Little more better…

If this phrase is in Manglish, our Malaysian “mangled” version of the English Language, a close cousin to Singlish (Singapore English), it means that it would be better when there is only a little of something, that being the direct translation from Malay, sikit lebih bagus.

Of course, many would not agree when it comes to food in which case it would be the more, the better like the choices at the chap fan place here…

Hao Ke lai Cafe & Rest
*Archive photo*

…right next to the medical centre where my mum was warded before she passed away. We had to keep vigil at all times so this was a convenient place to go and grab a bite to eat.

Many have sung praises of the wide range of options at the chap fan (mixed rice) stall…

Hao Ke Lai chap fan stall

…at this coffee shop. You get to pick from over a hundred dishes, at least, but to me, the more there is, the more you will want to take and the more you will have to pay…especially for people like me with very low resistance and the tendency to take more than I should.

I did not want the ang chao pork…

Ang chao pork

…and opted for the sweet and sour…

Sweet & sour pork


I also helped myself to the roast pork…

Roast pork

…and the fried cangkuk manis

Cangkuk manis

…and for want of a bit of gravy on my rice, I took the drumstick from their chicken curry…

Chicken curry

A lady stood at the end of the line and I asked how much that would be. She said RM7.00 so I paid her that amount.

I took my seat at the table and ordered my usual kopi-o-peng to wash all that down and the guy, quite obviously the boss, asked for RM9.50 for everything. I told him I had already paid for the rice and he said, RM1.50 then. Huh? Was he asking me for RM8.00 for the chap fan? Ah well! Probably he or the lady had miscalculated – I guess it happens to the best of us and such things do happen sometimes. Ever so often, I paid a ringgit or more extra and thankfully, all those times, the people were honest enough to return the  excess to me.

The food was good but I do wish they would cover the cabinets – I am sure they have those sliding doors and let the customers slide them left or right to get what they want…or have somebody take them off like at the Malay shops when there are customers and put them back again once they are through. There were a lot of flies fluttering around over the food so much so that I was contemplating on going for something else instead.

HAO KE LAI CAFE & REST (2.292095, 111.836698) is located along Lorong Mahsuri 1B, off Jalan Pedada, in the block of shops to the left of the Rejang Medical Centre, main building.


Author: suituapui

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

10 thoughts on “Little more better…”

  1. If they don’t have a consistent system for charging, different people will charge different prices for the same amount of food. Happens here a lot of times too.

    I’m sure they have and looking back, I do think the boss was correct, RM2 for meat and RM1 for veg and RM1 for rice. It looked like a family-run thing and the young lady helping out, probably the daughter or daughter-in-law, appeared to be busy babysitting at the same time…what they call multi-tasking today and probably she was somewhat distracted.

  2. RM 7 for 3 meat 1 veg is a good price. I also think the lady must have miscalculated. The veg dish looks dull or is it because of the lighting.

    Probably. The veg looked fine, tasted fine too – one FAILED cangkuk manis and pumpkin at another place, great colours BUT so bland, not sweet, dunno why. Coming up in my blog real soon.

  3. Me also low resistance, the chap fan here, the person will scoop for us, and usually I have the tendency to end up ordering other things to eat.

    Unlike the Malay ones, they will scoop for you too at most of the Chinese places here. This is one of the few exceptions.

  4. Most chap fans don’t have so many varieties but they are cleaner than those with over 20 dishes to choose from. Most of the times they serve the same dishes so you get bored too.

    Yes, generally you see those same dishes, nothing really special. That is why I prefer the Malay nasi campur, also the same dishes usually but to me, much nicer and at times, one may stumble upon something special.

  5. Hee hee. I find the translations of English very humorous.

    Yes, some of the literal translations can be quite “entertaining” but for one thing, more often than not, they’re very brief and to the point, if the listener understands what is said, that is.

  6. I must say that RM 7 is a good price, at least you won’t be able to find it here in Penang

    It should be RM8 actually, the lady miscalculated. I do think it’s a little on the high side, wouldn’t mind around RM5-6.00 for something like that.

  7. lots of pork dishes, thats good!

    Lots of chicken too. Didn’t notice any beef..maybe there’s fish, but don’t think there’s any prawns, these cheap chap fan places.

  8. I too have a tendency to pile up my plate and then regret when I feel too full!

    Birds of the same feather, we two…but one round will not make me feel too full, no way! 😀

  9. Yeah, I also prefer they cover the food…. but during peak hours, it is like that… more convenient for us patrons to take and go…

    No excuse. Then somebody must stand by and chase away the flies…and actually, that day, I did not see any other customers besides me and after I was through, nobody came to cover the cabinets. Obviously, they do not bother to do so. If anyone comes down with food poisoning and reports to the authorities, they will be in deep shit!

  10. i guess the flies were attracted by the roast pork – it seems like the kind of meaty protein that flies love! 🙂

    Surprisingly, there were no flies on the food! They just flew around above the food like Japanese warplanes. Maybe they did not see anything to their fancy. Hehehehehe!!!

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