make sure to save some space after your meal!
Location: Chomp Chomp Food Centre