Tian Jin Fong Kee Review: Handmade Dumplings With 74-Year History | Eatbook.sg
Chinese Hawker Reviews

Tian Jin Fong Kee Review: Popular Handmade Dumplings With A 74-Year History

22nd September 2022

Tian Jin Fong Kee has handmade dumplings with a 74-year history

tian jin fong kee - flatlay

Dumplings: simply made with flour, water, meat, some vegetables, and seasonings. They’re simple, convenient, and plain delicious. I often find myself boiling the typical, frozen ones from the supermarket into a pot for a quick meal, but let’s be honest, nothing really compares to the real deal—handmade dumplings. When I heard about Tian Jing Fong Kee, which specialises in them, I knew immediately that I had to try the stall out.

tian jin fong kee - storefront with owners

The first Tian Jing Fong Kee outlet was founded at People’s Park in 1948. It’s still in operation today, which makes them 74 years old! We visited the outlet at Serangoon Gardens, where the third-gen owner told us about how he’s helped his grandfather at the OG shop since he was seven! Today, he runs the Serangoon stall with his wife.

tian jin fong kee - rolling dough

Like his grandfather, he’s quite the perfectionist. If the dumplings don’t make the cut, be it in terms of colour or flavour, they won’t be served. In serving their customers quality dumplings each time, it ensures that diners leave satisfied, and will keep coming back.

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Food at Tian Jin Fong Kee

tian jin fong kee - dumplings intro

Inspired by his dedication, we had to give their Steamed Dumplings ($7 for 10 pieces) a try. It’s a point of pride for Tian Jin Fong Kee that their dumplings are made fresh in small batches throughout the whole day. On a non-busy day, this still works out to about 12kg of dough!

tian jin fong kee - dumpling cross section

Biting into the plump dumplings, we found them stuffed generously with a well-seasoned meat filling that’s fragrant with both sesame oil and chives.

tian jin fong kee - dumpling close up

I loved how the skin of the dumplings weren’t too thick—in fact, it was almost translucent, so you wouldn’t feel stuffed from eating too much dumpling skin. You can also purchase Frozen Dumplings ($14 for 20 pieces) so you’ll have a ready stash at home!

tian jin fong kee - fried dumplings

We also got ourselves some guo tie, AKA Fried Dumplings ($7 for 10 pieces). While we were waiting for our turn, we saw them churning out plate after plate of these, affirming our choice to order some.

tian jin fong kee - frying guo tie

When we asked them about their Fried Dumplings, they shared that the secret to achieving that beautiful golden-brown crust is in frequently changing the oil.

tian jin fong kee - fried dumplings cross section

Featuring a similar filling and skin-to-meat ratio as the steamed dumplings, these were extremely juicy.

tian jin fong kee - fried dumplings dipping

I’d recommend letting them cool for a bit before you take a bite, or you risk scalding your mouth as I did. I also enjoyed the contrasting textures of the crisp skin and tender filling.

tian jin fong kee - rice cakes

Aside from their famous dumplings, the dish that stood out to me was Fong Kee Rice Cake ($5). These reminded me, texturally, of Korean tteokbokki: chewy, yet soft. These, we are told, have to be soaked overnight before they can be cooked.

tian jin fong kee - rice cakes interaction

This ultra-garlicky gravy is cooked to order, with vegetables that are stewed till soft. I appreciated how heavy-handed they were with the garlic, but this might be off-putting for those who aren’t fans of the flavour. While the gravy was starchy, I wished it could be more viscous, to better coat the rice cakes for extra flavour.

tian jin fong kee - zha jiang mian meat sauce

A dish that is exclusive to the Serangoon outlet is Zha Jiang Noodles ($4). This dish was only introduced here because of how it’s popular with Singaporeans.

tian jin fong kee - zha jiang miang noodle lift

I felt that the hand-pulled noodles were a little on the soft side, though the meat sauce, prepared with fermented black beans, was savoury and umami.

tian jin fong kee - zha jiang mian

The heavy flavour of the meat sauce is balanced out with julienned cucumber, which brings freshness to the bowl. It’s best to mix it all up ASAP, as the noodles do tend to get clumpy otherwise.

Aside from the Zha Jiang Noodles, another outlet-exclusive item is their Stir Fried Noodles ($5), which I’m looking forward to trying next time.

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Ambience at Tian Jin Fong Kee

tian jin fong kee - ambience

Serangoon Garden Market & Food Centre is a 20-minutes bus ride from Serangoon MRT Station, or 14 minutes from Lorong Chuan MRT Station. This well-kept hawker centre has an open-concept space, making it very breezy with lots of natural light. Most stalls here close very early, however, so it’s best to head here in the morning or early afternoon if you’re looking for a wider variety of food options.

The verdict

tian jin fong kee - verdict

You’ll see me back at Tian Jin Fong Kee again, for sure, for their authentic, handmade dishes. It’s more expensive than my frozen supermarket dumplings, but Serangoon Gardens isn’t too far from home for me, so I’m absolutely willing to pay that little bit more when I can make it down to the stall. In fact, since their dumplings are sold frozen, I’ll probably be stocking up on these instead too! 

If you are looking for more delicious dumplings, check out Dumpling Darlings for truffle and mala dumplings, or A9 Noodle Dumplings for some cheap dumplings!

Serangoon Garden Way
Address: 49A Serangoon Garden Way, Stall 12, Serangoon Garden Market & Food Centre, Singapore, Singapore 555945
Opening Hours: Tue-Sun 10am to 8pm
Tel: 9656 4459​​

People’s Park
Address: 32 New Market Road, #01-1146, People’s Park Food Centre, Singapore 050032
Opening Hours: Tue-Sun 10am to 8pm
Tel: 6532 3318

Website
Tian Jing Fong Kee is not a halal-certified eatery.

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This article was originally written by Eileen Png.
Photos taken by Lau Hui Hui.
This was an independent visit by Eatbook.sg

Tian Jin Fong Kee Review: Popular Handmade Dumplings With 74-Year History
  • 8/10
    Tian Jin Fong Kee Review: Popular Handmade Dumplings With A 74-Year History - 8/10
8/10

Summary

Pros

– Dumplings had thin skins and tasty meat fillings
– Zha Jiang Mian meat sauce was flavourful

Cons

– Fong Kee Rice Cake gravy could be thicker
– Not near an MRT station

Recommended dishes: Steamed Dumplings ($7 for 10 pieces), Fried Dumplings ($7 for 10 pieces)

Opening hours: Tue-Sun 10am to 8pm

Address: 49A Serangoon Garden Way, Stall 12, Serangoon Garden Market & Food Centre, Singapore, Singapore 555945

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