[Singapore] Eurasian Fare at Mary's Kafe


(Peter) #1

I first came across Mary Gomes’ wonderful cooking when I visited her cafe at its old location inside the Singapore Council of Women’s Organisations (SCWO) building on Waterloo Street. That was back in 2007. Mary operated a small, no-frills cafe, and was assisted by her sister (they are Portuguese-Eurasians) and a Punjabi lady who was one of the women seeking shelter at the SCWO which, among others, provides support for women in vulnerable situations.

Mary had actually gained quite a following when she ran the canteen in St Joseph’s Church on Victoria Street. It’s been said that some people attended the church just to taste her cooking, and she rustled up some of the best Eurasian food (THE best, if you ask me) in Singapore.

Mary Gomes subsequently wrote two best-selling cookbooks: “The Eurasian Cookbook” and “A Celebration of a Singaporean Kitchen”. In July 2009, she moved her cafe to the current location at the Kum Yan Methodist Church Building on 1 Queen St., across the road from the Singapore Art Museum.

What we had at Mary’s Kafe last weekend:

  1. Eurasian chicken-and-potato curry

  2. “Tau yu bak” - soy-braised pork belly.

  3. “Ayam tempra” - Mary added a Eurasian touch to this otherwise Nyonya dish of chicken braised in a mixture of soysauce and lime juice by introducing dried chilis to add a spike of spiciness much preferred by Eurasians.

  4. “Pang Susi” - this is a Portuguese-influenced filled “pao” or bun, with corned beef filling.

  1. Dessert, given gratis, was a sago pudding (with rose syrup and palm sugar flavours) rolled in freshly-grated coconut.

Mary’s Kafe, because of its limited size, rotates its offerings on a daily basis, so what you’ll find on the menu board that day depends upon what fresh produce Mary finds in the market that same morning. One of Singapore’s hidden dining gems.

Address
Mary’s Kafe
1 Queen Street
Singapore 188534
Tel: +65 9852 0348
Operating hours: 10.30am-5pm, Mon-Fri (Closed Sat, Sun)


#2

The Tau Yu bak looks heavenly! Does the menu change daily?


(Peter) #3

It really does. Only the baked goods - Pang Susi (buns with savoury filling), sugee cake, coconut candy and other types of cakes/tarts are the always available daily.

Irregardless of what Mary Gomes cooks that day, the dishes will always be tasty. My faves are the Beef Smore and Curry Devil.


(Peter) #4

Mary’s Kafe is currently closed indefinitely - Mary Gomes has had to vacate her location at Queen Street, and she’s now looking for an alternative site for her cafe.


#5

Cafe re@opened since 26/3 @ 20 Bendemeer road.
Visit the Facebook page for directions to the cafe:


(Peter) #6

Thanks, Albe - good news indeed.