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Our Roots

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Nam Tong Lee 南同利

Chong Suan's grandma came to Singapore from Hainan in the early days. Like many Hainanese, she was a good cook and brought over many recipes to Singapore.

 

[Image: Chong Suan's family in Hainan]

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In the 1920s, after Chong Suan's grandpa passed away, Chong Suan's grandma started a traditional Hainanese confectionery shop named Nam Tong Lee on Purvis Street in order to raise her 7 children.

 

[Image: Chong Suan's grandma with 5 of her children]

Nam Tong Lee sold many types of traditional Hainanese confectioneries. This included the Hainanese Flaky Biscuits which was only sold on Mid-Autumn Festival thus the term "Hainanese Mooncake". During those times, it was the most sought after Hainanese pastry.

 

[Image: Old Purvis Street]

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In 2006, Chong Suan's grandma decided to close the shop as she fell down.

 

[Image: Chong Suan's grandma and mother, Mdm Wong Chih Lian, at the old Nam Tong Lee Bakery in Purvis Street]

In 2013, Mdm Wong Chih Lian together with Chong Suan started Chuan Ji to keep the legacy of Hainanese Flaky Biscuits alive and impart the skills and recipe to the next generation.

 

[Image: Mdm Wong Chih Lian making Hainanese Flaky Biscuits]

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