I’ve been hooked onto the fish steamboat at this place since my first visit during one of the Makanoutings organised by Makansutra
One weekend, when mum asked me for “bright ideas” on where to have lunch, I steered my family in this direction. Having lost my mobile phone some weeks back (& horror of horrors, my directory of food places), I called Andrew to get the number from him. The restaurant’s name “Whampoa Food Street (Keng) Fish Head Steamboat Eating House” is a real mouthful. I simply referred to it as Whampoa Fish Head Steamboat @ Rangoon Road. Ha! How Singaporean is that?
Pomfret Steamboat @ S$40
We ordered the Pomfret steamboat. Why do I love the steamboat here? Well, it’s because it has a richly-flavoured stock filled with thick slices of fresh fish, fried yam chunks, cabbage, Tang Oh
(Garland Chrysanthemum), and is topped with generous slivers of fried (dried) flatfish
. The freshness of the pomfret, which was firm and flaked easily, added sweetness to the already tasty soup. I loved the fried yam chunks as they had absorbed the flavours of the soup and were very fragrant. I prefer to have the yam chunks in fish steamboat dishes fried as the frying process enhances their fragrance and also helps to keep the chunks from disintegrating while they are boiled in the soup. I also like how they serve the steamboat old-school style with hot charcoals in the furnace (check out the middle of the pot). Mum keeps saying that food cooked with charcoal tastes alot better and is contemplating buying a charcoal stove to brew soups (mental note to remind her to put the stove out of reach of the curious pooches). Need I say more, this is definitely a MUST-TRY
I love the chili sauce (on the right) here as its spicy, tangy and not sweet! It went perfectly with chunks of fish and some of the other dishes! I also like the chili padi slices (on the left) for the spice factor.
Whampoa Food Street Tofu (House Special) @ S$10
The guy taking our orders suggested that we try the Whampoa Food Street Tofu dish. It was delicious as the home-made tofu was very soft, delicately seasoned and went well with the sauce that it was served with. Although the sauce was a little too starchy for my preference, it went well with steamed rice.
Deep-Fried Prawn Rolls @ S$8
This was also recommended by the guy but was a big disappointment. The rolls were a little over-fried so the bland prawn filling was a tad dry. I think alot more care in the wrapping process would help so that the rolls will not fall apart so easily when fried.
Sambal Belachan Kang Kong @ S$10
This Kang Kong (Morning Glory) dish was just a little too oily and sweet for my liking but was passable.
Deep-fried Prawns coated with Salted Egg & Cereal @ S$20
This dish had an interesting twist to the usual Cereal Prawn dish that many “Zi Char” (Singaporean-style Restaurant food served in a hawker-like setting) places serve. They’ve coated the shelled prawns with salted egg yolk and cereal! It was excellent as it was a marriage of 2 “Zi Char” favs, ie. Cereal Prawns and Prawns with Salted Egg. The prawns were fresh, firm to the bite and sweet, which was well-complemented by the rich saltiness of good quality salted egg yolks and the fragrance and slight sweetness of the cereal. This is definitely a MUST-TRY!
Speaking of Cereal Prawns, though I generally am not crazy over prawns, this is one of my favourite Zi Char dishes. I have a church mate, Michael, who is even crazier about this dish and HAS to order it whenever available. Gee, I can’t believe this guy! I have half the mind to nickname him the “Cereal Prawner”. I’m sure he’ll understand how I linked my 2 favourite things (food & watching CSI) into one nickname.
Fried Mee Swa @S$5
I love Mee Swa
(wheat vermicelli aka longevity noodles) in any form and thought I would give the fried mee swa here a try. It was a little too oily (though it has to be contended that mee swa is a very difficult dish to fry as it tends to stick to the wok, thus many cooks use more oil to prevent it from sticking and burning). The taste was a little flat (definitely lacking in “wok hei”) and was generally a disappointment.
Deep-Fried Chicken (Marinated in Prawn Paste) @ S$8
The deep-fried chicken had a pretty tasty and crispy skin but the frozen taste of the flesh was just a little too strong for our liking. I think I shall stick to the steamboat, tofu and cereal prawns the next time I visit.
Whampoa Food Street (Keng) Fish Head Steamboat Eating House
Main Outlet : 556 Balestier Road, Singapore 329872
Branch : 116/118 Rangoon Road, Singapore 218394
Keng: +65 9769-4451