Street Food - Bak Kut Teh

May 28, 2012 Ivan Teh - RunningMan 0 Comments

Street Food - Bak Kut Teh

Also Known As:
Bak Kut Teh, Bak Koot Teh, Bah Kut Teh, Meat Bone Tea, Pork Bone Tea, Pork Bone Soup With Tea, Pork Ribs Soup, Rou Gu Cha



Average Price Per Serving:
SGD $4.50 - $15



Description:
Bak Kut Teh, as the name implies, is a complex broth of herbs and spices in which pork bones are stewed. The traditional way to consume this soup was with a cup of tea, which helped cut through the richness and fattiness of the dish, and also gave rise to the name of the dish.


There are 2 main variations on the broth for Bak Kut Teh.

The Teochew (White) version of the soup is lighter, and uses only salt, garlic cloves, white peppercorns or black peppercorns and light soy sauce.

Thus, Bak Kut Teh (White) often has a clear soup, with a robust, meaty flavour from the stewed pork bones, and a strong peppery taste.

Some hawkers may enhance the taste by adding herbs like star anise or cinnamon sticks.

The Hokkien (Black) version of the soup is heavier, from the variety of herbs used. These include salt, garlic cloves, white peppercorns or black peppercorns, light soy sauce, dark soy sauce, star anise, cinnamon sticks, cloves, sugar, dried shitake mushrooms, fennel seeds, dried tangerine or mandarin orange peel and fried tofu puffs.

Chinese herbs that are added include dried chinese angelica (Dang Gui / Female Ginseng), goji berries (Chinese Wolfberries), codonopsis pilosula root (Tang Shen), solomon’s seal root (Yu Zhu), chinese licorice root (Gan Cao) and cassia bark (Chinese Cinnamon Bark). Before serving, it is often garnished with chinese broccoli (Kai-Lan) and fried shallots.

Thus, Bak Kut Teh (Black) often has a darker soup, with a strong herbal flavour. The meaty flavour from the stewed pork bones isn't as strong in this version.

Some hawkers may enhance the taste by adding other herbs including chinese yam (Huai Shan), lovage root (Chuan Xiong), rehmannia glutinosa (Shu Di) or astragalus root.

Bak Kut Teh (White) and Bak Kut Teh (Black) are rarely eaten as stand-alone dishes. It is often served along with rice, pickled vegetables, braised peanuts, chinese fried dough fritters (You Tiao / You Char Kway) and of course, a cup of Tea.

While spare ribs are the traditional cut of pork ribs used in Bak Kut Teh, other cuts of pork rib can typically be substituted upon request.


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Most Bak Kut Teh stalls also serve a whole range of other dishes, often from other parts of the pig. Popular items include Braised Pig's Trotters, Braised Pig's Intestines, Blanched Pig's Kidney and Braised Pig's Tail.

These are the top 3 stalls which I feel serve the best Bak Kut Teh (White) in Singapore.


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Ng Ah Sio
@ 208 Rangoon Road
Opening Hours: 7am – 10pm Closed Mon







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Founder
@ 347 Balestier Road
Opening Hours: 12pm - 2:30pm, 6pm - 2am, Closed Tue

@ 500 Jalan Sultan #01-09 Hotel Boss
Opening Hours: 9am - 5am Daily





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Outram Park Ya Hua
@ 7 Keppel Road #01-05
Opening Hours: 6am – 4am Closed Mon






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These are the top 3 stalls which I feel serve the best Bak Kut Teh (Black) in Singapore.


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Leong Kee
@ 321 Beach Road
Opening Hours: 11am – 9pm Closed Mon





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Jln Meru Lim Kee
@ 59 New Upper Changi Road #01-1260
Opening Hours: 11.30am – 9pm Closed Wed





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Sin Heng
@ 439 Joo Chiat Road
Opening Hours: 24 Hours Daily Closed Mon



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