Culinary Ambassadors: Breakfast in Singapore, Kaya Toast
Serious Eats' Culinary Ambassadors check in from time to time with reports on food fare in their homeland or countries of residence. Here's the latest! (Find out more about CA or join here!) —The Mgmt.
Among the many breakfasts Singaporeans enjoy, this might be the favourite that tops all others.
Kaya toast is ubiquitous in Singapore and can be found in hawker centres, kopitiams (coffee shops), and shopping malls.
Kaya is essentially a coconut jam—coconut milk cooked with eggs to make a thick, luscious custard. Sometimes it's flavoured with pandan (the "vanilla" of Southeast Asia), which gives it an aromatic fragrance and unmistakable taste.
Kaya is thickly schmeared on slices of decrusted grilled bread. The butter is thinly sliced and then laid, not spread, on the bread so that it is still somewhat a whole piece when you bite into it. This "sandwich" is served with soft-boiled eggs, to which you add a dash of soy sauce and white pepper powder.
I always do myself a favour and dip the sandwich in the eggs—the perfect mixture of vibrant, gooey, runny yolk; soft egg white; and sweet jam toast to make an unctuous bread and egg cocktail.
My own typical breakfast is, well, typical. Toast with jam or peanut butter, or plain ol' cereal. Pancakes are reserved for weekends.
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