Timothy Tye
Charlie's Peranakan Food

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Charlie's Peranakan FoodCharlie's Peranakan Food (30 July, 2017)

Charlie's Peranakan Food is a hawker stall at Golden Mile Food Centre in Singapore. It specialises in Malacca-style Peranakan dishes. The namesake of the stall is Mr Charlie Tan, aka Baba Charlie, who operates the stall with his wife Amy.

Charlie's is where you can enjoy authentic Peranakan cuisine at a fraction of what it would cost at an air-conditioned restaurant. No frills here, just good food. This is where you get all-time-favourite Peranakan dishes such as Ayam Ponteh, Itek Tim and Acar Fish, to name three.

Although Charlie has been in the food business for decades, his stall has been nomadic. Singaporeans who have been fans of Charlie's food for years and years will tell you of their disappointment each time they found his business gone. Unfortunately, it was often Charlie's volatile health that had forced him to stop operating his stall. When he was well enough to re-start the business, he had to find a different location. In the pre-Facebook Page age, once you move your stall, you lose all your followers. But now that Charlie's has its own Facebook Page, Baba Charlie can take comfort that his followers will now be able to track him down should he ever pack up and move once more.

Despite a stroke a couple of years back, Charlie is determined to live what's left of this life, and the present stall at Golden Mile Food Centre, is a manifestation of that desire to share with enthusiasts authentic Peranakan cuisine.

Charlie's menu covers all the must-try. Who can resist the Ayam Buah Keluak or the Nangka Lemak? I had the pleasure of dining at Charlie's, and I absolutely loved the food. We had Itek Sio, Buah Keluak Tulang Babi, Nangka Lemak and Terubok Busuk.

I enjoyed all four items, very much indeed. The duck meat was soft, and came off easily. I enjoyed trying the buah keluak - I hadn't eaten it for a long while, and it is very difficult to find up north in Penang. Then those two vegetable dishes, the Nangka Lemak and the Terubok Busuk, were also so tasty. Just imagine the thick coconut-based gravy on your hot white rice, the spices, the aroma - a Peranakan meal is not the place for health crusaders, but I'm in Peranakan heaven here!

I am so thankful to my friends Evonne and Bee Chan for bringing me here to try Charlie's wonderful cooking. It feels like, I've been invited into a Peranakan home. For our meal, we had asked Charlie to recommend his "chef's specials", and the result was a simple yet highly memorable meal. I would be dreaming of Charlie's when I am back in Penang.

Charlie's Peranakan FoodMy friend Bee and I at Charlie's Peranakan Food. (30 July, 2017)

Charlie's Peranakan FoodTerubok Busuk (30 July, 2017)

Charlie's Peranakan FoodBuah Keluak Tulang Babi (30 July, 2017)

Charlie's Peranakan FoodNangka Lemak (30 July, 2017)

Charlie's Peranakan FoodItek Sio (30 July, 2017)

Charlie's Peranakan FoodHere I am with Mr Charlie Tan at his stall, Charlie's Peranakan Food (30 July, 2017)

Golden Mile Food Centre


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