Make Yishun Great Again: What to Eat at Yishun Park Hawker Centre

Have been meaning to visit Yishun Park Hawker Centre (51 Yishun Avenue 11, Singapore 768867) for a while but it’s far from Yishun interchange/MRT and you’ll have to take a bus for 3 or 4 stops. But it’s a well-run hawker centre, very clean and well-lit, with different varieties of food. The food is very delicious, and this has become one of our favourite hawker centres in Singapore.

We visited the stalls anonymously and paid for our own food. These are some stalls we tried:

Ah Lock 豆腐店
51 Yishun Avenue 11, Yishan Park Hawker Center #01-08 Singapore 768867
Weekdays 12pm-2pm, 5pm-9pm, weekends 10am-9pm, closed Tue

The owner of Ah Lock Tofu is an ambitious young man, Lee Lock Teng, an engineering undergrad from NTU, who hopes to have a food empire one day, starting from this bowl of tofu. There are only 6 items on the menu, including a vegetarian version.

We got their signature, Hakka tofu bowl ($5.50). What is unique about it is that it combines Hakka lei cha (thunder tea rice) with handmade tofu items. It’s an excellent rice bowl. They use a sticky short-grain rice (Japanese?), which is super tasty on its own. The greens in the bowl (seaweed, long bean, and manicai sweet potato leaves) are also very tasty, and none of the yucky “green” taste of vegetables. In the center, there is a mayo something (egg?), which goes very well with the items. The tofu is ok, but the other, which is like a tau pok stuffed with minced pork belly, is delicious. They also have their unique chilli, which tastes like a spicy honeyed concoction. Altogether, a creative and delicious bowl. Recommend! With this delicious bowl, I’m sure he will have his empire one day.

Ah Tan Wings
51 Yishun Avenue 11, Yishan Park Hawker Center #01-40 Singapore 768867
11am-3pm, 4pm-9pm, closed Monday

Ah Tan Wings is a very popular stall at the hawker centre; a long queue was formed at about 7pm onwards. It’s known for its har jeong gai or prawn-paste chicken, which is marinated for two days, at $1.70 per piece (with a minimum order of 2 pieces). They also serve set meals such as 2 wings, rice, egg ($5.20) or cutlet, rice, egg ($6.50).

We ordered two wings but there was an extra drumlet stuck with another, and the uncle smiled and said I could have it for free. YAY.

It is superb. Even Mr Fitness, who doesn’t like har jeong gai, agrees with me. The skin has shreds of marinate that makes it crunchier than the usual wings. The juices are locked in the chicken due to superb deep-frying. And the prawn paste comes on strongly but not in a revolting fermented way. However, there was blood on the bones. We didn’t mind but we know many Singaporeans who do. Still, this has to be one of the best har jeong gai in Singapore. Highly recommended!

Fishball Story
51 Yishun Avenue 11 #01-27 Yishun Park Hawker Centre Singapore 768867
M, T, F 8am-2pm, 5.30pm-8pm; W & Th 8am-2pm; Weekends 8am-8pm

Fishball Story started with a grandmother story. Douglas Ng wanted carry on the legacy of his grandmother’s traditional handmade fishballs, using 100% yellowtail fish without adding any flour. It opened its first stall at Golden Mile Hawker, which moved to NUS. Then they closed the NUS outlet to open at Timbre+ at Ayer Rajah Crescent. In addition, they open a coffeeshop at Geylang which fronts their stall. This outlet at Yishun is their their first franchised stall. Joe, the franchisee, has trained with Fishball Story for more than a month.

Here is a sad story after the success of the stall: it was awarded the Bib Gourmand award in the inaugural Singapore Michelin Guide in 2016, but lost it in 2017. People I spoke to say that the standards have dropped.

Since this was the first time I ate it, I can’t report if the standards have fallen, but I’m glad to say it is very delicious. They sell the original fishball noodle ($4.50) or the premium fishball noodle ($6.50). I ordered the latter.

The premium fishball noodle consists of four fishballs, fishcakes, fish skin, 1 fish dumpling, and 1 fried dumpling. The fishballs are delicious, sweet and nicely firm. The noodles are cooked al dente so there is a great bite. It is tossed with a very good chilli and lard; I usually don’t like chilli but this one is excellent, spicy and well balanced.

My two little complaints are (1) why bother adding the fish skin which doesn’t go with the dish? Just give me more yu jiao which is delicious. (2) After a while, it seems like the fishcakes and fishballs are made from the same ingredients, and eating gets monotonous.

Still, I think this is delicious. Stamp of approval!

Munchi Delights
51 Yishun Avenue 11 #01-43 Yishun Park Hawker Centre Singapore 768867
tel: +65 8242 5588

Saw a short queue at Munchi Delights and decided to try it. There is a moving story behind the stall which was started by 61 year-old retiree Ng Ai Lian. It serves min chiang kueh (Chinese pancakes) and flat pancakes filled with local flavours like our Mao Shan Wang durian.

I bought three min chiang kueh (peanut with green tea skin, red bean, coconut) at $1.20 each. Unfortunately, this is the only stall on this list that I won’t recommend. The skin is too sticky and wet. Furthermore, usually for min chiang kueh, the skin is not sweet while the filling is; but here, both the skin and filling are sweet, throwing the entire kueh off-kilter. We felt like we were eating waffles, not min chiang kueh. Also: hawker centres’ min chiang kuehs are the best because they usually come out hot and fresh, but here, it had sat for so long that it lost that excitement.

Yap’s Noodles 叶福家乡面
51 Yishun Avenue 11 #01-36 Yishun Park Hawker Centre Singapore 768867
tel: +65 9670 4328

Henry Tan used to work at Jack’s Place and Lawry’s Prime Ribs before he went back to Ipoh to open a bakery. While his bakes were sold out within 2 hours, the rising cost of flour made the business unprofitable and he returned to Singapore to work at Café Cartel, Oasia Hotel and Tanjong Beach Club before setting up his own stall.

The stall sells mostly curry noodles (starting from $5 depending on the type of meat) and Ipoh hor fun ($3). Mr Fitness, who is an Ipoh native, said that the curry noodles is excellent and tastes exactly like the ones he has in Ipoh. Here, Tan uses less curry power and more aromatic spices like lemongrass, chillies, dried shrimp, garlic and shallots. These ingredients are mixed as a rempah (spice paste), which is fried over low heat for two hours. The curry noodles – dry or soupy – are topped with sides like seafood, sio bak, char siu, taupok, fried pig’s skin and cockles. As a result, the soup has a more earthy flavour than the usual Singapore curry noodles.

On the whole, the curry noodle is good but maybe they should change the supplier for the sio bak which is rather tough.

Zhen Ping Hong Mala Xiang Guo 真品红麻辣香锅
51 Yishun Avenue 11 #01-38 Yishun Park Hawker Centre Singapore 768867

We ordered 小辣 (small spice) as is our usual practice everywhere when we eat mala guo (we cannot take spice very well). But it is not spicy at all. And while it is not aromatic and not numbing and not spicy (mala xiang guo literally means numbing spicy fragrant pot), the sauce is savoury and delicious. Excellent when the rice soaks up the sauce.
Besides the delicious sauce, the ingredients are also of good quality, especially the pork belly. It comes in thick, clean slices, not at all gamy. Much better in quality than other places. We paid $10.90 for this bowl, very good value comparing to other mala guo stalls. Worth getting.

You may be interested in…
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SG Braised Rice 十格捞饭, Ion Orchard Food Opera: Super Affordable Modern Ricebowls with Abalone, Crab, and Wagyu Beef
Benson Salted Duck Rice, Toa Payoh: An Old Hokkien Dish, Unique in Singapore Hawker Scene

Written by Dr. A. Nathanael Ho.

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