Otoko – Japanese Curry Rice Starting From $4.60, With Customisable Toppings At Hougang Midtown
Previously known as Hougang Plaza at Upper Serangoon Road, Hougang Midtown welcomes another member to the existing F&Bs such as Nunsongyee (Hougang Midtown), Tiew Mai Thai Boat Noodles and Foxhole Café.
The interesting concept in this mall-meets-residential development is that the F&Bs are all two-storeys high with seats at the upper level, which requires some stairs climbing before digging into the meal.
“Otoko” implies a “strong man” in Japanese, and is not to be confused with Otoko Ramen at Alexandra Central.
Prices for their specialty dish with a single topping start as low as $4.60 for a plate of Curry Rice or $5.60 for a bowl of Curry Udon.
The Curry Rice and Udon can be customised like the “chap chye png” from a selection of 19 items ranging from $1.80 – $3.80.
Interesting toppings include Ham & Cheese Roll (2pcs for $2.80), Calamari (3pcs for $2.80) and Bacon Tomato (2pcs for $1.80)
I had the Curry Rice ($4.60) with Chicken Cutlet ($2.80) and Potato Salad in Bacon Wrap (2pcs for $1.80) served in a pool of Japanese curry on a huge plate.
While I enjoyed the round, plump rice and the Japanese curry (slightly spicier than usual), the thin, crispy, golden-brown chicken cutlet was unfortunately to the dry side.
Apart from the DIY Curry Rice or Udon, Otoko offers Donburi aka Rice Bowls ($9.80-14.80) and Ebi Tendon ($16.80).
The Salmon Teriyaki Don ($14.80) was pan-fried and glazed with a layer of teriyaki sauce, topped with spring onion and seaweed.
Decently portioned, the teriyaki sauce managed to salvage the otherwise slightly dry salmon.
My favourite dish was the Aburi Salmon Belly on Mini Onigiri ($10.80) served with mayonnaise and spring onion.
The partially grilled salmon belly was smooth and tender, which literally melted in the mouth.
The chili powder added to the onigiri rice ball was an interesting and pleasant twist to the entire combination.
The idea of customising your own Japanese Curry Rice was fun, interesting and reasonably priced.
Perhaps, it is time to visit Hougang Midtown more frequently.
1187 Upper Serangoon Road, #01-20, Singapore 534785
Opening Hours: 11.30am – 10pm (Wed – Mon), Closed Tue
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