Ye Ji Cooked Food, located within Chinatown Complex Market & Food Centre, has been known to have delicious home cooked-style Cantonese cai fan.
The store can be spotted instantly through its long queue. I joined the queue, noticing that there were around 10 people in front of me. As Ye Ji Cooked Food sells cai fan, the queue moved quickly and within fifteen minutes, I was already at the front choosing what to order.
By this time, there was a queue of around 20 people behind me, definitely boasting Ye Ji’s popularity.
Getting closer to the stall, I could see the wide array of dishes available for my picking. It was the famous conundrum— what should I choose? With over 20 options, I was literally spoilt for choice. I wanted to eat everything.
What I tried at Ye Ji Cooked Food
I decided to get as many ingredients as I could, such that it overflowed onto two plates.
First, I got the Steamed Minced Pork (S$1.50), which had tiny bits of sze chuan vegetables within it.
It was still juicy and had not lost much moisture despite being steamed. It had a nice salty flavour that was more apt to go with porridge instead. Even so, it tasted fine with my white rice.
The Fish cost S$3.20, so I was a bit sceptical given the price.
Thankfully, the fish was tasty enough to justify the price. It was fried till the outsides were golden brown, causing it to have a slight crisp, while the meat inside was flaky and moist. The meat was not dry at all, and did not have any fishy taste.
The Meatball (S$1.50) had a ngoh hiang-esque taste, with the exterior being crunchy, and the inside having the typical ngoh hiang ingredients, such as carrots and other vegetables. This was definitely an interesting dish; one serving of it came with four meatballs, which was generous.
I could not miss out on the Sweet and Sour Pork (S$1.50), which was fried together with zucchinis and onions. The meat was lathered well in the sauce, but the exterior still managed to remain crispy despite being saucy. The sauce was your typical sweet and sour sauce but it was not cloying at all— I’d be able to eat a whole plate of this.
This was another pork dish that just caught my attention at Ye Ji Cooked Food. To be honest, it looked like it was undercooked due to the pinkish colour, but it was actually cooked well. It tasted like the Pai Guat (black bean pork ribs) (S$1.50), similar to the ones from dim sum stalls, as it was cooked with fermented bean curd cubes. It was tender and saucy, which went well with my white rice.
I definitely had to get the Har Cheong Gai(prawn paste chicken) (S$1.50). It was delicious as it was freshly cooked and was still piping hot. It was extremely crispy on the outside and the meat within was not dry at all. It was the appropriate amount of juicy, and when bitten into the wing, the juice dripped down the chopstick, which I was extremely impressed by.
Har cheong gai is a pretty common dish that usually turns out to be quite average, but this was hands down one of the best har cheong gai I’ve eaten so far. It was well seasoned, and the combination of crispy skin and moist meat was just nice.
I had to get curry gravy to top my rice, which was warm and soothing. When I ate a spoonful of every single item together, an explosion of flavours occurred in my mouth.
I got two types of vegetables— Sauteed Brinjal with Ladyfinger (S$0.70) and Steamed Cabbage (S$0.70). Both were typical zi char vegetables which complemented the White Rice (S$0.60) well.
In total, I paid S$12.90 for both plates, which worked out to around S$6.45 per plate. While it was slightly on the pricier end, I did get quite a number of ingredients in order to get a good gauge of the food there.
I would totally come back for the cai fan at Ye Ji Cooked Food— it had fast service and served good quality items. I can see why there was a hype for the food here and why it was one of the most popular stalls at Chinatown Complex.
Expected damage: S$5 – S$6.45 per pax
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