Engineers Explain: Their Favourite Local Food

By Engine Room Posted 9mth(s) ago Reading Time: A few minutes

We’re a true foodie nation, here in Singapore. It’s not just because good, inexpensive food is always within arm’s reach, but we just love talking about food. So, in honour of Singapore’s 55th birthday, we speak to two engineers and self-confessed foodies to find out where they get their favourite local food fix!

The Ultimate Comfort Food: Feng Feng Hainananese Chicken Rice

According to Alvis Cheong, Process Engineer at GlobalFoundries by day and chicken rice connoisseur by night, the hallmark of what makes a good serving of chicken rice is how succulent the chicken meat is. Being the tough food critic that he is, he makes sure to put this to the test by ordering the toughest part every time - chicken breast.

After years of searching, Alvis finally found the perfect plate of chicken rice over at 304 Woodlands Street. Luckily, it’s only a 5-minute ride on the GlobalFoundries shuttle bus that takes him and his colleagues to Marsiling MRT, which means he can sink his teeth into the savoury treat whenever the craving hits.

So, what makes Feng Feng’s chicken rice so perfect? Alvis believes it’s down to three things - firstly, the rice, which at first glance, looks simple. But take a closer look and you’ll find that the grains are not clumped together, well-oiled and cooked to that perfect al-dente texture that we all know and love. Next is the chicken meat, which even the chicken breast, despite being renowned as the “driest part of the chicken”, is tender and juicy, making each bite a pleasurable experience. Finally, it’s topped off with the sauce - which has “just the right amount of umami-ness”. An explosion of flavours in every bite. 

But it’s not just how fragrant the rice is, or even how juicy the chicken is, that keeps bringing Alvis back. It’s the feeling of familiarity and comfort associated with it – derived from team lunches to  welcome treats for  new colleagues. After all, the best meals are enjoyed in the company of friends.

“No matter how much things will change in the future, we can be assured that Singapore will always be a familiar, comforting plate of chicken rice for all of us”.  

Find it at: 304 Woodlands Street 31, #01-125

A Synergy of Ingredients: Yong Tau Foo

Zhang Zhao was genuinely stumped when asked about her favourite local dish. Especially so when you’re spoilt for lunch choices every day. Micron Technology Inc’s unique cafeteria, located within their newly expanded wafer fabrication facility in Woodlands, dishes out up to seven different cuisines in a single meal-time - ranging from authentic hawker fare to handcrafted beverages and cakes from Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf (CBTL). Fun fact: this CBTL outlet is exclusively for Micron employees and is the only one in Singapore that is not open to the general public. 

Of all these, the Metrology Engineer’s favourite local lunch dish at Micron’s cafeteria is Yong Tau Foo. Typically, a soup dish containing several ingredients like fish cake, bean curd and vegetables, these are then paired with a carbohydrate of your choice - usually rice or noodles. At Micron, you don’t need to stress over which seven ingredients to pick. The dish comes with a set of predefined ingredients, including hotdog, fish ball, eggplant and fried bean curd stuffed with fish paste. 

The twist? It’s served with curry, instead of soup. For Zhang Zhao, the curry really adds depth with its strong flavour and spices, believing that “Yong Tau Foo only works as a synergy of ingredients, soup and a choice of carbohydrates. Individual ingredients, if eaten on their own, are quite lackluster. But if I had to choose my favourite ingredient, it would have to be the deep-fried bean curd stuffed with fish paste. It pairs really well with the curry, soaking up all of its strong flavour”.

So, what we’re hearing is… at Micron, not only do we get to choose from a wide range of dishes without ever having to step out of the office, but they’re also delicious and authentic!

Find it at: 1 North Coast Drive (note: Micron’s cafeteria is not open to the general public. A good reason to apply to work there, perhaps?)

As Singaporeans, we’re all self-confessed foodies at heart - we’ll willingly trek to the most ulu parts of Singapore to get a taste of the best chicken wings or char kway teow. Now, imagine if you had all this amazing food a literal stone’s throw away from your desk that you could enjoy every day in the company of your work fam. We don’t know about you, but that sounds like a pretty good #werkperk to us! 

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