Many associate Katong Shopping Centre with the famous Chicken Rice shop but what if I told you there was another hidden gem within? Ipoh Tuck Kee Son is the neighbour stall of Delicious Boneless Chicken Rice within the food court and is well-known amongst regulars for its wok-derful zi char dishes.
There’s really only one way to find out whether it’s good, right? Singaporeans are terribly competitive when it comes to food and I very well intend to hop on that bandwagon and play judge myself!
Note: the dining area within the foodcourt can be a little small and cramped, so do avoid peak hours if you can. Otherwise, takeaway might just be the smarter option.
What I tried at Ipoh Tuck Kee Son
First up, is the signature Moonlight Hor Fun (S$5.50).Many come from far and wide just to get their hands on this dish. I could see why, though. The flat noodle strips were slightly charred and glistening under the light, an indicative sign of wok-fried goodness.
Give the dish a good mix and mix the ‘moon’ (egg) in and brace yourself.
On one hand, this was sinfully oily yet, on the other hand, exceptionally tasty. Anyone would be willing to look past the calories just to savour a bite of the semi-sweet Moonlight Hor Fun.
Each mouthful packed a good amount of wok hei and flavour, and was not too dry. The dark sauce brought the dish altogether and was top-notch in execution. It’s not every day you find hor fun that is way above average, right? This is one that must greet the table if you’re dining with family or friends.
I was most excited to try the Crispy Mui Fan (S$5.50) for no other reason other than how much I love all versions of mui fan (translates to rice in gravy). I usually describe it as hor fun but substitute the noodles for rice and voila, mui fan!
At its price point, I must say the portion was huge. Each serving game with a large bowl of rice, crispy rice on top, surrounded by an egg gravy filled with vegetables, lean pork slices, lard bits and prawns.
Cue all the expressive Singlish words that exist— this was shiok, steady bom bi bi, ‘very good sia’. It looks simple but a spoonful of rice with the crunchy lard bits and eggy gravy was enough to convince me that I won’t be sharing this dish with anyone, ha!
Some might say that every other gravy and rice combination would taste the same and perhaps question the reliability of my review. I admit I do prefer savoury dishes (this was on the saltier side too) and am a fan of mui fan. Yet, this rendition had a homely essence, was generously hearty and altogether delicious. Nothing too over the top nor extravagant, which in my opinion, was the saving grace.
I guess the prawns were meant to bring out the seafood element of the dish but personally, I wouldn’t be fussed if there weren’t any. I could have mui fan as it is— a phenomenal gravy, rice and crispy rice! Oh, and the lard bits from Ipoh Tuck Kee Son, of course.
If you know me personally, I cannot resist having a fried dish on the table. Yes I know I’ll need to jog for 45 minutes or do a cardio session blah blah, I’ll still order that portion of fried meat! On today’s menu of Amanda’s temptations, I got the Ipoh Spicy Fried Meat (S$6).
The dish is as simple as it gets. Pork slices are marinated with a secret batter and deep-fried to literal perfection. The bright golden exterior says it all.
Two words: addictively good. Crispy edges meet soft chewy meat, rounded together by the savoury marinade, elevating each bite with umami goodness— definitely not your average side.
I can’t guarantee this is the healthiest snack nor will I advocate for you to eat it every week but I will tell you that it’s dabao-worthy. Two packets… maybe three? Alright, I’ll stop now!
When I asked for a recommendation from the staff, I was told the Meatball Soup (S$3.50) would be a good accompaniment to the other dishes I ordered. I won’t lie but it was a pretty small bowl with five meatballs, as compared to what one would usually get when ordering wanton soup outside.
I mean, for S$3.50, there’s nothing much to fault here. For diners would need a side of soup with their main carb, this would suffice. Otherwise, I’d probably waver to see if I could get something else with gravy instead.
If you find yourself at Katong Shopping Centre and just don’t feel like eating Chicken Rice, I’d definitely recommend opting for Ipoh Tuck Kee Son which is literally right beside.
Regardless of it all, the glistening Moonlight Hor Fun stole the show that evening. Ipoh Tuck Kee Son nailed it across the variety of dishes we had but this deserves a special mention. Reminder to self: just get the bigger portion and if you can’t finish, dabao the rest home lah! #WorthIt
Expected damage: S$5 – S$8.50 per pax
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