Best Chapati Found in Geylang Serai!

Click to listen/ download podcast of Chef Damian D’Silva’s Go-to Chapati place!



This week, our foodie friend Chef-Partner of Rempapa, Damian D’Silva is back to tell us about this excellent stall for a late lunch. In his line of work, it’s only after his last customer has left and his restaurant’s lunch service is over that he gets to have his own lunch, and he often finds himself wandering over to Geylang Serai Market & Food Centre for a bite to eat.

There on the second floor, you’ll find Muhabbat Setia Hati, a stall operated by a mother-and-son team, selling chapati that’s to die for. It’s so good, that Chef Damian is willing to put his money on this claim: it’s even better than at any restaurants or in the Tekka area he’s been to!

IMG_0809You can watch your chapati being made then & there. Which means, you always get fresh, piping-hot flat breads to order (yes, there’s usually a queue, but soooo worth the wait!).

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MasterChef SG Judge Damian D’Silva’s Go-to “Lepak” Place

Hello Makan Kakis! The trio of MasterChef Singapore Judges is complete, with Chef Damian D’Silva, who joins us this week to share his insights from the MasterChef Kitchen, updates from his own restaurant Kin (scroll down for Denise’s visit there) and a personal makan recommendation.



As a champion of Singapore heritage food, traditional and local favourites, you’re most likely to find Chef Damian at a hawker centre enjoying zichar or porridge. But when he wants a little change of scene, this is his current favourite go-to spot.

Above all, Chef wants an environment that is very relaxed and unpretentious, a place where you can just unwind and be yourself. He’s found that at Le Bon Funk on Club Street, a charming little bar/ restaurant, where he says he can go and simply “lepak” and “I can just sit down and talk to whoever for four hours and I’m happy. Because you can say whatever you want and they accept you for whoever you are.”

And that is also exactly how Chef likes his food. No bells and whistles necessary, he’s always on the lookout for simple food that is done well.  He enjoys Le Bon Funk for all those reasons – it’s relaxed, they have great drinks including an excellent wine list and really good food too.

One of Chef Damian’s favourite things to eat is Le Bon Funk’s  Beef Tongue & Gribiche Sandwich ($26, see above). Another recommendation is their Cedar Jelly & Foie Gras Toast ($18 for 2) and if you want a hearty meal, you can’t go wrong with their steak. On their menu is a Livingstone Farm Wagyu Striploin with Buttermilk Salad ($175) worth sinking your teeth into.

Photos via Le Bon Funk’s Facebook & Instagram.

What Chef appreciates is their food that’s meant for sharing – there’s nothing quite like communal dining. His advice is to go with 4 – 6 people, then you can order more dishes to enjoy together. So next time, if you’re looking for a chill-out place to have a little drink and nibble, pop by Le Bon Funk.


29 Club Street S(069414)
Open: 5 – 10.30pm (Tue-Thu); 12 – 10.30pm (Fri-Sat All-Day); extended bar menu between 2.30 – 5pm; Closed Sun & Mon.
Tel: +65 62241490



Located at the lobby of Straits Clan, Kin is helmed by MasterChef SG Judge and “Grandfather of Heritage Cuisine” Chef Damian D’Silva. It was a joy to catch our Makan Kaki in his element, presenting us with a veritable Easter feast of complex and diverse Singaporean dishes. The sights and smells – from a quick pre-dinner snack of keropok and sambal dips, to enormous bowls of curry and piles of steaming white rice –  were all familiar and nostalgic. Since 1 March 2021, Chef Damian has added “new” heritage recipes to the Kin menu – here are some highlights and some of my favourites:

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Awesome Abacus Seeds for the Festive Season

Click to listen/ download podcast of this week’s QQ, springy and festive episode – support local F&B!

Happy Chinese New Year! This week, I have something deliciously festive to recommend – suan pan zi (算盘子), or Abacus seeds, which get their name from the ancient calculating tool, the abacus (also called a counting frame). This traditional Hakka dish is a labour-intensive, time-consuming delicacy whose main ingredient is yam. It’s usually eaten during special occasions (like Chinese New Year) because its signature shape signifies wealth and prosperity.

Yam and tapioca flour are kneaded well together to form a dough which is then divided and rolled into little balls. Little indents in the middle of the dough balls are made from pressing them between thumb and forefinger, which give it its distinctive abacus bead shape.

Scrolling through instagram, I recently discovered a local home-based business whose specialty is handmade abacus seeds. Madam Yam is available for delivery or pickup and ordered via instagram or facebook. It looked so good, I just had to give it a try.

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Ice Cream Café with a Savoury Noodle Secret

You might have heard of a now defunct stall at Tanglin Halt Food Centre called Aw’s Signature Minced Pork Noodles, which made a name for itself with delicious, ingredient-laden bak chor mee. But almost as quickly as it rose in popularity, it closed down, much to the disappointment of customers in the know. One of them was my Makan Kaki, Chef Shen Tan of private dining experience, Ownself Make Chef and Gastrogig’s Thank-Goodness-It’s home delivery concept.

So imagine my delight when she revealed it had re-opened, albeit in a surprisingly different set-up, just a stone’s throw from its former location. She recommended that I head down to The Milky Way Homemade Ice-Cream And Coffee cafe for my bak chor mee fix, but with the added bonus of dessert.

The man behind the noodles (and now, ice cream) is Terence Aw, a self-taught cook and former police officer who left a decade-long career in law enforcement to pursue his passion for cooking. After a lot of practice and pointers from fellow hawkers at Tanglin Halt Food Centre, Terence’s bak chor mee, with its unique taste and plentiful ingredients, really took off and gained a loyal fan following.

He credits Chef Shen for helping to get the word out and helping to jump start his business. In fact, she’s still doing so, now that he’s added custom gourmet ice creams to the menu at his new location. But more on that later.

First, I was hungry for a taste of the noodles I had been hearing so much about. My order for the best-selling dry kway teow (flat rice noodles) cost $5.80 and came served in a bowl piled with meaty, golden-brown ingredients. Beside it was a separate bowl of soup swimming with greens and more meaty ingredients. No wonder it used to be called Aw’s signature minced pork noodles – Terence had created a noodle dish that was entirely his own – it didn’t look like the typical hawker centre variety and was unlike any other I’ve tasted.

Find out why by clicking the links below:

Delicious Dim Sum!



photo via kai garden facebook

This week our Makan Kaki, Chef Shen Tan of Ownself Make Chef returns to catch up with us & share her latest discovery, which actually comes at the recommendation of a foodie friend of hers via Instagram. And she was happy to report, this discovery did not disappoint! Now, when it comes to a whole menu of delicious delicacies, there’s hardly anyone who doesn’t like dim sum, right? And some of the best Chef Shen has had to date, comes from Kai Garden.

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Kueh-Kueh & Gelato

Yes, Denise is wearing a kueh-print dress for this interview!


New year, new Foodie Friend! Please meet Christopher Tan, an award-winning writer, co oking instructor and photographer, who recently launched a fantastic new book, The Way of Kueh: Savouring & Saving Singapore’s Heritage Desserts.

Essentially, this is his love letter to kueh (pun fully intended!), our collective Singaporean varieties both sweet & savoury, with a hope that people will return to making kueh at home to preserve this waning food heritage. Packed with useful recipes & cooking tips, fascinating interviews with Singapore’s kueh-makers and beautiful colour pictures, Foodies, this is a one book to add to your collection!

The Way of Kueh is the first book to explore and celebrate Singapore’s diverse kueh heritage across all major communities. It aims to inspire and encourage Singaporeans to make and enjoy kueh together with their families and friends, and to celebrate, preserve and progress this rich and meaningful part of our national food heritage. The Way of Kueh is a project supported by the National Heritage Board.

You can get it all good book stores (choose from 2 covers!) and for more, do follow Christopher on his instagram @thewayofkueh.

In our chat today, we talk about the conception of The Way of Kueh, our local kueh culture, heritage, traditions and kueh-makers and what recipes you can expect from the book.



photo: Christopher Tan

Christopher’s first recommendation of the year is a proudly Singaporean gelato shop called Tom’s Palette, known for their superb quality ingredients and unusual flavours. What really appealed to Christopher was the fact that owner Chronos Chan uses no emulsifiers, stabilizers or artificial additives in the making of his mouth-watering gelato. Ingredients are carefully sourced and kept as natural as possible, but what they produce is mind-blowingly good.

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Tantalising Tonkatsu

He’s back! Chef Daniel Tay, who was last here in 2015 during Chinese New Year, returns with more goodies to share. His family bakery, Old Seng Choong, has a newly-opened store at Clarke Quay Central (Eu Tong Sen St), where you can try before you buy! Some of the yummy things on offer include Hae Bee Hiam Pineapple Tarts and cookies in a myriad of local flavours, ranging from Putu Mayam & Gula Melaka to Satay & Cereal Prawn. Take home some delicious Nian Gao, Red Date & Yam Cakes, all in time for Chinese New Year! But for his first recommendation in 3 years, Chef Daniel wants to share his favourite place for Japanese breaded pork dish, Tonkatsu.

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Best of 2017 – Makan Kakis’ Top Ten List


Gluttonous Greetings Everyone & Happy New Year!

2017 saw a whole host of new foodie friends joining our rolling panel of Makan Kakis and along with them came a stupendous slew of new & delicious food recommendations. So as we begin 2018, let’s take a look back at some of the most popular makan places that really caught your attention in 2017. Click on each for details & enjoy!

10. Another Best Contender for Bak Chor Mee?
9. Curry Rice that’s a CUT Above!
8. Firebaked Excellence
7. Geylang Hokkien Mee NOT in Geylang
6. Super Crispy Prata
5. Raw Egg Bak Chor Mee?!
4. Nuts about Pistachio Grill
3. Magnificent Mee Pok
2. Karried Away by Kway Chap
1. Die-Die-Must-Try Fishball & Herh Keow

Just wanna listen to the audio? Click here!

Thank you so much for your support of our tasty little segment on Gold 905 and for helping it grow bigger and better. If you like what you hear on air and what you see here on the blog, do share share share! Here’s to yet another year of yum – may your 2018 be overflowing with the best things to eat and drink – Season’s Eatings!