Do you remember the old Singapore Wonderland? I do - particularly the small rollercoaster with the head of a lion in front of it. That coaster, together with Van Kleef aquarium (i.e. National Theatre) was iconic of Singapore in the 70's (for a 6 year old boy at least). I can still remember visiting Wonderland at night. I don't know if it is just because I was a kid, but Singapore nights seem to be cooler then. The best things to eat on a cool night were steaming hot peanuts and Kueh Tutu (Putu Piring).
The Kueh Tutu almost went out of fashion sometime during the 80s but thankfully, like the handmade Paus, Gen X-ers who grew up eating the traditional foods took it upon themselves to re-introduce the old favourites to a new generation.
Putu Piring is essentially the Malay version of Kueh Tutu. According to the friendly uncle at the stall, this dessert has its origins in India. The Malay version uses gula melaka for the filling and is served with grated coconut while the Chinese version (i.e. Kueh Tutu) contains grated coconut or peanut filling and is generally smaller in size.
This uncle has been running the stall for 14 years. He used to be in the building industry and was involved in many hotel projects. It was during this time that he learned the art of making kueh by observing the many hotel chefs that he had to work with. After several attempts and experimentation, he finally arrived at the perfect recipe for his Putu Piring.
There is a perpetual queue of people outside the stall even at 3pm in the afternoon, but the hardworking staff are always cheerful and friendly.
Now this picture really says it all - who can resist the finest grade Gula Melaka (from Malacca of course) oozing out of the kueh when it is piping hot? It is a wonder to behold and certainly not something you want to wait till you get home to eat.
ConclusionCan a Putu Piring get much better then this? I'll give it a rating of 4.75/5!
One Piring to rule them all,
One Piring that leads them,
One Piring above them all,
With a Gula that beats them.
~The Lord of the Pirings~
Banquet Food Centre
Blk 12 Haig Road
Tel: 9688 3067
Opening hours: 12 noon to 10.30pm daily; closed on the 2nd Tuesday of the month
|Leslie Tay is a guest contributor to AsiaOne Wine, Dine and Unwind. A self-professed foodie and amateur photographer, he has made it his personal mission to compile a picture archive of Singapore's culinary heritage. His blog, ieatishootipost, features many established hawker favourites which define Singaporean food culture. When he is not blogging he spends his time treating families in his clinic at Tampines Central Community Complex.
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