Not in that way…

People say that my favourite kampua mee in town is not really authentic, more a cross between Sibu kampua and Kuching kolo mee and I wouldn’t say that I disagree. In my humble opinion, I do feel that there are slight variations between the popular ones in town. They may not be exactly the same but one thing that they have in common is that they are nice or to some people, at least, so each would have its own following.

However, there are some that have strayed off the beaten path and are actually quite different from the real thing. This pandan-flavoured kampua mee

Pandan kampua
*Archive photo*

…that I had once wasn’t too bad – it was still quite close but this tom yam one…

Tom yam kampua
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…was a little too way out, I feel, as whatever hint of the real kampua mee flavour was completely drowned out by the strong tom yam taste and I would say it is the same in the case of this ang chao kampua mee

Ang chao kampua mee
*Archive photo*

…that my missus had sometime ago.

I had the kampua mee here once and despite the absence of lard, this being a pork-free place, I thought it was very nice though I did not quite care for the rather tasteless trips of shredded chicken. As a matter of fact, when I was there the other morning, I noticed quite a number of people ordering the kampua mee without the meat so my guess is that many, like me, like it enough to want to have it again…without the chicken.

I did not order that though – instead, I decided to give their beef curry kampua mee (RM5.00)…

Colourful beef curry kampua

…a try. I did not expect it to be served this way as in the photograph on the wall, it was in a plate with the curry by the side.

I quickly dug out the noodles…

The mee

…to see if it was anything like kampua mee as we know it but no, it tasted quite different even without mixing it altogether with the curry gravy. It was very tasty, very fragrant – I may be wrong but I did detect a hint of serai (lemon grass) in  it. All in all, it was very nice but it was different – something nice that one may consider having for a change sometimes but if it is the authentic kampua mee taste that you are looking for, I do not think you will find it in this bowl of noodles unlike the black pepper beef kampua

Noodle House black pepper beef kampua
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here. I always thought that the noodles did have the original taste of kampua mee and together with the black pepper beef, it sure was a winning combination.

Moving away from the topic of kampua noodles, how are your preparations for Chinese New  Year so far? I’ve been very busy spring cleaning, throwing away some unwanted stuff, dusting and wiping, rearranging this and that and everything. Of course I am no spring chicken anymore so I go about it very slowly, doing a little bit each day…and I would say I am making very good progress.

I don’t know if my missus is going to do any baking and cooking or not – I keep telling her not to as we are getting on in years and it would be best to just go out and buy and relax, take things easy and enjoy the festive season but I am pretty sure all my well-intended words would just fall on deaf ears. Women can be quite stubborn sometimes…and they are more prone to following their hearts, not their minds and stick to doing what they feel like doing, never mind what others say.

Anyway, she came home the other day with a jar/tub of pineapple tarts (RM12.70)…

Pineapple tarts

…from the supermarket at the mall near our house. To the Chinese, the pineapple is something very auspicious. Some would have fresh pineapples in the house or those potted plants with the miniature pineapples…and then, of course, there are those pineapple decorations that they hang in the house come Chinese New Year and also the huge, not-very-nice-looking paper ones that they hang outside the house in place of lanterns. The reason behind this is that ong in Hokkien means luck and lai means come so pineapple or ong lai means that luck is coming!

No, I do not have all those things in my house but yes, I wouldn’t mind having some pineapple tarts to serve to well-wishers who care to come calling…and I do enjoy eating them myself, if they are any good. Now, these made-in-Muar  tarts that my missus bought were really very very nice – the jam is soft and moist and the pastry is crumbly, not hard…and they’re very big too! I would say they are nicer than the nice ones that I got from Kuching (RM18.00) and are cheaper as well. I don’t know if there are any more at the supermarket – perhaps they have some more stock that they have not taken out yet but if they haven’t, don’t bother going there to buy as the very next day, I went back there and grabbed all that they had. You will have to drop by my house come Chinese New Year if you want to sample some. Hehehehehe!!!!