Sunday, 25 May 2014
Pork Knuckle at Western Food 85 Stall in Singapore
As soon as I posted about Newton Roast's pork knuckle in Newton Food Centre in Singapore, my makan kaki Martin reminded me about another pork knuckle stall in a hawker centre that should be highlighted.
Martin said I should try Western Food 85 stall in Bedok. When it comes to Singapore food, I listen to Martin's suggestions :D
So, I wasted no time and headed to Bedok in Singapore to check out Western Food 85's pork knuckle.
As usual, Martin's recommendation was spot on :D
This is Henry's stall at Blk 85 in Bedok where he ran his business for the past 12 years. At Western Food 85 stall, Henry and his wife serve a variety of common Western style fare like fish and chips, and chicken chop.
Western Food 85 is also popular for their balacan fish and ikan goreng, but our hearts were set on their crispy pork knuckles today.
I asked Henry where did he learn how to cook such a mean pork knuckle.
It turned out that Henry worked many years in Singapore's first German restaurant, Werner's Oven owned by Werner and Nancy Hochbaum.
Henry is the brother of Nancy Hochbaum and the pork knuckle at Western Food 85 follows the recipe developed by his brother-in-law, Werner Hochbaum.
Epicure Asia magazine named Werner's Oven's pork knuckles as one of Singapore's Top 10 (in 2011).
Now you can have Singapore's best in a kopitiam for SGD16 :D
How's that for a makan lobang (foodie tip) :D
Henry only uses pork knuckles imported from Brazil, and also from Germany.
Western Food 85's pork knuckles are marinated for 24 hours using spices and salts imported from Germany. The knuckles are slow cooked for three hours and then chilled. They are then deep fried on order, and served immediately.
The idea is to serve a flavourful pork knuckle that is moist and tender inside, and crispy outside.
Henry cut up the pork knuckle with scissor and tong before presenting it to customers.
The pork knuckle is served cut into bite size pieces.
The pork knuckle is served with sachets of chili sauce and disposable chopsticks. Might be a bit of culture shock for some :P
Henry told me that brown sauce is available on request but few customers asked for it, so chili sauce is the default.
I didn't ask about the chopsticks but I guess metal cutlery may not be practical in a Singapore hawker centre.
As I won't eat anything with industrial chili sauce in sachets, and I didn't know about the brown sauce available on request, I ate these pieces of pork knuckle neat.
In fact, neat is the best way to enjoy pork knuckle.
The pork knuckle meat was moist and tender. The savoury flavour was mild and gentle, and there was no porky taste at all. (Most people like it this way, but I actually don't mind a little slight porkiness.)
The golden brown skin is crispy and light. The skin was also thin and quite smooth compared to Cantonese style siu yok 燒肉 (crispy roasted pork belly). There was very little fat or grease.
The crispy skin crackles in the mouth like a cream cracker.
I like Western Food 85 stall's pork knuckle.
The side is a small heap of sweet crunchy fresh coleslaw. Henry said that sauerkraut (fermented sour cabbage) is available on pre-order.
There was a small pile of generic crinkled French fries, nicely fried and not greasy at all.
Western Food 85 won't be at Blk 85 for long.
Escalating rental has forced Henry to move on 1 Jun 2014 - fortunately, he found a stall space at the kopitiam next door at Blk 86.
Henry's stall will still be called Western Food 85.
One of Singapore's best pork knuckle is waiting for you at Bedok Blk 86 :D
Restaurant name: Western Food 85 stall
Address: Blk 86, #01-165, Bedok North Street 4, Singapore
Hours: 11:30am to 9:00pm (Closed on Weds)
Date visited: 25 May 2014
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