Saturday, July 30, 2011

Tiong Bee Bak Kut Teh, Singapore

Braised pig trotters, pig intestines and pork rib soup anyone?

For this miss piggy, I was in for a treat today ... bak kut teh; otherwise known as pork rib soup, or in its literal translation, 'meat bone tea'.  However, the latter doesn't sound quite as appealing now does it?

I have been wanting to try bak kuh teh for some time now.  And today, I was fortunate enough to be joined by a local foodie and new found friend 'Gigi'.  She very kindly offered to take me to her old neighbourhood haunt, Tiong Bee Bak Kut Teh.

An unfussy, no-nonsense kind of a place where menus don't exist, but tissue boxes do, fantastic ... yay!!!  It is run by an Aunty who is in her 70s and she is joined by her son who helps to run the show. 

Gigi did the honours of ordering which saved me from having to decipher the food on offer.  We had a wonderful array of porky dishes.  Sorry vegetarians! 

Braised pig trotters; the meat literally fell off the bone and was so so amazingly tender and juicy.  Pig intestines; something (along with the pig trotters) I had never eaten before until today.  They were chewy, very chewy and I can only describe it as something similar to a very chewy jelly snake, but obviously not in flavour!  I can't say I would rush back for these, but I am glad I tried them. 

Now for the pork rib soup (bak kuh teh) - cooked the Teochew way -this steaming hot broth was peppery, porky, heart warming, and totally lip-smacking delicious.  I had two more top-ups, which by the way are free!  A plate of salted pickled cabbage, braised tofu and crispy fried dough fritters (you tiao).  The crispy dough fritters are dipped into the steaming broth to soften before eating. 

With a generous portion of rice, I felt satisfyingly full at the end.  I don't know anything about how these dishes should taste, but for me, I really enjoyed my first ever bak kuh teh experience.  I loved the peppery fire of the soup and I loved the melt-in-your mouth meat off the trotters.

Thank you Gigi for a brilliant introduction to bak kuh teh and can't wait for our next food outing.

Tiong Bee Bak Kut Teh
588F Jalan Datoh, Off Balestier Road, Singapore 329899

7am to 3pm
Closed on Alternative Mondays

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