Literally “cook and fry” in the local Hokkien dialect, the term zi char refers to home-style Chinese cooking, with a helping of Malay, Indian, and Peranakan influences. Dishes are prepared to order and served in generous portions that make zi char great for groups. You’ll find zi char served in affordable coffee shops or open-air casual restaurants across the city-state. Standouts include JB Ah Meng Zi Char for its white pepper crab and “pancake” fried beehoon—which made it into the Singapore Michelin Bib Gourmand Guide 2016—as well as Two Chefs Zi Char for milk powder pork ribs and Whampoa Keng Fish Head Steamboat for its charcoal steamboat.
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