I love Austin. But, having grown up and lived in the New York area into my twenties, I'm constantly aware of the lack of cultural variation here, particularly as it relates to all things edible. And, while I think there's something to be said for regional cuisine staying-- well, regional (if we could get amazing Italian food or incredible Chinese takeout at any little dive, it wouldn't be so special when I visited Jersey, now would it?), I do get super excited when a new type of cuisine becomes available on the third coast.
Liiiiiike.. Singaporean noodles!
I was invited to a media dinner at DFG Noodles, a new food truck in the Rainey Street food trailer park (which I actually did not know existed. Food trailer parks literally pop up that fast around here!)
Fun fact: owner Cheryl Chin is a pretty famous actress and model in Singapore, and she played Steven Seagal's sidekick in Machete before he hired her on as his personal chef! And, I must admit, I was a little perplexed by the name of the truck-- DFG stands for Damn F-ing Good-- but, after meeting Cheryl and experiencing her snappy sense of humor, I totally got it. It works!
And now, onto the delicious food:
The DFG taco
Cheryl said she invented this taco as a way of combining the "best of" several dishes. So, here you have it-- a chicken coconut potato currey with teriyaki pineapple honey pork belly and cilantro on chewy, golden roti. (I'm sure I'm leaving something out.. but it was lip-smackingly good, I assure you!)
The Scholar: Singapore noodles
The Singapore noodles featured vermicelli cut into manageable pieces, Spam cubes (don't knock it 'til you've tried it), bok choy, the same pork belly stir fry that's in the taco above, and fried onion bits I want to just carry around in my purse and sprinkle on everything. Really. (p.s. I think this was my favorite dish!)
The Emperor: Laksa
Laksa featured rice noodles the thickness of udon (mmmmm), flavor-soaked tofu cubes, hard boiled egg, herbs, a creamy curry sauce, and some more of those dang f-ing good onions! I also learned about a new type of cuisine-- Peranakan culture, which combines elements of Chinese, Malaysian, and Singaporean (apparently laksa is a popular Peranakan dish).
The Malay: roti prata
Roti prata is a dish typically eaten from breakfast-- flaky roti is dipped into a curry, which is then eaten like soup at the end of the meal. I could definitely get down with a breakfast like this...(also, note to self: must make roti!)
The Pauper: a slow time special
The last dish we sampled is made with Mi Goreng, a type of instant noodle with a cult following in Singapore. It's only available between 2pm and 5pm and comes with slow-cooked pork belly in oyster sauce (which made it just a tad too sweet, in my opinion), a sunny side up egg, fried onions, and greens. It was a almost reminiscent of the Son-in-Law at Sway Thai, but a bit sweeter.
I think The Scholar and The Emperor were my two favorites here, though the taco is not to be missed either.
And I really do think I could eat noodles every day...