Saturday, January 31, 2009

Penang Nyonya Food

It was a meeting worth gathering in the terraced house and home of my wife's god-sister. To me it was grander than the assembling of ourselves in a well-appointed restaurant. Totally Penangized food and resourcefully converted into a vegetarian fare.

Gathering in KL is sadly lacking in ideas and with plentiful of lethargic and feeble efforts. No joking here, as I have been to a number of them and guilty in organizing it. Not to insult my friends but this is a rallying call to rise up to take our place in food preparation that is well-organized, better ideaed from recipes passionately learned. Let's dig deeper into our heritage.

The Perut Ikan (Curry Nyonya Fish Stomach with Herbs and Vegetables). Since it was vegetarian there was no ikan perut and small prawns. But the aromatic leaves and vegetables play mind and taste game with me. Mint and basil leaves, kadok, tumeric and kaffir lime leaves, tamarind juices etc etc. Sweet, spicy, rich, savoury and sourish. Best of all most of these leaves were sourced from the cook 11 acres farm in Balik Pulau. Recipe from Rasa Malaysia and The Star (Kuali).
Mieng Kham though Thai has been Nyonyanized. Shallots, ginger, toasted dessicated coconut, pomelo sacs, toasted peanuts, brown Malacca syrup, bird's eye chili and kadok leaves for wrapping.Indian Salad-Pasembor/Indonesian-Gado Gado. All home-made. Julinned cucumbers and turnips. No shots were taken on the crispy crackers.
Crushed peanut to be tossed on the Pasembor to gives it a cunchy nutty flavour.Spicy Pasembor Gravy.Ubiquitous Fried Noodles for the Carbo-addicts.Sticky Rice (Pulut) with Kaya (Coconut Jam). The blue colour is not from artificial colouring but from home-grown Bunga Biru. Wonderful, wonderful desserts.Dessert - I detect a faint hint of salt added in to flavour this sweet dessert. Multi-coloured sweet potatoes, yam, starchy strips, santan Mo Mo Cha-Cha.
Dessert - Bali Pineapples, the best in town?

Friday, January 30, 2009

Fresh Seafood Market - Teluk Tempoyak, Penang (Part 2)

While eating at Adnan Hassan we did a spot of shopping at this fish market next door. One of my eating goal when in Penang is always to get and eat fresh off-the-sea fish and shellfish. Being doing that whenever I visit riverine areas like Kalimantan, Sumatera, Mekong or the islands in Philippines. Its too good an oppotunity to miss.

Shiny and bright colours undiminished through the passing of time. Fishes with smooth skin, blood red gills and bright eyes. Fishes looking so alive and body so beautiful showing its vigour and strength. Crabs in brownish bluish hue tinged with reddish blots pointing to the presence of roe.
Ketam Bunga crabs from the sea.
Medium size Silver Pomfret.
A foot-long still alive and kicking mantis prawn.Crabs piled up in a wok and bake in its own liquid for 10-15 minutes.
Delicious, milky and flavourful meat from the pomfret.
Frusrated that this mantis prawn was over-cooked and was left in a steamer unattended while everyone was busy concentrating on other bounties from the sea.

Ikan Bakar Adnan Hassan - Teluk Tempoyak, Penang (Part 1)

It is advisable to be there early esp. weekends. We arrived at 6:15pm. Got our parking. I took some shots and breeze. Relax my mind and body in the serene environment. We went choosing the fresh seafood. There are basically 2 stalls. Ikan bakar and the other stall offers 3 different ways to cook the seafood and mee udang.

Directions: The drive was easy from Queensbay Mall. Using the coastal road we hit the Bayan Lepas Industrial Zone. Continuing on we arrived at the Batu Maung traffic lights cross-junction. Turning left is the 'end of the world' where there is a reputable seafood restaurant (read it from CK Lam). Turning right will be Jalan Batu Maung. Drive straight on and turn left at second left junction. There will be a signboard 'Teluk Tempoyak'. Uphill drive for a km or two and look out for Adnan Hassan signboard.

Part 2 Teluk Tempoyak: More in my next post. Went next door to buy fresh fisherman's catch and enjoyed cooking and feasting on it.
Ikan Bakar at Adnan Hassan Tel: 0194132572. Tuesday to Sunday 6pm - 11:30pmOrdered Mee Udang here.Some starters in the form of satay. Goes well with any food.Mee Udandg with 3 super super fresh and succulent prawns from the sea. Mud crabs with buttery juices and with firm and fresh meaty goodness.Ordered Bawal Talang for grilling. Fresh thick meat. Sauces were not overpowering thus allowing fish subtle goodness to shine through.Siakap and Hoong Jo.Bawal Talang, Jenahak and Grouper. Tried to buy the grouper (top right corner) home as it is still alive. Will be a waste if grilled and not steamed. But was turned down.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Nam Heong Old Town White Coffee, Ipoh

Nam Heong Old Town White Coffee, Jalan Bandar Timah, Ipoh
We have breakfast at Nam Heong this morning. Situated directly opposite to Sin Yoon Loong it has a few very good stalls. Prawn Mee, CKT, Egg tarts, Kai See Hor Fun and Liu Fun. Customers come not just for the coffee but also the food. Comparatively Sin Yoon Loong depends on its toasts and coffee to generate business. As usual we have to wait next to a table for them to finish.

Nam Heong pioneered the White Coffee Mix. Off course now there are 1001 different brand figuratively speaking. Its dynamicism is not limited to trading but the children ventured into the Kopitiam franchise business. It has gone to the length of penisular Malaysia and has reached Singapore where the business was snapped by a sole franchiser. Sin Yoon Loong is happy to wheel and deal in Ipoh and not expansion minded.

Other Posts: Vkeong and Kampungboycitygirl

Directions: From Ipoh New Town's Jalan Sultan Iskandar (formerly Hugh Low St.) cross the Kinta Bridge and turn left at 2nd junction. This is Jalan Bandar Timah. Nam Heong is on your left just before the high-rise flat.

CKT at RM7.00 with 8 prawns.Ipoh Kai See Sar Hor Fun at RM4.00.Egg Tarts

Saturday, January 24, 2009

'Liu Fun' @ Kar Pin Eating House - Ipoh

'Liu Fun' is a popular breakfast staple for the Cantonese in Ipoh. It is actually 'liu' with dry noodles or noodles in light and clear soup. What is 'liu'? It is fish paste used to stuff various vegetables like brinjals, lady fingers, chili and bitter gourd. Brussels sprouts and long beans are less common. Some may even have stuffed mushrooms.

Besides all these stuffed items, the ever popular fish balls come in various sizes and with different ingedients added. Kar Pin is famous for their RM1.00 fish balls the size of a golf ball. When tofu is used, the stuffing has some pork paste mixed in to give it a rough texture. Bean curd skin is also another common medium for the paste but it is fried in oil. 'Liu Fun' is very similar with KL's YTF except that it is eaten with rice or Chee Cheong Fun.

Kar Pin has all the above 'liu' plus very good pork and pork's tendon balls. I rated it highly as it is fresh with hardly any flour added. When I sank my teeth in, I can feel solid minced meat all the way. The tendon balls were equally fresh and crunchy. Quality tendons were used as every part can be chewed on unlike some, where the tendons are difficult to break down.

Raw fish and pork paste are available for sale at RM14 per kg. I may just pack it back for own consumption.

Most of the items is at RM0.60 per piece. MSG present.

Directions: Exit Simpang Pulai toll. Drive towards Ipoh city. Drive along Jalan Gopeng. Branch left to Jalan Kampar. At Oblong 'roundabout' take 12 o'oclock. Temple on left. About 200m arrive at traffic lights cross junction. Perpendicular road is Jalan Pasir Putih. Drive straight. You are now at Jalan Leong Boon Swee. At the traffic lights cross junction turn right and keep left (Kar Pin is on your right) as you will have to turn right almost immediatley. Look for parking.
2 lots shop. Airy and renovated.
Selections of stuffings - 'Liu'.
Fried Stuff.Food Preparation is Separate.Take Your Pick.
Pork balls (left) and Tendon Balls (right).Our Orders.Noodles that accompany the 'Liu'.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Hoe Fong Chicken Rice - Sea Park, P.J.

Beside Sea Park Wet Market, Jalan 21/17
Nice chicken rice is hard to some by. This one is unique as it comes in the form of deep-fried chicken. This is not an exactly healthy dish as chicken are fried in 2 woks brimming with hot oil. Even the fumes permeates the shop but not enough to get the clothes smelling like oil. Seat deeper into the shop.

The old lady hunched over the work and the chopping board busy, busy getting the orders filled. The youngsters get to play second fiddle! This shop is obviously an old brand as regulars come and go.

This one stall shop has lor bak on their very limited solitary one item menu. Their drinks are mediocre. Some MSG.

I ordered a chicken leg plus thigh and a lor bak. With a herbal drink - RM8.50 which is cheap.

Other Post: Masak-Masak
The chicken and lor bak. Soup (not in pic) with radish is complimentary.
The chicken is sweet and firm but not chewy. Should I say fried to perfection. I am not sure what they did to it but it taste as though it is marinated in ginger juice - 7/10.
Very good like my Penang MIL's lor bak. Only complaint, the bean curd skin is not crispy.