When you exit Little India Station and walk further up the street, you’d be greeted with a giant curry puff structure hanging above a corner store.
If you’re wondering why such a cute giant curry puff is doing on a shopfront at this particular location, it is because Old Chang Kee first began its operations in 1986 here (of course, the original stall was much smaller). Now 32 years on, Old Chang Kee has re-opened its flagship store – and it’s bigger and better than ever! It can seat up to 50 people (spanning three shophouse units), yet it retains that old-school charm and cosiness.
The Old Chang Kee Experience!
From the moment you step in to the time you’re seated, expect to time travel back into the ‘80s. There’s a strong Curry Times vibe with endearing old-fashioned tiles, intricately patterned tablecloths, rustic wooden seats and adorable memorabilia engulfing the entire shop. And if all that still doesn’t put you in a reminiscent mood, wait till the scent of coffee and baked goods transport you into the magic of olden days.
So what’s so different about this store compared to the other Old Chang Kee outlets? Old Chang Kee is known for their little booths that are both convenient and well dispersed across the island. This store takes it a notch higher, by adding space and increasing the variety of dishes. Signature items from sub-brands like Curry Times, Bun Times and Dip ‘n’ Go are also introduced into their menu.
Since it was such a hot day, the very first thing I had to try was their teh-ping (Iced Milk Tea)! I have to say, while it was a generous size, the many ice cubes made the tea taste a bit too diluted. Still, it solves my heat-wave problem, and I’m happily sipping away while waiting for the rest of the food to arrive.
The food was served rather quickly, and the first dish that arrived was the Flower Bread Curry Chicken ($11.90 for Curry chicken or chicken stew, $13.90 for beef stew).
I gingerly pluck out one “petal” from the Flower Bread and it effortlessly came off. Dipping it into the curry, I scoop out a boiled carrot to accompany the set. The curry was delicious, and the bread was so soft! This was perfect for sharing.
If you’re not up to having curry, you need to try the alternative, which is the chicken stew. It was thick and packed a punch of flavours! I’m still a curry person through and through, so I’d pick the curry over the stew any day!
Next on the list is the Hainanese Chap Chye $6.20. It’ll go very well with rice or even the Flower Bread leftovers!
Nasi Lemak is always welcome! This Nasi Lemak with Dry Curry Chicken $8.90 tasted like the typical nasi lemak but with much more side ingredients! I did enjoy the comforting plate of hot, steaming pandan and coconut rice along with curried chicken, though I would appreciate a fiercer dollop of sambal!
Next up is the Dry Laksa Goreng $8.50. This one is my favourite main-dish, because I already love laksa – yup I’m biased! It’s almost like a pasta… except the noodles were the thick bee hoon ones and served in non-soup version, yet it was not sticky or overly dry. I like how it retained the laksa taste without the soup – it really didn’t feel like you were eating a lesser laksa!
The Baked Beef Stew Rice ($9.50, additional +$1.40 for cheese) was surprisingly quite power-packed in taste, portion and ingredients! Served in an army mess kit ware, there were succulent beef pieces that tasted like rendang or lasagne, along with mushrooms, soft radish and loads of cheese that would make any kid happy! I was really impressed by this dish, and it’s best for sharing.
I saved the best for the last. I absolutely love Burbur Cha Cha $5, and this was easily the highlight of my night! It was perfectly balanced – the coconut milk taste and the natural sweetness of the yam, sweet potatoes, and tapioca jellies. I ate up everything in that warm bowl of what Singaporean dreams are made of, and didn’t even bother to hide a burp at the end!
Along with these dishes, this newly-minted flagship store also sells their traditional curry puffs, and is fully-stocked with all the goodness of a typical Old Chang Kee snack stall! I even got the chance to witness a curry puff making session with the one of the founder’s helpers back in its humble days: check out her nimble folding skills! What a lovely walk down memory lane, indeed.
It was so much great fun and food!
Old Chang Kee
19-23 MacKenzie Road 01-01, Singapore 228673
Tel: +65 6732 1665
Monday to Thursday: 11am – 9pm (last order at 8.30pm)
Friday and Saturday: 10am – 10pm (last order at 9.30pm)
Sunday: 10am – 9pm (last order at 8.30pm)
Images and write up by @chowbaccas
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