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Zhao An Granny Grass Jelly 🌿 Chin Chow @ Golden Mile F C 诏安祖传仙草粿


Cincau or chin chow or grass jelly is one of those childhood favourites we can still get today in Singapore and Malaysia. However, almost all are factory made now and any cincau stall that still makes cincau from scratch using Mesona Chinensis herb is a gem we should treasure. There is one such stall at Golden Mile Food Centre called Zhao An Granny Grass Jelly.

Stall name: Zhao An Granny Grass Jelly 诏安祖传仙草粿

Address: 505 Beach Road, stall #01-58 Golden Mile Food Center, Singapore 199583

Tel: +65 9146 7313

Hours: 11:30am - 7:30pm


Founded in 1946 by granny Sim Sai Geok, Zhao An Granny Grass Jelly at Golden Mile Food Centre is in the third generation (grandson Yeo Hwee Seng) now and the only one I know that still makes their cincau from scratch with Mesona Chinensis herb.


The jiggly black translucent cincau jelly comes with optional toppings of canned longan, sea coconut, attap seed, etc but I always go only for kosong (no topping) except for crushed ice and a splash of sugar syrup.


Compared to factory made cincau which practically every grass jelly stall uses, Zhao An Granny's made from scratch version is smoother, lighter, less dense, less bitter, and has a subtle grassy herb taste. It requires less or no sugar syrup to mask its slight bitterness. It almost melts in the mouth whereas factory grass jelly is often like a firm custard. Zhao An's handmade cincau also has a subtle fragrance.

The taste of grass jelly feels refreshing and cooling. There's always stomach space for it after a hearty meal at Golden Mile Food Centre.

Cincau came to Singapore and Malaysia from China, brought here in the 1800s by migrants from Fujian province. Zhao An, for instance, is a county of Zhang Zhou in Fujian. (Even in China today, handmade chin chow is disappearing, replaced by factory made ones.)

The wild herb Mesona Chinensis (related to mint) is harvested from the hills. (Image courtesy of Wikipedia)

The leaf and stem are sun dried. The dried leaf and stem are washed at least three times before cooking. They are boiled with water in a pressure cooker for five hours! 😮 The stem and leaf are then hand wrung to extract as much juices as possible.

The resulting solution is filtered through a cloth sieve to remove all the stem and leaf residue. The filtered liquid is boiled in a pot at high heat for another 30 minutes.

Next, add in rice flour and stir while boiling for another 30 minutes. The solution is allowed to cool at room temperature for two hours, and it gels into a jiggly black jelly i.e. cincau or chin chow or grass jelly.

Mesona Chinensis herb is believed to have medicinal properties like treating fever, heatiness, cough, indigestion, high blood pressure, diabetes, etc.

In Singapore and Malaysia, when you order a "Michael Jackson" at a drinks stall, what do you get?

You will get soya bean milk with grass jelly cubes inside 😄

If you are a visitor from out of region, a taste of "Michael Jackson" is a must! It is uniquely Singapore and Malaysia.

Zhao An Granny Grass Jelly is one of my top choices at Golden Mile Food Centre 👈 click

Written by Tony Boey on 2 Apr 2021

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