It’s the one time of the year that this salty, sweet and savoury grilled meat tastes even more delish. But if you don’t wish to overindulge on this guilty pleasure yet still want a taste of it, or want something extra special than just your normal square slice of sweetmeat, than try these food items that elevate bak kwa beyond its festive snack status.
Bak Kwa Dark Chocolate Mousse Cake, $88, Berthold Delikatessen
Still missing Christmas? Love cake? And can’t live without chocolate? Your wishes are granted: Behold the decadent sin that is the Bak Kwa Dark Chocolate Mousse Cake. Baked by this German delicatessen, it’s only served as an 8-inch cake (meaning, you sooo must share this). Or, if this seems too rich for you, the cafe also serves a more doable Bak Kwa Bagel ($8.80) that comes laden with eggs and ebiko mayo.
Available at Berthold Delikatessen, 13 Stamford Rd, Arcade @ The Capitol Kempinski, #01-84,178906, kempinski.com/en/singapore/the-capitol-singapore/dining/arcade-at-the-capitol-kempinski/berthold-delikatessen. You can order the cake here
Bakkwa Vanilla Gelato, $5.50 (cup)/$16.50 (pint), Bee Cheng Hiang Grillery
Trust bak kwa specialists Bee Cheng Hiang to come up with a dessert that’s creative, yummy and true to its heritage. This cold treat (available at its bistro-slash-flagship store) is said to be creamy, vanilla-ish and packs a bold bak kwa infused flavour even without any visible meat bits. Perfect to serve to the kids after the home reunion dinner and watch their eyes light up in surprise.
Or, if you prefer something savoury, try its bistro’s new item, Cheesy Bakkwa Toasties ($8); shredded Mozzarella cheese, mince pork bak kwa and pork floss, all stuffed between slices of warm brown toast. Best for reunion brekkie and brunch!
Bak Kwa Flavour Potato Chips, $1.40 (60g), Jack ’n Jill
If you’ve missed out on buying bak kwa (too expensive, too lazy, sold out, etc.), you can make do with this super-affordable packet of bak kwa seasoning-flavoured chips instead. Though not new (it was launched here a few years ago), it still makes a decent snack for the festive season. Warning: It can be a tad salty to wolf down at one go.
Available at supermarkets, grocers, convenience stores and minimarts.
Bakkwa Fries, $6, New Eastern Kim Tee
Move aside French fries and spam fries, a new, big fry’s in town: bak kwa fries. The idea’s so simple but oh-so-sinful; the heritage bak kwa brand’s signature minced pork, sliced into thick strips, then deep fried. While it’s best to buy them at Kim Tee’s outlets at Serangoon Garden and Chinatown so you get them fresh, hot and juicy, you can also order them online for delivery.
Only available at Kim Tee @ Serangoon Garden (Flagship Store), 22 Maju Avenue, 556695; Kim Tee@ Chinatown (Premium Shop), 22 Sago Street, 059019; and online at kimtee.com.sg; www.facebook.com/NEKIMTEE
Bak Kwa Fried Rice, $6.50 (with Osmanthus Barley set), Toast Box
Why this familiar festive bestseller is making a comeback at local cafe chain, Toast Box: bak kwa bits, cooked with egg fried rice. So simple, so comforting, so tasty. ’Nuff said.
Available at all Toast Box outlets except at those located at Singapore Press Holdings News Centre, Singapore Cruise Centre and Tan Tock Seng Hospital. toastbox.com.sg; www.facebook.com/toastboxsingapore
Bak Kwa Pumpkin Kueh, $28, Slake
What’s in this contemporary Asian cuisine bar and kitchen’s take on this kueh: mushroom, scallop, butternut squash, carrot, seafood and of course, pumpkin and spicy bak kwa bits. Or, if you prefer something healthier, try its Bak Kwa Crispy Rice Bars ($20) that comes in a pack of 5 that are also studded with spicy bak kwa.
Prosperity Bak Kwa Pasta ($18), PAZZION Café x Bee Cheng Hiang
Looks like collaborations have hit the Lunar New Year food scene, too; the cafe extension of footwear retailer PAZZION have tied up with popular bak kwa brand Bee Cheng Hiang to come up with an East-meets-West food concept. Imagine strips of caramelised pork bak kwa, placed lovingly over garlic al dente aglio olio, with a dash of chilli flakes to heat up this fusion pasta dish. Now stop imagining (and drooling) and go dine at the cafe.
Featured image: PAZZION Café