Saturday, July 26, 2008

Kaya Toast, Singapore

Kaya ... sweet, sticky and fragrant. It's a jam like custard made from eggs, sugar & coconut flavoured with pandan. Traditionally it's served between 2 slices of toasted brown bread with a slice of cold butter. This is then eaten with some super soft-boiled eggs and a coffee.
Our first Kaya experience is Tong Ah Coffeeshop, out in the middle of Chinatown in a charming corner building that has been doing this for years! Initially they started out just selling coffee powders. Their coffee is still let to sit for a few weeks to mature the fragrance before being brewed.... and superb it was!
We both have the Kopi-O which comes with a little sugar and condensed milk. It's a dark, thick brew with just the right amount of sugar and a good splash of condensed milk.. this comes out with some soft boiled eggs and a couple of slices of Kaya toast.
They do use white bread here instead of the traditional brown, but it's sliced nice and thin and well toasted. Once the eggs are cracked open, revealing their gooey and runny deliciousness, it's time to start dipping the toast... and also order another coffee! We were buzzing for hours after 2 coffee's each.

The next morning we try Ya Kun Kaya Toast. It's like an institution in Singapore .... the first opened in 1944 and is still owned by the original family. They run the biggest of Kaya Toast chains in Singapore, although still manage to have that little kopitam feel, without feeling at all commercial. They do a couple of sets, including kopi, toast and eggs. We both go for the traditional but also have to try a portion of French toast with Kaya.
They use the traditional brown bread here ... it is meticulously toasted and re-toasted until it's deliciously crisp. The Kaya is nice and thick, and the slice of cold butter big enough to taste with every bite... the eggs are sent out already cracked, so a little white pepper and soy and you're ready to go. The French toast wasn't too exciting, we'll be sticking to the original! and the Kopi-O is sweet and rich, we'll be racing all morning .. again!

After dinner at Gluttons Bay, we sniff out the busy Roti Kaya Fondue stand... this was a must on our Gluttons list! The toasted brown bread is cut into little fingers, with a pot of soft butter and warm Kaya for dipping.... I feel like a little kid again!

Not really Kaya 'Toast' but I thought worth a mention ..... a little Japancake we picked up outside one of the MRT station, filled with, of course, Kaya. Pretty tasty!

Tong Ah Coffeeshop
36 Keong Saik Rd
6:30am - 10pm Closed alternate Wednesdays

Ya Kun Kaya Toast
18 China St
#01-01 Far East Sq
7:30am - 7pm Mon-Fri, 8am-6pm Sat-Sun, Closed Public Holidays

Roti Kaya Fondue
8 Raffles Ave
#01-158 Esplenade Mall
Makansutra Gluttons Bay
5pm-2am Mon-Thur, 5pm-3am Fri & Sat, 4pm-1am Sun

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