Xuan Miao Vegetarian – Vegetarian Ban Mian in a Food Court
With the popularity of vegetarian and vegan diets, lots of hawker food options have been closed off to our vegetable loving friends. Fret not, you can now bring your vegetarian AND vegan friends to Xuan Miao Vegetarian for hawker favourites such as chicken rice, banmian and even bat kut teh!
We tried the U-Mian Dry ($6.50), Banmian Soup ($6) and the Bat Kut Teh Soup ($7). All of the items here come with fried vegetarian fish maw, mock meat slices, and a generous portion of chinese spinach (amaranth).
The U-Mian Dry ($6.50) has its noodles separated from the ingredients and comes with a blob of xiang chun sauce, a type sauce made with Chinese toon leaves. It coated the noodles evenly after a few tosses and has a strong garlicky taste, which some may find too overwhelming. Black sauce which had more savoury than sweet notes sealed the deal the for us, complementing the xiang chun perfectly.
If you can take a slight spice, do request for chilli oil to be added to your bowl of dry noodles as the noodles can get a little dry after being left out for some time. *Note that it contains garlic*
While the soup may taste a little bland for some, rest assured that you’re getting in your five a day with the amount of chinese spinach (amaranth) in the bowl! Filled to the brim with vegetables and accompanying ingredients, you’d wonder if you’re ordering noodles with a side of vegetables, or vegetables with a side of noodles. Hmm… No complaints though!
The Banmian soup ($6) surprised us as the noodles texture is similar to kuay teow. Instead of being opaque like our usual banmian noodles, these were ever so slightly translucent.
The portion honestly looks rather intimidating. It comes in a larger bowl since the load of veggies are included in the same bowl as the noodles. This wasn’t as satisfying as the dry version, since the xiang chun and black sauce were absent, leaving the flavours almost bland with none of the tasty goodness to cut through the soup.
Bak Kut Teh ($7) is one of those dishes that two camps of people can never seem to agree on. We have the Teochew camp that prefers the clear peppery soup, and the Hokkien camp that lives for the darker herbal broth. Its surprising to find a vegetarian version of bak kut teh, as the name translates directly into ‘meat bone tea’.
The herbal camp will rejoice in this case, as the bak kut teh here had no peppery taste whatsoever. While we found it disconcerting to drink bak kut teh without huge chunks of pork bones floating in the soup, the absence of jelat-ness from the fat-laden soup that usually kicks in after half a bowl was a welcome change.
The mock meat was different from the ones in the U-mian and Ban Mian, and looked unsettlingly like the real deal. However, it tastes worlds apart from actual pork meat. I would recommend if you’re looking for a healthier choice, but you’re better off getting some non-vegetarian bak kut teh if you’re craving for something heavier.
With long queues during peak hours, Xuan Miao Vegetarian has proven that Vegan food need not be boring and bland. While it might not taste anything like their non-vegetarian originals, you can rest assured that you’re taking one step in the right direction for your health and the environment. Your food might take between 10-15mins to arrive, so grab a seat and keep waiting for the buzzer to beep!
*Other branches in Tampines Mall and Sengkang Compass One.
Xuan Miao Vegetarian
Address: Paya Lebar Road, #B1-51, Singapore 409051 Paya Lebar Square Canteen, Store 3
Opening Hours: Monday-Friday 12pm to 9.30pm, Open Daily
MissTamChiak.com made anonymous visit and paid its own meal at the stall featured here.
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