Singapore Country Guide



Indian Cuisine

The smallest of the area's big three ethnic groups, the Indians have had proportionally the smallest impact on the local culinary scene but there is no shortage of Indian food even at many hawker centres. Delicious and authentic Indian food can be had at Little India including typical south Indian meals such as dosa (thosai) crepes, idli lentil-rice cakes and sambar soup as well as north Indian meals including various curries, naan bread, tandoori chicken and more.

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Sroti prata and chicken curry by Jpatokal

Like many of the ethnic cuisines in Singapore, Indian cuisine in Singapore has been influenced by other ethnic groups. Many of the Indian dishes here have been localised and some are even unheard of in India. 

Roti Prata
Roti prata is a flat bread, rapidly cooked on a flat pan and eaten dipped in curry. A popular item with the breakfast crowd or late afternoon meal. Canonical versions include roti kosong (plain), roti telur (with egg) and murtabak (layered with chicken, mutton or fish). Modern-day variations can incorporate unorthodox ingredients like cheese, chocolate, sugar and even ice cream.

Fish Head Curry
Fish head curry is, true to its name, a gigantic curried fish head cooked whole in curry until it's ready to fall apart. Singapore's Little India is the place to sample this dish. Note that there are two distinct styles, the fiery Indian and the milder Chinese version.

Briyani Rice (Nasi Briyani)
Nasi briyani is basmathi rice cooked in turmeric, giving it an orange colour. Unlike the original Hyderabadi version, the Singaporean version is usually rather bland, although specialist shops do turn out more flavorful versions. It is usually served with curry chicken and some Indian crackers called papadom.

Rojak Mamak
Rojak Mamak is a dish comprising of various vegetable, fried tofu, seafood deep fried in batter, crispy dough crullers, and topped with spicy peanut sauce. There is also a Malay, Indonesian and Chinese version as well.

condiment of pickled vegetables and fruits with a combination of sweet, spicy and tangy tastes. The dish has also found its way into Malay and Nyonya cooking but with their own unique version.

Thosai is a rice pancake and dipped in lentil gravy. Commonly served as plain but can also order a crispy, buttered or potato filled version.

Putu Mayam
Putu mayam is a sweet dessert composed of vermicelli-like noodles topped with shredded coconut and type of caramalised sugar.

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