'Do as the Singaporeans do': US YouTuber goes all out at hawker centres to delight of local netizens

'Do as the Singaporeans do': US YouTuber goes all out at hawker centres to delight of local netizens
US YouTuber Jeremy Jacobowitz showed his favourite Singaporean hawker fare in a series of TikTok video.
PHOTO: TikTok/Jeremy Jacobowitz

They say the best way to learn about a country's culture is to "do as the locals do".

That is exactly the attitude American YouTuber Jeremy Jacobowitz adopted on his recent trip to Singapore to get a taste of our culture.

Jeremy posted a video to his TikTok account on March 31 documenting his favourite eats across two well-known hawker centres, Newton Food Centre and Maxwell Food Centre.

"Hawker centres are a must in Singapore for some of the best street food," he wrote in the caption.

He sampled a variety of local dishes ranging from sambal stingray to chicken rice and was impressed by the different flavour profiles he experienced – some novel, others familiar.

@jeremyjacobowitz the best street food! #singapore #hawkerfood #streetfood #noodles ♬ original sound - Jeremy Jacobowitz Brunch Boys

'Tastes like Passover'

The first stop on Jeremy's food tour in Singapore was Newton Food Centre, where he kicked things off with char kway teow, satay and carrot cake, amongst other local fare.

Praising the sweet and savoury stir-fried dish, Jeremy declared char kway teow his "favourite kind of noodles".

The YouTuber, who is Jewish, was then surprised by how similar black carrot cake tasted to matzah brie – a dish of Ashkenazi Jewish origin made by frying an unleavened flatbread called matzah with eggs in either a sweet or savoury sauce.

"It's a very specific thing – tastes like Passover," Jeremy said.

'Boiling hot soup in 90-degree weather?'

When he was served a bowl of soup with his chicken rice at Maxwell Food Centre, Jeremy questioned the idea of drinking "boiling hot soup in Singapore's 90-degree (Fahrenheit) weather with humidity" but decided to "do as the Singaporeans do".

He was not disappointed.

The YouTuber opted to get a plate loaded with both roasted and steamed chicken, adding char siu as well.

"I actually like the boiled (steamed) chicken better," Jeremy said after trying both types of chicken with chilli sauce and some soup.

This earned him a few nods of approval from Singaporean netizens.

Some local viewers were even more impressed when Jeremy shared about our country's 'chope' culture, encouraging those visiting hawker centres to bring tissues and wipes to reserve their seats.

One netizen said in the comments: "Napkins to reserve seats, spot on!"

Another netizen wrote: "Thank you for doing your research. Your video is very informative and very accurate. Hope you enjoy your time in Singapore!"

"All your choices are so good! Good representation of hawker food, all things at the top of the list," another netizen commented.

'Exactly why I love to travel'

Jeremy, who specialises in travel and food-related content, has uploaded multiple TikTok videos of him eating his way through Singapore.

In one video, he challenged himself to try durian – which he called "one of the more divisive foods in the world".


Picking the spiky fruit up proved challenging for Jeremy, who expressed it was hurting him even with his gloved hands.

"This fruit is literally telling you 'don't eat me'," he quipped.

But the YouTuber was surprised when he finally tried the notorious fruit, exclaiming that it tastes pretty good.

"It's very soft – almost banana-like, fruity and sweet," he explained.

"Everyone [around me] was so concerned, but I'm pretty happy," he added.

Another video, which was in collaboration with the Singapore Tourism Board, showed Jeremy trying a traditional Singaporean breakfast.

He visited Tong Ah Eating House, an establishment that has been running since 1939, and had the quintessential kaya butter toast set with soft-boiled eggs and a cup of kopi as his first meal in Singapore.

Dipping the kaya toast into his soft-boiled eggs like a true-blue Singaporean, Jeremy said: "I love how deceptively simple this is... This is the perfect breakfast."

ALSO READ: 'You ate satay with the wrong sauces': US tourists return to Singapore to 'fix mistakes' from their first visit


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