Taste-test: Which Is The Best Egg Tart In Singapore?
We try six popular egg tarts to find out which one reigns supreme.
Believe it or not, egg tarts are actually an adaptation of English custard tarts! The pastry was only popularised in Hong Kong later.
The most distinctive characteristic of Chinese egg tart is its unique puff pastry. Made with two kinds of dough—water-based and lard-based—the resulting pastry is crisp, airy, flaky, and melt-in-the-mouth.
Together with a silken custard centre, the contrasting textures and flavours of an egg tart create a simple but satisfying epicurean experience. Enjoyed at any time of the day, no wonder this humble pastry is a perennial favourite for many.
To find Singapore’s best Chinese egg tarts outside of dim sum restaurants, we taste-tested pastries from 6 popular stalls and eateries islandwide. Read on for our verdict.
If there’s one thing that you have to try at this Hong Kong franchised cha chaan teng, it is the famous egg tarts – the dough used to make the crust is folded into 192 layers to achieve a flaky quality.
While we like the flaky, fragrant, buttery shell, we prefer the custard to be slightly sweeter. This is also a tart that has to be eaten warm; most egg tarts taste somewhat stale when cold, but this one especially so.
For many, Tong Heng’s signature diamond-shaped egg tart is the gold standard. What makes it so impressive is the amazingly thin crust and slippery soft custard.
Buttery, slightly flaky, and crisp when warm, the buttery crust resembles puff pastry but isn’t as crumbly. Its incredible thinness is measured by the millimetre—a culinary feat that’s hard to beat. However, the crust tasted best when eaten warm. When cold, the crust tended to be slightly flaccid and greasy.
Reminiscent of crème brulee, the wobbly custard had a strong eggy smell and was rather sweet. It also oozed water and disintegrated easily. In spite of this quirkiness, the overall effect was most memorable. Tong Heng’s egg tart is a definite must-try!
There’s a wide variety of pastries available at Leong Sang, but their classic Hong Kong-style egg tart is the top-selling item.
The custard was very well-made. Smooth and not too sweet, with an immensely pleasant fragrance, the custard and pastry complemented each other exceptionally well.
The crust was rather thick as it was made with water-and-oil dough. But it had a delightful melt-in-the-mouth quality. The pastry didn’t disintegrate too quickly, yet it felt sufficiently light. This egg tart kept very well, with the crust retaining its crispness for hours.
If the tart case had been slightly thinner, this would have been a perfect egg tart. On the whole, Leong Sang’s egg tart was a solid all-rounder and offered excellent value.
In 2016, after several pop-ups, Tai Cheong Bakery finally opened their first kiosk, and then a dine-in cha chaan teng-style restaurant, in Singapore.
Their legendary egg tarts here boasts a buttery, crumbly cookie-like crust made from shortcrust dough. The egg custard is everything you’d expect it to be: wobbly, fragrant, with a smooth texture and consistency.
P.S. Even celebrity chef Marco Pierre White is a fan.
The Imperial Treasure restaurant group’s bakery concept offers an egg tart that is different in that they use a shortcrust pastry. The tart case isn’t the crisp and flaky kind.
Rich, buttery, and melt-in-the-mouth, it had a superb cookie-like fragrance. So was the firm and smooth custard, which had a lovely vanilla scent.
The sweetness was just right and paired well with the tart base. Although Imperial Treasure’s egg tart was not conventional, it was a refreshing change from the traditional style.
With relatively high standards for their restaurant dim sum, we had high hopes for Crystal Jade’s egg tart. Sadly, we were let down.
The most disappointing aspect was the custard. It had an artificial shade of sunflower yellow. It had neither fragrance nor flavour, just monotonous sweetness.
The tart case was rather airy and melt-in-the-mouth. But, like the custard, it was tasteless and lacked real flavour. Overall, Crystal Jade’s egg tart was visually attractive but fell flat when it came to taste.
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