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Studded among the noodle shops, roast meat purveyors, and other hawker businesses at Bukit Timah Market and Food Centre is two-week-old Shiba Roti, a cheery-looking stall whose trendy signboard, featuring a cartoon Shiba Inu, suggests hip Japanese offerings within. Except you look in and see the two strapping owners, friends-turned-business partners Justin Tang (right in pic) and Leonard Lim, both in their late 30s, griddling up ready-made roti pratas and filling them up with colourful garnishes, to make roti prata “tacos” of sorts. Throughout our visit, the middle-aged and elderly neighbouring stall owners poke their heads round curiously to see what’s on offer, and seem amused but intrigued. “This one aunty has been coming round to get breakfast from us every day,” says Justin, adding that there’s been a very positive response from both the neighbouring hawkers and the regular clientele at the market, mostly residents from the nearby housing estate.

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