Toa Payoh Rojak

Restaurants, Singaporean Geylang
Toa Payoh Rojak

The only way to describe the rojak here is a big black mass of thick, delicious goop. Thanks to deft manoeuvres in a big wooden bowl, no part of the jumble of fresh turnip, pineapple, jellyfish, doughsticks, dried beancurd skin, bean sprouts and kangkung was left uncovered by the robust sweet prawn paste sauce. For a little more zing and sting, ask for some chilli paste to be mixed into the sticky, nutty sauce. Every bite was a combination of crunchy, chewy, soft and crisp textures. This is not a light salad, so you could easily make a meal out of it. Celine Asril

INTERVIEW WITH THE HAWKERS: Mr Cheng Kong Sang, 80, Mdm Lim Nei Ee, 70, and their son-in-law Mr Lim Swee Seng, 30s
They’ve been mixing rojak for 40 years.

You have installed an electronic counter in your stall – why don’t you just let your customers stand in line?
We think they’ll be more comfortable sitting and waiting, especially those who come at the end of the day – they probably have had a long day at work.

You give a very generous coating on your rojak. How much sauce do you go through in a day?
We use about 40kg of sauce in three days, so around 13kg per day.

Wow. How long does it take for you to prepare that much sauce?
Not very long – we start at 9am everyday and we open at noon.

What is the secret to your recipe?
Fresh ingredients, and we use a chilli paste made using our own recipe.

How do you maintain that balance of sweet, zing and sting in every plate?
By sight mostly, but we also have set amounts of ingredients we put in: our $5 plates have one long piece of you tiao, two extra pieces of tau pok and jellyfish, for example. The ratio’s important.

Why rojak?
We thought it was the easiest thing to make, and it is – you just have to have good sauce.We’ve done a lot of research over the years to get our sauce to what it is today.

Like this? Try these...
• Soon Heng Rojak, #B1-23 Gourmet Paradise @ HDB Hub, Toa Payoh Lor 6
• Hoover Rojak, #01-06 Whampoa Drive Food Centre, Blk 90 Whampoa Dr

This story first appeared in 'Step up to the plate' (TOS Apr 2010)

Posted:

Venue name: Toa Payoh Rojak
Address: 51 Old Airport Road Food Centre And Shopping Mall #01-108
51 Old Airport Road
Singapore
390051
Opening hours: Mon-Sat noon-8.30pm
Do you own this business?

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