A few more days…

My god-son/ex-student, Andrew, and his family had only a few more days left in town before they had to go back and I was really keen on taking them here for the traditional ethnic Dayak delights , something they will not get easily elsewhere and definitely not in Christchurch, New Zealand, so I arranged to meet them there for lunch. It is located right behind the medical centre where my mum is currently putting up so it was quite convenient for me to walk over to meet them there.

Unfortunately, the son was not feeling very well so he and the mum were not able to show up and in the end, there were just Andrew and his girl and my missus and I.

I specially requested for my picks to be served separately in plates and bowls instead of having everything in a tray or a plate the way we would have it usually. Andrew loved the dabai fried rice…

Anak Borneo dabai fried rice

…and this was the first time he had umai

Anak Borneo umai

– the raw fish dish which is actually Melanau in origin.

He did not seem too comfortable with the tapioca leaves…

Anak Borneo tapioca leaves

…that we always enjoy very much but he loved the kasam ensabi (preserved vegetable) with pork…

Anak Borneo kasam ensabi with pork

The deep fried pork served with their special tempoyak (fermented durian) dip…

Anak Borneo pork with tempoyak dip

…was rather hard, a little too crusty and while the dip was very nice, we could hardly detect the tempoyak in it, probably to cater to their mainstream customers. Fermented durian is an acquired taste and not everybody will love it. However, for hardcore tempoyak lovers like my missus and I, we prefer the way they cooked it that other time, very much stronger with the tempoyak and to us, a lot nicer but this was all right for a change.

The pansoh babi (pork cooked in bamboo)…

Anak Borneo pansoh babi

…was excellent that day and yes, Andrew loved it and another thing worth mentioning as well was the fact that the complimentary soup was really very nice – Andrew’s girl had a lot of it with her rice.

We had the dabai fried rice packed to take back for Michelle to enjoy at home and we also asked for the pansoh babi, the tempoyak pork and the kasam ensabi with pork for her as well. The total for that and all that we had came up to only RM45.00. Too bad they had to leave in a couple of days or we could have made our way back there again to see what else they could try.

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Author: suituapui

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

9 thoughts on “A few more days…”

  1. I am getting hungry looking at your photos, Arthur! Fortunately I will be having supper in a couple of hours. 🙂

    A must-try for every visitor here, our local ethnic cuisine…

  2. Among all the dishes, I only tasted 2 dishes before, ie. pansoh babi & umai. I like durian as it is but not make into tempoyak.

    It’s an acquired taste – obviously you do not have it…like how people love blue cheese.

    All my younger days, I would see my mum enjoying tempoyak, cincaluk, lusip, budu…and we would grumble as to how smelly those things were. Now I love them all. She would enjoy pickled petai too…and salted preserved dabai. The dabai was the only thing my dad would eat. None of those for us, the kids…but now I enjoy them all…except the petai though I do enjoy the fresh ones now, not at the time.

  3. Unusual dayak dishes – certainly unobtainable here.

    Actually if someone in the know goes over there and sets up a restaurant, he should do very well. Westerners are more adventurous in their eating, of that, I am pretty sure.

    This is just a different and unique style of cooking, simple recipes – not hard to cook and not that many ingredients needed unlike Thai or Indonesian or Malay cooking, can always tweak a bit, leave out or use alternatives instead. Of course, some things are not available there like our wild jungle ferns – the midin and the paku – then those dishes would have to be left out. No problem getting tapioca leaves there, I think or bring a few sticks over and plant, will grow well…and bamboo tubes would be required too, can do without but some will insist it is not as nice.

  4. The food looks so good. Does sweet potato leaves have an acquired taste?

    No, they just have that green taste so if one is not that used to it, one may not like it as much.

  5. It’s amazing how many unique dishes you’re able to feature in one dinner – most of these recipes are not available in the peninsula either! 😀

    There is a special place – I did share the link once, can’t remember where now – they have buffets with all these exotic ethnic dishes but I did hear it is rather out of the way for KL people…and it is expensive. Dunno.

  6. Everything looks good. Though I have never eaten Dayak food, I am quite sure I will like them.

    Come on over! I’ll make sure you get to enjoy these and more! Yum yummmm!!!!

  7. I like all the food here. This is another eatery that I would like to visit in Sibu other than Payung. How thoughtful to order takeaway for Michelle to enjoy at home. The price is affordable too.

    I don’t think one can say one has been to Sibu/Sarawak/Borneo if one does not get to try the exotic traditional ethnic delights. In Kuching, other than these Iban favourites, I know of a place selling those of the Bidayuhs too…and Miri, Bintulu side, you have the Lun Bawang, the Kelabits, Kayans, Kenyahs and so on – what they call the taste of the Highlands (Bario).

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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