What better way to celebrate Singapore’s 46th birthday than to pay tribute to our favourite national dishes? Sous chef Sunny de Costa of Raffles Town Club shares these home-styled recipes. 

1. CHAR KWAY TEOW
This dish serves four.

INGREDIENTS
4 tbsp pork lard
4 eggs
8 jumbo scallops
12 prawns
40g Chinese sausage
40g fish cake
4 tsp chopped garlic
560g kway teow
160g yellow noodles
10 stalks spring onions
80g beansprouts
120g cockles

FOR THE SAUCE:
100ml light soya sauce
50ml dark soya sauce
190ml sweet flour sauce
3⅓ tbsp sugar
2 tsp chicken powder
1⅓ tbsp oyster sauce
50ml Thai fish sauce

DIRECTIONS

  1. Heat the wok, add pork lard and fry till crispy. Set aside.
  2. Stir-fry the eggs in the pork lard oil.
  3. Add in scallops, prawns, Chinese sausage, fish cake and chopped garlic. Continue frying.
  4. Add the kway teow and noodles. Continue to stir-fry for 1min.
  5. In a bowl, mix all the ingredients for the sauce; add to the noodles. Continue to stir-fry until the sauce is evenly distributed. Add the spring onions and beansprouts.
  6. Add in the crispy pork lard and cockles, and stir. Remove the wok from fire and transfer the dish to a plate to prevent overcooking of the cockles.

 

2. NYONYA SEAFOOD LAKSA
Singapore recipe: LaksaThis dish serves four.

INGREDIENTS
100ml cooking oil
1 litre coconut milk
Salt, to taste
Sugar, to taste
500g rice vermicelli/laksa noodles, blanched
125g beansprouts, blanched
5 pieces tau pok, cut into strips
10 quail eggs, cooked and deshelled
150g prawns, blanched
1 fish cake, sliced
24 cockles (optional)
2½ tbsp chopped laksa leaves

FOR THE LAKSA PASTE:
2 tbsp dried shrimp, soaked in water
1 tbsp belacan
8-10 cloves garlic, skinned
8-10 shallots, skinned
30g turmeric root, skinned
25g galangal (blue ginger)
2 candlenuts, soaked in water
2 stalks lemongrass
10-15 pieces dried chilli, soaked in water

FOR THE SAMBAL SHRIMP PASTE:
2 tbsp dried shrimp, soaked in water
1½ onion, skinned
10-15 pieces small dried chilli, soaked
in water
2 tbsp cooking oil
Salt, to taste
Sugar, to taste
 

DIRECTIONS

  1. Blend all the ingredients for the laksa paste in a blender until it becomes a smooth paste, adding some water if needed.
  2. In a medium-sized pot, heat the 100ml of cooking oil on medium heat. Cook the laksa
  3. paste for 10-15min, stirring constantly so the paste doesn’t get burnt at the base. Continue cooking till the oil separates and the paste becomes aromatic.
  4. Pour in the coconut milk and add salt and sugar to taste. Bring to boil and set aside.
  5. To make the sambal shrimp paste, blend dried shrimp, onions and dried chillies in a blender until it becomes a smooth paste, adding some water if needed. Heat the 2 tbsp of cooking oil, add the shrimp paste mixture and stir well till the oil separates. Season with salt and sugar.
  6. To serve, place blanched noodles, beansprouts, tau pok, quail eggs, prawn, fish cake and cockles in a bowl. Scoop the laksa gravy over. Garnish with chopped laksa leaves and sambal shrimp paste at the side.

 

3. HOKKIEN NOODLES
Singapore recipe: Seafood hokkien meeThis recipe serves four.

INGREDIENTS
1 tbsp cooking oil
5⅓  tbsp chopped garlic
4 eggs
400g yellow noodles
320g laksa noodles
200g pork belly, pre-cooked
800ml chicken stock
Fish sauce, to taste
4 pinches white pepper powder
Chicken powder (optional), to taste
4 tsp oyster sauce
16 prawns, pre-cooked
16 squid rings, pre-cooked
10 stalks chives
120g beansprouts
Sambal chilli, for garnish
Calamansi, for garnish

DIRECTIONS

  1. Heat cooking oil in wok. Add the chopped garlic and eggs. Fry till aromatic.
  2. Add in the noodles, pork belly and chicken stock. Let the noodles braise till tender then add the fish sauce, pepper, chicken powder and oyster sauce.
  3. Add in the prawns, squid, chives, beansprouts. Saute for 5min. Serve with sambal chilli and calamansi lime.

 

4. MEE SIAM
Singapore recipe: Mee siamThis recipe serves four.

INGREDIENTS
Oil, for frying
1.4 litres + 150ml water
 

FOR THE GRAVY:
1⅓ tbsp dried shrimp
1⅓  tbsp dried chili paste
1 small onion, minced
1⅓  tbsp minced garlic
1 tsp belacan, toasted
60g peanuts, roasted and chopped
60g fermented soya bean
2 tbsp tamarind juice
1 tamarind flower
Salt, to taste
Sugar, to taste

FOR THE NOODLES:
¾ tbsp minced onion
¾ tbsp minced garlic
300g bee hoon, soaked in
warm water for 1 hour
¾ tbsp dried chilli paste
100g beansprouts
20g tau pok, diced
½ tsp turmeric powder
2 tbsp peanut oil
Salt, to taste

FOR GARNISHING:
3 stalks flat spring onions
2 calamansi
Sambal chilli (optional)

DIRECTIONS

  1. Heat oil in non-stick pan. Add in all the ingredients for the gravy and stir-fry for 2-3min. Add 1.4 litres of water, stir, bring to boil and set aside.
  2. Heat up oil in pan, add minced onion and garlic and stir-fry till fragrant.
  3. Add 150ml water and the rest of the ingredients for the noodles. Stir-fry till almost dry, then lower the heat and toss till the noodle is dry.
  4. Transfer to four serving bowls; spoon the gravy over and garnish with spring onions and half a calamansi for each portion. Serve immediately, and with sambal chilli on the side.

 

5. NASI LEMAK
This recipe serves four.

INGREDIENTS
Oil, for frying
Cucumber slices, for garnish

FOR THE RICE:
900g rice
1 litre water
800ml coconut milk
3 onions, cut into chunks
2 star anise
1 large cinnamon stick
1 tbsp salt
7 tsp sugar

FOR THE SAMBAL PRAWN:
10 prawns, cut into small pieces
40g diced onion
40g butter
100g sambal chilli
Sugar, to taste
Salt, to taste
Pepper, to taste

FOR THE IKAN SELAR:
4 ikan selar (each about 140g;
or use 560g of sliced ikan selar)
4 tbsp sambal belacan
2 tsp chilli powder
1 tsp turmeric powder
Salt, to taste
Pepper, to taste
For The Omelette
6 eggs, beaten
5 stalks spring onions, chopped
½ onion, sliced
2 tsp deep-fried shallots
2 pieces chilli, sliced
Salt, to taste
Pepper, to taste
 

FOR THE IKAN BILIS AND PEANUTS:
100g peanuts
100g ikan bilis
Icing sugar, to taste
Salt, to taste
 

DIRECTIONS

  1. For the rice: Put all the ingredients for the rice in a rice cooker. Cook for about 15min.
  2. For the sambal prawns: Heat oil in a pan over gentle fire. Add prawns; stir-fry for a few minutes till prawns are cooked then add diced onions, butter and sambal chilli. Season with sugar, salt and pepper.
  3. For the ikan selar: Marinate the fish in all the ingredients for 2 hours. Heat oil in wok and deepfry till crispy.
  4. For the omelette: Mix all the ingredients together and pan-fry in a round non-stick pan with some oil till golden brown.
  5. For the ikan bilis and peanuts: Deep-fry the peanuts and ikan bilis separately before mixing together. Toss with icing sugar and salt. Note that the ikan bilis might already be salty, so be cautious when seasoning with the salt.
  6. To assemble: Serve a bowl of rice with the sambal prawn, ikan selar, omelette, ikan bilis and peanut mix, and garnish with 2-3 slices of cucumber.

 

6. ROTI JALA
This recipe serves four.

INGREDIENTS

600g all-purpose flour
1 egg
½ cup oil + extra, for coating
2 tsp salt
1 litre water
1 pinch turmeric powder
 

DIRECTIONS

  1. Mix all the ingredients in a mixing bowl. Stir well until it becomes a smooth batter.
  2. Coat a hot plate with a thin layer of oil. Pour some batter into a roti jala mould and transfer over the hot plate. As the batter flows through the mould, make circular rounds around the hot plate to create net-like patterns.
  3. After about 1min, or when batter is cooked, lift the roti jala, place on a plate and fold into a triangle. Repeat for the rest of the batter.
  4. Serve with your choice of chicken curry or beef rendang.

Raffles Town Club is located at 1 Plymouth Avenue, Singapore 297753, Tel: 6323 2323.

This article was originally published in SimplyHer August 2011.