Peppercorn at Kandahar St

Peppercorn
30 Kandahar St
Singapore 198890
Reservations: DM them on Facebook!
Tel: +65 9862 2559
Remarks: Accepts cards, cash, Grabpay and Favepay

Opening Hours
Mon-Sat: 1130am to 230pm, 530pm to 930pm

Halal status: Halal-certified
Halalicious rating: 8.5/10
Average spend per pax: ~$20

Recommended dishes: Literally just pick any ingredients you want; I would go for medium or big spicy level!

So I have to admit sometimes I perasan (fancy myself) American and follow American news a little too closely. Like I feel secondhand rage about Trump being president, about the unfair deaths of black victims like Trayvon Martin, Sandra Bland, Michael Brown and Eric Garner, and about the extortionate prices of medication thanks to Big Pharma greed. I also watch basically all the liberal left-wing night-time talk shows like Late Night with Seth Myers, Last Week Tonight with John Oliver and The Daily Show with Trevor Noah — which is ridiculous.

I think it’s a habit that started from when I was studying in the US and had a raging crush on Jon Stewart back when he was the host of The Daily Show. I even got tickets to be part of the studio audience TWICE like an absolute groupie LOL young me. Anyway recently I was watching yet another liberal programme The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, when he announced that the musical guest was Incubus, singing Drive!!!

OKAY I mean I had such a huge crush on frontman Brandon Boyd back in school!! His voice is no longer what it used to be but goshhh still love him (even though he is slowly transforming into Anthony Kiedis). Listening to him sing that song in 2019 took me RIGHT BACK to like 2001, so I’m gonna leave you guys with the original video to refresh your memories (of his shirtless days). Delicious piece of trivia: Brandon Boyd did all the drawings in the video himself!! Beautiful AND talented, good lord.

ANYWAYYYYYYY FINALLY let’s get down to brass tacks, sorry for that detour.

I wanted to blog about my experience at Peppercorn, the halal joint at Kandahar St specialising in mala-tang. Má refers to that numbing sensation you get from sichuan peppercorns, là means spice, and tàng means soup!

The entrance!

So basically the concept at Peppercorn is not unlike fancy Yong Tau Foo except it’s weight-based and not per-item. There’s a whole wall of ingredients that you can pick from, which are then priced up based on their weight and unit price. So here are the steps to getting your piping hot bowl of malatang.

Step 1: Pick the ingredients you want from their spread below!

I found all the ingredients to look really fresh, and def tasted it in the ones I picked

Step 2: Head to the counter and select the spice level/type of noodles you wish to add to your bowl of malatang (optional).

Choice of udon, maggi, and tang hoon noodles!

Step 3: Pick a side while they price up your order based on the unit price of the ingredients clearly displayed on the menu board!

Ingredients will be priced up based on their unit price above. You can opt for sides too!

Step 4: Choose between soup, dry, or soup on the side. Wait for the order to be ready while you admire the decor of the place and read up on malatang history.

Quirky mildly propagandistic décor.
A history in case y’all want to read. Goodbye body dampness, hello balanced constitution.

Step 5: Malatang is served. SHOW IT WHO’S BOSS.

This is what my bowl of medium spice level malatang looked like!

Okay so for my ingredients I picked enoki mushrooms (AN ABSOLUTE MUST), ladies fingers, fish tofu, oyster mushrooms, a small filet of fish, beancurd skin and a slice of beef to try, no noodles. Winning ingredients really IMO, and my bowl cost me S$17! All the ingredients tasted fresh, esp the fish which was really great because you do take a risk whenever you order fish. The broth tasted really clean and not oily which is a bonus. I’ve tried both the medium and big spicy levels. Because I find that the taste of the broth intensifies the more you eat, the medium starts out a little bland and ends up pretty tasty, while the spicy starts out really tasty but the heat sneaks up on you and suddenly you’re crying and your nose is running. SO shiok though! I must say I def prefer the big spicy level. 8.5/10

I also tried the Scallion Noodles (S$4.50):

Scallion noodles (S$4.50) on the right – meh, 6.5/10

So I found the scallion noodles a little underwhelming – it reminded me of Indomie, so if that’s your thing you might like this. I’m more of a tom yam instant noodles person to begin with, and also I felt like $4.50 was a little steep considering I was already paying $17 for my bowl. I’d def stick to the malatang, yum. 6.5/10 for the scallion noods.

Overall I had a great time at Peppercorn – it’s really comfortable, air-conditioned, and there is a very clean and relatively spacious restroom available (compared to the usual chokey-like toilets in shophouses in the area lol). Service is always very patient and friendly, which is really great. I would def (and have, lol) come back to this place again. FYI GST and service charge apply.

Peppercorn
30 Kandahar St
Singapore 198890
Reservations: DM them on Facebook!
Tel: +65 9862 2559
Remarks: Accepts cards, cash, Grabpay and Favepay

Halal status: Halal-certified
Halalicious rating: 8.5/10
Average spend per pax: ~$20

Recommended dishes: Literally just pick any ingredients you want, I would go for medium or big spicy level!

Opening Hours
Mon-Sat: 1130am to 230pm, 530pm to 930pm

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Le Fuse at Lim Tua Tow Road (Serangoon)

Le Fuse
22 Lim Tua Tow Road
Singapore 547772
Reservations: DM them on Instagram or Facebook!
Closest MRT Station: Serangoon MRT!

Opening Hours
Tue-Sun: 4pm to 10pm
Closed on Mondays

Halal status: Muslim-owned
Halalicious rating: 7/10
Average spend per pax: ~S$25
Recommended dishes: Chong Qing Diced Chicken (S$9.80), Sweet Potato Noodles with Beef (S$9.80)

Hey guys! Wow it’s been FOREVER since I last posted something, sorry I’ve just not been in any mood to post, and also really lazy?? Raya was so tiring ugh I felt like retreating from everything and everyone for a while. Also, I’ve been watching Season 3 of Crazy Ex Girlfriend on Netflix (ugh I LOVE the series, but this season is particularly dark haha).

Anyway I wanted to tell you guys about this halal fusion mala place I recently visited called Le Fuse. So apparently the owners had their original branch at Middle Road under the name Mala Hui Cui Guan – the ingredients were halal and the place was muslim-owned, BUT they served alcohol which made some of the patrons uncomfortable. I guess not the ideal place to bring your old folks too, they’ll be all “eh apa ni ada beer semua ni” LOL. So yeah they decided to vacate and restart at Lim Tua Tow Road as Le Fuse!

Le Fuse - Exterior

The exterior which opens out to a public carpark. Quite convenient for drivers!

Le Fuse - Interior

The interior. That Fuse projection on the wall makes it look like a club lol.

Le Fuse - Counter

Counter

Le Fuse - Carpark

This is the carpark on the outside; quite nice right.

Here is a look at the menu for you guys!

Le Fuse - Menu appetisersLe Fuse - Noodles Menu 2Le Fuse - Rice MenuLe Fuse - Drinks Menu

There were 7 of us so we got to try quite a bit of stuff. My friend and I actually came early to sneakily try a couple of starters first (HAHA so greedy). We tried first the Mala Tofu Skin (S$6.80):

Le Fuse - Mala Tofu Skin

Mala Tofu Skin (S$6.80) – 6/10

Man, this was disappointing because firstly it wasn’t at all chilled; it was maybe like 2 degrees above room temperature haha. Also there wasn’t much of a texture/bite to the tofu strips. Added to that, the sauce, which wasn’t flavourful enough to begin with, was in such small quantities and did not manage to coat the tofu skin well. I hope next time they’ll improve this dish, shouldn’t be too hard! 6/10

Next up we tried the Chong Qing Diced Chicken (S$9.80), comprising deep fried diced chicken tossed in with dried chilli and sichuan peppercorns.

Le Fuse - Chong Qing Diced Chicken

Chong Qing Diced Chicken (S$9.80) – 8/10

Le Fuse - Chong Qing Diced Chicken 2

A close-up

Okay YUMMMM this was such a good dish. I loved the texture of the chicken; it was so so crispy. The mala flavour wasn’t too strong unless you bit into the peppercorns, which is not ideal. I wish it had been incorporated into the chicken seasoning somehow, but it’s a small complaint. The dish was also borderline over-salted but I have quite a high salt tolerance so I could not stop eating lol. Pair it with the delicious plum (PRUNE??) juice and it’s all good. 9/10

Le Fuse - Prune Juice

Delicious Chinese Sour Plum Drink (S$3.80). Shoutout to my clean thumbnail.

We were also swayed into ordering the very trendy Salted Egg Calamari (S$9.80):

Le Fuse - Salted Egg Calamari

Salted Egg Calamari (S$9.80) – 6.5/10

Le Fuse - Salted Egg Calamari

Mm not my favourite of the lot; the salted egg taste was not to my liking, and the texture of the batter was a little hard when it should’ve been light and crisp. My favourite salted egg calamari dishes are also the ones with a creamy salted egg sauce though, instead of the battered ones. 6.5/10

Another dish we ordered was the Dengdeng Beef Sichuan (S$10.80), comprising thin crispy slices of beef coated in Sichuan sauce:

Le Fuse - Sichuan Beef Dengdeng

Dengdeng Beef Sichuan (S$10.80) – 7/10

Okay to be frank I don’t remember much about this dish, and neither did my friend when I asked him! I remember thinking it was okay – not terribly memorable, but not bad either. It was a little like those crispy beef balado you get at some Nasi Padang stores. I remember wishing it had a bit more of that mala sichuan numbing taste, but that’s about it. 7/10

Okay so finally we moved onto our main noodle dishes. I went for the Mala Tang (S$12.80) which is the spicy mala soup version. It came with pre-selected ingredients comprising sausage, chicken luncheon meat, lotus root, broccoli, cauliflower (BOOO), and that fungus ear mushroom thingy:

Le Fuse - Mala Tang Spicy Soup

Mala Tang Soup with Noodles (S$12.80) – 7/10

Oh no I terribly wanted to like this but I found it way too oily and not spicy enough! I got it in level 2 but would have def preferred level 3 I think. I also felt like it was just regular spicy and not mala-spicy. When I spoke to the owner towards the end of our meal, he did mention that he went easy on the mala spice because not a lot of the Muslim crowd likes that numbing spice taste, but that we could customise our order and indicate our preference when putting in our order. I also didn’t like that they had pre-selected ingredients. I much prefer being able to select my own ingredients at those Kopitiam mala shops lol. 7/10

One of us went with the dry version Mala Xiang Guo Noodles (S$12.80) which I actually found slightly better than the soup version:

Le Fuse - Ma La Xiang Guo dry noodles

Mala Xiang Guo dry noodles (S$12.80) – 7.5/10

Less oily than the soup version, and I feel with the soup version you need to make sure the broth is super tasty; otherwise it won’t add to the dish. As with the soup version, the ingredients are pre-selected. Please god I don’t want cauliflower lol. Broccoli is okay I love broccoli. 7.5/10

One of us got the Sweet Potato Noodles with Beef (S$9.80):

Le Fuse - Sweet potato noodles with beef 2

Sweet Potato Noodles with Beef (S$9.80) – 9/10

Le Fuse - Sweet Potato Noodles with Beef

UNFFFF

OMG I loved these noodles and totally wished I’d ordered them instead!! Actually my friend and I ended up basically swapping lol since he preferred my soupy mala noodles. Anyway wow the noodles were super on pointtttt they were so perfectly chewy and soft!! Loved the beef chunks also which were rather tender, and I think the noodles soaked up the broth better. Yum; would def get this the next time I’m at Le Fuse!! 9/10

All in all I think there’s definitely room for improvement at Le Fuse; the selection of dishes is pretty good so after some tweaks it could really be great. One thing I’d like to see is more customizable levels of mala spice in the menu, as well as the ability to select ingredients in your mala tang/mala xiang guo! I’d definitely welcome any place that serves halal sichuan food so I hope Le Fuse only gets better with time!

Le Fuse
22 Lim Tua Tow Road
Singapore 547772
Reservations: DM them on Instagram or Facebook!
Closest MRT station: Serangoon MRT!

Opening Hours
Tue-Sun: 4pm to 10pm
Closed on Mondays

Halal status: Muslim-owned
Halalicious rating: 7/10
Average spend per pax: ~S$25
Recommended dishes: Chong Qing Diced Chicken (S$9.80), Sweet Potato Noodles with Beef (S$9.80)