SINGAPORE — The old saying “that’s the way the cookie crumbles” could have been thought up for Gold 90.5FM DJ Vernetta Lopez.
“I was a teenager and trying to make cookies,” she recounted. “We placed the dollops nicely on the grease paper. But it came out looking like a map of the world; all the dollops melted and joined up.”
She may not be as talented in the kitchen as she is on radio, but this avid rice lover stands firmly by our good ol’ Singaporean fare, believing that Singapore’s the place of “aromatic chicken rice, the perfect wanton mee, the kway teow from heaven and soups galore”.
“Singapore hawker food is just incomparable,” she mused. “It’s got variety and it’s affordable. I don’t have a favourite hawker centre, although Maxwell has some fantastic options. But my favourite duck noodle stall is the duck noodle stall at Newton. Kwee Heng (#01-13), front row on the right side of the entrance — yeah, baby!”
Nevertheless, this foodie has many ardent attachments to food, admitting that another one of her must-haves, regardless of cuisine, is chilli.
“I cannot live without chilli. If I travel, chilli comes with me or I find the location of the nearest chilli provider.”
Lopez added: Singapore does Asian food very well. And it’s not just because we grew up with it. I’ve seen foreigners who have tried Asian food and have been blown away by what we offer.”
But what about her biggest indulgence? “Anything with major carbs. I love rice!” she declared. “I can eat (nothing but) plain white rice. I can’t live without rice!”
BREAKFAST: Duck kway teow (S$3.50) from Kwee Heng at Newton Circus Food Centre, 500 Clemenceau Ave North. It’s the chilli, the combination of duck and kway teow with the broth. A bowl of that broth alone is soul-satisfying!