Saturday, September 15, 2007

Kim Huat Fried Fish Soup

I was in Chinatown last evening and decided to hunt for some good food at Maxwell Market & Hawker Centre. I have earlier visited "Xin Yuan Ji" Sliced Fish Soup, and have since been endlessly praising it its fried fish soup. This time, I visited the famous "Kim Huat" at Maxwell Market & Hawker Centre to try our their specialty, which of course is either their fried/sliced fish beehoon (rice vermicelli) or fish head beehoon. I usually don't believe in queuing up for my hawker food, but I just got to try this!

Just look at that queue! It just continues to pile up! The queue moves rather swiftly due to the efficient pre-ordering system handled by the young funky stall attendant. The only times when there there are chokes, are when people start ordering 'big' orders.
From S$4 or S$5, I decided to let the young chap decide for me, as I made my usual request of mixing fried fish and sliced fish. My meal added up to S$5.30 including rice. First impression was not that fantastic as everything has sunken into the soup and it looked like a mess. But I was shortly proven wrong.

Although the fried shallots were added last, they quickly soaked up the soup. Digging deep into the huge bowl, I began fishing up seaweed, vegetables, tomatoes, ginger slices, sliced fish and fried fish chunks.

We all know that fried fish soup usually comes in carnation milk added into the clear soup. Kim Huat did the same. The soup looks rather oily, as seen from the small oil rings floating on the soup. The yellowish colour is probably due to the seaweed or ginger, which gave the soup a distinctive taste. After taking a sip of the soup, I paused to play around with the liquid in my mouth. I immediately gulp down and spoonful. It is FANTASTIC! I believe that no alcohol is added to the soup, unlike Xin Yuan Ji's, but the Kim Huat does not shy in taste at all!
I put a piece of sliced fish into my mouth and began tasting it all over my taste buds. I did not detect any 'fishy' taste, which suggest freshness of the fish. However, I also did not find any particular 'sweetness' in the fish. The fish was rather well-cooked and thus the texture being rather dry.
The fried fish came in thin chunks instead of fat chunks. The fried fish was fragrant and despite the dry texture, it went well with a bit of the tasty soup. I would order the fried fish over the sliced fish, should I visit again.

I recommend the fried fish soup or beehoon. The soup is fabulous and rich in taste. I find it a hard choice to make between Xin Yuan Ji and Kim Huat, as both serves a mean bowl of fish fish soup that leaves you craving to return. However, if I were to queue for either one, I would probably be more willing to queue for Xin Yuan Ji. Nevertheless, if travelling to Serangoon central is rather out of the world for you, you can settle for Kim Huat. I am sure you will finish every drop of soup and leave with a big smile of content on your face!

Kim Huat can be located at Maxwell Market & Hawker Centre along South Bridge Road,directly opposite the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple & Museum.


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