Looks are deceiving…

The other morning, we stopped by here…

Ming Xuan Corner

…round the corner from my house. It used to be a bakery…

Ung Tong Bakery
*Archive photo*

…but that eventually called it a day and now it is a coffee shop with the usual kind of stalls.

I saw this pulut inti/pulut sambal (RM2.20)…

Ming Xuan Corner pulut sambal 1

…and bought one to try. No, this was not our kampung-style pulut panggang – you can tell by how green it was that it was not panggang-ed, not cooked over some hot charcoal fire so you will not get that very nice fragrance, not at all.

I don’t think any santan (coconut milk) was used in the making…

Ming Xuan Corner pulut sambal 2

…or if there was, I could hardly detect it. The saving grace was that the sambal hay bee/udang kering (dried shrimps) inside…

Ming Xuan Corner pulut sambal 3

…was quite nice but at RM2.20 each, I would have second thoughts about buying any next time.

I was not impressed by the look of their ang koo kueh (RM1.00)…

Ming Xuan Corner ang koo kueh

– yellow in colour with the use of sweet potatoes to make the skin but my missus bought some home, pek tau sar (mung bean paste) and peanut filling and I did give them a try. You can get much nicer ones at this same price at the Chinese kueh stall at Rejang Park in the block of shops opposite the cinema, next to the Chinese medical store or somewhere around there.

Now what brought us to this place that morning was the photograph that a friend of mind shared on Facebook a few days earlier and his friend said that she went for it the day before. Oh? That sounded like it was really good so I made up my mind right away that I would want to go and give it a try – after all, it is very near my house.

I had the one with two eggs (RM6.00)…

Ming Xuan Corner pan mee, dry 1

– the pan mee, dry while my missus was quite happy with just one in the regular (RM5.00).

Their own handmade noodles…

Ming Xuan Corner pan mee, dry 2

…was kind of soft, not as firm as the rest that I have had elsewhere and it was white – others that I have had before were a little yellowish, probably the result of the egg used in the making. What looked like two poached eggs…

Ming Xuan Corner pan mee, dry 3

…turned out to be half-boiled/cooked eggs instead.

I would say it was not bad, not anything that I would go out of my way to eat but I would not mind having that should I happen to be in the vicinity and feel like it and no, this is not chili pan mee so don’t bother asking why there are no chili flakes. If that is the one you want, then you can go elsewhere…and no, I do not know of any place in town that serves this like that. My favourite pan mee, dry, would be the one here and if you click the link to hop over and have a look, the lady served hers quite differently from the rest and no, there were no chili flakes either…but unfortunately, the last time I dropped by there, the stall was closed, replaced by something else and I wouldn’t know if they had moved elsewhere or called it a day – I so loved their Penang har mee (prawn noodles), so very very nice.

While we were at this coffee shop that morning, an ex-colleague stopped by with his son with the intention of eating the kampua noodles there but the stall had closed for the day and the people were in the midst of cleaning up and clearing everything. He said he liked the one here very much so probably, we would drop by for that sometime. We’ll see…

MING XUAN CORNER (2.312754, 111.846595) is located in the second block of shops on your right if you are turning in from Jalan Pedada at the junction after Delta Mall, heading towards Lorong Taman Seduan 8, somewhere opposite the Bread Sense Bakery outlet there, a little to the left.

The one you want…

I went back to this place

Colourful Cafe

…last Friday to try another one of the sets that they now have on their menu.

My missus asked for the Sarawak laksa (RM5.00)…

Colourful Cafe Sarawak laksa

…with a special request that the thin strips of shredded chicken be excluded. Lent is over and it is Easter but we still carry on without meat on Fridays…as and when possible.

I had their sweet and sour fish set (RM9.90)…

Colurful Cafe sweet & sour fish set
*Archive photo*

not too long ago and when I went to pick my girl from her school in the jungle on Thursday, I bought the honey chicken wings set for her to eat first before we set off for home. Normally, when she comes back on Fridays with her colleague, she will not have lunch before they leave and she would be so hungry by the time they get to Sibu at around 3-4.00 p.m. and after eating something at that time, she would be too full to eat much for dinner.

Well, I did not take a photograph of what I bought that day as I brought along a 3-tier tiffin carrier and had everything separated – the chicken rice, the salad and the wings…

Colourful Cafe honey chicken wings
*Archive photo*

If you go for the wings, you will get three for RM9.00 but for the set, you will get two only. Needless to say, my girl enjoyed what I got for her and finished off the wings but the serving was a bit too big for her so she did leave behind a bit of the rice, just a bit and quite a lot of the lettuce. Perhaps they could reduce that and give a few more than just the two slices of cucumber and the solitary slice of tomato.

So what did I have this time around? Yes, of course, I had the fish, the salad fish set (RM9.90)…

Colourful Cafe salad fish set

…and yes, it was good.

They were so very generous with the fried fish fillet…

Colourful Cafe fish fillet

…that by the time I had finished the rice and the salad, I still had some of it left in that huge (and heavy) 14-inch plate.

Other than the aforementioned three, there is also the salad chicken set and if you’re not a very big eater, perhaps it would be a good idea to order a set and share with somebody.  So which one do you want?

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.

Stay another day…

Usually, come Sunday, we would have to send my girl back to her school in the jungle but we did not have to do that last Sunday as they had taken the following day, Easter Monday, off which meant that they got to enjoy an extra-long weekend.

We got up early that morning to go for the Easter Sunday service in church knowing that the place would be packed and if we went later, we might not be able to get a seat…and when it was all over, we dropped by here for brunch.

My girl loves the thosai

Sri Pelita thosai 1

…here and yes, it is gluten-free so she can get to enjoy that, not the roti canai, murtabak, chappati, naan and whatever else made from wheat flour. She likes the ones here a lot more than what she had here, the dips in particular, and that morning, she asked for two…

Sri Pelita thosai 2

The mum had the fried kway teow

Sri Pelita fried kway teow

…with a special request for it to be extra spicy and indeed, it was…and she loved it!

I ordered this bowl of mutton curry…

Sri Pelita mutton curry

…for my girl but she did not want it as she was quite happy with the two dips that came with her thosai so I had to eat it all myself together with my beef kampua

Sri Pelita beef kampua

I only ordered that as I was quite sure she would not be able to finish both her thosai and I would have to help her with it. The kampua was good and I loved the complimentary sup tulang (beef bone soup)…

Sri Pelita beef kampua and complimentary soup

…that came with it. True enough, my girl managed one of the thosai completely and more than half of the other piece but that wasn’t much of a problem – I finished it all in no time at all.

I don’t have the breakdown of the prices for all our orders as when I went to pay the bill, the very nice boss, Guna, simply rounded it up and collected RM15.00 from me, inclusive of drinks.

SRI PELITA CAFE (2.293579, 111.820700) is located along Lorong Kampung Datu 11, off Jalan Kampung Datu, the first shop in the block to the right of Paramount Hotel.

Almost a year…

Gee!!! How time flies! Sometime towards the end of next month, it will be Ramadhan again, the Muslim fasting month and it had almost been a year since I had satay – I think that was last Ramadhan.

That was why when my missus and I dropped by here for brunch that day and I saw somebody eating those, I quickly ordered a plate…

Noor Satay beef & lamb satay

…for myself, 70 sen for the beef and lamb and 60 sen for the chicken. The beef did not look like it had just been barbecued, something like it had been left over from the night before but thankfully, it was not hard or dry and I enjoyed it. I liked the lamb too but my missus said it was too sweet for her liking and the beef was nicer.

The satay came with ketupat and cucumber by the side…

Noor Satay satay with cucumber & ketupat

…and it was pretty obvious that they were not so very generous with the kuah (peanut sauce dip). It was not a problem though as when I had finished all of it, I asked for some more and the nice boy happily obliged and gave me another bowl of it.

No, that was not all that we had. We also had their nasi campur (mixed rice) and these were what my missus picked…

Noor Satay missus' picks

– their beef curry, brinjal and long beans, one meat and two vegetables.

As usual, I got carried away and I had the sambal egg with broccoli…

Noor Satay sambal egg & broccoli

…as the asam fish…

Noor Satay asam fish

ikan bawal hitam no less and half of it and I also had the fried fish, dunno if that was kembong or one in the same family…

Noor Satay nasi campur, my picks

…and I also picked the brinjal that my missus had – three meat and one vegetable.

When we were done, I went to pay our bill and the lady asked what we had…and she told me the total for everything, inclusive of drinks. I asked how much the nasi campur was and she said RM12.00 so I clarified a little bit more, “Satu enam ringgit?” (RM6.00 each) and she said, “Ya!” I just paid the amount due and left, happy that we had had a very delightful brunch – we do like what they dish out here…and it was a whole lot cheaper (and nicer too) than what my missus had here that day.

NOOR SATAY ISLAMIC CAFE is located among the shops off Jalan Teng Chin Hua, facing the Sg Merah river (2.325114, 111.840421) – a little bit to the right is the so-called Lovers’ Bridge and this coffee shop is in the very next block and this one is the first shop at the corner of that block, with the gym on the upper floor while this more upscale cafe/restaurant is in the same block somewhere in between the two coffee shops.

I’m on my way…

I heard that they were selling yong tofu laksa in a coffee shop located opposite this restaurant…

Golden Happiness Restaurant

…behind that hotel on the left in the photograph at the junction of this lane with the main road. Well, as soon as I heard that, I was on my way to go and give it a try and it turned out that it was not the one immediately behind the hotel but a little further in…

Rong Rong Cafe Seafood & Cafe 1

…next to this place…

Prawn fishing

…formerly a bakery, where, for RM10.00, you can go fishing for prawns and this…

Rong Rong Seafood & Cafe 2

…is the name of the coffee shop but you would not be able to see it from the road.

There is a vegetarian stall…

Rong Rong Seafood & Cafe vegetarian stall

…inside and I spotted an old friend of mine with his wife, eating something from there. According to him, there are quite a few of such places around town now but in his opinion, this one is the best.

All along the way, I was thinking of yong tofu and Sarawak laksa and I was expecting the latter topped with all those yong tofu delights…

Rong Rong Seafood & Cafe yong tofu laksa 1

…instead of the usual thinly-sliced omelette, strips of pulled chicken, breast and a few tiny prawns…but no, it was something like the Singapore nyonya curry laksa like the celebrated one available at the 328 Katong Laksa place here (Incidentally, it seemed that the outlet here has closed down – I noticed that it was closed all the time everytime I drove by but I guess the one at The Sarawak House here is still in business.)

The gravy was very lemak (rich with santan/coconut milk). something that true blue Sarawak laksa lovers in Kuching would frown upon – it would be like curry, they would say, not like Sarawak laksa…but I did hear people saying that Sibu folks like their laksa very lemak and not spicy and those would be two of the qualities of the yong tofu laksa (RM7.00)…

Rong Rong Seafood & Cafe yong tofu laksa

…that my missus had that morning.

According to a friend, now residing in Australia, it was supposed to be like that, like curry laksa, and not like Sarawak laksa. She used to live in KL a long time ago and she would go and eat this there and she loved it a lot. Oh? I didn’t know that. I only know of yong tofu in clear soup which they also sell at this stall…

Rong Rong Seafood & Cafe yong tofu laksa stall

…in this coffee shop along with a whole lot of other things. It turned out that the old guy was my brother’s classmate in school, one year my senior, but no, I could not, for the life of me, remember him.

Well, since my missus was having the laksa, I decided to try something else from the second stall…

Rong Rong Seafood & Cafe fried chao chai hung ngang stall

…at that coffee shop.

I ordered the chao chai

Rong Rong Seafood & Cafe fried chao chai hung ngang 1

hung ngang (preserved vegetable with big bihun), fried. As far as I know, they serve this in soup at all the other places around town, one of the local Foochow delights but this one was fried and thus, served try.

It did take a little bit of getting used to (RM5.00)…

Rong Rong Seafood & Cafe fried chao chai hung ngang

– the fried hung ngang with the taste of the chao chai but after a mouthful or two, I thought it actually tasted great, something that I would not mind having again should I happen to drop by here another time.

RONG RONG SEAFOOD & CAFE (2.284978, 111.834573) is located along Jalan Chengal, off Lanang Road. You turn into that road at the junction where Kawan Hotel is located and go straight in, the first shop in the second block of shops on your right, a short distance after the Golden Happiness Restaurant which you would go past, on your left.

Oh no, not again…

I heard from a friend that there are new stalls here and some of the old ones have closed down so I went to have a look.

This is the menu…

Chu char menu

…for the chu char place at the back. At one time, there was a fat guy doing the cooking and we quite liked what he dished out. Then they renovated this section and turned it into a drinks stall. At that time, the chu char stall was shifted to the other side, right in front of the toilet which was not very clean…and I saw the guy with a cigarette in his mouth while he was cooking. Then they moved back to this end again and my guess is that this is another set of people…and looking at what they were serving as they walked past my table, the things did appear pretty good.

The Malay lady‘s stall and the roti canai stall are still there, enjoying brisk business and the Sarawak laksa stall is still around though it was not open when we dropped by that day. The stall selling the beef noodles that we really enjoyed a lot has called it a day or moved elsewhere and the one selling the sotong kangkong that I had once and liked a lot was not there already the last time we were here. I noticed there was a new guy selling the kampua noodles now and when I went to have a closer look, it turned out that it was an ex-student of mine. I had already eaten by then so that would have to wait till the next time we come here.

So what did we have that morning? There was a new stall and my missus had their fried sambal kway teow (RM5.00, with en egg)…

Happiness Cafe sambal kway teow 1

It was very fragrant with the sambal and the wok hei but no, that was all ruined by the fact that it was extremely salty and my missus could not even finish half of it…

Happiness Cafe sambal kway teow 2

Maybe the belacan used was in itself, very salty – sometimes that may be the case so they should reduce the salt and the soy sauce to accommodate that. I always do that when I fry anything with belacan like this plate of sambal belacan fried rice that I cooked the other morning…

My sambal belacan fried rice

Now, what did I order for myself from that same stall? The aforementioned friend shared a photograph of the hung ngang (big bihun) with paku (wild jungle fern) that she had and so far, I have only had that here so I wanted to give this one a try.

After all that eager anticipation, imagine my disappointment when I was served and this (RM4.50)…

Happiness Cafe fried hung ngang, no paku 1

…was what I got! I asked the lady and she said they had run out of paku.

Oh no!!! Not again!!! The day before, the Indonesian ladies had run out of kacang and ikan bilis (peanuts and fried cried anchovies) so I had to go without those in the nasi lemak that I had…and now, the lady saw it fitting to substitute the paku with kucai (chives) instead…

Happiness Cage fried hung ngang, no paku

What on earth is going on with these people these days? Is this how they do business in this present day and time? If they did not have any more paku, they should have the decency and courtesy to come and tell me and ask me if I would mind having chives instead…or maybe I would prefer to order something else.

I don’t know if I will ever drop by this coffee shop again or not but if ever I should happen to do so, you can bet your bottom dollar that there is one stall that I will definitely NOT order anything from, never ever again. Once bitten, twice shy! @#$%^&*!!!!

HAPPINESS CAFE, (2.306608, 111.827179) formerly KONG MA MA, is located along Lorong Delta 4, off Jalan Delta. The left turn into Lorong Delta 9 will lead you straight to the Delta Public Swimming Pool.

She’s gone…

I enjoyed the nasi lemak that I had here in February and I was going to go back again for the nasi campur – the lady said she was going to have that beginning in the month of March but when I dropped by the other day, I found out that she was gone! I don’t know if she has called it a day or moved some place else but in her place, there were these two Indonesian ladies…

Chopsticks Indonesian ladies' stall

Ah well! Since I was already there, I thought I might as well give it a go and see if they had anything good to offer. The chicken for the ayam penyet looked good and since they were Indonesians, it couldn’t possibly be any more authentic that that, I’m sure. However, my missus said no…no…no!!! We have resolved not to eat chicken for a long long time, never mind which part, not after the scandalous episode revolving around some indiscriminate dumping of chicken wings here just the other day.

My missus would not want anything from the stall so she went and ordered the kueh chap (RM5.50)…

Chopsticks kueh chap

…from another stall at that same coffee shop.

I asked for the nasi lemak (RM3.50)…

Chopsticks nasi lemak

– I guess they call it nasi uduk there but wait a minute! I was positive that I saw some kacang (peanuts) and ikan bilis (fried dried anchovies) in the photograph stuck to the fridge but there were none in what I was served. Later I saw some freshly fried ones so I asked one of them and she said that they had run out and that was why I did not get any. @#$%^&^*!!!! That should not be the way to run a business. They should have told me that they had run out of the condiments and asked if I would mind going without them or perhaps I would like to order something else instead.

The rice was not lemak at all (they used a funnel to get it into that shape – I saw them doing that) but it had a very light fragrance that was quite nice, so very light that one could hardly notice it. The sambal was very good though – no, it was not anything like the regular nasi lemak sambal that most would be more familiar with but it tasted great and was very spicy. If not for it, I would feel like I was eating plain rice with those thin strips of omelette and the two slices of cucumber.

I also ordered their kway teow goreng dengan kerang, fried flat rice noodles with cockles (RM5.00)…

Chopsticks kway teow goreng dengan kerang

…and yes, there were two big ones and a few small ones. Other than those, there were some very tiny shrimps and of course, those fish balls cut into slices. Well, with all the ingredients that went into it, I thought it tasted all right but when you fry stuff using a regular gas cooker, you will never get that much coveted wok hei fragrance, that’s for sure.

I don’t know how long they will be around, seeing how nobody seems to be staying there very long – probably the feng shui at that stall is not very good.

This stall is located at CHOPSTICKS CHICKEN & RICE in the Delta Mall, Jalan Pedada area of shops, facing Lorong Taman Seduan 8, off Jalan Gambir.