Thursday, August 30, 2012

Good eats in CBD: Happy Chef

Its not often that one gets cheap and good in Singapore. Perhaps I should not really use the word cheap, as it has other implications...value for money is perhaps a better description of today's review on Happy Chef.

As I understand it, Happy Chef is an initiative from an elderly couple, who had once migrated to Australia, owned and operated an award winning restaurant there, and when their children were grown up, returned to Singapore to startup this little place in a Kopi Tiam.

Tucked next to the super famous Tai Hwa noodle shop in Crawford St, this little stall gets its own line of admirers and an invisible queue...as one orders, take a number and return to your seat. The food will be delivered...sometimes half an hour later. I was indeed very happy to find out that they opened an outlet occupying an entire shoplot in Ang Mo Kio Ave 10.

I visited the AMK outlet several times, and each time came away satisfied with the value for money criteria as well as good taste criteria...cheap and good. But alas, I recently visited, and found they have closed the outlet...the same location is now occupied by a bak kut teh stall.

So its back to the queues at Crawford. The other difference is the AMK outlet allows you a choice of up to 2 side dishes, whilst at Crawford, no options are provided.

Most of the dishes are recommendable. But I particularly like the Chicken Kiev...a dish which has vanished almost altogether from Singapore. I used to love this from the Cairnhill Steakhouse a long while back. But Cairnhill Steakhouse is no more.

So at Happy Chef, I almost invariably order the Chicken Kiev. Though technically, this is Chicken Cordon Bleu...as Kiev will have butter stuffing, instead of ham and cheese.

Methinks, very nice. The chicken is rolled, pounded, breaded and stuffed with cheese and ham. Deep fried till golden brown and very crisp outside. The chicken meat remains moist and juicy, and the melted cheese provided capable support. When out of the frying pan, the chicken is then sliced into two, exposing the melted cheese heart. With two side dishes. All for $6.

Highly recommended. The menu is quite comprehensive...chicken cutlet, chicken chop, pork chops, pork ribs, steaks, fish. All present and accounted for.

Happy Chef
Block 466 Crawford Lane #01-12
Singapore 190465

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