Walking through the streets of the Arab Quarter we say a little cafe and decided to give it a try. It was called the Dong Po Colonial Café and it looked like it has been there for many years. Quite surprisingly it does not seem to be that old, as I researched it on the Internet and read that it opened a few months ago. I had thought it had been there for many years already!
It has lots of retro fittings and serves old-time favourites – lots of different pastries, cakes and even fresh scones. The owner/baker inherited the recipes from his grandfather, but we were so full from our breakfast that we did not try any. They looked good and were very affordable!
We had some coke and iced coffee – but coffee is not called iced coffee in Singapore. It’s kopi oh peng, with kopi being the Malay word for coffee.
For traditional kopi Arabica beans are used and the filtering process involves coating the inside of a flannel sock with ground coffee beans, placing it over a coffee cup, pouring in some hot water and allowing it to filter through. The beans coat the flannel material, allowing the water to steep and absorb the coffee flavour. Finally, adding sugar and evaporated milk completes the process and the result is a thick, sweet coffee – hot or with ice.
To accompany this strong and sweet drink, Singaporeans often eat soft boiled eggs (topped with thick soya sauce and spiced pepper) and kaya (which is a sort of coconut jam made with coconut, egg, sugar and pandan leaf for flavour) toast. This is often a typical breakfast, but you can purchase it all day. I’ve tried it on another day (not at Dong Po Colonial Café) and it really was great.
Back to Dong Po Colonial Café – we just sat there and read our guide books. It was a nice long coffee break just about before we were ready to explore Little India.