Sunday, September 29, 2019

Restoran Jia Kopitiam (家咖啡店) - Danau Kota Setapak

Jia Kopitiam aspires to be like those olden days of muhibbah. Halcyon days of Ah Leong, Samy and Ahmad sharing the same shop lot dishing Malaysian multi-ethnic cuisine in a jiffy for the hungry souls. Jia Kopitiam in food terms is unmistakably Malaysian at least.

The food was good, and most of the hawker stalls' fares are there. I was given a lunch treat and managed to snap my friends' food before the chopsticks went in.

My Nasi Lemak Fried Chicken was strait-jacketed. They got things right. Was it superb, not there, but was between good to great. You follow the system and train the workers, the Kopitiam will get into the path of excellence. I wish them well as they were polite and a vibrant, helpful bunch.

My friends dug in. Food was good. Special mention was the Chee Cheong Fun, Ipoh-style with red sauce. They told me, the bowls of Prawn Mee, Hainanese Chicken Rice and Curry Laksa were good.

It's better than the stalls at the coffeeshop if you know I meant. There is a difference between Kopitiam and Coffeeshop. Yes. One is more stylish, cost more and with air-con while is the other has none of the three.

Be there is you are near Danau Kota in Setapak/Genting Klang.

Restoran Jia Kopitiam (家咖啡店)
G02, Danau Kota Apartment Suite, Jalan 1a/6, Taman Setapak Indah

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Pokok Assam Market Hawker Food, Taiping

Polo Assam Market Food, Taiping

Small pleasures only for the seekers. For they shall find. A drive up to visit a friend in Pokok Assam got us to pause a little while at this old market with a newer annexe, for our lunch.

This is no Taiping but a satellite. But then the common food is as common as any market in Malaysia. So many varieties for a smaller pain in the market. In fact, it gets us to try more.

One of thing I like about this type of market is the authencity of their food. They stick on to old recipe and taste. Klang Valley has become a sweet food valley. Sweet predominates.

Here in Pokok Assam, I still get to taste the sour, spicy, pungent, savoury (thumbs up) and sweet. The Mee Rebus Chinese style has almost all the above flavours and tastes. The Chee Cheong Fun and Popiah almost has the same sauces, sweet, spicy, sour and savoury.

And finally, the Loh Mee, almost lost that soya sauce taste in KL. A kind of smell that half assault and invite itself into your world. Somehow, I have no need for the black vinegar to Ho with it. The lost sauces reintroduction were enough for the day.

Pokok Assam Market
Kampung Potong Pinang, Taiping, Perak

Saturday, September 21, 2019

Best Kopitiam Yuan Kie Kopitiam - Bentong, Pahang

Each time for the last few occasions, this would be our brunch pit stop after starting from KL at 9 am. We particularly like the Mixed Rice stall. Heaps of food whet our appetite and best of all some old favorites not commonly available, as well as the Kongsai clan specialty, all kinds of tofu with meaty toppings or stuffings.

We usually pick up the stuff Tau Pok (Dried Beancurd Puff) and White Tofu with Meat Paste toppings. Robust flavourful taste with great texture.

The next plate should be their aromatic spicy wild boar curry. Careful cooking locked in layers of the spices ready to be unleashed on the taste buds.

The Hooi Kee Wantan Noodles were also tasty. Cheap and good eats with al dente springy noodles and flavourful sauce and equally good wantan with fresh pork and aromatic sesame oil wafting ever so plainly to the nostrils.

Great place for breakfast and lunch, at least for the outsiders.

No. 57, Jalan Chui Yin, 28700, Bentong, Pahang
016-963 2427

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Key Hiong Dim Sum - Taman Megah, Petaling Jaya

It came highly recommended especially the dumplings. I went for their Sang Yuk (Pork) and Char Siew (BBQ Pork) Pau. Their fillings just of the fair and right amount. The taste was a tad sweet for both. They were careful with the Char Siew as the taste were flavourful and aroma great, compared to some whose fillings were just a lump of protein fibres.

Chee Cheong Fun (CCF) was of a big portion. The fillings were tasty Char Siew again. The dried shrimps sambal were excellent. They were packed with dried shrimps. Back to the recurring sweet flavour sauce. And the Loh Mai Kai was a bit soggy. Foh San Ipoh still has the best.

I tested the Brinjal Yong Tau Fu. The fish paste was flavourful, bouncy and flavourful. One of the best around. It means right fish materials were used and I have confidence in this shop.

The test of the Dim Sum will be the Har Kau (prawn dumpling) fillings. The skin figures but it varies from place to place. The prawns and pork were good. No gamey and funky taste. It means the rest of the dumplings in different forms should be good barring the use of various sauces, dumplings skins and soy sheets.

Crispy Yam Puff was crispy and had a good yam puff layer. Again the Char Siew fillings did not disappoint.

Overall, I will go for their fish paste in and on anything, Puffs, Paus and CCF with Char Siew inside and their lighter Dim Sum as I will try to avoid some of their platters with heavier sauces which deliver the sweet notes.

Key Hiong Dim Sum
21, Jalan SS 24/8, Taman Megah, Petaling Jaya
03-7804 6912

Friday, September 13, 2019

Twin Brother Bak Kut Teh Seafood - Ara Damansara

Twin Brother Bak Kut Teh Seafood Restaraunt

Ara Damansara has undoubtedly seen more light shining into their dull and sparse culinary scene. We came to this Bak Kut Teh place for a carnivorous meal, but it was sold out at 8 pm Sunday. We settled for some a la carte Chinese food. Pretty impressive though, a Bak Kut Teh and Seafood restaurant under one roof. Thus, the BKT has to wait for another day.

We took our time to place our order, scouring the menu, and engaging the captain on what's good. After an exchange, the decision was primal. Order our favorites from the list.

Top of the list would be the Fried Intestines with Dried Shrimps. This dish does not come easy as most eateries don't carry it. We were in luck that day. The first I noticed on biting and chewing was the wok hei (breath of the wok). Secondly, the crunchy texture I expected was there with the excellent umami taste.

The vinegar trotters came second; my wife dug in as I was enjoying the intestines. Came my turn, after eating the first two pieces, I was asking her where were the meaty parts. I seemed to be getting those with skin and small bits of meat. She was sheepish. The competition was on. The taste was on a sweet side with some tart. Some have so much vinegar that the fumes will sear the nose and get you to the point of almost choking.

Lastly, the pork stomach soup came in a clay pot. So far, so good. It was a clear soup type. Good broth. The stomach usually has three different textures. One is smooth and slightly chewy and the other rough and firm. The middle is more of a thin elastic membrane. That is the reason why many like this piece of pig's spare part. It was done just right. Some kitchen seemed to have overdone it, and the rough part gets crinkled and rubbery. The stomach loses the correct texture and somehow ruins a good eat.

Worthy of visits again. But first I have to try their Bak Kut Teh maybe for lunch.

Twin Brother Bak Kut Teh Seafood Restaraunt 孖仔肉骨茶海鲜饭店
F-G-5, Jalan PJU 1a/20d, Dataran Ara Damansara, Petaling Jaya
016-633 3709

Monday, September 9, 2019

Yong Tau Foo (Grabfood) - Kepong

Yong Tau Foo is one of the healthiest food around. It has lots of non-meat protein from the tofu and soy sheets. Then there is the multi-coloured vegetables that is not only a sight to behold but also a treasure trove of all kinds of nutrients and vitamins.

With the advent of personalised food deliveries, there is no need to beat the jam, look for parking and wait for a table and wait for the food. So, nowadays I look to Grabfood to bring my meals to my home. I find the delivery partners pretty efficient and fast. In fact to thank them for their service, I do tip them.

Each YTF eatery has their own unique and secret recipes for the fish paste, condiments and even soup. This shop has something more, a half soup half condiment concoction. The main flavouring agent is in the form of the ubiquitous Tau Cheong (fermented bean paste) as an ingredient. Something like the Miso soup. The soup was desirable and tasty and can be addictive as it is a comfort taste for those used to having Tau Cheong in their food.

I have the following deep-fried YTF that were made from soy sheets or tofu:
Stuffed crispy Tau Pok (Dried bean curd puff),
Fried tofu,
Fried soy sheets (Fu Chok Spring Roll),
Fried soy sheets (Fu Chok Flat Sheets)
Fried Tofu and
White Tofu

Stuffed Vegetables and others
Green Chili
Red Chili
Ladies Fingers
Bitter Gourd
Fish Ball
Fried Sui Kao (dumplings).
Fish Cake
Chee Cheong Fun (Rice Noodle Roll)

My requirements for YTF is simple, clean and fresh oil for frying. Make sure they keep clear of stale or over-used oil. Secondly, the condiments must be decent. If they go the extra mile to get it right and good in-situ, I will certainly patronise them. Lastly, the soup for the fish or pork balls: what ingredients were used to get the broth matters. I don't mind simple clear soup but certainly not those laden with salt and MSG. Overall, I found a decent YTF restaurant that mostly get all the above right plus decent portions that make their food value for money.

Restoran Yong Tau Foo
Jalan Metro Perdana Timur 3

Thursday, September 5, 2019

Fatty Mee Hoon Kuih House - Taman Berkeley

The promise of a good eat will be when I am with old friends. Good exchanges from one another's socialising and eating playbook. We got there just after 12 noon and quickly found a table and food was also promptly delivered. 

Most of the grumblings frm customers in social media and reviews were on the wait for a table, heat inside and then the time taken for the food to come. Easily 30 to 45 mins. While waiting, go for their cincau soya drink. Crowd favorite. Go for a second one if needed. Let them make some money as we are holding up their table!

This row of shops where FMHK is situated has some hallowed companions. Facing the shop, on the left far end of the road will be the redoubtable Hock Chew restaurant, Jit Ben. Then on Jit Ben row at the right-hand corner, we have one of the best handmade Tong Yuen (glutinous rice balls). Sells only in the evening.

Back to Mee Hoon Kuih, the Fatty MHK noodles made were velvety smooth to feel in the mouth and had a beautiful textural sensation when chewed. The right amount of components and the right timing of the cooking will get it there. Until and unless we have time and skill, we will have to eat out like this when the call of the stomach rises and can't be ignored.

The soup was excellent. Pigs bones and anchovies were used definitely. Adding to the appetite would be the clear soup that packed a big wallop. Surely the main attraction, it was sweet and never too harsh with too much salt or MSG to overrun your taste buds. I was not thirsty after the noodles and downing the soup in it's entirety from the bowl. 

Finally, you get the unique Klang treatment, liver was added. Some thought that with some blood it enhances the taste. A good outing for me and go for two bowls if you can stand the heat from the soup and eating without air-con.

Fatty Mee Hoon Kuih House
Leboh Bangau, Taman Berkeley, Klang, Selangor
017-336 6183

Sunday, September 1, 2019

Sze Ngan Chye Roast Duck in Kepong

The salted first duck here tastes so savourily good. The last I had the original Petaling Street was from a time I couldn't recall. Of course, there were other distractions here and there and these roast ducks were succulent and stood out as among the better ones. However, niggling at the back of my mind was this one, but the travel and parking were not very beckoning. That is until I was told that there is an air-con branch in Kepong.

So one fine lunch afternoon, we eagerly traipsed there with our hearts and mouth trembling with culinary excitement.

Now, for the first experience, it was a good one. The duck was succulent and the meat's taste was indescribable. It has the effect of creating a desire to have more of that duck. The salt as in 'salted' tasted so good. In an Asian world of food, most were ladened with sugar.

There is a way that salt can bring the best out of the meat. There is something we can learn from the West. Frankly, take a look at how steak is done. Just salt and cracked black pepper. Of course, there is the gravy, but then the most important work on the steak was done using salt and black pepper.

Then roast pork was expected. Crunchy rind and delightful meat cooked and honed to a desirable taste from a controlled fire in the oven.

A relaxing lunch with a good ambiance and air-condition added to our day. Lunch can be so satisfying without breaking into the usual bout of perspiration.

四眼仔 Sze Ngan Chye
48, Jalan Metro Perdana Barat 3, Taman Usahawan Kepong, Kuala Lumpur
03-6241 1115