Bedok grocery shopping with celebrity cook Annette Tan

2020-12-01

Block 16 Bedok South Market & Food Centre is the wet market you need to shop at.

She’s been featured in Vogue, appeared on Netflix, and fed the likes of Shake Shack founder Danny Meyer. Ms Annette Tan – writer, cook and food consultant – is every bit the homegrown food hero taking the flavours of Singapore to a wider audience. But as they say: you can take a girl out of the kampung, but you can’t take the kampung outta the girl. Here, the true blue East Coast girl shares tips on the best things to buy from her favourite marketing haunt: Block 16 Bedok South Market & Food Centre.

VEGETABLE STALLS

This vegetable stall run by two sisters (#01-95) is where I go for ulam rajah, moringa leaves, wing beans, turmeric leaves, and even western vegetables like cherry tomatoes on the vine, dill, and Romanesco – fresh produce that are hard to find in other wet markets. They also sell coconut, freshly grated on the spot, which I use in making the kerisik (dry-toasted shredded coconut) that tops nasi ulam, and also in desserts such as kueh kosui. Many residents also like to frequent the vegetable stall owned by an affable uncle (#01-128). He also carries a good variety of produce, including things like ginger flowers.

16 Bedok South Rd, #01-95, Singapore 460016
16 Bedok South Rd, #01-128, Singapore 460016

Opening hours: 6.30am until sold out

EXTRA! - DE VEGGIE - UNCLE DAWOOD

If you #jalanjalan to Bedok South only to find the Block 16 market closed for cleaning, fret not. This store in the facing block also has an excellent range of produce, from purple cauliflower and Romanesco to baby radish and burdock. Best yet, they open for slightly longer than the vegetable stalls in the market, so even the late-risers can get some choice greens.
17 Bedok South Rd, #01-577, Singapore 460017
Opening hours: 6am until 2pm

DRIED-GOODS STORES

While people were scrambling to buy baking supplies during the Circuit Breaker, I just went to the dried-good stores to buy flour, baking powder and all the things that were sold out at the likes of Phoon Huat and Cold Storage – don’t overlook the dry grocer for the supermarket! Another tip: at the end of the row of dried-good stores in this market, next to the lady who sells roast coffee, is an uncle who peels shallots by hand. You can buy these for about $8 per kilogramme. It makes a lot of difference for somebody who uses shallots in large quantities, such as myself!

16 Bedok South Rd, #01-91, Singapore 460016

Opening hours: 6.30am until sold out

POULTRY STALL

While I usually order my meats from the wholesaler,  the stall at #01-159 is where I go when I just need a chook or two to make a devil curry pie or ayam lemak chilli padi. While I am not a fan of yellow-skin chicken (which is considered a premium ingredient with more robust flavour), many others come to this stall to buy this – in fact, the chef of a very popular private dining space in Bedok frequents the stall just for this. If it is the best deals you are going for, head to the poultry stall at #01-175, which other stall owners have recommended as the one offering the best prices.


16 Bedok South Rd, #01-159, Singapore 460016
16 Bedok South Rd, #01-175, Singapore 460016

Opening hours: 6.30am until sold out

EGG STALL 

When I am knee-deep in sugee cake orders, I buy Jumbo eggs at $8 for a tray of 30 from this stall at a corner unit beside the fruit stall. It doesn’t seem to have a unit number! The eggs are huge – almost 70g each. They are so big that most times, each egg yields two yolks. This means that I need to break less eggs to get the quantity of yolks I need!
16 Bedok South Rd, Singapore 460016

Opening hours: 7am until sold out

YONG HUA YOU TIAO 

Great youtiao that’s fresh and crisp. I always buy more than I need cos they bake up well after refrigeration. Their wares usually sell out around noon, so go early.

16 Bedok South Rd, #01-147, Singapore 460016

Opening hours: 7am until sold out

Visiting Block 16 Bedok South Market & Food Centre? There’s lots more #JalanEat, #JalanShop, #JalanSee and #JalanDo gems to explore in Bedok! Check out our ever-growing list here . Or if your favourite Bedok haunt isn’t on the list, share it with us at bit.ly/jalanjalanwithme


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