A new level…

My girl came home as usual last weekend, the first after school reopened for the new academic year.

We were out that Saturday in question and for lunch, she wanted the nasi kerabu

Sri Tanjung nasi kerabu, chicken

here, RM5.50 for chicken and RM5.00 for fish.

It sure seemed to be getting very popular as it was very crowded with customers coming and going the whole time we were there. It did not help one bit that there were only two girls working at a snail’s pace…and I was really put off by the sight of the face of one of them. She looked so so so unhappy and was cold and unfriendly. It sure took a lot of effort on my part not to give her a piece of my mind…and she was lucky that my girl was around – I knew she, being so good-natured (unlike the father) would not like me making a scene so I had no choice but to refrain from doing that.

It probably would help a bit if they had a better system – for instance, I saw her going to the kitchen at the back to get the rice plate by plate…and bringing them to the stall in front…plate by plate…where she would arrange all the condiments and sauces…one…by…one…plate by plate…and at the pace she was going, it certainly came as no surprise at all that when it was FINALLY served, the keropok (prawn cracker) had gone a little bit limp.

This is the only place in town serving this for lunch and that too, it would only be on Saturdays…and if not for the fact that it is very nice and we do enjoy eating it very much, we certainly would not bother going back at all. While waiting, I went next door to this place to buy their prawn fritters…

Sunny Cafe prawn fritters

They have been selling them at 4 for RM1.00 for a while now ( used to be 5 for RM1.00) and this time around, we did not think they were as good as before. Maybe they had new workers on the job but the batter was a bit different and the prawn in each of them was very small and quite bland/tasteless…but at least, those kept us occupied – munching on a few of them while waiting for the nasi kerabu that took a long time coming.

After having had our lunch, we went to a bookstore in town as my girl had to buy some visual aids for use in class. I did not want to go in so I just waited for her on the pavement outside the shop. In the meantime, a young boy came along pulling a trolley full of these pulut panggang

Pulut panggang

…that he was selling at RM1.00 each and RM1.50 for the ones with sambal inside.

It had been raining on and off all morning and it was already way past noon, almost 1.00 p.m. and the poor thing still had so much left so I bought some from him even though I knew it would not be good – there’s only one that is really very good and that’s Kate’s but no, they do not make theirs regularly (not even on special order) so those would be really hard to come by. I tried them when I got home and to my delight, they were not too bad. They were not overcooked, like some that I had had before, till the rice became hard and not palatable but yes, it was not lemak enough as that would have brought it to a whole new level – one that would surely get me looking for the boy and grabbing more from him.

The next day, Sunday, we sent my girl back to her school. She did not want to bring the prawn fritters along with her since they were not all that nice or she had other plans of her own for her meals during the week so we had them ourselves at home and for our vegetable dish, I cooked my version of the long bean omelette. I had blogged about the simple original (Foochow) version sometime last year where minimal ingredients were used. This time around, I had these…


Clockwise, from left to right, I used 3 eggs, finely-chopped garlic (3 cloves), a handful of ikan bilis (dried anchovies), chilies and long beans, finely sliced, a spoonful of cincaluk (fermented shrimps) and spring onions, finely chopped.

I beat the three eggs well, adding the cincaluk and the spring onions to it…and put it aside. You may want to add a pinch of msg to it if you wish but do not add any more salt as the cincaluk is salty enough. I heated up some oil in a wok and fried the ikan bilis and the garlic till golden brown before adding the long beans and the chilies…

Step 1

I fried them till the long beans were cooked and whatever moisture there was in the wok had dried up before spreading it all out and adding the eggs…

Step 2

Make sure that you beat the eggs well before pouring as some of the cincaluk might have settled at the bottom. Once it had been fried enough on one side and had turned into a nice golden brown, I loosened it from the wok using the ladle…

Step 3

…and turned it over to cook and brown the other side as well.

Unfortunately, I’m not good at flipping such things over so it fell apart and did not stay in one piece…

Step 4

Never mind, I just went on cooking it and once, it was all nicely cooked on all sides, I dished it out onto a plate and served…

Long bean omelette with cincaluk and ikan bilis

Needless to say, this would be a head above the original recipe as the cincaluk and the ikan biliis added would bring the taste to a new level and I, for one, certainly enjoyed it a lot more, cooked this way.