We’re here…

We were here

Dragon Door

…for lunch that day – my girl had not been here before and as we happened to be going past that way, I thought we would stop by but unfortunately, my friend, Philip, was not around. Nonetheless, with our sprinkling of Mandarin, we managed to order this plate of cangkuk manis, fried with egg…

Dragon Door fried cangkuk manis with egg

…that my girl said was particularly nicely done and she also liked the pork…

Dragon Door pork

…that we had the first time we were here and their own-made tofu…

Dragon Door tofu

…that I did get to try that time when we had dinner here.

Yes, we did have a good lunch. The servings were big, enough for 5-6 people, I think but there were just the three of us and the best part was that it was so very cheap – RM31.00 only for 3 persons, inclusive of rice.

We sure wouldn’t mind dropping by again sometime.

DRAGON DOOR (2.279520, 111.839882) is located along Jalan Aman, among the (new) shops on your left if you are coming in from Jalan Wong King Huo or on your right if you are coming from Lanang Road.

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Better than I thought it’d be…

I bought these packs of instant noodles…

Ibumie mi goreng sambal udang

…at a supermarket the other day for the simple reason that it was selling at RM3.90 for a pack of 5 packets and the cheapest available (a different brand) was RM2.90 but I saw that one would get a spoon with this one. I did not think much of it; I thought it would be one of those cheap spoons that would bend when you try to use it to eat some meat that is a little too tough but I felt RM1.00 extra for that is quite all right.

I took two packs, thinking that I would have a pair, and went to pay for them at the cashier’s counter and asked for the free gifts…only to be told that they were inside. Gee!!! I really must learn to read everything more carefully.

When I got home, I saw on the pack that one would get either a spoon or a fork and by some stroke of good luck, I got a pair…

Free gift fork and spoon

…and they were really very nice. I liked the design with the gold pattern on them. I must say that RM1.00 for each of them is very cheap!

I was in for another pleasant surprise when I cooked the noodles…

Mi goreng sambal udang, cooked 1

…and had it with a fried egg, sunny side up, and some leftover roast chicken, garnished with some finely chopped Chinese celery/parsley (daun sup) from my garden. They were very nice with a hint of the udang kering/hay bee (dried prawns) in the ingredients provided inside each packet.

I wouldn’t mind buying more…

Mi goreng sambal udang, cooked 2

…should I feel the urge to stock up again but I guess I would just have to be happy with a set of the lovely fork and spoon. I sure would not go and buy 10 more packs so that I would have a nice set of 6. It would probably take forever for me to finish 50 packs of the instant noodles, never mind how nice they are.

Two places…

This first place is one where we’ve been dropping by regularly all this while and we made our way there again that day as I heard that the guy now had wat tan hor, the Cantonese-style yin yong or fried kway teow or hor fun with thick egg sauce, on his menu. He treated us to that on the house a few months ago but it was not on his menu at the time.

Yes, it was very nice (RM12.00)…

Colourful Cafe wat tan hor 1

…but it was such a huge plate with a whole lot of gravy/sauce and there was so much of it! I was thinking that perhaps I could tapao (have it packed for take away) it home and then I could add my own kway teow or bihun and maybe, some extra ingredients too.

As it was, I would say the noodles would be enough for two persons and the ingredients included a whole lot of fish fillet, some prawns…

Colourful Cafe wat tan hor 2

…and very thin slices of bitter gourd. I was wishing he had some sotong (squid) and thinly-shredded Chinese cabbage in it too – they usually have those, the ones I had in KL and elsewhere in the peninsula. Unfortunately, this would not be available in smaller servings so unless you can find someone who is willing to eat the same thing as you, you probably will have to eat something else or go elsewhere.

Then, on another day, more recently, we dropped by here

View from Warung BM

So far, our favourites here would be their smoked chicken rice and also their ayam penyet. My missus said that she had their nasi lemak once but it was a disappointment, the sambal especially. I tried looking for it on their menu but could not find it – maybe they decided to remove it in the end.

That morning, she had their mee mamak with an egg (RM7.00)…

Warung BM mee mamak with egg

The noodles were very good, with lots of ingredients, mostly chicken, and were spicy too. Of course, I was not impressed by the egg – I am not a fan of eggs fried using the ring and it was way overcooked, no runny yolk at all.

I ordered their mutton curry with rice (RM7.50)…

Warung BM mutton curry with rice

…and yes, the curry…

Warung BM mutton curry

…was very nice with lots of meat though I was wishing they would add some potatoes in it as well…or at least, some cucumber and tomato slices by the side of the plate with the rice. For some reason or other, I had to wait a mighty long time for it to be served so if that is how it is going to me all the time, I think I would not want to order it again.

My missus had their cendol while I had their ais kacang/iced red bean (RM3.00 each)…

Warung BM cendol and ang tao peng

She did not seem to enjoy hers all that much and I did see a lot of things in it – the sago pearls, jelly of different colours and maybe some cincao as well, not just the cendol and the ang tao. On the other hand, I loved mine to the max especially when they were so generous with the gula Melaka (palm sugar) and the santan (coconut milk). I sure wouldn’t mind going back there for that again.

I bought one smoked organic chicken home – it is now RM26.00 each, up from RM23.00 before but it is still very much cheaper than the ones at the chicken rice stalls – I think theirs go up to RM30 and above and the ones from here are very nice and supposedly healthier so I don’t think I really mind the slight increase.

COLOURFUL CAFE (2.316673, 111.837539) is located in the Renew4U building at the junction of Brooke Drive and Lorong Kwong Ann 8, across the road from the Church of Jesus  Christ of the Latter Day Saints and WARUNG BM (2.293317, 111.841781) is located right beside Medan Mall, among the shops to the right at No. 2, Ground Floor, Lorong Wong King Huo 1D. 

Been around a long time…

This place…

Jing Cafe

…not to be mistaken with this one in another part of town that goes by the same name, more or less, has been around a long time and I would walk past ever so often but somehow or other, I never stopped by.

An ex-student of mine is a regular here and almost every morning, he would share on Facebook a photograph of what he eats here but it was not until I heard people saying that the roti canai from the stall in front…

Roti canai stall

…was very nice that I made my mind I would check it out some day.

Yes, it (RM1.30)…

Roti canai

…was really very good and I loved the crispy and fragrant flaky layers on the outside plus the dhal dip was thick and creamy, just the way I like it.

The roti telur (RM2.00)…

Roti telur

…was good too but between the two, I felt the canai had an edge over it.

I also saw a friend sharing on Facebook/Instagram a photograph of the Sarawak laksa here and he seemed to like it very much so I also ordered that (RM6.00)…

Sarawak laksa

It was nice, that much I would say, very lemak (rich with santan/coconut milk) and a whole lot nicer after I had squeezed the calamansi lime over it and mixed it well.

There were six prawns and the usual thin strips of omelette but there was no shredded chicken, and no taugeh (bean sprouts) either. For reasons unknown, they saw it fitting to add some strips of imitation crab sticks and shredded Chinese cabbage! And they probably forgot or ran out of Chinese celery (daun sup) and spring onions so I did not get a sprinkling of those on top as garnishing.

The sambal was more like chili sauce with a very very slight hint of belacan (dried prawn paste)…

Sambal belacan

…but I was wondering the whole time whether I had imagined it or not.

Obviously, if it is something authentic that you’re looking for, like the nice ones in Kuching, this is not the place you should check out but if you’re here and wouldn’t mind the difference and are just looking for something nice to eat, you may consider this or perhaps you would like to try something else – they do seem to have a lot of options here that you can order from people in the kitchen at the back.

The chap fan (mixed rice) is mighty popular…

Chap fan stall

…especially with the people working in offices and shops around here – we saw so many of them bringing their own containers to have their lunch packed to take away.

My missus decided to go for that and this was what she had (RM5.00)…

Chap fan

…a meat and fish and two vegetables and I really must give them due credit for using glass instead of those colourful plastic or melamine plates that they have elsewhere, not a very good idea for serving hot food, and yes, she did enjoy her picks from that stall.

JING CAFE (2.292823, 111.826829) is located along Jalan Kai Peng in the middle of the block of shops right behind Ta Kiong Emporium.

They’re here…

There used to be a coffee shop a long long time ago at the end of the block to the left of this mini-supermarket…

Kim Tak Mini-supermarket

…round the corner from where I stay. However, the supermarket expanded and the people took over that shop lot to occupy the whole block. As a result of that, the occupants had to move and subsequently, I found out that they are here now.

I guess presently, the economy is not so good so the supermarket has been downsized and the shop lot at the end was left vacant for a while. Not long after, I saw some renovation works going on and now, there is a coffee shop…

Ah Kau Cafe

…there occupying just half of the lot and every morning, when we drove past, it was packed with people literally spilling onto the road so we never bothered to stop by to check it out until the other day, past 11.00 a.m. when it was not that busy but still, there were quite a lot of people eating there.

There is a kampua mee stall in front…

Kampua mee stall

…and a lot of people were eating that. I did have a look and it did look good but we were attracted by the nice fragrance of the things being cooked at the stall at the back so we went and placed our orders for what we wanted from there.

I don’t know if they were way too new at it or just plain slow for it took a very long time. I saw a man at another table going to ask and when he came back, he spoke to his friends in the Foochow dialect, “Ngui pha long mai siak lou wor!” (I intend not to eat already). Finally, what my missus ordered arrived – the Foochow fried noodles (RM4.00)…

Foochow fried noodles 1

…and yes, it was good and had the much-coveted wok hei fragrance…

Foochow fried noodles 2

My plate of fried kway teow/flat rice noodles (RM4.00)…

Fried kway teow 1

…came a little later and yes, it was good too…

Fried kway teow 2

In the meantime, I had gone and ordered this plate of innards – intestines and stomach (RM10.00)…

Innards - intestines & stomach

…from the kampua mee stall so we did have something to chew while waiting. Yes, it was nice and we sure enjoyed it. I guess normally, one would order that and a plate of kampua mee kosong (no meat) to go with it but probably, that is not going to be all that cheap.

I may go back again but no, if it is going to take that long, I will think twice about ordering anything from the stall at the back and will just give the kampua mee a try instead.

AH KAU CAFE (2.316346, 111.839861) is located along Jalan Ruby, off Jalan Lim Han Swee, in the same block as Kim Tak Mini Supermarket, to the extreme left.

You can have it all…

My friend/ex-student told me about this place…

My Home Town Cafe

…which was once occupied by an outlet of this Singapore franchise but that eventually called it a day, including their other outlet in another part of town.

No, it did not get me all excited as this is one part of the town centre where parking can be a pain so I wasn’t in a hurry to go and check it out. However, it so happened that I spotted a vacant parking lot close by that day and I wasted no time at all in grabbing it and walking there. Besides, everytime I drove past, the place looked quite deserted and I was amazed that it managed to stay open this long.

They open at 8.00 a.m. and you can order what they have in their menu including these rice sets…

Rice sets

…and at night, opening hours from around 6.00 p.m. till 9.00 p.m., you can order dishes…

Glimpse at menu

…like at any of those not-very-big chu char (cook & fry) restaurants.

Right now, probably in an effort to push their business a bit, they have this chap fan (mixed rice) promotion, Mondays to Fridays from 10.30 a.m. to 2.30 p.m. but it seemed that they do not stick rigidly to those hours. We were there past 11.00 a.m. and they only had these dishes…

Meat & fish dishes

…and these vegetables…

Vegetable dishes

…in the food cabinet right beside the entrance…

Food cabinet

…and two more came out after a while. What I was told was that for RM5.00, one would be able to have all 10 options available daily but these two came out…

Two more

…after we had started eating so we only had 8 to choose from, together with the complimentary chicken seaweed soup…

Chicken seaweed soup

Unfortunately, we were not allowed to help ourselves – there was a lady there and we just had to tell her what we wanted and she would put them in our plates of rice. I must say that she was not very generous, far from it and the plate was rather small. I did not bother to ask whether we could have double servings or not as the lady did not seem very keen on chatting.

This was what I had…

What I had

…and my missus had this…

What my missus had

…and we both thought the food was all right, not over oily and no msg overdose unlike many of these Chinese chap fan places around town but we probably would not be dropping by again as I wouldn’t say it was anything that would get us rushing back for more and besides, my missus caught a glimpse of some guy in the kitchen with a cigarette in his mouth but she could not see if he was involved in the cooking or not. I guess there would be others elsewhere doing that same thing as well but as the saying goes, what one does not know/see would not hurt him or her.

MY HOME TOWN CAFE (2.292374, 111.826991) is located at No. 22, Jalan Bindang beside the SCR chicken rice outlet in the Tunku Osman area of shops, right behind the Hong Kong Bank building.

This one…

All too soon, it was Saturday, the end of the week-long break and the very next day, Sunday, we would have to send my girl back to her school in the jungle.

For our lunch that day, I chose this one, my late dad’s favourite and for one thing, the people there are very accommodating and will be willing to tweak their recipes/ways of cooking according to our whims and fancies and another reason why I wanted to drop by there was we liked the very nice fish so much the last time and I was hoping we could have that again.

Much to our disappointment, they did not have it that day. According to the boss’ wife who came and took our orders, there was a shortage of fish around here and I certainly was not surprised, looking at the storms we had had lately. Even Bubu, our Visit Sibu Year 2017 icon and the lanterns in our town square were not spared.

In the end, upon her advice, we settled for the freshwater tapah, “cooked white”…

Y2K Cafe tapah, cooked white

…meaning that there will not be any dark soy sauce used. Of course, this is not a very cheap fish, the favourite of many in town when it comes to having steamed fish at a restaurant, though not mine, but I thought it was all right to go for it just this time for a change.

We had not had the Foochow-style tofu soup with canned oysters…

Y2K Cafe Foochow tofu soup

…for quite sometime so we ordered that and it was really good. The taste may vary between places and I feel that the one here would be among those that are really authentic, the way my mum used to cook it.

For our vegetable dish, we had the sweet potato leaves…

Y2K Cafe sweet potato leaves

…again and another reason, other than the fish, why I wanted to come here was this…

Y2K Cafe lemon chicken 1

…their lemon chicken, another of my girl’s favourites at this restaurant and they certainly did it very well that day. I liked the darker colour, not bright egg or lemon yellow…

Y2K Cafe lemon chicken 2

…and I liked the fact that no artificial flavourings were used in the cooking. I got quite put off by the strong lemon essence at some places where I had this before.

As expected, it did not come cheap, our lunch that day – the total for the food came up to RM51.00 and I was pretty sure it was all because of the fish.

Y2K CAFE (2.294220, 111.825753) is located in the Tunku Osman area, round the corner from that block of shops where the branches of AmBank & RHB Bank are located. with its back entrance facing the side (right, not the main one) entrance/exit of Methodist Secondary School.