Last week, I visited Maxwell Food Centre to try out Tian Tian Hainanese Chicken Rice. I was also very keen to tickle my tastebuds with Zhen Zhen Porridge but because of the horrendously long queue, I chose to wait and by the time I finished my chicken rice (whose queue was also very long), the stall had closed and I was left for home feeling half sated. This time round,I was determined to go straight for the porridge and yu sheng (raw fish salad). And after queuing for a good 45 minutes, it was time to tuck in.
Zhen Zhen Porridge Yu Sheng ($2/3/4/5) is a healthy combination of raw fish slices, spring onion, deep fried shallots, toasted sesame seed, julienned ginger, with a good serving of limes for that zesty addition. I called for the $4 portion and the portion was huge for such an affordable price. The fish was fresh and the lime juice made the salad tasty. Crisp shallots gave the good crunch in between while the toasted sesame seeds provided texture, presentation and a hint of earthy goodness.
For mum I ordered the Fish Slices Porridge with Century Egg ($3). After taking the first sip, I realised that the main draw here for the queue is the thick tasty congee that was almost pastelike together with generous ingredients, variety of toppings and the very affordable price. $3 got me a huge serving that was satisfying till the last bit and the slices of song fish together with chunks of century egg made the porridge all the more hearty to enjoy. One might note that the porridge is not grainy but instead the gooey type that would probably make you want to sit back and go ahhhh…
Myself, I had the Fish Belly Porridge ($3). Just as tasty, it was delicious enough for me.
Maxwell Food Centre is spacious and their ceiling is so high and well aerated. Nice.
When it comes to food, it is surprising that from such a wide spectrum of flavours and dishes, perhaps the best dish is one that strikes the closest to the heart. For many, it could even be that plain bowl of congee which they have been eating since young. Zhen Zhen Porridge with its affordable price, generous toppings and ingredients, and a tasty back to basics recipe, is the main draw for customers and regulars here. And with 20 over years of porridge making history, its hard not to like this stall. Period.
|Zhen Zhen Porridge
Maxwell Food Centre
Closed on Tuesdays