Made from an old-world recipe that’s been a local favourite for many years, carrot cake is also known as chai tow kueh and actually consists of cubes of steamed rice flour and white radish, fried in egg-like an omelette and garnished with spring onions, a recipe common to the Teochews in Singapore. It can be served “white” (plain) or “dark” (seasoned with sweet black sauce or molasses), and is perfect for those looking for a quick yet satisfying meal.
Some of the best carrot cake in town can be sampled at Makansutra Gluttons Bay near the Esplanade Theatre and Newton Food Centre. Restaurants such as Hai Tien Lo offer a Cantonese variation of the fried carrot cake - usually served with fresh radish, “lup cheong” (preserved Chinese sausage) and shrimp, in large rectangular slabs that are first steamed then fried whole.
The process of cooking carrot cake is a fun-filled one, with hawkers chopping the omelette-like dish on their hot plates into squares; there’s a lot of clanging sounds, chopping thuds and quite a bit of theatre, so stick around to see your dish being whipped up.