Brothers Rojak @ Clementi – I Should Have Ordered Two Plates!
Rojak is one the hawker dish I seldom eat. Because the one near my house (Soon Heng Rojak) is forever long queue, the one in Whampoa (Hoover) is a little out of the way, and the thought of eating thick and gooey prawn paste doesn’t quite appeal to me. Having said that, I do have a list of rojak places that I have always wanted to visit. One of them is Brothers Rojak.
It’s really hard to say which is the best rojak. Some likes the youtiao to be crispy, some likes the prawn paste to be thick, some prefers it to be not so wet, some prefers to sprinkle with lots of crushed peanuts… As one of my friends said, the food we love is based on the memories/perception we had of that dish. This is so true.
For me, a good plate of rojak needs the usual motley of cut fruits (pineapple, guava, cucumber) with youtiao and taupok, that are nicely coated with homemade shrimp paste (hei gou). The shrimp paste doesn’t have to be exceptionally thick as I don’t think I can finish it all by myself. But it has got to be rich, yet wet enough to coat the ingredients and balanced enough for me to finish the plate. I am a difficult customer, right?
I think I have a new found love, and that is Brothers Rojak in Clementi. It is quite common to see a snaking long queue at this small stall waiting to tuck into the savoury delights. It has got almost all the elements I needed in the rojak. The sweet-and-savoury concoction complements the dose of freshly-cut fruits. The tau pok and youtiao were given a quick toast before serving, even though I prefer the youtiao to be more crispy than what I had that day. The key ingredient of rojak is the sticky sweet and slightly pungent fermented shrimp paste. The sauce is dark and flavourful, and lifted by the flora notes of ginger torch bud. Lime is added into the sauce for a more refreshing finish.
Of course, a good plate of rojak lie in the hands of the rojak seller as well. It’s quite entertaining to see the brother skilfully tossed the rojak in his big bowl (and yet never lose his smile). The shrimp paste is wet enough to coat the ingredients evenly. Crushed peanuts are sprinkled all over for that extra crunch. The acidity from lime helps to make this rojak more palatable but not too acidic, I can easily finish the whole plate myself!
Brothers Rojak does not come with a lot of ingredients unless you chose to add more ingredients at a little cost. Prices start from $3 to $8 with additional cost for add-ons like stuffed taupok (taupok pau), century egg and pressed cuttlefish. If you are packing away, the sauce will be packed separately so the you tiao and taupok does not turn soggy by the time you get home.
Address: Blk 449 Clementi Avenue 3 #01-211, Singapore 120449
Opening Hours: Mon to Sat 11am – 930pm. Closed on Sun
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