Savour A Slice of Peranakan Culture at House of Peranakan, Capitol Piazza
I have a strong affinity for Peranakan food because of its rich heritage and vibrant flavours. Peranakan or Nyonya cuisine is a unique blend of Chinese, Malay and Southeast Asian culinary techniques and spices, resulting from the intermarriage between Chinese male immigrants and local Malay women from the 15th century onwards. I love the bold, imaginative and eclectic flavours produced through the use of exotic ingredients and herbs including rempah, tamarind, chillies, laksa leaves, lemongrass, kaffir lime leaves, basil and more.
House of Peranakan at Capitol Piazza is one of the latest additions to the House of Peranakan Group of Restaurants, a pioneer of Peranakan cuisine in Singapore, managed by a pure Peranakan family for three generations. Founder, Bob Seah established his first outlet, Peranakan Inn in Katong in 1985 as he had a keen passion to share his family’s recipes to those with a soft spot for Peranakan food. The restaurant's authentic food attracted many including past Singapore leaders and old guards such as the late President Wee Kim Wee, Goh Keng Swee, Eddie Barker and Lim Kim San.
Over the years, the business developed tremendously and the group now owns House of Peranakan at Frankel Avenue in Siglap, House of Peranakan Petit along Eng Hoon Street in Tiong Bahru and House of Peranakan at Capitol Piazza.
I visited House of Peranakan at Capitol Piazza in August last year and another time last week. The restaurant has a bright, airy ambience with some Nyonya artefacts neatly displayed on the shelves. The menu offers a mix of Peranakan classics and modern interpretations of Peranakan cuisine to thrill adventurous palates.
Here are some of the noteworthy dishes to savour a slice of Peranakan heritage. For appetiser, I would recommend the Kueh Pie Tee (S$8++) comprising thin and crispy pastry tart shell generously filled with a spicy, sweet mixture of turnip, bamboo shoots, prawns, chilli-cuka and coriander leaf. House of Peranakan’s rendition is crispy with a lovely blend of sweet, tangy and spicy flavours.
The Ngoh Hiang (S$8++) ticked the right notes for me with crispy beancurd skin and juicy, succulent filling of prawns, pork, carrots, turnip, water chestnuts and onions. Each morsel imparts a nostalgic, homey feel, transporting one to a traditional Peranakan home in the 1980s.
Named by Asian Wall Street Journal as the best dish in Singapore, the Curry Fish Head (U.P. S$24++, promotional price S$20++) is probably one of the best I have ever tried at a Peranakan restaurant. I was totally enamoured by the fresh red snapper fish head in rich, creamy, piquant curry gravy with coconut milk, lady's fingers and brinjals.
The Nyonya Chap Chye (S$10++), an all-time favourite dish at House of Peranakan has a light, refreshing and healthy flavour and would appeal to the health-conscious. However, those who desire stronger flavours may find the flavours a tad too light.
For dessert, one can’t go wrong with the quintessential Chendol (S$5++), a distinctive dessert with pandan jelly, shaved ice, coconut milk, gula melaka, red beans, palm seed. Creamy and delightful, it sweetens one’s palate and brings your meal to a hearty conclusion.
House of Peranakan is the place to head to for an authentic Peranakan meal with friends and family. Food may not be fancy but you can can definitely look forward have a taste of wholesome Peranakan culture here.
House of Peranakan is located at 13 Stamford Road, #B2-52, Capitol Piazza, Singapore 178905.
For reservations, please call +65 6282 8672
Opening Hours: 11.30am – 10.30pm
For more information, please visit their website here.