Tony Johor Kaki Travels for Food · Heritage · Culture · History

Adventurous Culinary Traveler's Blog with 64 million+ reads 📧

Surprising History of Satay in Singapore, Malaysia & Indonesia

Warong Sate Kendal in Batam, Indonesia
Satay (known as sate in Indonesia) is a popular BBQ dish found everywhere in Indonesia, Singapore and Malaysia. Satay is one of Indonesia's national dishes.

Laksa Siglap • Original Laksa in Singapore

When people speak about laksa in Singapore, the first things that come to their minds are Katong laksa and Sungai Road laksa. Not many would think of Siglap laksa. But, Siglap laksa is much older than Katong and Sungai Road laksa, and deserves a lot more recognition than it does now.

While Katong laksa is thriving commercially, Siglap laksa which has an older vintage remains relatively unknown and is in serious danger of going extinct in the foreseeable future.

[Siglap laksa is grammatically correct in English. In Malay, the correct name is laksa Siglap. In this post, I shall use the Malay name to honour it as a Malay dish.]

History of Curry Puff & Epok Epok in Singapore & Malaysia

Swees Epok Epok in Batam
Food can tell us a lot about our history. When we munch on our favourite epok epok and curry puff, we are tasting a legacy of Portuguese, Dutch and English rule in Malaysia and Singapore for over half a millennia.

History of Singapore Chili Crab · From Pong Teng - Sua Ti - Palm Beach - Roland Restaurant to National Culinary Icon

Ban Leong Wah Hoe Seafood
In Singapore, chili crab is almost synonymous with seafood. I mean, if you go to a seafood restaurant in Singapore today, you will be hard pressed to spot any table that doesn't have a big serving of that flaming red chili crab dish at the centre of the table.

History of Roti John. A Legacy of British Forces in Singapore

Image credit: Singapore Memory Project
Before there were hamburgers in Singapore there was Roti John. Though a relatively new creation, Roti John is a popular and commonly found hawker dish in Singapore, Indonesia and Malaysia today.

Boneless Carp Fish Head in Yangzhou, Huaiyang Cuisine 拆烩鲢鱼头

Boneless Silver Carp Head is an iconic dish in Huaiyang cuisine 淮揚菜 which is one of the Four Great Traditions in Chinese cuisine (which includes Cantonese, Shandong and Sichuan cuisines).

Malaysian Wonderful Papa Bak Kut Teh in Taipei 萬得富爸爸肉骨茶

All three biggest brands of Singapore bak kut teh were in Taiwan by 2019 but Malaysian bak kut teh shop Wonderful Papa Bak Kut Teh 萬得富爸爸肉骨茶 squeaked in ahead of them, securing a foothold in Taipei since 2017. Till today, Wonderful Papa is still the only Malaysian style bak kut teh shop in Taiwan.

Original Bak Kut Teh Recipe of our Fathers • Re-creating Coolie Tea


Bak kut teh 肉骨茶 is one of Singapore's food icons (along with chicken rice, chili crab, Katong laksa etc). Yet, nobody knows now what the original bak kut teh was like. There are no written records except for anecdotes and grandfather stories diluted through five generations. There is also no precursor in China as bak kut teh is uniquely Nanyang.



Hearing the good news that Mad About Sucre is opened for home delivery, we ordered lunch quickly as MAD is one of our favourite Singapore restaurants. Yeah.... we are crazy MAD fans.

Deciphering the History of KLANG Bak Kut Teh between Myths, Grandfather Stories & Marketing PR

Four Eyes Bak Kut Teh
The origin of Klang bak kut teh 巴生肉骨茶 is as clear as their famously delicious dark brown, viscous, savoury herbal stock. The vacuum left by lack of records is filled by myths, grandfather stories and "creative" marketing spiel - so the origins of this iconic dish is in the realm of speculation, fertile ground for contention. (So, I am treading on sensitive ground yeah.... .)

Ebony & Ivory. History of KL & Singapore Hokkien Mee (Rochor Mee)

History_KL_Singapore_Hokkien_Mee_Rocho_ Mee

Singapore Hokkien mee and Kuala Lumpur Hokkien mee have the same name and the same roots, but they are as different as black and white. And, both Hokkien mee cannot be found in Fujian, China. How come?

History of Bak Kut Teh ● From Coolie's Tonic to a President's Favourite

✍ 29 Mar 2024. The origin of bak kut teh is still lost in the sense that, so far there are no documents or artefacts to conclusively prove any of the claims on where the first bowl of bak kut teh was brewed.

10 Differences between Chicken Rice in Singapore and Hainan China

Sin Kee Famous Cantonese Chicken Rice
ok.... everyone knows that Singapore's Hainanese chicken rice originally came from Hainan island (in China)... .

Have you ever been curious about what chicken rice is like back in Hainan? and is there any difference between chicken rice in Singapore and in Hainan itself? I did wonder lor... 🤔

Le Palais Taipei 3-Michelin Star Restaurant 2018 2019 君品酒店- 頤宮中餐廳

Le Palais is the only 3-Michelin Star restaurant in the Taipei Michelin Guide - an honour it achieved consecutively in the inaugural 2018 edition and again in 2019.

History & Origins of Hainanese Curry Rice • Not from Hainan China 海南咖喱饭


If there is one dish that well represent the old Nanyang immigrant spirit, the Singapore spirit today, one of the first dishes that come to my mind would be Hainanese curry rice.

History of Maxwell Food Centre - From Chinese Burial Ground to Famous Hawker Centre in Singapore


Maxwell Food Centre is not the largest hawker centre in Singapore but it is one of the most famous and busy because of the popular food stalls here and its central location in Chinatown. But, the 92 year road to glory was not a straightforward one for Maxwell Food Centre - there were quite a few unexpected twists and turns, blind corners and even some drama along the way.

Siu Mei - A History of Chinese Cantonese Roasts

King's Noodle in Toronto
Cantonese roasts known as siu mei 燒味 in Cantonese (together with dim sum) is synonymous with Cantonese cuisine. As Cantonese roasts are found everywhere around the globe, it is the face of not only Cantonese but also Chinese cuisine to many in the world.

History of Fuzhou Oyster Cakes

Fuzhou Oyster Cake in Singapore
As the name Fuzhou oyster cake suggests, the dish originates in Fuzhou, China and is also found at food stalls in Taiwan, Malaysia and Singapore. It is eaten at homes around the world wherever Fuzhouness migrated.

Daqiaotou Yansan Night Market - Taipei Local's Comfort Food Haven🌜

🌜Cabbage Rice and Pork Rib Soup 高麗菜飯. 原汁排骨湯 is a 40 year old, third generation stall serving comforting home style dishes. You know..., grandma's boiled pork ribs with radish and rice cooked with cabbage, eaten with a dip of dark soy sauce, diced garlic and cut chili pepper. Layers of savoury sweetness and natural flavours from the clear soup, fall-off-the-bone meat, and stir fried cabbage with rice. Humble dishes but somehow their multi-generation fans are hooked for life for that familiar old home flavour.

Ningxia Night Market - A Little Popular Taipei Local Hangout🌜

🌜Fang Chia Shredded Chicken on the Rice 方家雞肉飯 made it into the Michelin Bib Gourmand Selection in 2019. It's shredded chicken over boiled white rice splashed with a savoury sweet sauce and chicken oil blend.

Underrated Tonghua Linjiang Street Night Market Best Food Guide🌜

🌜Tien Hsiang Stinky Tofu 天香臭豆腐 is listed in the Michelin Bib Gourmand Selection 2019. They make their own fermented stinky tofu and also make their own pickled cabbage topping.

What to Eat @ Taipei Nanjichang Night Market a Gem of Taiwan Night Markets🌜

🌜A Nan Sesame Oil Chicken 阿男麻油雞 is one of the 南機場夜市 Nanjichang night market stalls in the Taipei Michelin Bib Gourmand Selection 2018, 2019.

Raohe Night Market @ Songshan MRT. Best Food including Michelin Bib Gourmand Selection🌜

🌜Fuzhou Ancestor Pepper Pie 福州世祖胡椒餅. Fuzhou pepper bun is one of the things every visitor to Taipei must try. Here at Raohe Night Market, there's the famous Fuzhou Ancestor Pepper Pie right at the entrance arch. There are many pepper bun brands in Taiwan but Fuzhou Ancestor is the only one in the Taipei Michelin Bib Gourmand Selection 2018, 2019.

Best Food @ Shilin Night Market in Taipei including Michelin Bib Gourmand Selections🌜

🌜Hai You Pork Rib Soup 海友十全排骨Probably the most popular stall among locals at Shilin Night Market but it is relatively unknown to tourists. Listed in the Taipei Michelin Bib Gourmand Guide 2018 and 2019, but for foreigners, herbal pork rib soup is an acquired taste.