A while later, Grace delivered a plate of carrot cake to me. The glutton in me was almost ready to stretch out for a piece of it until the journalist in me hit back. Oh wait, I’m here on an assignment. Photos first.
Chey Sua’s carrot cake is fried crispy on the side coated with egg.
Chey Sua serves the white carrot cake. It is fried crispy on the side coated with egg while soft on the other. What stood out from the first few bites of the carrot cake was how consistent the chai bor had been mixed with the carrot cake and the dual texture of crispiness and softness of the carrot cake. Heavenly!
The time was 1.20pm before the sisters finally had time to sit down for a chat. But not before turning down a few customers and telling them that they had closed for the day. Such short business hours, you might think. But the duo have the shutters up for business by 6.30am every working day. Besides, they revealed, with a tint of pride, that they make their own carrot cake and chilli in the afternoon.
“There was once I forgot to keep some carrot cake for a customer and had to buy some to fry. But the customer could tell immediately that the carrot cake was not ours because it was not as soft. From then on, we dared not buy from others; we would just tell customers if we ran out of carrot cake,” Shirley quipped.
Chey Sua was started some 50 years. Shirley was only 7 when she started helping out at the stall. In 1995, she took over from her mother. Ask her if her culinary skills surpassed her mum and the humble and vivacious cook was quick with an answer: “Of course my mother was better. She was frying carrot cake for a few decades!” Despite her claim of being a lousier cook, Shirley has a strong and loyal following of customers. Some would call to make reservations; others could come as early as 6am to wait even before the stall opens. And then there will be some who would order as many as 30 packets at one go.
The sisters are excited about being invited once again to cook up a storm for Singaporeans during Singapore Day 2012. With some experience under their belt, they are confident of making this coming feast an even more enjoyable one. “We’re very satisfied when Singaporeans approach us and tell us ‘Very delicious!’”
Can’t wait to savour this delectable local dish from a stall that is multiple award-winning? Register online now and find out for yourself on 14th April in New York City why this hawker stall gets the nod from Singaporeans!
Chey Sua Carrot Cake
Blk 127, Lorong 1 Toa Payoh #02-30, Singapore 310127
Operating Hours: 6.30am -1pm. Closed on Mondays.
By Yee Wei Zhen