There are a few versions of beef noodles in Singapore with the existence of multiple Chinese dialect groups on our small island. The two variants that I am most familiar with are the Teochew and Hainanese versions.
I have fond memories of having the soupy Teochew version at Jalan Berseh Food Centre with my Dad when I was younger. There was no option to have dry noodles, only choice of either thick Beehoon or Kway Teow. Sadly, the stall at the basement of the food centre had ceased operations years back with the passing of the stall owner. I haven’t found a Teochew version as good as that in Singapore just yet.
As for the Hainanese version, I do have a few favourites and one of which I always go back to is Blanco Court Traditional Hainan Beef Noodles at their North Bridge Road Food Centre stall.
Hainanese beef noodles comes in both soup and dry versions. The dry noodles are usually served in a rich and starchy gravy made from beef stock, black soy sauce and sweet potato starch. As for the soup version, the beef stock is generally dark and rich from hours of brewing with Chinese herbs, spices (sometimes) and beef.
If you are not one for innards, do just go for the Beef Noodle (SGD$4) version with just slices of tender beef. I always order the SGD$6 version with tribes and tendons, even upsizing it with extra $2 tendons for the collagen 😀 Maybe because I am pretty regular at the stall, the stall owners are always friendly and warm!
Look at that glistening dark gravy topping the noodles with loads of beef slices, beef tripe, beef briskets and beef tendons! The garnishes are springs onions and salted vegetables in the Hainanese version and there’s also ground peanuts that you can add to the noodles but I am not a fan of nuts so there’s none in the picture.
The gravy with perfectly cooked noodles have a silky texture on the palate, overwhelming with beef flavours. The chewy tripe and succulent tendons add textures to the overall taste of the noodles and just simply yummy. Beef balls though not handmade were decent but I can do without those.
The chilli sauce is spicy and zesty, and you got to add cincalok (fermented shrimp) to it, it’s somehow invisible in this picture but I always add it. Cincalok is made from shrimps brined in salt with a unique aroma and taste – salty and sour at the same time. It balances the spiciness in the chilli and perfect to dip those juicy beef briskets, tripe and tendons in.
You can ask for a bigger bowl of soup like I always do as the beef soup is ridiculously rich with beefiness and herbs – totally delicious to savour together with the dry noodles.
The beef noodles from the North Bridge Road Food Centre is definitely memorable and I will always have sudden cravings to have a bowl of that beef goodness. They do have a branch newly opened early 2016 at Guillemard Road opened by their son who have learnt the ropes. I have been there once to taste-see if the standard is similar but I didn’t enjoy the meal as much and it was pricier as well. I have not returned to see if they have improved as the location isn’t as convenient. Meanwhile I will satisfy my beef noodles craving at the North Bridge Road Food Centre.
Blanco Court Traditional Hainan Beef Noodles
Stall: 861 North Bridge Road, North Bridge Road Food Market #01-93, Singapore 198783
Branch: 92 Guillemard Road, Singapore 399716
65) 6348 1708