So close, yet so far…

Bintangor is a small town that is quite close to Sibu. To get there, one would need to cross the mighty Rejang River and in the past, there used to be a ferry service and at times, the queues could be a bit too long and might prove to be test on the commuters’ patience but ever since the bridge had been completed, such problems have become a thing of the past. It probably would take around 40-45 minutes to drive there but despite the close proximity, I cannot remember the last time I was there – it was that long ago.

I don’t know now but I remember when we last stopped there for lunch, the food was very good and cheap…and servings were huge. The town is famous for its very green and very sour oranges – my missus’ favourite! She would go for these instead of Mandarin oranges anytime, believe it or not. Other than that, lately, it had become well-known owing to the popularity of its rojak.

Many have blogged about it and it was even featured in an article in a local newspaper. I have heard of people stopping by the town while driving between Kuching or the other towns along the way and Sibu just to enjoy it and there have been others as well who would drive there all the way from Sibu for this same purpose. I have long wanted to do the same but somehow or other, I never got round to doing it. As they say, I’m so near…and yet so far.

Imagine my delight when Melissa’s friend/coursemate, Christina, went through the trouble of getting some and bringing it all the way to Sibu for me to try. There was a bag…

Bintangor rojak 1

…full of fried sweet potato fritters, bean curd or tofu cake as well as tofu pok with a generous sprinkling of crushed peanut and toasted sesame seeds.

In another bag, there were cut cucumber and pineapples…

Bintangor rojak 2

…and they came with two bags of the rojak sauce…

Bintangor rojak 3

I was wondering why there were two bags of the sauce so I asked Christina about it. According to her, the sauce would be pre-packed as their business is always so good so to speed things up, they are forced to get bags and bags of the sauce ready well beforehand for the people who stop by to buy the rojak or sometimes, just the sauce and take home. I don’t know how true this is but according to Christina, the secret to that so very awesoms tasting rojak is in the stone bowl that they have used all these years to mix everything together.

I put all of that in a bowl and tossed thoroughly – the same as what people would do when preparing salad…and then, I served it in a plate…

Bintangor rojak 4

Was it good? Well, I must say that it certainly was simply out of this world. The rich prawn paste taste with the sweetness, probably from the use of gula apong, plus the sour fragrance of calamansi lime and whatever else all blend it to make this the best rojak I’ve ever tasted anywhere in the country…but if I were to order it for myself,  I would ask for it to be a little bit spicier.

I don’t know if it is still there or not but towards the end of last year, when I went to one of the megamalls in town, I saw a stall selling what they claimed to be Bintangor rojak.  I’m not too sure if there is any connection between the two but I ordered a plate then and somehow or other, I did not think it was anything great – I did not even bother to take photographs and blog about it at the time…but this one is certainly worth special mention.

It is so good that I am contemplating on driving to Bintangor one of these days with the sole intention of having some more of that. Anybody keen on joining me?