Situated in a cosmopolitan country that emphasises on being united as one, it is no wonder that in Singapore we can find different cultures within our food scene. There’s Malay, Chinese, Indian, European and the list goes on. We of course have our very own local food fare but what better way to reinvent these dishes than to fuse it with other cuisines.
I’ve started noticing the rise in Singapore fusion foods and as I am typing this, the image of the laksa pasta comes floating back into my mind. So I thought to share my favorite local fusion dishes with the ever curious crowd in search of the next dish to eat. It might get a little weird but hey, creative points there.
1. Satay Burger (The Quarters)
Satay Burger ($17). Satay sticks move aside, we’ve got a hassle free burger with the same satay meat. Here’s to all the satay lovers who wish for 10 sticks of meat to become one because 1 stick just isn’t shiok enough.
Think thick and juicy slabs of pork meat nicely encased by QQ rice patties with peanut sauce at the side. Found at The Quarters, the Satay Burger isn’t the only fusion they’ve got there. Let’s just say the entire restaurant is a Modern Singaporean food concept. Perfect for a day where you’re slightly more on the adventurous side.
Read more from our The Quarters review.
The Quarters: Icon Village, 16 Enggor Street #01-09 Singapore 079717 (Next to Cold Storage) | Tel: 6834 4174 | Website
2. Labyrinth Chilli Crab (Restaurant Labyrinth)
Labyrinth Chilli Crab (Dinner Menu – 5 Courses for $98 / 6 Courses for $105). A deconstructed rendition of the ever famous chilli crab, this dish combines hot and cold by having a crisply fried soft shell crab paired with a tantalising dollop of chilli crab ice cream while sitting on a sandy mantou (bun) beach. Considered a signature dish, it tastes like the original local fare but with much more complex layers to the flavours.
Restaurant Labyrinth offers an innovative list of local food fusion and is open for lunch, pre-theatre, dinner or simply for a lounge at the bar. The chili crab is part of the set menu.
Labyrinth: Esplanade Mall, 8 Raffles Avenue #02-23 Singapore 039802 | Tel: +65 6223 4098 | Website
3. Orange Kaya Pisang Creme Brulee (Sinpopo Brand)
Orange Kaya Pisang Creme Brulee ($7). I am a kaya fanatic so this totally worked for me although it might be slightly on the sweeter side. The croutons give an extra crunch and it helps in neutralising the sweetness. The kaya custard was creamy and fragrant, pisang (banana) adds a nice texture but the caramelised top kind of overloaded this dessert with sugar. I would order it again but perhaps more of something to be shared.
Sinpopo Brand does offer other local fusions as well, such as the Pandan Souffle ($9), which I was initially about to order but it was sold out.
Sinpopo: 458 Joo Chiat Road, Singapore 427671 | Tel: +65 6345 5034 | Website
4. Pandan Infused Panna Cotta with Salted Gula Melaka (Wild Rocket)
Pandan Infused Panna Cotta with Salted Gula Melaka ($15). This famed panna cotta from Wild Rocket is smooth and the pandan taste is not over powering at all. The salted gula melaka is a refreshing change from the otherwise commonly used salted caramel.
Wild Rocket prides itself as a Modern Singaporean restaurant as well and Chef Willin Low draws inspiration from local food fare. Within the menu, there are other dishes like the Giam Hee Chinese ‘Anchovy’ Aglio Olio Spaghettini ($32), Gong Tng Chinese Peanut Candy with Peanut Butter Ice Cream ($15) and so on.
Wild Rocket: 10A Upper Wilkie Road, Singapore 228119 | Tel: +65 6339 9448 | Website
5. Ayam Buah Keluak Burger (Hambaobao)
Ayam Buah Keluak Burger ($5). Affordable and tasty, you can find this gem at Hambaobao at Beauty World Centre. Nestled in an unassuming hawker centre, this burger promises a nice and juicy chicken cooked in rempah (paste) and topped with chap chye. You might want to pair this with a side of fairy fries and no, you’re not turning into one after eating it.
Hambaobao: Block 144 Upper Bukit Timah Road #04-49, Singapore 588177 | Tel: +65 9667 5254 | Website
6. Buah Keluah Ice Cream (Candlenut)
Buah Keluak Ice Cream ($14). Since we are on the topic of buah keluak, the next fusion dish I want to share is it in an ice cream form. How, you may ask, but the team at Candlenut has experimented enough to let you know it works. The indonesian nut is incorporated with Varlhona 80% dark chocolate to reach a rich and earthy taste. Completed with salted caramels chunks and chilli specks, this dessert is complex and rewarding in taste.
Candlenut serves dishes that are Peranakan inspired, so gather all your Nyonyas and Babas down for a good time.
Candlenut: Dorsett Residences, 331 New Bridge Road #01-03, Singapore 088764 | Tel: +65 8121 4107 | Website
7. Chilli Crab Pasta from Hyde and Co.
Hyde’s Chilli Crab Pasta ($16). Seems like the local chilli crab is a favourite for fusion cuisine. Made up of a generous portion of crab meat and tossed in in-house arrabiata sauce with herb panko, this dish will definitely invigorate your senses with its’ spices. Prepare to douse the fire with loads of water but other than that, there’s really no reason to not try it. Nassim Hill does a pretty good rendition of Chili Crab pasta as well.
Read more from our Hyde and Co. review.
Hyde & Co.: 785 North Bridge Road, Singapore 198753 | Tel: +65 6635 5785 | Website
8. My Intepretation of Kaya Toast (Corner House)
My Interpretation Of Kaya Toast (Part of Business Luncheon, Lunch and Dinner sets). An artistic version of traditional kaya toast, it will leave you craving for more. Consider this a gula melaka ice cream sandwich frosted with pandan flakes and finished off with yuzu sorbet and meringue. The gula melaka taste was distinct with a slight hint of pandan fragrance.
And just take a look at the plating, it’s art. A visual and gastronomical dish indeed. Corner House has a focus on botanicals, how appropriately located.
Corner House: Singapore Botanic Gardens, 1 Cluny Road, E J H Corner House, Nassim Gate Entrance, Singapore 259569 | Tel: +65 6469 1000 | Website
9. Exotic Seafood Laksa Pasta (Eight Cafe & Bar)
Exotic Seafood Laksa Pasta ($24.80). Topped with grilled seafood, the pasta is tossed in a creamy laksa paste. I could make out the luscious coconut milk and boy was it delectable. Pasta was done al dente and seafood was accompanied by a generous portion of laksa herbs, making it flavoursome and juicy. Altogether delicious and not too spicy, the portion was just right, leaving me with just enough room for desserts.
Eight Cafe & Bar: 8 Bukit Pasoh Road, Singapore 089822 | Tel: +65 6220 4513 | Website
10. Liu Sha Bao Doughnuts (MAY MAY)
Liu Sha Bao Doughnuts ($7 for 3). Do I really need to introduce this, it’s the best of both worlds. Forget cronuts for a bit and give this local fusion a try. Lava salted egg custard oozes out as you bite into the sugar coated doughnut. Although the custard is slightly too viscous, the sweet and salty combination still overrides everything. Get to MAY MAY early, they’re only available during lunch.