If not for social media websites such as Burpple or Instagram, I think my life would be one boring tasteless journey. Because if not for them two, we would never have discovered some seriously sublime braised pork trotters from Seng Kee Bak Kut Teh in Chong Boon Market & Food Centre. This afternoon, my Dad needed to visit a bicycle shop nearby and our hungry selves prevented us from exploring further than the food centre just across the road. A quick Google search saw many recommendations for a particular BKT stall. Never one to resist pork, we made a beeline for it. At the stall, there was so much activity going on and the lack of menu rendered us lost. So my Dad and I stood aside to watch many bowls of Teochew-style BKT, Braised Pork Knuckle, and braised Tau Kee (beancurd skin) with salted vegetables served up; we followed suit. For $17 we got ourselves a feast!
When ordering we learned from the unbelievably kind and good-natured Uncle at the stall that we could choose between the Lean or Fatty braised pork knuckle. Thank goodness my Dad quickly said lean. If not for his health-consious self, we would have missed out on this huge piece of knuckle with the most tender meat hanging on to the bone. Plus the aromatic sauce quickly got us addicted!
When my chopsticks first pieced the leg, it met with little resistance and the meat so casually pulled apart. I was impressed right there and then! But when I bit into it, it was first-bite magic. I forgot all other pork knuckles as the deliciousness overwhelmed me.
As for the namesake-BKT itself. Not that it was bad but the broth was in desperate need of more seasoning. I like my Teochew-style BKT sneeze-inducing peppery. That, only Rong Chen in Sin Ming has achieved with aplomb so far. However the uber thick but tender small pork rib was still pretty impressive with a slight “QQ” (crunch) that could be felt on first bite. On my next visit, I will remember to throw in to the soup the little saucer of black soy sauce and red-cut chilli.
The braised Tau Kee (beancurd skin) and Salted Vegetables may have also been in a dark thick sauce but was markedly different from the Braised Pork Knuckles. ANOTHER aromatic but richer thick sauce, we liked the extra effort that went into preparing a completely different stew.
My Mum is not into BKT (I will never understand why) so she went a few stalls down and ordered an equally-highly recommended but anaemic-looking Kway Chap. For $10.50, this mammoth plate was filled with SO MANY pieces of fresh-tasting small pork intestines, firm beancurd, fishcake (yay!), pork stomach, thin strips of pork belly and…
Tongue! Oh holy pork was this pretty heavenly! YUMMMM
Seng Kee BKT surprised us in the best way possible. Good affordable food prepared with so much passion and effort. There were many big metal pots of goodness bubbling away in the little stall. This was hawker food at its finest!
Many dishes such as the large steamed fish and even the lean braised pork knuckle were sold out before 1pm so go early or be disappointed.