Can you remember…

The acronym, SRC, brings back such lovely memories of those carefree days when we would go and dance the night away at dances at the Sibu Recreation Club. Of course it is no longer where the building was – they have demolished it a long time ago and the club has been relocated here…

SRC

…but no, I don’t think they have a ballroom anymore like the one on the upper floor of the old building.

The food court beside it has been in operation for  a long time but I never went to check it out. The back of the stalls was facing the road so one could not see what they had there. Now they have moved the stalls to the other side and they are all facing the road…

SRC Food Court

We used to drive past every Saturday evening on our way to the sunset service at the church not too far from there but we did not stop by to see what they had in store until just the other day.

Many of the stalls were still vacant but I saw that they had this (RM10.00)…

SRC Food Court or chian, Kuching style

…at this stall…

SRC Food Court Stall No. 1

…so of course, I wanted to give it a try.

This is the way they do the oyster omelette or or chian in Kuching and we used to have a really good one here but that place had since closed down.

Yes, it was very good, paper thin and really crispy – something like rempeyek or papadum but unfortunately, the oysters were barely visible to the naked eye and we could not really get to enjoy the taste. I would love to go for it again but the next time, I would ask the guy to add a lot more oysters and I would pay for the extra so that we would enjoy it a whole lot more.

The char koay kak or fried chai thow koi or white radish/carrot cake (RM5.00)…

SRC Food Court char koay kak

…was very nice too but the cake was a little on the firm and chewy side. I wouldn’t mind it a little softer, just a little.

I sure enjoyed the fried kway teow (RM5.00)…

SRC Food Court fried kway teow

…that had some tiny prawns and squid in it.

I did hear someone say that they went on a very busy night and some beer company was having a show or something so the place was so very crowded and what they ordered from this same stall turned out rather disappointing. Well, I was lucky – there weren’t a lot of people when we went there that day and what we had was very much to our satisfaction.

As I approached the stall that evening, the guy greeted me and said that I was his teacher way back in the 80’s – I taught him English and I asked him if his surname was “Lu“. I could see the gleam in his eyes as he said yes and then I asked him if his name was so and so. I did not get it exactly on the dot but it was pretty close. It was obvious that he was so very surprised that I could remember his name after all these years especially when I had had thousands of students over the years and to be honest, sometimes I do surprise myself! Amazing but true! LOL!!!

THE SIBU RECREATION CLUB (SRC) FOOD COURT (2.304611, 111.821043) is located along Jalan Perpaduan, formerly called Robin Way, on your right if you are turning in from Jalan Awang Ramli Amit at its junction, with the Red Crescent Headquarters Building to your right on the other side of the road.

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The best people in the world…

I am sure everyone would agree that…

People who love to eat...

…in the world!

This food court…

Food Bazaar 1

…is pretty new, located at the mega mall in town and I spotted that poster in one section of the place there…

Food Bazaar 2

…and of course, I couldn’t agree more!

We seldom venture there as we do not go out much on weekdays nor would we be keen on going out of our way but that day, we did not have a choice as we had to buy some things at their supermarket/departmental store. That was around lunch time so I suggested going to the food court to see if there was anything nice or not.

My missus had the bak kut teh, dry (RM12.00 plus RM1.20 for the rice)…

Food Bazaar bak kut teh, dry

…from this stall…

Food Bazaar bak kut teh stall

…and she said it was nice.

I ordered the Bintangor rojak (RM8.00, medium)…

Food Bazaar Bintangor rojak

…from the stall next to it but no, though it was edible and the sauce was nicer than the one we had here, I would not say it was anything I would want to have again. Those crisps were so hard that my gums hurt when eating them and I could not figure out what they added as the topping in place of crushed groundnuts – it appeared like pop corn to me. No, it was definitely a far cry from the real thing.

I also went to have a look at the stall next to the rojak stall and I saw this durian mille crepe (RM15.00)…

Food Bazaar durian mille crepe 1

Yes, I did think that the price was kind of shocking but I simply had to give it a try and thankfully, it was very nice…

Food Bazaar durian mille crepe 2

…and had the taste and smell of fresh durian. Still, at that price, I certainly would not want to have that again.

I was intrigued by the sight of this…

Food Bazaar matcha crepe roll 1

…at that same stall but I failed to make head or tail of the lengthy explanation the guy gave to tell me what it was so I just ordered one to find out for myself and it turned out to be a matcha crepe roll (RM10.00)…

Food Bazaar matcha crepe roll 2

…with cream and something that looked like red bean inside. Of course, I did not fancy that – I am not fond of anything green tea and the smell was rather strong, and it was even a little bit bitter, at times.

My missus just had one kopi-o-peng (iced black coffee) from the beverages stall while I was a bit more adventurous and went to check out this one…

Food Bazaar Thai coconut ice cream & shake stall 1

…and ordered the coconut shake…

Food Bazaar Thai coconut ice cream & shake stall 2

…but it (RM6.00)…

Food Bazaar coconut shake

…wasn’t great, not really thick, rich and creamy like a shake and I told my missus that it felt like I was drinking santan (coconut milk), straight. I would much sooner go for the one that I like very much here…or at the stall outside a house at Rejang Park (but it seems to be that they are no longer running the business there) and I was wondering the whole time if their ice cream was any better. Perhaps I’ll check it out next time.

I don’t know when I will go back to the mall again – it is always very crowded on weekends but when I do, I probably would want to venture to the food court again to see what else they have in store.

FOOD BAZAAR is the food court located in the Orange Zone at the Star Mega Mall (2.304917, 111.86407) along Jalan Tunku Abdul Rahman, the road leading to the Sibu Airport.

Real good looking boy…

My nephews, the one I had breakfast with that morning and his brother, called me, asking me to join them and their family for dinner one evening so off I went to the venue they had picked. It was the long Good Friday/Easter weekend and a lot of people were home for Ching Ming so there was this terrible jam in the town centre and I was quite sure I would not be able to find a place to park the car but luck was on  my side – it so happened that one car along the way was leaving and reversing out after a few cars had gone past and I had just come along so I quickly grabbed the space.

Seeing that I was not far from the pasar malam (night market) which had been moved back to its former site now owing to some upgrading works and massive renovations at its more recent location, I decided to go and buy some tee piang for the boys so I went searching for the stall with the real good looking boy. I did mention in a recent post that one should look for the sign…

Tee piang stall, sign

…at the stall but when I was there, I did notice at least one other stall that had a sign up too. I guess if that is the case, one will have no choice but to look out for the boy…

Greal good looking boy

…who is looking a lot more handsome than ever – for one thing, I do think he looks much nicer in person.

As always, most everything was sold out…

Sold out

…except for a few pieces of sweet potato fritters…

Sweet potato fritters

…and these chai peah and ngor hiang

Chai peah & ngor hiang

…and when this local version of the French toast with meat filling…

French toast with meat filling

…came out of the wok, they were gone within seconds!

I placed my order for the tee piang, kosong (RM2 for 6 pieces)…

Tee piang, kosong
*Archive photo*

…and the ones with the very nice meat filling (RM1.20 per piece)…

Tee Piang, with meat filling
*Archive photo*

…something like what one would find in those steamed char siew pao and waited patiently while the frying was going on.

The boy was not only good looking – he was also very pleasant and polite and he kept apologising that I had to wait and even suggested that I went round the pasar malam to browse around but I assured him that it was perfectly all right.

In the meantime, I heard him saying sorry to some customers that something had run out and they would have to come back the next day…and it looked like my tee piang was the last batch as there were others asking for them and he said there wasn’t anymore…and it was just past 7.00 p.m., still so early and most everything was already sold out!

As soon as I got hold of my purchases, I hurried to meet my nephews and the others in their immediate family. The one based in Shanghai, China, could not resist taking a piece to eat right away, piping hot from the wok, and he remarked, “Gee!!! This is so very nice!” Of course, it was! Very very nice!

The tee piang stall (2.287975, 111.828622) at the Sibu Pasar Malam (night market) is presently located somewhere in the middle along Jalan Lembangan, the road leading from Market Road to Channel Road (where the Sibu Central Market is). The Chinese stalls are along this road at the current location of the pasar malam – the Malay stalls are along Market Road and the miscellaneous stalls are at High Street.

Anything for you…

I do not drop by here all that often these days as by the time we venture out of the house at around 9 or 10.00 a.m., most of the things would have been sold out. I think they open very early to cater to those after their prayers at dawn at the surau a stone’s throw away and parents and children going to school before 7.00 a.m. and the office crowd before 8.00 a.m.

I did go over to have a look the other day though but I could not find anything that is gluten-free for my girl. She likes the laksa Penang…

Mak Met Bandong laksa Penang
*Archive photo*

…there but it was not available that morning.

There was the putu mayam

Mak Met Bandong putu mayam
*Archive photo*

…but she’s not into that and though she will eat those onde onde aka kueh Melaka

Nyonya Colours onde onde
*Archive photo*

…I do not see her getting excited about those.

In the end, I did not manage to get anything for her but I did buy their roti jala (RM2.00)…

Mak Met Bandong roti jala 1

…to try and I thought at best, it was just all right, not anything I would be dying to have again…

Mak Met Bandong roti jala 2

…but the mee jawa (RM3.00)…

Mak Met Bandong mee jawa 1

…that I also bought was very nice. The gravy was not the usual pinkish and sweet type and it was very rich and thick – I did enjoy it, I must say but at that price, for nothing much else other than that half a hard-boiled egg…

Mak Met Bandong mee jawa 2

…I felt it was rather pricey though it was a lot cheaper than what one would have to fork out for the same at the shops, just that one would get a lot more toppings at the latter.

MAK MET’s BREAKFAST STATION (2.314192, 111.825581) is located at the shops along Jalan Bandong in Kpg Nangka here, facing Bandong Walk. It opens every day except Sundays but if you’re looking for those Malay kuehs and other delights, you’d only find those in the morning…while stocks last. 

Come over…

2017 is Visit Sibu Year and Bubu

Bubu

…the friendly crocodile, is the official mascot.

I stumbled upon this very nice display at one of the shopping malls in town the other day. It probably has been there for sometime, just that I did not drop by…or walk past that way and hence, I did not see it before this.

I thought it was very nicely done – I could see the buah dabai (our local black olives)

Dabai and all the rest

…and the duku or langsat and it amazed me to see how cleverly they managed to replicate the hairs on the rambutans. Can you spot our famous/infamous delicacy, the sago worm?

There is the buah manggis (mangosteen) and buah nangka (jackfruit) in this section…

The Hornbill and more

…and the pitcher plant aka monkey pot alongside a nice carving of the Hornbill, our state bird, and you can see the midin (wild jungle fern) here, there and everywhere.

Well, it is already September, less than four months left in the year so what are you all waiting for? Come over and find out for yourself all that this little town has in store for you.

If you come over now, there is a new attraction, a new pasar malam (night market) at the Sungai Merah Heritage Walk…

Sungai Merah

…where the Lovers’ Bridge is located…

Lovers' Bridge

One of the NGO’s here has set up this structure…

LOVE Garden

…in the vicinity…

Lock the Love

…so couples can attach their pairs of padlocks…

Padlocks

…onto the frame. I think I did see them selling those at a stall/booth close by so no worries, you do not have to bring your own.

As for the night market proper, I don’t know if we were too early that day or many of the booths/stalls were still vacant, yet to be rented out. There was one selling soya bean products…

Soya Bean stall

…and another one specialising in the bak kua (barbecued sliced pork)…

Loong Kee

…one of the better known names in Kuala Lumpur.

I was glad to see this guy wearing a mask…

Hygienic

…while doing the grilling. That is a good hygienic practice, I must say. Unfortunately, he was not doing it over some hot burning charcoal…

Pork satay

…but nonetheless, my missus did buy the pork satay (RM2.00 per stick) from him to try. It was very tasty but a bit too salty for our liking.

You can get to enjoy some fried chicken at this stall…

MR Fried Chicken

…if that tickles your fancy and there is kompia

Kompia stall

…our so-called Foochow bagel, at this one and there are chicken claws…

Chicken claws

…available here. Eyewwwww!!! No, thank you!

This one selling rojak and kompia and a lot of other fried stuff as well seemed to draw quite a lot of people…

Free testing

…and as I went closer to have a look, I could see what the attraction was. Free testing! No, I did not bother to sample anything – by then, I was feeling a bit hot and uncomfortable so we decided not to go any further. I think there is a stall further up selling roast chicken or duck or whatever – I could see something like that in the distance and no, we did not feel like having that either.

The sun was setting…

Setting sun

…when we crossed the bridge and went back to where I had parked the car and left.

As far as pasar malams or night markets go, I do feel that the main one in the town centre has an edge over this one – for one thing, there are a lot more things, especially our local Sibu/Foochow delights and on the whole, it is more interesting.

Having said that, you may want to check out this one if you are keen but most people who come here will probably stay for a weekend and maybe a day or two more so they may not have the luxury of time. Besides, if one is staying at a hotel, chances are he or she would be at the town centre, quite a distance from here and it would not be so convenient to drop by unless one has one’s own transport…or a local resident, be it a relative or a friend, to bring them here.

Without a doubt…

The nasi lemak guy at Bandong Walk here once asked me which ayam penyet here would be my favourite and I replied straight away that, without a doubt, it would be this one…

Penyet Bandong

Yes, I do drop by quite regularly but most of the time, I would buy and take home to eat instead of eating it there and all those times, I did not bother to blog about it as I’ve done that many times before like here or here for instance.

This young and friendly guy…

Penyet Bandong guy

…is the one running that place and he asked me when we were there on Friday evening last week, “Masih akif blogging?” (Still actively blogging?) Oh? It seemed that he knew who I was and my guess was that he heard it from Mak Met who runs the Malay kueh stall at this same place in the morning. True enough, he told me she’s his father’s sister, his aunt – all in the family!

My missus had the chicken (RM6.50)…

Penyet Bandong chicken

…while my girl and I had the pecel lele (RM6.50 each)…

Penyet Bandong catfish

…the grilled ikan keli. The mum is not into catfish, that’s why.

Well, if it is the chicken and whatever bumbu (garnishing) they have on it or the grilled catfish, they are more or less the same everywhere, give and take a little as they may be overdone at some places, hard and dry.

What puts this place a head above the rest would be the very lovely rice…

Penyet Bandong rice 1

…wrapped in banana leaf and steamed and served piping hot…

Penyet Bandong rice 2

It has that very nice fragrance and is anytime a whole lot better than the plain white rice that we will get elsewhere.

The sambal (chili dip) too is so very nice, so very spicy and so very much to our liking…and furthermore, at only RM6.50, the ones here are definitely a lot cheaper than all the rest that we have tried.

Needless to say, we certainly will keep coming back for more.

PENYET BANDONG (2.314192, 111.825581) is located at the shops along Jalan Bandong in Kpg Nangka here, facing Bandong Walk. It opens every day but only in the evening (and the guy did say that they will be closed for a couple of days this weekend for Hari Raya Haji.)

Ain’t what it used to be…

I dropped by the pasar malam (night market) here the other day. My girl said she felt like having some tee peang

Tee peang
*Archive photo*

…so I headed straight to the stall for what we feel is the best in town in the hope that I could get hold of some for her. This is one of few kuehs (local cakes) left that she can eat as most would be made using wheat flour so they are not gluten free.

Incidentally, I heard that they are no longer running the stall at a coffee shop in town in the morning so if you insist on getting theirs and theirs alone, you will have to try your luck at their stall at the pasar malam.

Yes, the handsome young boy was there…

Handsome boy
*Archive photo*

…helping his mum at the stall at night and he was all apologetic that there wasn’t a single one left.

One thing I’ve noticed about them is that if they are frying something, they would do just that and nothing else so if that is not what you want, you will just have to wait. They were frying the ngor hiang/lor bak at the time and looking at the crowd gathered at the stall that evening, I decided to come back and try my luck another day.

I walked around looking for the stall that was selling this yeu chang koi (fried shallot cake)…

Pasar malam yeu chang koi

…but I did not see it anywhere so I left the place empty handed, disappointed that my effort had all been in vain.

The one I had here was quite like the ones I used to enjoy so much in my younger days except that they used a shallow saucer, not a bowl, so it was not as thick as the ones before but at least, it tasted pretty much the same.

It so happened that I came across this…

Lok Ming Yuen yeu chang koi 1

…at this coffee shop behind the medical centre where my mum was warded at the time and of course, I wasted no time whatsoever in grabbing a pack to try.

Inside, you can find the koi (cake) with the special soy sauce…

Lok Ming Yuen yeu chang koi 2

…and the yeu chang (fried shallots)…

Yeu chang

You will have to sprinkle the yeu chang all over the koi

Fried shallots, sprinkled

…and  pour the sauce over everything…

Pour the sauce

…before you start eating.

Yes, it was nice but no, it just ain’t the same. For one thing, the koi was very thin and it reminded me of chee cheong fun, nothing like what we had before and loved so well…and not anything I would go out of my way to buy again. Sighhhh!!!!