15 February 2010

Comfort Food

I am sure everyone has a comfort food or sorts. Some yearn for chocolate, others go for ice cream. Even a couple of girls I know *wink wink* craves the pearly white splendour of the steaming white rice.

Me? Well, my is a little unusual and may even make a few of you roll your eyes.

So what is it?

It's fried rice with curry gravy. Not just fried rice but fried rice with curry gravy.

I discovered this "dish" way back in 1981 where I was in Primary Four. I studied in Catholic High School (Primary School Section 小学部) back then and Primary Four was the only year for me where my classes are held in the Secondary School section (中学部) across the opposite side of Queen Street where The Church of St Peter & St Paul stood (and still standing till this very day).
It was recess time and everyone headed to the tuckshop (we don't call it canteen or cafeteria back in the day then. We ish old skool.).

So there was this stall run by the rice stall auntie selling char siew rice and fried rice. Then next to the counter there is this pot of curry gravy for us to pour curry gravy to our purchases.

I was intrigued by the fact that the other boys were all greedily scooping and pouring the curry gravy on anything. Yes, curry gravy even on char siew rice.

My curiosity got the better of me as I helped myself to the ladle and scooped two ladle-full of the curry goodness. Why 2 ladle-full and not 1 nor 3? I have no idea, I saw the other kids scooped two ladles of it and I just followed lor. What do I know? I was only 10 years old!

The taste was just heavenly and I was hooked ever since.

Fast forward to my National Service days and the year was 1990. I just finished 3 miserable months of Basic Military Service (BMT) and was posted to my new unit. Food back on Pulau Tekong was terrible. Rice were burned, and the kangkong vegetables were so salty, it was as if they washed their vegetables in sea water in order to conserve fresh water and seasoning.

Fortunately, our meal times were so short, that nobody from my Company actually have time to even sit down to eat. We swallow our food as we walked from the serving station to the washing area. Yes, it was that rushed. We didn't need to sit down as we were eating so fast that by the time, we reached the washing area, we would have already gobbled up every morsel of food in our pathetic steel trays.

3 months later and I was posted to my active unit where I served out the rest of my NS days.

I remembered very clearly my first day. I didn't know anyone there as I was the lone private posted to that particular unit. It was utterly sianz to the max.

The only joy I received was to know that eating in the cookhouse was optional as we are free to head over to the canteen for our meals, which I was more than glad to pay as opposed to the free cookhouse food catered for every soldier.

I ate fried rice with curry gravy for 5 consecutive days of lunch AND dinner.

The rest of the camp who were also checking me, the new guy out, thought I was some weirdo!
So what is your comfort food?

p.s. I tried looking for pictures of Fried Rice in Curry Gravy to put up in this entry but to no avail. I guess I was right in the sense that this recipe was tad too bizarre for most.

Image Credits:;
- Voxeros

1. Hamie left...
Monday, 15 February 2010 11:50 am
i love Canto soups after a darn tired day. or any day. too bad i'm not a Canti (LOL) else me mom would know how to make Canto soup. sibei sian. hokkien donch acknowledge the good of long-hours soups siah.

2. Pam left...
Monday, 15 February 2010 5:50 pm
at the moment, anything that reminds me of Sg is comfort food... from prata (and the thin watery curry!), to chicken rice, to wanton mee, to mee pok, to mee goreng.... heck even the A&W root beer makes me think fondly of home.

3. JayWalk left...
Monday, 15 February 2010 6:01 pm :: 
Hamie:: Yeah the cantonese are famous for their 煲汤 and 糖水.

Pam: Very soon I may end up to be in a similar situation where any Singaporean food would be good enough. Le sigh.

4. Pam left...
Tuesday, 16 February 2010 6:51 pm
oh??! pray tell why??

5. Ruok left...
Tuesday, 16 February 2010 9:42 pm
We always thought you were a bit queer back then ... :P

6. JayWalk left...
Sunday, 21 February 2010 7:58 pm :: 
Pam: Tuned in to my next blog entry. All shall be revealed.

ruok: *bish*

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