Saturday, August 18, 2012

Muscat Street Ramadan Bazaar 2012


If you don't know, Ramadan is a period in the Islamic calendar in which healthy Muslims have to fast from Dawn to Dusk every day leading up to Hari Raya. This is also the time where Muslims will prepare for Hari Raya celebrations. Ramadan will not be complete without Ramadan bazaars which are basically a bigger version of regular neighbourhood night markets. In today's article, I'll be giving you a tour of the Ramadan Bazaar at Muscat Street which is near the famous Sultan Mosque and Haji Lane.


Unfortunately, getting here was not really simple because there was only one bus stop along North Bridge Road plus the MRT station is really really far away from the bazaar. Thankfully, there was one straight bus service from my house all the way to the North Bridge Road bus stop and that's how I got to the bazaar. The Muscat Street bazaar has numerous stalls selling food and drinks. Some of the stalls sell food that's never before seen while some sold regular food that's available at almost every bazaar like the famous Ramly burgers.


This was the first stall I passed by after reaching this bazaar. This stall sold several finger foods and as you can see, there's the fried banana fritters on the right side of the picture which are a favourite delicacy among the Malay community in Singapore. I think the finger food on the bottom right hand corner may look a little disgusting but it's actually fish crackers. Fish crackers are flavoured with fish flavouring and it's all deep fried so it will have that crispy crunch. It may look disgusting but once you take a bite, you can't stop eating it. Just don't inhale the smell deeply. I'm not really sure what snacks were those on the left side of the picture though so apologies for not knowing what they were.


Unknown Spiced Fried Dough Balls S$2 for one paper bag
Here are some more snacks from the same stall. Right at the bottom of the picture are snacks that were really delicious. I don't know what was the name of it but I do know that they're actually small little fried pieces of dough balls which have been spiced and they taste really good. It's S$2 for a small bag that comes with some raw chilis which are supposed to be eaten with the fried dough balls. Other than that, there were some cheesy sausages which are also popular among Ramadan bazaars and the rest were other kinds of fried finger foods that I have never heard of. Oh and sorry for the out of focus picture of the fried dough ball.

 

After checking out the finger foods stall, it's time for me to check out this stall which in my opinion, is probably one of the best Ramadan bazaar stalls I have ever come across. This stall sells Satay Burger which is basically a burger with Satay ingredients in it. They claim that their Satay Burgers are famous. Since it attracted a lot of people, I decided to join in the queue and try their famous burger.



The way they prepared the burgers were unique. It was prepared a little bit different than how Ramly Burgers were prepared. The chicken and beef patties were actually pressed on with some kind of press machine. The machine cooks the patties and after a few minutes, they took the patties out and placed them on a grill as seen from the picture above. The other lady took out some vegetables and placed them into the packaging so it's ready to be served to the customers after the patties and buns have been added.

Chicken Satay Burger S$5

This is how the Satay Burger looks like. The burger was quite slippery and the patty wanted to come out of the buns so it looked like this when I took a picture of it. Just like regular Satay, the burger was filled with various Satay ingredients like cucumbers and onions. The Chicken Satay burger was marinated like regular Satay and the whole burger was smothered with Satay peanut sauce. The entire burger was delicious, juicy and it's a really unique twist to one of Singapore's favourite foods, the Satay. Although the price was quite steep at S$5.


At the same stall, they also sell this huge hot dogs called Big John's Sausage. The Big John's Sausage is a hot dog that's been smothered with lots of delicious Satay peanut sauce along with copious amounts of veggies in the bun. The sausages are not those small sausages that you find at regular hot dog places. These sausages are filled with lots of cheese and they're huge. It's the biggest sausage I have ever tried. What's cool was that the sausages were cooked on this roller grill which rolls and cooks the sausages evenly.

Big John's Sausage S$5
This is how the magic hot dog looks like. It may look the most disgusting food you have ever seen but when you take a bite into this hot dog, you will forget about what you have said earlier. The sausage was juicy with lots of cheese oozing out when you take a bite. For the sauce, it was amazing. It has that peanut flavour all around and it really goes well with the huge cheese sausage. The bun was fluffy as usual and the veggies were hidden from view. Unfortunately, this stall can only be found during Ramadan. It's too bad that they don't have their own hawker stall or food court stall which can really attract even more people.



Over at this stall, they sold a wide variety of packaged Malay food ranging from Malay Chicken Rice to Malay Fried Noodles. There were so many varieties to choose from. I got a packet of Chicken Rice from the stall and took it home so that I could eat it at the comfort of my own home. There were other packaged Malay dishes I wanted to buy too but I changed my mind after that. Apart from the Malay dishes, there were also fried snacks sold at this stall.

Malay Chicken Rice S$4
I bought a pack of chicken rice at the stall for a hefty amount of S$4. It's quite expensive for a pack of chicken rice especially when you can get it at other places for a lesser price. Anyway, the stall is at a bazaar so I guess rental rates may be the reason why the dish is priced that way. I actually opted for no 'toppings' to be added into the pack like cucumbers and tomatoes because I'm not really interested in them. When I came back home to eat it, unfortunately, the chicken was soggy and a little bit tasteless. However, it was a little bit on the thick side plus, I like the rice. The rice has lots of chicken stock in it and it was on the salty side. For S$4, it's quite steep but like I said, it's just a temporary makeshift Ramadan stall.


Over to the other side, there was a stall selling sweet and colourful drinks which sold a variety of flavours. The drinks were called Air Kathira which were made from syrup, sugar, water, Kathira seeds and basil seeds. They're very refreshing and it comes it different flavours. This drink is 'limited edition' mainly because they can be found only during the Ramadan period. I also like the transparent bottles that come with it.

Air Kathira (Bandung Flavour) S$5 for three bottles (I think)
I got the Bandung flavour of Air Kathira and it's definitely refreshing. Basically, it's just like the typical Bandung drink that you find in hawker centres and food courts but it's a little bit different because there's basil seeds and Kathira seeds inside. I forgot the price of one bottle though but I think it's S$5 for three bottles. By the time Ramadan is over, you can't get this drink anymore.


Just beside the stall that sold the colourful varieties of Air Kathira, was a stall that sold colourful varieties of Malay Kueh. Malay Kueh is a popular Malay dessert that's sweet and they're mainly made from sugar and coconut milk. Some Malay Kueh have some kind of white-coloured base that's made with rice paste and on the top are coloured and sweet. They come in a wide variety of tastes and unlike food that's available at the other stalls, Malay Kueh can be found all year round at various Malay food stalls and hawker centre stalls. Unfortunately, I forgot to take a picture of the Malay Kueh that I bought but if you want to know, it's the one with the green top and white bottom. Plus, it's sweet and it's delicious.


There were also more stalls than the ones featured in this post but I did not have the time (and money) to check out and buy food from those stalls. Some include the signature Ramly Burger stall, a burger stall that originates from Istanbul called Wetburger (the stall with the longest line of people queing up), a Putu Piring stall and so much more. Unfortunately, if you are reading this right now, the Ramadan bazaar is already over and you can't find those stalls anymore. Not to worry though because Ramly Burger stalls will always be a staple at night markets and there is still next year's Ramadan to check out the bazaar again. Also when I left Muscat Street, I saw these beautiful artworks at the entrance of the street.

The Muscat Street Ramadan Bazaar was a great bazaar and it's a place that I will go to once a year during the period of Ramadan. Lots of great food can be found and lots of great food concepts can also be found here at the bazaar. Do check out my next few posts in which I'll talk about other Ramadan bazaars complete with photos of the stalls and all the food that I purchased at the featured bazaars.

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