Hello Makan Kakis,
International Women’s Day was just yesterday (8 March) and all this month, we’re featuring inspiring female F&B entrepreneurs, like our new Foodie Friend Pang Gek Teng.
She’s the Founder of Aussie-inspired Surrey Hills Grocer, a one-stop shop for quality produce & products from Down Under. Gek’s expanding F&B empire includes cafes within the grocers and a deli in the CBD.
Get to know Gek better in the podcasts below, where she shares how she picked herself up after the pandemic ended her chain of F&B stores in Melbourne.
The pet-lover also shares future plans for the doggie parallel universe of Surrey Hills – Furry Hills!
Plus: Gek’s sound advice for aspiring F&B entrepreneurs and details of her fantasy dinner party – who would she invite? What food & drink would she serve? What music would she play? Hint: She has divine plans!
And for fellow epok-epok lovers, Gek recommends a must-try, super-crispy Eastside Stall.
What’s not to love about a deep-fried pastry parcel filled with a tasty filling? These simple, old-school epok-epok come highly recommended by Gek, who says she has zero complaints about them. They are always done right and always go down an absolute treat when she orders them for parties. When I popped down on a Sunday evening, the queue was about 6 people deep, but I didn’t really have to wait too long for my turn. If you don’t want to read everything in this post, you only need to know one thing about Yang’s Epok-Epok: CRRRISPY!!!
If you love the crunch + savoury tastiness, then they are a must-try! Gek left kept them out for 2 hours after buying and they’ve remained crispy. Mainly becausethey are fried in small batches so you always get a crispy, hot product. They don’t come in any special takeaway container (just a brown paper bag), but I can testitfy that more than an hour after I had bought mine, they stayed just as crispy!
Yang’s has two types of epok-epok – the traditional fillings of potato or sardine. The two versions are made distinct by their crimp style. First up, check out the potato, which is hand-crimped with small twisted folds. It’s these little twisty edges that get really crispy after a deep-fry.
The potato filling is soft and steamy, moist and mildly spicy. They are generous with curry leaf, which makes it all the more fragrant. The filling is cooked down to an almost melty, creamy consistency that contrasts beautifully with the crunch of the crimped edges.
If you think the potato epok-epok are crispy, the sardine will impress you even more! They are visibly distinct from the potato versions because they are fork-crimped, which creates wider, flatter edges with forked ridges that get extra, extra crispy in the fryer. Surprisingly, I enjoyed the sardine even more than my usual favourite of potato. Here’s why – I find sardine fillings generally too overpoweringly fishy and too sweet (almost ketchupy), Yang’s was deeply savoury, neither too sweet nor fishy. The balance between onion, chilli and sardine was on point and did I detect a hint of lime to lift all the flavour? SO delicious! And the crunch on the pastry was insane – each bite was delightfully noisy.
Gek was a 100% right – it would be really hard to stop at just one. She often orders them for parties and 50 epok-epok can easily be polished off by 20 people! I drove to Bedok Corner and took away a dozen of each – freshly fried potato and sardine – but by the time I got home, only 20 were left. Just like that, I had munched and crunched my way through 2 of each on the drive! To be fair, they aren’t too big – the perfect snack-sized pastry parcel that’s gone in 3 big bites. Best of all, affordably 60 cents each!
Bedok Food Center, #01-04, 1 Bedok Rd, Singapore 469572
Open: 11am – 10pm (Closed Mondays & Tuesdays)
Call/ WhatsApp to order in advance: +65 87798038