Pondok Makan Indonesia: Michelin-recommended mutton satay & slurp-worthy mee rebus in Bugis

I walked through rows of stalls located in Albert Centre hawker centre and finally arrived at Pondok Makan Indonesia in the very last row. The stall front was kept simple with a menu board pinned onto a glass cabinet. Heaps of noodles, fresh tofu cubes and meat skewers could be seen through the glass, as if inviting passers-by closer for a look.

pondok makan indonesia - storefront

Upon asking for recommendations, the team mentioned that one’s choice was entirely up to individual preference. I liked that response as it suggested that they were confident in all their menu offerings. 

What I tried at Pondok Makan Indonesia

pondok makan indonesia - mee siam dish

Since it was one of my first Malay cuisine experiences, I was determined to try as many items as I could. I recall my last time being in secondary school, which was a good 10 years ago. I ordered my favourite dish first — Mee Siam (S$3.50).

pondok makan indonesia - meesiam noodles

The dish came with thin and white bee hoon strands that effectively soaked up all that tangy and savoury broth. The broth was speckled with fermented soybeans which are a contributing factor to the saltiness of the dish.

pondok makan indonesia - meesiam sambal

Tiny tofu cubes and a whole boiled egg were also included. Despite the simple ingredients, the dish was comforting and almost addictive to eat. Additionally, as a spice lover, I added a heap of sambal (chilli paste) for a spicy kick to complete the noodle dish.

pondok makan indonesia - mee rebus egg

Initially, I thought that describing mee siam was a tough feat until I tried the Mee Rebus (S$3.50). With the help of some online research, I learnt that the base of the starchy light brown- coloured gravy was made from sweet potatoes. It possessed a thick consistency that encapsulated the thick yellow noodles entirely.

pondok makan indonesia - mee rebus noodles

Taste-wise, the gravy was fragrant with no sharp saltiness, sweetness or spiciness. To be abstract (a quality I’m known for), eating this noodle dish was similar to receiving a warm hug. I thoroughly enjoyed the combination of flavours boasted in the broth coupled with the egg and tofu cubes.

pondok makan indonesia - tahu goreng

I also tried one of the lesser found dishes (or at least to me) — Tahu Goreng (S$3.50). This was a simple dish which consisted of a large tofu block, bean sprouts and sliced cucumbers. The main highlight of the dish was none other than its sweet peanut sauce.

pondok makan indonesia - tahu goreng tofu

This dish was similar to the local delight, rojak. The peanut gravy was flavourful and nutty, but  I wish it held a thicker consistency. The tofu was lightly deep fried till its edges were slightly crisp but not overly tough. I loved the size each cube of tofu was cut into, making each one a perfect bite.

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pondok makan indonesia - mutton satay

Given that Michelin has recommended their Mutton Satay (S$0.70 per stick), it would be a missed opportunity not to give it a try. Boasting an eye-catching layer of translucent fat sandwiched between 2 cubes of lean meat, the mutton satay entices one to take a bite immediately. The sweetened meat was super tender yet still held a firm bite. 

The best part of the skewer is unsurprisingly its fatty layer. It was grilled till charred and possessed a distinct melt-in-your-mouth consistency.

pondok makan indonesia - beef satay in sauce

The nutty sauce was not spicy at all and was thicker than the peanut sauce used in the Tahu Goreng. I preferred this thickness and loved the grainy crushed peanuts that were thrown into the sauce. 

I also tried their Beef Satay (S$0.70 per stick) which turned out to be chewier than the mutton version. I suspect it is due to the usage of more lean meat than fat in the beef skewer. However, dipping the meat in its accompanied peanut sauce elevated the beefy flavours. 

Final thoughts

pondok makan indonesia - several dishes

Pondok Makan Indonesia is a no-frills eatery with homely vibes specialising in homemade comfort food. I love their simple dishes which are not overdone and hit the spot when craving for some hot and delicious Malay noodle dishes. Would I return? A definite yes!

Expected damage: S$3.50 per pax

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Price: $

Our Rating: 4 / 5

Pondok Makan Indonesia

270 Queen Street, Albert Centre, #01-123 , Singapore 180270

Our Rating 4/5

Pondok Makan Indonesia

270 Queen Street, Albert Centre, #01-123 , Singapore 180270

Operating Hours: 8am - 7pm (Mon & Tue), 8am - 8pm (Wed to Sun)

Operating Hours: 8am - 7pm (Mon & Tue), 8am - 8pm (Wed to Sun)