Hello like before…

I was in the vicinity behind the HSBC building here early one morning and I decided to drop by this coffee shop for the kueh chap that a blogger-friend once insisted was the best in town. Whatever its name was before, it is now called Leader Cafe and not too long ago, it was closed down for a while to get some renovations done to its premises. It certainly looks much nicer and cleaner now with the tiled floor and all and there is  a kampua noodle stall in front that appeared to be quite popular. At the back, there is this chap fan place that had moved here from its previous location – I’ve heard a lot of people singing its praises but no, I have never gone there to try.

The bak kut teh sure seemed to be doing very well still – even though I was there so early, there were a number of people having that with rice. Nope, I do not usually eat rice so early in the morning, not even chicken rice, except perhaps for the fried rice that I may dish out at home time and time again.

I ordered the kueh chap (RM5.50)…

Ah Ling kueh chap

…and it was served in no time at all. As a matter of fact, my missus and I did drop by a few weeks ago at around 11.00 a.m. but they were sold out. I guess as they say, it’s the early bird that catches the worm!

I was kind of disappointed though when I saw that they had kway teow in it…

In strips

…instead of the usual broadly-cut sheets. Well, they’re basically the same thing but I hear that you can get it uncut from the kway teow maker and do it yourself. Maybe it saves them the trouble, I wouldn’t know and I did notice this same thing the other day here as well.

As for the taste, I thought it was all right but that morning, I could get a hint of bitterness in it – perhaps they would need to do a better job in cleaning the intestines. Fortunately, there was no smell – they tell me that will be the case when one does not know how to clean the kidneys properly. As for the dip…

Dip

…it did not have that fragrance of belacan (dried prawn paste) that it had before but it was o.k., just not as nice as what I had when I had this previously.

I noticed that those people having the bak kut teh had the soup served in nice black claypots and I did wonder as to why they cannot serve the kueh chap in those as well instead of these not-all-that-presentable plastic bowls. I am always wary about hot food served in plastic and we would never use those at home.

Anyway, parking in this area can be such a pain so I guess I would not be coming back all that soon and incidentally, I noticed that they have this Singapore franchise here…

328 Katong laksa

…now. I do not know whether this is another outlet altogether or maybe it is the same one that is moving from its previous location. Personally, I am not a fan of that so it does not really matter to me whether they set up shop north, south, east or west…and given a choice, I would rather head to places where it is easy to find a place to park…and free.

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Author: suituapui

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

14 thoughts on “Hello like before…”

  1. I would be disappointed too if normal kway teow is served in kway chap instead of the broad sheets. You detected the bitterness just in the intestines or in the kway chap broth? Sometimes if they use too much of a certain spice then the broth tastes a bit bitter.

    Both. You can see in one of the pics that there was still something in the intestine, well-cleaned ones would be quite deflated and even wrinkled. I didn’t mind the slight bitterness, just that usually, that shouldn’t be there and I don’t mind strong herbal broth being bitter too. That kind of bitterness isn’t quite the same.

  2. When parking is a big issue, I would not bother much to go there too often too. Haha.

    The kueh chap looked so-so. Never mind, next time you come here, I bring you go makan nice kueh chap. 😉

    I just had one last week with a girl friend. One of the best over here. Will blog about it soon.

    Looking forward to your post. Kueh chap used to be a Kuching specialty, none in Sibu. But these days, I know of two places that are very popular but my favourite is the one at Noodle House, more expensive, of course!

    The last one I had in Kuching was at Sin Poh Poh, smelly – double thumbs down. In the 70’s, a very popular one was at Padungan market…until word went round that somebody spotted a rat in the broth. So bad, some people! Around that same time, the satay behind Rex Cinema was so very popular too and people started saying that they added dadah so everyone got addicted and kept going back for more. All rumours, I’m sure…but there are some who may believe like I know people who will not eat roti canai…because they heard the story about the guy making, wearing one huge ring…

    Ya, don’t mind paying but here in Sibu, at certain times of the day, it is virtually impossible to find a parking space and people would just park illegally, double parking, blocking others’ cars and all. Gotta invite that lorry driver from Penang to come over – will teach them all a good lesson!

  3. The bitterness in the kuey chap comes from the intestines? You so clever la, can detect.. If I taste bitterness, I would suspect the soup, too much spice or something like that..

    It’s a different kind of bitter taste, not what we would find in herbal soups that are too strong. I love those, kao-kao!!! Chinese say what’s bitter is good.

  4. Oh yes, I love kueh chap & BKT but the broth must be of herbal taste, not like some using soy sauce & all innards must be totally clean & no smell. So far, 2 places in Kuching I like, Thomson Corner & Bintawa Kueh Chap, both in Tabuan Jaya area.

    Couldn’t remember what I went to Thomson Corner for when it first opened but the last time I dropped by, there wasn’t anything great so I never went back again. Used to stay at the hotel nearby a few times. Would rather go for the hay peah at Peterson Corner, behind the hotel…now got the Swee Kang ang tao cendol place there some more.

  5. Yes, yes, yes…. definitely with you on the parking! There are so many food options in Malaysia I see absolutely no reason to get involved in a parking dilemma.

    Indeed. Just go elsewhere, it’s as simple as that. Nothing can be THAT good as to go through all that hassle – same goes to places where they make you queue and stand in the sun, plus I can’t stand crowded, hot and stuffy places.

  6. I, too, do not frequent places where it is difficult to park. Luckily most of the places around here are quite ok. One reason I visit the city very rarely, if at all.

    That is the very reason I hardly ever venture to the town centre unless I can’t help it, got something to do there. That is why when I meet people, they always ask why they have not seen me for such a long time.

  7. Be interested to taste how the bak kut teh there is like.

    It was the first ever, local born and bred and we all loved it – then there was one that claimed to be people from Klang. This one is still good, last I had it, a little to the peppery side while that one from Klang, with the old Chinese swordfighting movie setting decor and all, has been going downhill. Still open, still has some business but no longer as crowded as before. For one thing, we have some many other bak kut teh places now – spoilt for choice.

  8. Kidneys that are not properly cleaned have a urine smell. Yuks!

    Like the kueh chap I had in Kuching, not too sure if it was urine but boy, it was smelly. Did not like it at all.

  9. i remember one of the first times i had kidney … i think it was sheep kidney, and we ordered a plate not knowing what the size would be. it turned out to be a huge portion, and the taste/smell was just so strong, we couldn’t even finish a quarter of the plate 😉

    Gosh!!! I cannot imagine what that was like. Can’t say I’m a fan of kidney – love liver, intestines, even tongue…but kidney, I’d pass…especially when there is always the danger that they do not clean it well.

  10. Yeah, the kway chap doesn’t looks as good. There’s one in JB which is quite popular and maybe I should blog it someday. In fact, kway chap is quite a popular delicacy here in JB and SG. However, I don’t take the spare parts.

    It is? Never heard of it when I was there or as a matter of fact, I did not get to see it anywhere in the west so I never got to try any, other than in Kuching. Good, good…best not to go for all those innards – much as I love some of them, I would only eat once in a while.

  11. I’ve not eaten kueh chap but I would really like to have the original broad ones compared to just having kueh teow in it. Oh so now I know, if it has a hint of bitterness it’s due to the intestines not cleaned properly. I ate pork noodles at a stall once and it smelt so horrible I had to return it. They made me another bowl half an hour later and it was better but I was already put off to enjoy my meal by then.

    Aiyor!!! After that horrible smell, sure no appetite already lor. I had the peppery clear soup noodles in KL with all the innards, not kueh chap but and I enjoyed it very much. Luckily, no smell!

  12. It looks good but I prefer kueh chap to have the regular sheets they put inside.

    Somehow eating kueh chap with kueh tiaw doesn’t feel the same. I’ve had it a lot of times in Kuching, never had it in Sibu recently though.

    Yes, the first one I had here years and years ago had kway teow. It was nice but I was kind of disappointed. Since then, I always had those broad sheets, dunno why they seemed to have switched to kway teow now. Noodle House’s one is very nice but the last I had it, they had kway teow too. I hope that is only temporary.

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.

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