The upcoming 50 Cents Fest is truly the marriage between two of Singaporean’s true loves – food and all things cheap! Happening on 29 and 30 July, get ready to be transported back to the ’80s when Chinatown Food Street brings back local heritage dishes for diners to enjoy for as little as 50 cents. Check out our guide on some of the lesser known refreshments that you just can’t afford to miss out on, along with the best ways to soak up the nostalgic atmosphere.
This dish, famously dubbed after rickshaw pullers of old who traversed the streets of Singapore, comprises of Hokkien noodles in a pork broth topped off with fried garlic and shallots. This tasty creation only costs 50 cents.
UFO (Fried Oyster Cake)
The fried oyster cake, more affectionately known as the ‘unidentified fried object’, gets its name from its unique rounded base that comes about as a result of being fried using a ladle. This savoury treat contains oysters, prawns, Chinese parsley and peanuts. It is also able to stay crispy on the outside while being deliciously soft on the inside, even after being friend. This treat costs only 50 cents!
Paper Wrapped Chicken
This simple yet brilliant Cantonese creation was founded by Union farm in 1953. The technique used to paper wrap the chicken allows the essence and aroma of chicken to be trapped inside. The full flavour is unleashed onto your taste buds only when you take a bite. You’ll be able to grab some Paper wrapped chicken at only 50 cents.
A traditional Hakka delicacy, this dish is believed to signify wealth and prosperity and were made to mimic the abacus beads due to their people’s niftiness with money. It consists of rounded yam balls with dimpled centres friend together with condiments such as diced prawns, cuttlefish and even mushrooms. The best part? A bowl of this will only set you back a dollar.
Red Glutinous Wine Chicken
The name of this dish may seem like a mouthful, but we assure you that the flavour of this particular Hakka cuisine will make you feel otherwise. Do not let the blood red colour of the chicken scare you off! This one dollar delicacy is marinated in red glutinous rice wine with special seasoning, thus explaining its very unique look.
Satay Bee Hoon
The Satay Bee Hoon was crafted by the Teochew immigrants in Singapore. This yummy dish combines bee hoon with key ingredients such as beansprout, cuttlefish and even tau pok. Of course it wouldn’t be complete without a generous topping of chilli-based peanut gravy. Get yourself a plate for only a dollar!
Ma La Baby Lobster
Did someone say seafood? Indulge in baby lobster cooked the Cantonese way at two dollars for four, only at The 50 Cents Fest. Cooked and marinated in a ton of delicious spices, this particular delicacy is not for the faint-hearted! The spicy but flavourful lobster flesh is sure to stir fond memories of Singapore past.
Mini Wa Ko Kueh
These little delicacies are also known as steamed rice cakes and are sure to bring back fond memories of your childhood. They are made from fermented rice and rice flour and usually eaten together with shredded coconut and orange sugar. A pair of these colourful treats will cost you only 50 cents!
You might’ve heard about this unique combination of grass jelly and soya bean milk at your neighbourhood hawker drink store, but nobody’s really sure why its named after the late King of Pop, perhaps after his song, ‘Black Or White’? Anyway, there’s no denying how delicious this drink is, especially in our hot weather – two cups of Michael Jackson at The 50 Cents Fest will only set you back a total of 50 cents!
Ah, this drink brings us back to the good ol’ days. The uncle or aunty usually displayed this yellow-coloured delight in a large clear container filled with ice. It would then be scooped out into a plastic cup using a large metal ladle. Sounds familiar? Get yourself a cuppa or two for only 50 cents!
This old school dessert is sure to be a hit, especially amongst the younger generation who may have missed out on this experience growing up! This sweet treat is essentially a palm-sized ball of ice that is drizzled in different kinds of syrup, wrapped in plastic for you to enjoy from the palm of your hand. Each ice ball is going for 50 cents.
Of course, such a festival wouldn’t be complete without traditional games and performances! Take a trip down memory lane by playing hopscotch with some friends or enjoy Xin Yao performances by young and talented Singaporeans. You can even buy freshly baked biscuits from a traditional ’80s shop while catching some of the many performances available throughout the day.
The 50 Cent Food Fest will be held at Chinatown Food Street, Smith Street, Singapore 050335 on 29 July (Saturday, 12pm – 11pm) and 30 July (Sunday, 11am – 11pm)
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