*All photos in this post (except one) through the kind courtesy of Phil, my cousin’s hubby, from the UK*

When my cousin and her hubby were in town, they were staying at a hotel around a hundred metres from the Sibu Central Market so I suggested to them that they could just stroll over and walk around to look and see. Many who came did that and they were absolutely enthralled as they saw many interesting things, not (easily) found elsewhere.

They did not do that the first morning they were here probably because the hubby was still recuperating from the food poisoning he experienced before he arrived. However, they managed to do so on the second day and he shared a series of photographs on his Facebook page.

One that got me really tickled was this parade of chicken butts…

Sibu Central Market chicken butts

…black and white. Gee!!! I’ve been to the market so many times but I never noticed them displaying the birds in that awkwardly compromising position. LOL!!!

These, what I call newspaper chickens

Sibu Central Market newspaper chickens

…are a star attraction and they even have them featured in the street art painting on the wall in front at the market…

Newspaper chickens & duck
*Archive photo*

They were not in luck though as they did not get to see any frogs nor sago worms but they did come across some ikan keli (catfish)…

Sibu Central Market ikan keli 1

…that we had for lunch the day before and one even managed to get away…

Sibu Central Market ikan keli 2

That happens quite often, I think, as I have seen it a couple of times and it sure is not easy trying to catch those slippery slithering eels.

They asked me what fish this was…

Sibu Central Market belt fish & fish maw

…and if I am not wrong, we call it the khor tua hu (belt fish) by virtue of the fact that it looks like a belt.

They also did not know what those long white cylindrical things at the far end were. Well, they’re hu phio (fish swim bladders) or fish maw, very popular in soups and believed to have some health benefits, a good source of collagen and it helps with one’s blood circulation.

I love the colours in this photograph that Phil took…

Sibu Central Market jambu air

…and what??? Durians again???…

Sibu Central Market durians

The previous season just ended and they are making their appearance again, and the same goes with the dabai (our local black olives)…

Sibu Central Market dabai

Phil, who had never had the fruit before, managed to get to try the sample and he said no, it sure did not taste anything like the olives he had eaten back home. Too bad they did not appear a week or two earlier around Chinese New Year time – those who came all the way home for the festival would have been delighted to be able to eat these seasonal fruits.

Well, the two of them sure enjoyed browsing around our market and you would too, I am sure so don’t miss this place should you ever have the chance to drop by our good ol’ little Sibu town.

Author: suituapui

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

10 thoughts on “Marketplace…”

  1. this is one interesting market place that i would love to pay a visit. many things i have not seen before too. like newspaper chicken!

    You haven’t? Always thought you’re from these parts? Not sure if they do the same in Sarikei but I guess young people don’t go visiting markets when home. The old folks would have bought and cooked everything, all very special.

  2. Reminds me of the late Michael J…..It’s black or white, hahaha!!!… I love those chickens beautifully wrapped in newspaper & I don’t recall seeing any in our wet market here. Interesting to see a lot of things in the market and if there is a choice, I don’t think I like to venture into the market place.

    Why? Because it is wet and smelly? You’ll be surprised! The one here is very airy, no smell…and not wet unless you go to the fish section, wet but not smelly. I did detect the smell of the raw meat in the pork section once but I never go there anymore – will just buy from the fruit and vegetable shop near my house, more convenient. The chicken section used to stink badly those days when they were kept in cages waiting to be sold but not these wrapped in newspapers ones – maybe it’s like disposable diapers, all kept inside. πŸ˜€

  3. I would definitely enjoy market browsing.. heck i even like it in KL:D And oh.. I luv black chicken in herbal soup!

    Yes, they say it is extra nutritious, good for health. It is nice actually, despite the colour that may put off a lot of people.

  4. it’s really strange to see those ‘newspaper chickens’ … i wonder if sibu is the only place in the world where we might find chickens being sold that way! πŸ™‚

    I have no idea. I don’t think there are a lot of people buying live chickens anymore – some kids in some countries have never seen any even.

    Well, at least, it is cleaner and you do not get the stink of the birds’ droppings when you walk around the stalls. I do hope they do release those not sold though by around noon when they usually close their stalls for the day and put them back in the cages. They look quite comfortable but I bet they don’t enjoy it much…being in bondage. πŸ˜›

  5. I love visiting the Sibu market. And I also never see vendors displaying their chickens that way. Usually the heads in front. That vendor sure has sense of humor. Lol.

    That’s why I don’t seem to recall seeing the chickens displayed like this. Very amusing. πŸ˜€

  6. At first glance, I thought the black chicken were deer’s heads with antlers sticking out! haha

    I thought those black claws sticking upwards into the air looked kind of creepy…like some horror movie. πŸ˜€

    1. I like to go markett look see look see esppecially other people country…

      Come, come. Come and see ours! πŸ˜‰

  7. Haha! Yeah, the first photo looks good with the black chicken feet sticking up. I was wondering what it was at first.

    Eels are very good at escaping, just like octopus. If they’re still alive, and the floor is even slightly wet (doesn’t need to be wet for octupus) they’ll try and make a quick getaway.

    I was quite surprised to see durians too, we had some the day before I flew out. There were durians again, seems to be a minor bumper season.

    Yes, rather unusual. It was a once-a-year thing in my younger days. Global climatic changes, I guess…the trees are all confused.

  8. I love going to the market because there’s lots of interesting things to see. Oh, those black and white chickens hee..hee..hee…

    Very popular among the Chinese community, very nutritious. I think they are not all that cheap – we get this at dinners sometimes in place of the offensive not-to-be-named soup, steamed black chicken soup with dried scallops. I love the soup, so very sweet, so very nice. As for the chicken, ummmmm…let’s just say that I would not go for a second helping, just the soup. Hehehehehehe!!!!

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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