The other half…

The guy running the chu char (cook & fry) stall at the back of this shop has an ethnic wife. I was told that he was in Kapit before he came to Sibu to set up his business here so most likely, they met there. I never asked her specifically which race she belongs to – she is very fair, looks a bit like a Chinese so my guess is she’s a Kayan.

I don’t know if she can speak Chinese/Mandarin or not but if I am not mistaken, all the children go to Chinese schools. What I do know for sure is that what the hubby can cook, she can too and perhaps, she may be even better at it like this tomato kway teow (flat rice noodles)…

…that I had once. Usually, she handles only the drinks in the coffee shop but everytime the hubby is away, she will do all the cooking as well.

Other than that, for sometime now, I have seen her selling some kuihs placed at a table in front of the shop. However, I never bothered to go and have a look until the other day when I decided to buy her popiah (fried spring rolls), RM1.00 each…

…to see if they were any good. She said that she made them herself. I bought three and took them home and my girl helped herself to them – she said that they were very nice and she had two of the three that I bought. I quickly went and tried that last one and yes, it was good.

No, I would not say it was sensational, so overwhelming that it swept me off my feet but it was good, nicer than all the rest in town (which I hardly bother to buy). What was lacking was the chili – I think she did not add any at all so we would have to add my missus’ own-made blended chili dip ourselves and yes, dipping it in some kacang tumbuk (crushed peanut) would bring it to a whole new level too.

I was in the vicinity that morning so I decided to buy some more and yes, everyone agreed that they…

…were nice.

I also bought her curry puffs (3 for RM2.00)…

…and even though they do not look that great, they actually tasted very good. The ones sold at the kampung are usually 3 for RM1.00 but they are smaller and inside, it is all potatoes even though some may tell you it’s daging (meat).

I loved the filling…

…a lot and I must say these were much nicer than the ones from here, chicken selling for RM1.00 each.

I also bought these jian dui/煎䭔 (Chinese fried sesame seed-coated glutinous rice balls), 3 for RM2.00 as well…

…but unfortunately, they had red bean paste (or tau sar) inside and for reasons unknown, my missus is allergic to that so she is not able to enjoy eating them. I was hoping that perhaps, there would be peanut paste inside.

I never knew the proper name for this before – never too old to learn, eh? A friend of mine commented on my photo on Facebook saying that they call it kuih bom in Malay.

All in all, I was pleased with what I bought – I certainly would drop by again to buy some more whenever I feel like having the popiah and the curry puffs but I guess I shall have to leave the balls out.

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.

Author: suituapui

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

8 thoughts on “The other half…”

  1. That plate of tomato kway teow looks good, so much ingredients and so generous with the greens. How much is that plate? I love the fried spring roll and curry puffs. I have try this kuih bom before and I find that the skin are chewy and not to my liking. I wonder the one you bought is chewy or not.

    Yes, the skin is chewy but I think that is the way it should be. Not my favourite kuih either – that is why I never buy it.
    If I remember correctly, the tomato kway teow was RM4.50, RM4.00 here for the regular noodles,
    add 50 sen for the tomato, RM1.00 for an egg if you want char kway teow or char pek koi.
    Quite confusing the pricing here – that Ah Kau is a complicated character. The wife is very nice.

  2. Used to come here for dinner once in a while since I live close by too. I never came back after I had a horrible experience. That Ah Kau fella was in a horrible mood and refused to even take our orders. We (my mother and I) got really scared when he started shouting and cursing at his wife and kids. Apparently, he’s notorious for his short temper. So I have never been back since, even though I really liked his food. Not worth the trauma lol

    Oh? That means you live close by, in my same neighbourhood! I’m in the next lane!

    Same here!!! I just told the ladies in the house that day that I would never go and buy the fried stuff from the guy ever again!
    He did not say anything but he was sitting here, his feet up on another chair. I placed the tiffin carrier on the table in front of him
    and ordered one plate of tomato kway teow that I would eat there and another plate to take home
    and one plate of Foochow fried noodles, moon. He looked at me so angrily like he was gong to attack me
    but he stood up without saying a word, took the tiffin carrier and went to the back and started cooking.

    Once, I heard him talking to a lady who went there with her family. I thought he was rude…very insulting
    and the lady was a bit pissed off, it seemed but he did appear to be joking at the time – sure had a strange sense of humour, that guy!
    Too bad all the rest in this area aren’t really that nice – will probably have to go some places all the way in the town for anything good.

    Pity the wife. She’s very nice.

  3. We don’t have tomato kway yeow in Johore. How come you guys have so many things that we don’t have.
    They were so generous with the ingredients, which is good to see.

    It’s hard to find 3 for RM1 kuih these days. Our karipaps from Malay stalls look smaller than yours, less stuffing too that’s for sure. And they’re drier too. But our Chinese karipaps are much bigger than yours cos they stuff boiled eggs and chicken pieces inside. But my favourite is sardine and bawang karipaps from Malay stalls.

    My aunt and cousin are allergic to prawns. Ha ha… I feel sorry for them cos they can’t enjoy prawn seafood. Oddly, they can eat lobsters! But red bean allergy is rare, I think. Usually heard of peanut one, kids in the UK can have all sorts allergies like milk, egg, nuts etc etc. I read somewhere it all came to the environment they were brought up to. If they came from a sterile, ultra clean background. Then, chances for them to develop allergies in their adulthood are high. On the other hand, if they were exposed to rough environments (eg playing sand in the playground, catching fish in the longkang ) they will become immune to most allergies. To conclude, you can use this food allergy to determine a country’s wealth. Rich countries have picky eaters with all sorts of allergies. Poor countries have “adventurous” eaters who are willing to eat whatever they can obtain from. So where does this put Malaysia, huh? Honestly, I don’t have many friends who have food allergies in Malaysia, so I guess we are still in the poor category… Prove me wrong then.

    1. I dunno much about allergies but I do know of people who have them. Dunno if it has anything to do with people being rich or poor but the old folks here used to say, lasap ciak, lasap pui – eat dirty, dirty fat! In other words, if you simply eat anything, you will develop the immunity and will not fall ill or anything like that.

      No sardine karipap for me, thank you very much. I’ve had those giant Chinese ones in KL and also Sg Petani – lots of filling…but they were deep-fried and VERY oily – not anything I would want to eat again. There is a famous one in Singapore too, Old Chang Kee – tried once, did not think it was that great. So far, there is just one bakery here with baked curry puffs, shortcrust pastry, VERY nice…but the other side of town so I do not bother to go all the way to buy.

  4. We don’t have the tomato kway teow here. I love fried popiah and curry puff but not easy to find good ones.

    If I am not wrong, tomato kway teow is originally a Kuching dish – tomato kway teow and tomato crispy noodles, alongside Kuching kolo mee and Kuching laksa. Same here, no really good ones, popiah especially…not like in Kuching.

  5. I thought her fried popiah is like those Malay one, with mashed potato in it. Those from Kapit now so into mixed marriage, and the children could speak Chinese and native dialect well.

    A friend mentioned on Facebook that the guy also has a coffee shop in Kapit too, same name, enjoying brisk business, always full, Maybe your hubby or your MIL knows him.

  6. The filling of the curry puff look so tempting.

    Yes, much nicer than most of those we have around here.

  7. One or two of those Chinese fried sesame seed-coated glutinous rice balls for me please!

    They’re very popular at those Chinese dim sum places – will eat but not my favourite, not quite into those sticky balls.

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