Jiak Pa Lang Eating House – Delicious Zichar-Inspired Rice Bowls
Jiakpalang(Hokkien for 吃饱人), which when loosely translated means “someone who has eaten his fill”, is a pun on the word chapalang, Singaporean slang for ‘a random mixture of items’. Set up by Chef Nixon Low, this 1 month old eatery serves a mishmash of food items. As they are located near Labrador Park MRT, they mostly see a working crowd clientele and are closed on weekends. If you’re looking for healthy Asian fare, grab a unique salad bowl or rice bowl from Jiakpalang. (We promise: no impending post-lunch food comas!)
They will be launching a new menu with 6 new salad and rice bowl dishes, and are pushing out a dinner menu. While we were here, we tried out their current salad and rice bowl menu, which is only available for lunch as of now.
If you have a sweet tooth, look out for their locally-inspired cakes. They didn’t have many flavours available while we were there, but the banana with caramelized pineapple cake sounds rather interesting.
Also available are their bar bites. While the usual suspects like Crispy Fries ($6) and Spicy Chicken Drumlets ($9) are present on the menu, we spotted some unorthodox snacks on offer. How does Szechuan Calamari with Szechuan Mayo ($9) sound?
Jiakpalang’s signature rice bowl is the Sesame Sous Vide Chicken ($6.90) which is surprisingly one of their most affordable dishes! The manager described it to us as an ‘Ang moh chicken rice’. It comes with a plentiful amount of marinated wood ear (black fungus). However, we felt that the marinate could be more flavourful. Despite chicken breast meat being stereotyped as tough, the sous vide method helped the chicken to become fork-tender. The chicken breast slices were succulent and not at all dry! We could easily cut through the thick chicken slices. Pomegrenate seeds were also mixed in to add a sweet crunch. We felt that it didn’t complement the other ingredients though. The rice bowl is made with brown rice which gives more of a bite and better texture. After being mixed with the onsen egg that sat atop, the rice became creamy and comforting.
We hesitated before ordering the Tempeh and Truffle Mushroom Rice ($7.90) because there isn’t any meat in this dish (this bowl is completely vegetarian). Thankfully we did, because it turned out to be the crowd favourite! The oyster mushrooms were oh-so-juicy and savoury, and when paired with the brown rice, sweet corn kernels and crispy fried tempeh chips, the mix offers an explosion of flavours in your mouth. The truffle oil brings the flavours of the dish up a notch. The broccoli heads, cabbage and boiled carrots on the side were comforting and homey tasting. We would definitely recommend this rice bowl if you’re searching for something simple yet tasty.
We tried the Thai Style Wagyu Beef Salad ($13.90), a full-sized salad that comes with green bell peppers, sweet corn kernels and cashew nuts. This is one of their most popular salad bowls, and is suitable for those who can’t resist a serving of red meat. The salad comes with an egg that we originally thought was a normal hard boiled egg. To our pleasant surprise, the yolk oozed out after we cut into it! It’ll probably be your first time eating RAINBOW-coloured croutons. Modelled after the traditional ice-cream man’s rainbow bread, the croutons here come in pink and green shades. However, they were rather soggy and lacked the usual crisp you would expect. Sliced poached pears and raisins were a refreshing addition. The beef was the star of the dish, and was not tough or chewy. It is cooked via the sous vide method before being drizzled with sweet Thai Chilli sauce. We preferred this sauce over the reduced balsamic in the Cold Smoked Salmon Salad.
Cold Smoked Salmon ($8.90) consists of sour plum cherry tomatoes, citrus fruits and reduced balsamic. The reduced balsamic (balsamic glaze) is definitely a lot more sour compared to the usual balsamic vinegar you get at usual salad shops, and may not suit all palates. The portion of smoked salmon is generous for the price point, and the onsen egg was done to perfection. While this is a refreshing bowl of greens, the sauce was simply too concentrated and strong, therefore overpowering the taste of the other ingredients. We would have preferred a lighter sauce which would have complemented the ingredients better.
Staying true to their ‘chapalang’ concept, Jiak Pa Lang serves Thai Milk Tea ($2) too.
Jiakpalang is an interesting concept that will appeal to Singaporean foodies who can’t decide what to eat. So the next time your colleague tells you he ‘don’t know eat what leh’, bring him here. Jiakpalang will also be launching a new menu and changing some of the sauces that go with the proteins on their current menu, so look forward to that!
Jiak Pa Lang Eating House
Address: 456 Alexandra Road, #01-04/ 06 Fragrance Empire Building Singapore 119962
Opening Hours: 11am to 10pm Monday to Friday. Closed on Weekends.
MissTamChiak.com made anonymous visit and paid its own meal at the stall featured here.
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