I heard it through the grapevine…

I heard of a place in town that sells very nice sio bee or  the Sibu-style meat dumplings or siew mai so I made a beeline to the coffee shop and bought some to try….

KiawHin sio bee 1

I understand that the taukeh-neo (lady proprietress) makes them herself and they’re selling at 70 sen each…

KiawHin sio bee 2

Are they really that nice? Ummmm…I would say that they’re very tasty, that I cannot deny. However, somehow, they remind me of those from that so-called dim sum place in Kuching and I never like what they sell there – the pao (steamed bun) skin is yellow in colour and chewy and when you bite into it, the whole chunk of minced meat ball would drop out onto your plate or the table. As for the har kao, you would have to eat the skin (thick like anything) and the filling separately as they would have come apart…and the sio bee is one tough ball of meat. They all taste all right, no doubt but I cannot understand why people are so crazy over them and those in Sibu would buy boxes of the stuff home. Not me, that’s for sure!

Like the ones from that Kuching shop, these here have a whole lot of meat inside…

KiawHin sio bee 3

…but they are not as hard/rubbery. Personally, I think I prefer the ones I had here – and they’re only 50 sen each. Smallkucing loved it so much that he had three at one go!!!

Traditionally, people would make our Foochow/Sibu-style sio bee using meat and sengkuang/mangkuang (turnip) in the right proportions – not too much of either…and there are good ones and not-so-good ones where they would scrimp on the ingredients and add a lot of flour instead…so strictly speaking, these aren’t exactly like what our local sio bee should be…but they’re not bad really, not bad at all.

I also bought the bak zhang that they say are also made by the taukeh-neo herself…

KiawHin bak zhang 1

I’ve purposely placed the mug beside them in the photograph so that you would have a fair idea as to how huge they are…and these giant ones are RM3.50 each with a salted egg yolk inside…

KiawHin bak zhang 2

It tasted really good…

KiawHin bak zhang 3

…with quite a lot of meat and some Shitake mushroom inside besides the yolk but some people may feel the pinch if they have to fork out RM3.50 for one dumpling. But at least, it is better than paying  a lot of money for something that really isn’t worth the calories, don’t you think?

So if anybody is interested in trying these, they are obtainable at Kiaw Hin, the coffee shop right next to the Methodist Book Room (across the road from the Inland Revenue office and this coffee shop) in the town centre. Somebody told me before that the Hinghua fried mihun (the one with cangkuk manis) is good there but I have never gone to try – traffic is usually heavy around that part of town and parking can be a real pain. Perhaps I’ll drop by there again someday. We’ll see…

Author: suituapui

Ancient relic but very young at heart. Enjoys food and cooking...and travelling and being with friends.

28 thoughts on “I heard it through the grapevine…”

  1. that hawker’s place siobee was good… bakchang, u have to come to kl to try kathy’s. I think will use the toothpick haybee as the secret weapon this time…

    Poslaju – dijamin sampai hari esok!!!! They say if you use the bamboo zhang leaves – the zhang can keep/ wouldn’t go bad without refrigeration. Those using the pandan leaves wouldn’t last very long.

    1. u gotta define the meaning of ‘keep’ cos it does not exist in my dictionary… hahaha… i believe in kacang cap ngan yin’s motto ‘bila buka, makan sampai habis’…

      “keep” here means it doesn’t go bad lah!!! Aiyor…have a heart lah! Kesian poor me here – send a few over lah!!! LOL!!! 😀

  2. actually i like how they are presented, in a row on the long plate instead of the traditional steam basket.. but take a close look again, and i supposed you are the one who brought them home and place them on the plate, haha!! the bak chang is nice, hmmm, i’m waiting to eat them as the dumpling festival comes..

    Yup…I arranged them myself – brought them home to eat, but if you eat at the coffee shops or hawker stalls here, they will serve you on a plate – not in a bamboo basket like in those dim sum places. Hmmmm…you don’t have to wait for the festival – sold everywhere in KL and the kawasan2 yang sewaktu dengannya. Used to have a nice stall at Bukit Bintang – now no more lah! The last I saw was at Paramount! Looked good but I didn’t buy…

    1. hahaha!! kawasan-kawasan sewaktu dengannya!! started to berdoa already?? but very true, nowadays dumplings are available all year round, i just ate one made by a friend’s grandma, very nice.. Bukit Bintang ah, you mean along Jalan Alor??

      Nope! Bukit Bintang all right! In the mid-80’s, there was a stall by the roadside in front of the row of shops opposite Bukit Bintang Plaza – the zhang was really very nice…and the giant pao at one of the coffee shops there were simply out of this world also…and the wantan noodles and other delights from the stalls in the coffee shop were good too!!!

      There was also a time when there was a stall there (by the roadside too) selling Seremban siew pao – when it first took the country by storm. I did not like it very much…so I was not too crazy about those. And then, somebody started a dim sum place at the coffee shop there – really good dim sum…but that did not last very long. They got rid of everything there and turned it into what it is today. I remember round the corner, in the lane between Agora Hotel and the next building, there was a roadside stall…and the bak kut teh was really very very nice.

      Sad that all these things are gone now – those would be the true KL identity – not the supposedly more impressive shops, Body Glove and what have you, that you see today, not the many mid-eastern restaurants you see today, not The Ship…and definitely not those foot reflexology and massage palours…or the pimps that have ventured out from Jalan Alor. Certainly serve to give KL a bad name, all these – don’t you think? Tsk! Tsk! 😦

  3. Wah Arthur is displaying his plating skills wor! Lolz the posh chinese eateries just have to arrange them nicely, add a lil garnish and walla! prices are hiked up!
    Somehow my craving for those dumplings happens only once a year when the should be made. Otherwise, lor mai kai suffices! 🙂
    +Ant+

    Yup! I always feel lor mai kai is more or less the same…but we do not get that here – no nice ones that I know of. We used to have what looked like the Cantonese pillow zhang, big…and very nice with lap chiang, peanuts, chestnuts, yam and all inside other than the usual meat, shitake and salted egg yolk but they cost RM5.00. No sign of those anymore. Maybe too expensive so no matter how nice, people would think twice before buying.

  4. Home made bak chang is still the best. Wink wink! It seems the season is around the corner… Praying that I am in the mood to wrap some… hahhahahha

    Yes, …and I’m praying too! Wink! Wink! Muahahahahaha!!!! 😀

  5. I also like the Rm0.50 siew mai .. looks good…
    over here .. at least RM1.00pc..
    I think I could eat a dozen….. kekekeke
    I had too much of my MIL Ba Zhang liao .. kinda phobia now .. LOL..

    Oh? You can always send them over – poslaju – dijamin sampai hari esok. Wouldn’t go bad so soon… 😉 LOL!!!

  6. Both looks nice and I know the dim sum place in Kuching you are referring to., hehehe!!!… I like nyonya bak chang….yummy!!!!!!!….

    Me too!!! But I can’t get the nyonya ones here unless some friends, like Richard, will make and give me some. Hint! Hint, Richard! Or somebody sends from Kuching. Hint! Hint, Irene! Muahahahahahaha!!!! 😀 Where do you usually buy yours? The ones from the old lady’s stall in front of the Green Road shops in the afternoon – those used to be pretty good, not too sure now.

  7. Everyday having nice food I see. 🙂 I like the photos you take, nicely angled and very closeup.

    I might skip that dim sum, but would love having some of that giant bak Chang. Yum!

    Nah!!! Your photos are nice too! You don’t want the sio bee? Hmmmmm…tak kenal maka tak cinta. Come on over and try! You’ll be begging for more. Muahahahahaha!!!! 😀

  8. The pictures look lovely, and the food looks appetizing.

    I believe I’ll make dumplings sometime next week. If I recall, I haven’t made them since my daughter was about two years old. Then I made them often since she loved them. When she first heard the word, she called them ‘dump-per-lings’… ha ha, so cute.

    Hah!!! The things we do for our kids! If my daughter wants to eat anything, you can be sure the next minute, I’d be sweating it out in the kitchen… Sigh!!!

    1. I’m the same way… I do a lot for my eight-year old daughter, she doesn’t always receive what she wants, but she always receives what she needs. So daily doses of attention are on that list. We spend a lot of time together. I’m enjoying my time with her… all too soon she’ll be whisked away doing other things; college, activities, and (gasp) dating! 😉

      I’ve been craving dumplings ever since your last dumpling post. I think you posted one about a week ago.

      Did I? Maybe the one when my blogger-friends were in town? Ya…that’s part of life. Eventually, they’ll sprout wings and fly away…leaving us in our empty nests. Sobssss!!!! My daughter’s been away from home for some 5 years now, final year right now…and not sure whether she’ll eventually come home when she has graduated. Will have to see where she’ll be posted in the country when she becomes a full-fledged teacher next year.

  9. Ooooo yum!!! Would happily eat this for brekkie any day 🙂 luckily this post is not posted yesterday(good Friday). It looks so tempting!

    LOL!!! Lead you not into temptation, ya? Hehehehehehe!!! I don’t suppose you van get these for breakfast there…and even if you can they’d be so very expensive. Poor deprived people there… Namind, those oats and whatever wholegrain cereals are very healthy! Muahahahahahaha!!!! 😀

    1. Ewwww oats and multigrain cereals are disgusting. For me anyway 🙂 my aunt makes bak zhang sometimes. Once in a blue moon she’ll give some to us poor deprived people. I don’t think we can find siew mai here 😦 I could probably eat 3 siew mais at one go like small kucing haha

      Hahahahaha!!!! I always call those things food for the horse – see how big and strong horses are! Muahahahahaha!!!! 😀 Never mind, ASpriul already…and very soon you’ll be coming home for the summer hols. Then you eat all the sio bee you want. Actually, you can get the skin from the wet market here, if somebody’s going over…and you can try to make your own. 😉

  10. Aiyor.. I read this post I naik takut already.Thought of taking u to a dim sum place here but after reading how you describe the pau etc, I Sudah naik takut.. Hahaha. Sweating now!!!

    Auckland dim sum best lah! Original Hongkie chef, don’t play-play. This one…old-school, famous since the 70s…and only 3 choices, want to call dim sum. LOL!!! 😀

  11. I see not the siew mai, I see not the bak zhang. But I see an ad about a ‘deliciously sensual cook seeking…’. I hope you had many full mailbags, heh heh! 😉 make that muahahahaa!

    Hahahahaha!!!! That’s my mug of “naughty” classified ads. You wanna apply? Muahahahahahaha!!!!! 😀

    1. Apply?? I can’t take rejections! I was going to say “I can’t take no for an answer” but….muahahaaaa!

      Let me see what else is on the mug… This definitely can’t be you: “Old fashioned. attractive, polished Christian lady…” Muahahahahaha!!!

  12. oh myyyyy u make me crave for dim sum at this time!! TT

    No problem…Penang, like KL – the city never sleeps, can get dim sum or any kind of food any time of day… 😉

  13. Perils of blog hopping at such an unearthly hour is I have to bear with my croaking stomach and no many places to visit to makan. though i think f i can wake the hubster up, I may just end up having some old fashion dim sum at the market! *grin*

    Sometimes, the old school ones are the best… I’ve a cousin who will eat our local sio bee anytime, not those dim sum siew mai. 😉 Once, he asked a friend to buy from a shop here…and the guy went to buy the siew mai from the dim sum restaurant next door. LOL!!! 😀

  14. Those siew mai looks really nice and I haven’t had my breakfast yet. Now your yummy photos make me want to eat siew mai. Yes, that is what I am going to have for breakfast this morning 😀

    You did not get to eat these when you were here. Now you will have to come to Sibu again to sample our own Sibu Foochow-style sio bee or siew mai… 😉 Very different from those dim sum ones.

  15. argh…you remind me….time to dig out the bak chang leaves….time to make bak chang again soon…wondering this year whether will try those white bak chang that you have posted. Prev year tried. Remdam the beans too long…hancur …sigh…

    Beans? What beans? The white ones, I think they did not fry with soy sauce and 5-spice before wrapping….

  16. Sibu siew mai, nice nice, is this one as good as the famous “hook chu liu” one? I like to eat it with dip in chili sauce. Nice!

    Zhang! Very soon, next month, zhang festival again! I keep my promise, will ask my mother in law make extra, freeze it, then i bring it back for you and my mum . :D:D:D

    Ah!!! Can’t wait for you to come – wanna try your MIL’s beautiful bak zhang. Last year, could see only…hope to get to eat this year.

    I haven’t had the Hock Cheu Lau sio bee for a long time…many, many years – RM1.20 each, the last time I heard…and if steamed, RM1.30. I think the price is quite ridiculous. A cousin from Kuching bought and she said – like that only, nothing great. I can buy these for you when you come, most probably much nicer – see if you like it or not.

  17. Well, from the photo the siew mai looks pretty enticing. I have the urge to get a bite….so hungry. No lunch today…sigh**

    Aiyor…why? So kesian! You can try it when you come again at the end of the month… 😉

All opinions expressed in my blog are solely my own, that is my prerogative - you may or may not agree, that is yours. To each his/her own. For food and other reviews, you may email me at sibutuapui@yahoo.com

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