All mixed up…

It is called chap fan in Chinese (Cantonese, if I’m not mistaken) and nasi campur in Malay and they both mean the same – mixed rice. There have been other names used at those Chinese chap fan stalls such as economic rice or economy rice – which I feel would not be the right name for it if what they mean is that it is cheap and one can save money eating this for one’s meals and should be called economical instead like what I have  mentioned before in this post a long time ago. Some will call it fast food which I would think is quite appropriate except at some very popular ones where you would need to queue up for a long time to get what you want, in which case it would not be exactly fast at all.

The mamaks (Indian muslims) have their nasi kandar shops and if you do not know what that name means, I googled and managed to stumble upon this piece of information:
‘Nasi’ means rice in Malay while ‘Kandar’ refers to a formidable stick that is slung across one’s shoulder to carry heavy objects securely hung on both ends of the stick.
from this website. But of course, there have been a lot of complaints that at times, after picking our choices and sitting down to eat it all up, we may feel the pinch when it is time to pay the bill as at times, it may be somewhat expensive and the total may go way beyond RM10.00 depending on what we have – for instance, I paid a whooping RM11.00 for what I had here.

Thankfully, we can have something similar here for a lot less…like what I had the other day…

Nasi campur @ Balkis

…at a Malay/Melanau Muslim place here in Sibu…

Balkis Sibu

For the lamb curry, the baby sotong (squids), the big chunk of chicken liver and the sambal emplam and the rice, I only had to pay RM5.50. At some places, they may have fixed prices starting from say, RM3.00. depending on what you take – 3 veg…or 1 meat and 2 veg…or 2 meat and 1 veg but I had 3 meat and 1 veg in my combination.

I like eating at some of these nasi campur places more than the chap fan ones as usually they do not cook so much and it would taste much better – something like our own home-cooked dishes. There was even dabai (black olives) that day…


…but we have had too much of the fruit this year and I guessed I have had more than enough, thank you.

Melissa had a thosai


– I think this is about the only place in town where one can have that. I hear there’s another one down the road but I was told that they only sell roti canai the whole day and one can only have thosai at around 4.00 p.m. in the evening. Anyway, the ones here are nice and Melissa loves them – in fact, she prefers them to the ones she had in Sungai Petani, Kedah.

My missus had their mee mamak

Mee mamak

…and it was nice too.

The total, inclusive of drinks, came up to only RM14.00. I would say that’s pretty reasonable, don’t you think?

Author: suituapui

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

37 thoughts on “All mixed up…”

  1. I love thosai too.. must have with a little coconut chutney.. drools…

    never tried dabai before… what does it taste like?

    The inside, the yellow part is very rich (the good ones)…like avocado. Really had my fill this year – too much this time around!

  2. Oh…..chap fan! I eat chap fan almost every dinner. It’s so easy….all on the plate and in front of the TV 😀 So long have not eaten tosai. Not craving yet….haha.

    My father would NEVER hear of it – cannot accept everything dumped on a plate like that, said like the stuff we fed the dogs in my younger days. Would insist on eat item in its own plate.

  3. Chap fan? Not quite economy in KL these days. 😦 Naik harga dah. 3 veggies can hit RM6 sometimes. 😦 Really pengsan wan.

    Good grief!!! THAT is expensive! 😦

  4. Learn something today about Kandar which refers to a formidable stick tQ. Have you tried carrying stuff using kandar before? Bro not easy for new comers your shoulder will sure ‘or chear’ *black green* coz Bananaz tried once helping out in the vegetable garden carrying two pail of water when as a kid, more of play play and not really working.

    Me? Cannot lah…my skin very thin one, so delicate. LOL!!! 😀

  5. WhyAskWhy we Chinese say ‘Or Chear’ *black green* referring to bruises but the Englishman says ‘black and blue’? Who is colorblind? lolz

    Both, I guess – it’s black! But when it gets better, it turns a little greenish, doesn’t it? Oops…you wouldn’t know. Hehehehehehe!!!!

  6. No doubt about it the ma’cha stall always very axepensive, they don’t cut, too slow already instead they axe you. Would’nt say go for economic rice lunch anymore but rather buffet lunch now hehehe

    Got class a bit, eh? 😉

  7. yeah, economy mixed rice is never economical anymore!! they can be so expensive.. yours at RM11.00 i think most probably they count the squid by pieces?? hahaha.. actually come to think of it, mixed rice is still not the very right way to call this chap fan right?? it’s merely literally translating the terms from cantonese.. what better or more correct terms can this be called, English Teacher??

    I thought that’s fine unless you prefer rice combo – rice with a combination of whatever you choose.

  8. Actually chap farn depends on what dishes you take.. there is one shop here in Ipoh which Elin and I often frequent now..cos one plate of rice is around 3rm only… any 3 dishes (excluding fish)… and lots of people queuing up during lunch hour…

    That’s the usual price, I guess…but you want more, you pay…simple as that.

  9. RM14??? That’s more than reasonable. Now you got me craving for thosai 🙂 You are right, when eating at certain places, it is good to track what you have taken to prevent being slaughtered. Better check the prices first. During CNY we went to this place and discovered they charged us RM15.00 for a simple fried fish. Too late, we already took the fish. Now we are wiser 🙂

    But at the kandar places, they will just say eat first…and then when you want to pay, they will come and do some mental calculation and tell you the total that is enough to give anyone a heart attack. How will they know what you’ve eaten when you’ve finished everything and they do not see before you finish it all up?

  10. you can’t get that price here lo…with sotong some more…it will cost more in nasi kandar restaurant 😦

    Yalor…and yet they’re so popular – always packed, so many people willing to be slaughtered.

  11. Love mixed rice but not the rice. Love the dishes actually. LOL.

    It depends. Some of the Chinese chap fan places, the food sucks big time…and some of the Malay ones too. Like everything else, must know where to go.

  12. For the price it’s considered very good already. Mmmm sambal empelam sedap, No need take other vege already

    Yalor…that alone, can finish one plate of rice. Slurpsssss!!!!

  13. Here they don’t call it economy rice.. apparently it’s called a buffet or hot food bar. And it’s DEFINITELY not cheap.. the cheapest I found also $8.50+ for 2 dishes. 😦 But I prefer having the tosai than mixed rice right now! LOL!

    Not too fond of the mixed rice either, the Chinese ones…but I do not mind the Malay ones. Nicer.

  14. Right, its called chap fan in Cantonese.
    I like chap fan, its quick and there’re lots of variety to choose!
    But of course, all subject to taste (too much Ajinomoto) and price..

    True! Msg a lot, very oily and most places…not nice.

  15. When eating outside, I prefer to have other things than chap fan. It all depends on what dishes you take. Love the mee mamak.

    Me too, not one to go for chap fan…but don;t mind nasi campur at the Malay stalls.

  16. These days, those chap fan (nasi campur) cannot be called as ‘economy rice’ anymore. Cos they are not economy at all!! It can easily cost more than a bowl of noodle @_@

    It does… Not cheap, that’s for sure.

  17. Ooh, they serve dabai too! What sauce are they using? Is it sweet or savory?

    Yeah, nasi kandar is not cheap. That plate of fried mee looks delicious!

    For the dabai? I think they do it like how we do it at home – toss in soy sauce plus sugar.

  18. I always love the Malay chap fan more than the Chinese ones.. hmm.. that’s an idea for what to have during my lunch later.. the plate of rice you having may cost a little more say RM8 in KL.

    Me too. Hmmm…cheaper here, small town.

  19. wow thats a lot of interesting dish huh,
    I love that last one the most

    That’s fried noodles, Malay style…or Malaysian Muslim Indian style.

  20. dabai dabai… nice nice… eh, if mel likes thosai, would like to introduce her to uthapam… a thicker version of thosai… nice too…

    How was the dabai I gave you? Good?

  21. I have always prefer Malay chap fan than the Chinese ones and wouldn’t mind those mamak one too. I would order tosai more often than I would roti canai as roti canai I can make myself.. nicer somemore ( humble is definately not one of my virtues.. Hehehe). I would kill for the mee mamak now… although, why so sikit, ah?

    Ya…serving’s not that big at the Malay stalls. I like nasi campur better too, will have that anytime…but not the Chinese chap fan.

  22. Yup, chap fan is in Cantonese. Truth be told, I like the Chinese economy rice even better because they have the varieties. Thosai’s another favorite. Speaking of it, I haven’t had ’em in a while. Would need to order this as a change to the all-usual banana rice and/or chapati. =D

    They have the variety but I find that most are not so nice. The Malay ones fewer but most are not to my taste. To each his/her own, I guess.

  23. Hi, I miss the train, that’s why I’m late in commenting. 🙂
    Chap fan.. I call it ‘Chinese buffet”. I think no longer economy as sometimes price can be quite expensive depend on what we pick. Anyway I don’t fancy chap fan, not my cup of tea.

    The tosai and mee mamak look delicious, YUMMY!
    Have a nice day.

    Still ok here, not expensive…but not necessarily nice.

  24. Learn a new word today…I don’t know what the word “kandar” means before reading this. Loves the mee mamak. I seldom take rice during lunch time as I tend to be sleepy after taking rice.

    Oh? They say have a light lunch like the westerners do and a heavy breakfast to start off the day.

  25. I always opt for Chinese economy rice when ever I go out. Boring me! :p Because I am a diet balanced type of person, I prefer vegetables and meats in my plate. But it is no longer economic nowadays. Hard to find economy rice sold at less than RM5.00 unless you take 2 – 3 vegetable dishes only. Hahah! I think dabai is in abundance now, people bored of it.

    Me too, not buying anymore… Too much, they say will last till Chinese New Year.

  26. The Malay nasi campur for me any time! Oooo, very soon you will be enjoying some superb cooking. Some people are just sooooo lucky. * sigh *

    I was having dinner with some locals here last night and they were talking about very nice Penang char kway teow here…at NZ11.90…*faints* Even without converting, that’s expensive! So thankful I’m living in Sibu. Nice and cheap.

  27. Hmm…I love dabai. I had lots and lots of dabai, local durian (bitter ones, not those branded ones we have in West M’sia) and wild durians (orangey flesh) since I was in Sibu two to three weeks ago. Due to my 10 month old baby still on breastmilk, he got slight fever last week and was cranky, I concluded my food was too heaty for him and I have slowed down a bit 🙂

    Hope your baby’s ok now. No lah…memang want to fall sick one, but those fruits are indeed very very heaty, no doubt about that.

  28. is that sotong?! yum yum! high cholesterol tho! =(
    mee mamak looks yummy! but why taugeh looks so lonnggg?

    You don’t like it long? Wink! Wink! Muahahahahaha!!!! 😀

  29. Send the dabai over here then lol! My dad just brought over a small bag because my grandma asked him to. Finished in no time!

    Too bad I’m not going to KL or I could bring a whole lot for you. Incredibly cheap these days – as low as RM5-6 and very good already. I’d go for the RM8-10. Excellent!

  30. I love this place! It’s my second favorite nasi briyani place and I called my dad the other day and he told me dabai was in season in Sibu too.

    Can’t wait to get a hold of it and eat them 😀

    Yes, dabai has been out since November, around RM20 a kg then…now less than RM10….a lot and very very good. Good time to come home but not now, I’m not home. 😉

  31. Before I forget again, I must say a BIG THANK YOU very much for your gift! I appreciate your kind thoughts and God will bless you always for being a caring friend to everyone. Sorry for the late acknowledgement as that silly SP just passed it to me after getting an earful. He always forgot to bring it out when he met up. So hard to believe that he is so young and FORGETFUL. Next time please buy him Gingko supplements! LOL

    I saw Pussy cat getting Dabai….must be from you. I am so curious to sink my teeth into them!!

    Too much of night activity, I guess…floods his brain! You should have asked from mamma pussy – I bought her 1 kg, more than enough to go round. Can’t keep long, will wrinkle and then not nice anymore.

  32. mixed rice stall they serve dabai too? Interesting!

    AH!! Now i can tell my mum, Sibu serve tosai too! This time when she was here, i bring her for tosai almost everyday she enjoy it so much!!! Tell me it is really nice. hahahahha..But i am order paper tosai. I should tell her read this and go and try the tosai here.

    She doesn’t know? The mamak shop next to Academy Book Centre has it too…but around 4.00 pm. – rest of the day, only roti canai.

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

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