Sunday, 1 July 2018

Singapore Toa Payoh Lor 4 Kuey Chap 粿汁

Many of my makan kakis (foodie buddies) are fans of Toa Payoh Lor 4 Kuey Chap (also spelt Kway Chap). So, I jio (invite) Uncle Bob to try it together on this Sunday evening. Uncle Bob has eaten here many times before.

Many people were here waiting before the stall opened at 5:30pm. A long snaking queue formed up immediately after the stall opened for business (slightly late today at 6pm).

Uncle Bob who is familiar with the stall did the ordering. We had an assortment of braised big intestines, small intestines, fallopian tube 😱, tongue, pork belly, stomach, and skin. Kuey chap is a throwback to those lean times when no part of the animal was wasted.

We made it a point not to order any fish cake, meat roll, tau kwa, tau pok etc as we were here for the offal 😂 

The braised offal, pork belly and skin are eaten with kuey, which are thin sheets of rice served in a bowl of savoury stock.

Singapore's kuey chap is similar to Johor Bahru's kway teow kia. Both the Singapore and JB dishes consists principally of braised pork offal. Where they differ is kuey chap is served with thin rice sheets whereas kway teow kia is served with slender rice ribbon noodles.

The kuey at Toa Payoh Lor 4 is served soaking in a mild savoury stock with subtle herbal notes.

The offal at Toa Payoh Lor 4 were very well cleaned. They have a tender bounce but slightly firm bite. They tasted mainly moderately salty i.e. quite flat. There was no porky taste at all (I would like some natural porky sweetness but I know most people prefer none of it 😛).

The braised offal and meat may taste slightly salty and flat but when eaten together with the soft kuey and a bit of stock, the salty meat, subtly sweet kuey and slightly herbal stock blended together into a delicious well balanced mouthful. The slightly firm meat and soft kuey worked well together. The bits of fried shallots added a bit of crisp and more than a bit of aroma to the dish.

Three of us, we had 5 plates of braised offal and meat, and 4 bowls of kuey. Our total bill came to S$17, which is reasonable.

The popularity of Toa Payoh Lor 4 Kuey Chap belies the reality that kuey chap is one of Singapore's disappearing street food heritage. It is hard to get new hawkers into selling kuey chap as preparing offal is tedious and time consuming. Profit margin is also unattractive. Young customers are also spoilt for choice and old school food like kuey chap is not often their top of the mind dinner option.

Restaurant name: Kuey Chap 粿汁 Blk 93, Toa Payoh Lor 4 (stall actually doesn't have a name)

Address: Stall #01-40, Blk 93, Toa Payoh, Lor 4 Market & Hawker Centre (Toa Payoh Palm Spring) 
GPS: 1°20'18.2"N 103°50'59.9"E | 1.338390, 103.849968
Nearest MRT Station: Braddell 
Hours: 5:30pm - 11:00pm (Mon & Thurs off)  

Non Halal  

Date visited: 1 Jul 2018  

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  1. Kway chap is a Teochew dish, not Hokkien. You’ll find it being sold by Teochew in Bangkok and of course in Chaozhou China. But you won’t find it in Fujian or Taiwan.


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