Things to Eat: Geylang Serai Bazaar 2016

It is that time of the year to eat your weight in street food again. Uncontestably the mother of all pasar malams (Malay for night markets), The Geylang Serai Bazaar is back again with more stalls than ever before to satiate our national obsession with food.
Apart from conventional offerings like the Ramly burger and dendeng, the bazaar has seen an exponential invasion of hipster vendors over the years. These millennials have been rolling out visually appealing nosh, changing the street food game (psychedelic rainbow bagels anyone?) on an epic scale. With only one stomach and this Goliath of a market to manoeuvre through, we know that mapping out a food trail can be challenging, which is why we have prowled through the bazaar to suss out the must-trys just for you. We promise they’re equal parts delicious and instagrammable.
1. Salmon Burger with Salted Egg Sauce
We know the whole salted egg craze has made the coveted sauce quite an overkill, but trust us when we say you need to try this. The homemade patty made from Norwegian smoked salmon is fresh and well seasoned, but what gels it all together are the buns. The soft and buttery buns soak up the egg sauce and seasoning from the salmon quite nicely – one bite into this juicy, flavoursome goodness of a gourmet burger will have you queuing for seconds. If you’ve yet to jump on the salted egg bandwagon, they’ve got a neat wasabi mayo alternative too.
Price: $5.50
Stall: SAHWON (facebook | instagram)
2. Rainbow Dadih
Dadih is basically a Malay-style milk pudding drink. The stall with the salmon burger also has their rainbow version of the dadih à la unicorn tears. It has the consistency of soya beancurd pudding, but with a much stronger aftertaste of caramel and pandan. This Paddle Pop flavoured drink is a visual feast of soft, pastel colours in a gradient fashion, but what’s most appealing is the way the colours mix and swirl beautifully in the straw as you slurp it up. Admittedly a cheap thrill, but it would make the perfect Boomerang shot nonetheless!
Price: $5
Stall: SAHWON (facebook | instagram)
3. Kinder Bueno Milkshake
It does sound like diabetes in a cup, but this milkshake is really not as sweet as it sounds. Blended with real Kinder Bueno bars, milk and vanilla ice cream, the vanilla flavour is distinct but does not overpower the familiar, hazelnut taste of our favourite childhood snack. It complements the chocolate to give a rich and creamy concoction of a milkshake. Other super indulgent flavours like Nutella, Ovomaltine, Salted Caramel and Snickers are also on the menu. Apart from milkshakes, Thai Milk Tea and Green Tea are also available here. The former is extra sweet and milky, like how it’s done in Thailand. It’s got a good balance of condensed milk and tea.
Price: $5.50 for milkshake, $2.50 for Thai Milk Tea, $3.50 for Thai Green Tea
Stall: Ice Burnz (instagram)
4. Double Fried Russets
The folks behind Katoshka take their fries seriously. The russets here are freshly cut before they’re fried, with the skin still intact, to give the fries an authentic taste. The whole double fry technique they’ve got going on is well worth the effort because the golden-brown end product has a cracker-like, crisp exterior and a fluffy inside to match. You might possibly never settle for Macs again after trying this.
Four dipping sauce options (salted yolk, special cheese, sour ranch and BBQ) are available and we highly recommend the special cheese and sour ranch. Both are homemade and the former has a hint of smokiness to it. Katoshka might be a fresh face at the bazaar but they sure know where they’re going with these fries, so go ahead give them some love.
Price: $4.90
Stall: Katoshka (facebook | instagram)
5. Crunchy Fried Bananas with White Chocolate and Grated Cheese
It’s like goreng pisang on a sugar high. If you’ve got a sweet tooth and a liking for the traditional banana fritters, then this gooey mess of an indulgence is your ultimate guilty pleasure. The sweet bananas are coated in a light batter and deep-fried till golden brown. But unlike the usual goreng pisang, this is less dense and way less oily. The bananas are then drenched in melted white chocolate (or milk chocolate/strawberry) and topped with grated mozzarella chesse, but it doesn’t stop here. They are further smothered with a generous dollop of salted caramel sauce to give you the ultimate sinful treat. The saltiness of the mozzarella cheese does break up all of the sweetness but overall, it is definitely more sweet than savoury.
This is not something you would want to bring home for sure, it’s best eaten hot so you can savour the fried bananas in all its crispy, artery-clogging glory.
Price: $4.50
Stall: BananaNCheese (instagram)
6. Croatian Nutella Balls
From a scale of 1 to fried bananas, these Nutella balls are probably a 7 if we’re talking sinful. Small, bite-size dough balls (or mini donuts) are deep fried and served in a plastic drink cup. This stall is extra, extra generous with their Nutella – each layer of mini donuts is plastered with the rich hazelnut spread before the next layer piles on. We’re not complaining, there’s no such thing as too much Nutella.
Price: $4.50
Stall: Ice Burnz Bites
7. Sliced Beef Sandwich with Caramelised Onions 
If you’re looking for a hearty meal after a long day, then the beef sandwich here checks all the right boxes. This stall serves deli-style sandwiches and for $6.50 you get tender beef, melted cheese and caramelised onions stuffed inside a warm, grilled-to-order loaf of focaccia bread. The classic combination of caramelised onions and beef pairs marries well with their secret homemade sauce and mayo. This is possibly the most value-for-money gem we chanced upon at the bazaar.
Price: $7.00
Stall: Ice Burnz Bites (instagram)
8. Watermelon Volcano
Heat radiating from the sizzling grills, crowds of people rubbing shoulders in a compact space and our 35-degree weather. It is going to be a sticky, sweaty mess out here. Wear light clothing, bring a fan and cool down with this watermelon thirst quencher.
The Watermelon Volcano is essentially a slushie of fresh watermelon, condensed milk, syrup and ice served in a watermelon husk. Topped with real watermelon balls, this is as tropical as it gets. They’ve got medium and large watermelons, but we advise settling for medium as it is more than enough to share among 2-3 friends.
Price: $6.90 (medium), $12.90 (large)
Stall: Happyrollies (facebook | instagram)
9. Pizza Dendeng
Dendeng is a conventional hallmark of the annual night market. They are wafer-thin slices of meat (think beef jerky) that are popular during Ramadan. Apart from eating dendeng on its own, this stall has put a local twist on the all-American pizza by incorporating dendeng into it. The pizza crust is light and nicely toasted, and the sweetness of the preserved meat complements the saltiness of the cheese.
Price: $4 (slice), $10 (whole)
Stall: ZF Café (facebook)
10. Durian Ice Cream
Durian connoisseurs, meet the ice cream of your Mao Shan Wang dreams. It was truly an emotional, “be still, my heart” moment when we savoured this for the very first time. The real Mao Shan Wang durian in the ice cream was so mindblowingly rich and aromatic that it tasted more like creamy, frozen durian than actual ice cream. Apart from ice cream, this understated stall also has other durian desserts in the form of pancakes, puffs and rolls.
Price: $3
Stall: Mao Shan Wang King
11. Churros
The churros market is a highly competitive one, but Loco Loco appears to be riding on a wave that doesn’t seem to crash. It is a bigwig in the scene with its elevated flavours and crisp churros. The pandan churros with gula melaka dip is a perennial favourite, but their Oreo variation with white chocolate sauce is going to win you over if you are a sucker for all things Oreo. They have an assortment box option if you can’t decide on a flavour – why choose one when you can have all four?
This year, soft serve ice cream with churros is joining the party. Loco Loco has also unveiled a new salted egg yolk sauce for those of you who can’t get enough of the eggy goodness.
Price: $4.50/cup, $16 (assortment), $6 (churros with soft serve)
Stall: Loco Loco (facebook | instagram | website)
12. Sotong Bakar
Another crowd favourite at the bazaar. The freshly grilled squid is pressed on the hot grill until a beautifully charred exterior is achieved. Choose to have either BBQ or fiery sauce slathered on to contrast the natural sweetness of the squid. Simple, unpretentious and satisfying; they’ve got a fried, bigger-than-your-face version of this street snack too.
Price: $4
Stall: UYI Savoury Squids (facebook)
13. Dark Chocolate Gula Melaka Soft Serve
This dreamy soft serve was made for fairies. And Instagram. We’ve got a lot of things going on here; creamy swirls of soft serve ice cream topped with a big, fluffy cloud of cotton candy. You can order the soft serve on it’s own – for $3.90 you get to choose between dark chocolate gula melaka or sea salt milk – but the real fun begins when you add toppings. Go all out whimsical with the cotton candy topping like we did, or dress your ice cream pretty with caramel popcorn and marshmallows. Major props to Momolato for the homemade, gourmet flavours specially curated for the bazaar too. They taste as exquisite as they sound.
Price: $3.90 (soft serve), additional $1 for topping (2 for $1.50)
Stall: Momolato (instagram | website)
Geylang Serai Bazaar
Date: 4 June – 6 July
Time: 5 pm till late
Location: Along the stretch of Changi Road between Joo Chiat and Paya Lebar Road
(Paya Lebar MRT Exit A. Due to construction work this year, turn left and follow the crowd instead of heading in the direction of the Singapore Post Centre)

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