There isn’t a shortage of cafes around Kallang, but if you’re around the area looking for some delicious local eats at wallet-friendly prices, your best bet would be Bendemeer Market & Food Centre.
While other locales like Old Airport Road Food Centre pride themselves with over 150 stalls, the recently renovated — by recent we mean 2019, Covid is but a blip in our lives here — Bendemeer hawker centre doesn’t lose out in terms of amazing stalls either.
For instance, diners can tuck into a taste of nostalgia with Toa Payoh Hwa Heng Beef Noodles. The stall is run by a descendant of the famed Odeon Beef Kway Teow, so you can expect the same flavourful, gooey mess lathered with your thick vermicelli noodles. Other interesting bites include the pan-fried soon kueh and png kueh from Yong Xiang Carrot Cake. This dish sees the method of carrot cake being used on sliced up pieces of traditional Teochew Kueh, and is a great way to get the flavours of all three dishes in one bite.
Read on for the full list.
What to eat at Bendemeer Market & Food Centre:
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We’ve gushed about Heng Kee Lor Mee and its affordable pricing — a solid bowl packed with toppings like deep fried pork belly, braised pork belly, fried wanton at just three dollars, who could ask for more? For more lor mee to slurp on around the island, head to our list here.
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You’ve probably had savoury dumplings like soon kueh and png kueh, but have you had them pan-fried like carrot cake? At Yong Xiang Carrot Cake, they allow you to order yam kueh, soon kueh, png kueh and chive kueh, all charred to perfection in the pan and best had with an egg for the full experience. The best of all worlds, if you ask us.
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Min Ji Laksa makes their own rempah from scratch, and you’ll be able to get a hearty bowl of the spicy, creamy goodness for a neat S$3.50. For that price, you get a generous portion of noodles, a whole egg, multiple cockles, fish cake, and bite-sized pieces of tau pok that soak up the rich, laksa gravy.
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Longtime beef noodle fans will probably remember the iconic Odeon Beef Kway Teow that used to sit opposite the old Odeon Theatre at North Bridge Road. While the brand is no longer in use, you can find the same nostalgic taste at Hwa Heng Beef Noodles, which is managed by daughter of the younger Kian brother. The go-to for us has always been the dry version: think vermicelli covered in smooth and sticky gravy, thinly-sliced beef and soft beef balls and chewy tendon to boot.
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When in doubt, mixed rice is always a good idea. The Nasi Kuning at Indonesia Curry Rice carries a subtle coconut flavour, and serves as a great base for the stronger dishes that complement it. The beef rendang remains a crowd-favourite for its tender cubes that come with just the right amount of fats, and other popular items include the kangkong and the chicken drumstick.
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Bendemeer Prawn Noodle has a constant snaking queue, and for a good reason too. While it isn’t the best prawn noodle we’ve had, it’s pretty decent for it’s price. The broth is savoury and thick enough to savour with the noodles, and we love adding on extra pig skin, intestines, pork rib and tail to the bowl. If you’re craving for some prawn mee in the area, this is it.
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While wonton mee seems like the obvious choice at One Ton Mee, we’d like to make a case for the Sarawak kolo mee here. Each bowl comes with springy noodles, a generous scatter of minced pork (a little more on the sweeter side!), slices of char siew and fried wontons.
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Braised duck fans aren’t strangers to Ah Xiao Teochew Braised Duck. The beloved stall opened its second outlet in Bendemeer food centre a couple of months back, bringing their signature tender, subtly herbal duck meat closer to fans in the east. P.S you can even get some yam rice here to pair the meats with, an exclusive item on the menu that the Golden Mile outlet doesn’t have.
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While the peanut option for Min Jiang Kueh is always a popular item, Granny’s Pancake has taken it up a notch with the addition of peanut butter — think rich and creamy peanut butter and sweet crushed peanuts that add tons of texture to the fluffy, chewy pancake.
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