The Naughty Chef, located at The Bedok Marketplace, offers affordable Italian food in a hawker centre. While there are plenty of Italian eateries in Singapore, it’s rare to find one in a hawker centre.
With its bright and warm fluorescent lighting, this store gave off a cosy feel. Walking around the hawker centre, I couldn’t help but notice quite a number of people digging into their pizzas and plates of pasta.
This is usually a pretty good indicator that their food is good. That’s a relief because I travelled all the way from the South to the East to try their food!
While waiting, I saw the chef place a generous portion of roasted pork belly on the pizza before rolling it up. This seduced my palate as I waited patiently for it to be served.
There are three ways to have your pizza at The Naughty Chef. You can either enjoy it Double-Baked, Freshly Hand-Stretched or in Calzone fashion. We went for the Calzone pizzas, which looked a little like a huge curry puff.
The Porchetta ($13 for 10″, $18 for 12″) was filled with Italian roasted pork belly, fresh cherry tomatoes, and mozzarella. We tried the 12″ portion, and it was extremely filling.
The dough was evenly baked throughout, with a slightly charred top that gave it an irresistible charm. I just wanted to dig right into it!
One thing I realised was that there were little puddles of oil present around the plate and crust of the Porchetta. If you’re a health nut, this may not be the pizza for you.
Upon cutting into the Porchetta, the glorious Italian pork belly peeked out, accompanied by the tomato juice oozing out and the mouthwatering fragrance filled the air.
The pork belly was tender, with bits of crunchy cartilage that added a crunchier texture to the dish. The pork belly also wasn’t too salty, so the flavour of the tomato base stood out prominently.
I was expecting the mozzarella to be soggy after being soaked in tomato juice. To my pleasant surprise, the ‘cheese pull’ was really satisfying. It seemed to stretch on endlessly!
We also ordered the Diavola ($9 for 10″, $14 for 12″). Consisting of pork salami and mozzarella, this tasted just like a regular pizza.
You can decide how spicy you want your Diavola to be. We had it mildly spicy, which meant that bits of chilli were added into the pizza. We found the Diavola to be a little underwhelming, mainly because it tasted quite predictable. It was still a pretty decent pizza though.
The pork salami wasn’t as salty as I expected it to be, resulting in a fine balance between the flavours of the tomato base and the thinly sliced pork. The chilli added a little kick to the Diavola, but it wasn’t so spicy that I needed water to douse my burning tongue.
How would you like some vodka in your pasta? For the budding alcoholics, introducing the Vodka Crab Meat ($11) pasta. With a dash of vodka and topped with a generous portion of crab meat, this dish is something you wouldn’t expect to find in a hawker centre.
Penne pasta was used to trap the crab meat within the pasta. With every bite I took, I could taste the sweetness of the shredded crab meat. The overall taste of the dish was a little on the sweet side, with the tangy tomato base still present subtly in the background of your palate.
We couldn’t taste the vodka while we were eating this dish though, and a quick chat with the staff revealed the reason. The vodka was supposed to bring out the flavour of the crab and to sweeten the dish, instead of featuring prominently in the flavour profile.
The Squid Ink Risotto ($15) was another dish I was dying to try. This dish came with soft and chewy baby octopuses, which went well with the well-cooked rice. With its sweet and peppery taste, it was a delightful experience savouring this seafood dish.
While the squid ink made this dish look unappetising, don’t be deceived by its look because it tasted heavenly. The pan-seared mussels were fresh, tender and had a springy texture.
We decided to end off the meal with homemade Baileys Tiramisu ($6). I could taste the Baileys when biting into this soft and moist tiramisu.
I liked how the sweetness was complemented by the slightly bitter cocoa powder. If you’re a sucker for desserts like me, you’ll definitely want to try this sweet treat.
The Naughty Chef aroused my taste buds one dish after another. If you are staying in the east, this is one shop you should definitely patronise.
Expected Damage: $9 – $21 per pax
The Naughty Chef: 348 Bedok Road, #02-14, The Bedok Marketplace, Singapore 469560 | Tel: +65 6920 4996 | Opening Hours: 12pm – 2:30pm, 5:30pm – 9:30pm (Tue – Sun), Closed on Mon | Website | Facebook
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