Epok Epok Central: Nasi lemak & home-made curry puffs from S$0.50 at Eunos

·5-min read

Epok Epok or curry puffs— I loved eating them as a kid on weekends when I’d be over at my Grandma’s. Imagine my excitement when I discovered Halal-certified Epok Epok Central that’s situated at Eunos Crescent Market and Food Centre— I’ve never been there in my life!

Yes, you heard me right! All thanks to this new job at Sethlui.com, I get to travel all around Singapore, visiting hawker centres that I have never been to before— Eunos Crescent being one of them. This place reminded me of Haig Road Hawker Centre, where there is a separation between the Halal and non-Halal stalls.

epok epok central - stallfront
epok epok central - stallfront

I told my Malaysian colleague, Reena, about my obsession with epok epok. She asked, “What’s that?” I had to admit I was stunned! Apparently Malaysians call it karipap and not epok epok— I learn something new everyday.

Epok Epok Central serves up plates of nasi lemak in the mornings, and at 3pm daily, their food shelves are replaced with freshly-fried epok epok. The dough of the curry puffs are made fresh at the stall and are rolled out using a manual pasta machine— super labour intensive!

What I tried at Epok Epok Central

epok epok central - nasi lemak
epok epok central - nasi lemak

It was still early and the batches of epok epok were not ready, so it was time to start things off with their Nasi Lemak (S$4.20). It was stated as Nasi Lemak With Egg And Ikan Bilis (S$2) on the stall’s menu, but I had opted for an additional Chicken Wing (S$1.50) and Sausage (S$0.70).

epok epok central - nasi lemak rice
epok epok central - nasi lemak rice

The chefs at Epok Epok Central should teach many mainstream nasi lemak stalls about the techniques of cooking good coconut rice. Sufficiently fragrant and cooked just right, the nasi was flavourful and completely won me over— and I hadn’t even tried the other condiments yet!

epok epok central - nasi lemak sambal
epok epok central - nasi lemak sambal

The sambal chilli had the perfect ratio of sweet and spicy, and was one of the better tasting sambals I’ve tried in recent years. It went really well with the rice and everything else on the plate.

Don’t even get me started on how good the chicken wing was— I was blown away! Fried to perfection, the skin of the chicken wing was crispy and so satisfying. It was a pity I didn’t have a microphone with me where I could have done the classic ASMR crunch sound test.

epok epok central - chicken wing
epok epok central - chicken wing

How many times in your life have you been disappointed with chicken wings? You can get a crispy outer layer that’s extremely crispy, but then the meat inside turns out to be dry and overcooked— sounds familiar? None of that happened at Epok Epok Central, the flesh was still moist and juicy, and it was well marinated.

epok epok central - chicken wing
epok epok central - chicken wing

The sausage that came with a dollop of sambal was just a typical generic version that you’ll find at any other hawker stall selling nasi lemak. It’s nothing too fancy but still so satisfying to eat.

The ikan bilis on the other hand could compete with the chicken wing in terms of its crispiness. It had the right amount of salt and was so good to eat together with the peanuts.

epok epok central - curry puff closeup
epok epok central - curry puff closeup

Time flew by and it was already 10 minutes past 3pm. I walked over to the stall and there on the shelves, were several mini golden pillows of yumminess. The epok epok had three different options— Sardine (S$0.50), Potato (S$0.50), and Potato With Egg (S$2 for three).

Upon purchasing all three types, I noticed that they were slightly smaller in size than what I was expecting. I’d probably need to eat twice the amount to get me satisfied— this coming from a self-obsessed epok epok human! There wasn’t any colour indication to distinguish the difference in fillings, probably the only obvious indication was that the Potato With Egg variety was slightly fatter.

epok epok central - curry puff potato filling
epok epok central - curry puff potato filling

I reached for the Potato With Egg and I was first greeted by the crispy outer crust of the epok epok. It was surprisingly flaky yet crispy, and it felt to me like a hybrid of two different kinds of curry puffs— the typical malay curry puff and the crispy puff pastry kind. The dough was also relatively thin, unlike numerous thick ones that I’ve had before, which I don’t fancy.

The curry potato filling on the inside was perfectly balanced without being too overpowering, and paired really well with the quarter piece of boiled egg inside.

epok epok central - curry puff sardine filling
epok epok central - curry puff sardine filling

The Sardine epok epok was slightly different from the usual ones that I’ve had before. Epok Epok Central’s sardine filling wasn’t in the typical shade of red like what you’d normally expect, instead it was dark brown— almost like the shade of caramelised onions. The filling was leaning towards the sweet side and there wasn’t a hint of spice at all. Oh, I could get used to this!

Surprised at how different the sardine filling tasted, I took a second bite only to realise that I’d started to get hooked on them— I could eat a second or third piece without hesitation.

Final thoughts

epok epok central - market exterior
epok epok central - market exterior

It’s really not common to find stalls like Epok Epok Central selling epok epok that’s made in-house and fried on the spot. I could probably count the number of stalls that I know with just one hand— most of them sell items that are factory-made!

You need not travel to the far ends of Singapore just to get good nasi lemak when you can have a cheap and great tasting version right here at Eunos Crescent Market and Food Centre. I have always passed by this place without stopping by for a visit, but I’m glad I finally did— better late than never!

Expected damage: S$0.50 – $7 per pax

Other articles you might like:

Indulge in S$1.50 Salted Egg Lava puffs at Fang Handmade Curry Puff, a hidden puff stall in Ubi

10 best curry puffs in Singapore for less than $2

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