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Legendary Satay: A Quick Guide On Singaporeans’ Favourite Dish

Satay or sate is a dish of skewered and grilled meats, served with a sauce. Contrary to popular belief that Satay originated from Thailand, it is actually an Indonesian dish. In the early 19th century, after the influx of Arab immigrants in Indonesia, it is believed that Satay is the invention of the Javanese street vendors.

While the most common meat used for a Satay is chicken (Satay Ayam), there are other meats that you may want to try. You can ask if there is mutton (Satay Kambing), beef tripe (Satay Lembu), beef intestine (Satay Perut). The more creative types are pork, fish, shrimp or squid. If you are more to the exotic side, you can try turtle, crocodile and even snake meat.

To add to the flavor, the meat is marinated before it is grilled over coals. It is an affordable dish that is usually eaten together with delicious and spicy peanut sauce. The dish has its characteristic yellow color because of the used of Turmeric to marinate Satay. Other than peanut sauce, Satay may be served with onions and cucumbers, not forgetting ketupat (rice cakes).

Since the 1940s, Satay is one of the earliest foods in Singapore. Before the city was developed to what it is today, it was sold on makeshift roadside stalls and pushcarts. Due to the concerns over public health, Satay stalls at Beach Road during the 1950s became know as the Satay Club. When it moved to the Esplanade Park in the 1960s, the Satay Club became a major tourist attraction in Singapore. Although, the Satay club is no longer where it was, without a doubt, it is defined how Satay is served in Singapore since then. It used to be a popular nightspot despite most hawker stalls and modern food courts, including upscale restaurants had Satay in their menu at any time of the day.

Several stalls from the original Satay Club have moved to Sembawang, the north of the city although the name has been transferred to the Clarke Quay site. Lau Pa Sat has become the tourist hotspot. The stalls at Lau Pa Sat occupy Boon Tat Street, when it is closed to vehicular traffic to serve this purpose. It clearly mimics the “al fresco” concept, of its previous establishments. Other popular places that serves great Satay are, Newton Food Centre, East Coast Park Seafood Centre and Toa Payoh Central.

Brief History of The Asia’s Famous Otak Otak (Otah Otah)

Otak Otak is a mixture of fish paste together with other spices. The fish paste differs from place to place but more commonly mackerel is used. Just like the recipe differs from place to place, its name is known differently among different cultures and groups. Here are the more common names: otah-otah, otah or otak. The idea behind the name Otak comes from the Malay or Indonesian word “brains”, as the fish paste, literally, looks grey, soft and squishy.

It is well known across Southeast Asia, where it is traditionally served fresh. The people of outside of South East Asia also get to enjoy Otak Otak as it is being sold as frozen food to them. Modern versions of Otak Otak often utilizes crab and prawn meat.

The southern Malaysian town of Muar in Johor is a popular destination for it. In places like Singapore, Malayasia and Indonesia the fish paste is wrapped up as a thin slice using banana or coconut leaf and grilled over a charcoal fire (barbeque). In Penang, the Peranakan version of Otak Otak is known as Otak Otak Nyonya where it is steamed as a cake in pandan leaf.

It is completely up to how you want to eat it. While most people have it eaten as a snack, you can eat it with some bread or as part of a meal. In Indonesian Otak Otak found its origins from Palembang, South Sumatra. The Palembangese have Otak Otak with Cuko, a local spicy tamarind sauce. The influence has spread over to Jakarata and Makasar where people enjoy it with peanut sauce.

There are other Indonesian dishes cooked with a mixture of spices using the fish sauce as the main ingredient. Namely, they are, pais ikan, botok, and satay.

In Central Europe, a similar variety called Szczecin paprikas has a more distinctive taste, spicier than Otak Otak due to the larger content in the use of fish paste. It is made with mixing fish paste with rice, onion tomato concentrate, salt and a mixture of spices.

Famous Muar Otah (Otak Otak) in Singapore

Muah Otah Otah

Looking for the Famous Muar Banana Leaf Otah in Singapore for your upcoming BBQ?

Singapore Otah’s — now serving the award winning, highly loved and super famous — Muah Otah is made with the freshest mackerel and finest spices, served fresh, wrapped inside banana leaf and grilled to perfect fragrance.

We recommend having a party mix of famous Muar Otah along with the thinner and spicy Otak-Otak for the best of both spicy and delicious worlds!

Comes in sets of 30 or 50; select one that’s the perfect fit for your BBQ.

Demystifying DIY-BBQ’ing: Flipping of BBQ Food for the Perfect Grill Lines & Optimal Taste

BBQ Chicken
cc – Arnold | Inuyaki

Been tasked with the most honorable (yikes!) duty of being your next BBQ outing’s chef? All too frequently, people have been frightened by this very task alone with a few of the most common barbeque myths. More often than not, it’s not because we’re gullible or stupid in any way. Many barbeque myths are so well known and so wide spread that they are more frequently passed on as truth than they are as the myths that they truly are.

If you’re cooking your food properly on your barbeque, you’re getting delightful results every time. Here’s one myth that we’re going to debunk today … the art of flipping of your BBQ meat.

Demystifying DIY BBQ: Flipping of BBQ Meat

For example, many first-time BBQ goers love trying to get perfect grill lines on their barbequed foods. Either straight lines, or the more fancy criss-crossed ones are thought and accepted as a sure sign of an expert barbeque chef. Getting such results involves the flipping your meat, so that the lines are on the both sides. However, not many people know how to achieve it (it’s not that hard in fact) as they have fallen victim to one of the main barbeque myths. They believe that flipping or poking your grilled food makes the food tough – untrue. In fact, flipping your meat not only creates great grill lines, but it also makes certain that you cook more evenly.

The belief that poking or flipping your food will let all of the juices out and making it tough would only work if your food was shaped exactly like a balloon – which we know is totally isn’t. Meat is made up of hundreds of small cells, each filled with its own moisture and juices. Should you poke your BBQ meat with a fork while it’s on the grill, you may pop one or two cells, but it won’t let all of the juices out … only that of the cells you’ve punctured. Certainly, if you repeatedly stab and puncture your meat, many of the cells will be broken, and you’ll lose a great deal of your juices, but the good news is that there’s no immediate reason for anyone to do that in exaggeration, just a little stab at the meat would do the trick.

Similarly, flipping your meat doesn’t let a great deal of the juices out either. After all, flipping doesn’t puncture any of the cells, so as long as you don’t flip it and smack it hard, then you won’t lose much by the way of juices at all.

Have fun BBQ’ing! :)

The only problem with flipping your meat on the grill lies when cooks use their spatulas and other tools to squish the meat after it has been flipped, often trying to squeeze out the grease. By flattening the cells in the meat, much of the moisture and juices are pushed out, leaving the meat dry.

While there are an amazing number of helpful self-help information on DIY BBQ’ing available providing tips and tricks for the best results on your barbeque, much of it can be exaggerated to a certain extend while many other articles were written based on what the author “thinks” rather than what is actually known.

In conclusion, let yourself enjoy your first-time being a BBQ chef and start flipping those steak and BBQ meat! Get those grill lines just the way you want them to be. Your food will always be good and juicy, just like the pros do it.

Enjoy BBQ’ing! :)

5 Fun Ways to Make Your BBQ a Memorable Event

BBQ wings
cc – sporkist

Having an upcoming barbecue planned for the June holidays? BBQ outings have been a favorite pastime for many Singaporeans, from weekends to school holidays, one can easily book BBQ pits and start your own BBQ party instantly for a great time with friends, colleagues and family.

We believe that every barbecue can and should be an exciting time for get-togethers; here are 5 fun ways to make your BBQ a more unique experience:

1. BBQ beyond meat with fruits and bread.

Who said you have to stick to meat? Much can be done with bread and fruits over an open flame. One quick idea is to prepare cookie cutters to make breads and fruits into fun shapes with themes like “animals” or “letters”! Allow the shapes to be different from the others. Let everyone in the party decide the toppings they would like to add into the mix, from adding cheese, onions, various spices, to bread and cinnamon, and honey to fruits.

2. Foil-wrapped surprise meals.

Place different combinations of chicken, fish and vegetables with sauces and spices in foil packets. These cook in less than 20 minutes and lead to no-mess, lip-smacking results. Your BBQ friends will love the surprise element and can easily switch or share packets. You can even ask your family for combo suggestions before the barbecue, or draw ingredient names out of a hat to create fun and new meal ideas.

3. Add a little variety into the mix.

A little variety goes a long way. If you tend to stick to the same old beef kebabs to BBQ chicken wings, why not try beef steaks or Japanese teriyaki chicken chop? Similarly, try to mix it up with condiments and seasoning. Sick of ketchup? Try salsa instead. Look online where you’ll find hundreds of easy recipes for barbecue rubs. These give your food that extra variety and have a even greater time of fun through the day.

4. Barbecues don’t have to be rushed.

In fact, barbecue fans will tell you that today’s quick broiling is an insult to the term, which should represent a process of slow cooking on low heat. You can find many slow cooker recipes online, and the wait is a great opportunity to pass some quality time with your family and friends. Entertaining chalet or East Coast Park BBQ activities include creating an outdoor canvas to paint on or playing quick frisbee games to keep the activity fun with friends and family members.

5. Go huge on your BBQ for the adventurous!

Build your own massively-crazy-and-an-epic of a BBQ dish with the items you can order through our menu. From chicken chops to beef steaks, to the outrageously hot and spicy otah otahs and bagus tasting satay (with the satay sauce), you can start creating your supersized burgers or pizzas today—the skies the limit.

Finally, don’t fret! Far too many people get lost in the details of planning the perfect barbecue party and forget to enjoy the social atmosphere and delicious food. So kick back, bask in the relaxing sun and prepare for a summer of unforgettable barbecues.