James…

I did blog about this char siew sauce

…before, more than once, perhaps because we have been using it ever since the first time we tried it and it turned out to be very much to our liking. Yes, we did try Lee Kum Kee and/or some brand from Cosway but no, they were not as nice.

Well, the other day, my missus took two slabs of meat, the tenderloin and marinated them in the sauce the whole day. Come evening time, just before dinner, she grilled them in the oven till they were nicely done…

She cut them up into slices…

…and served…

Yes, we sure enjoyed that and the next morning, since there was a bit left, I cooked a plate of The Kitchen Food – Sibu Instant Kampua – 厨艺食品, dark soy sauce and served that with a few slices of the char siew on top…

…like how they would do it outside.

That sure looked good, don’t you think so? You can grab a packet of the char siew sauce to try if you have yet to do so. It should be available at all leading supermarkets and grocery stores.

Something that I never had…

I saw my foodie friend sharing photographs of these noodles (RM7.00)…

…a few times on Facebook so of course, my curiosity was aroused. That was something I never saw, much less, had before so, of course, I simply had to make my way to the coffee shop to give it a try.

I could see something like Scotch eggs in it, salted egg yolk wrapped with meat…

…plus a whole lot of minced meat and the guy’s own-made…

…noodles…

…and a whole lot of those green vegetables that I am not a fan of.

The noodles tasted great – they went very well with whatever ingredients or sauce used to toss them and the minced meat was great too. I can’t say I was all that thrilled by the salted egg yolk wrapped in meat though – I thought it wasn’t anything to shout about.

I tried it with the chili sauce…

…provided but no, I did not think they were all that compatible. It tasted like what they will give you if you go to a chicken rice place and yes, it was very nice just that I did not think it went all that well with the noodles. The guy was selling it at RM7.00 a bottle but no, I did not bother getting one to take home.

ALOHA CORNER (2.293843, 111.827118)…

is located at No. 48-52, Jalan Keranji.

Words…

I bought my car in 2018 so it is already 4 years old now but actually, it is literally brand new, having covered over 6,000 km. only after all this time plus I take very good care of it. That includes sending it for servicing every 6 months to make sure it is in tip top shape.

The service centre is on the other side of the world, so to speak…in that part of town that I hardly ever go to. Two years ago, when I was there, I had the kolo mee

…at one of the stalls in this coffee shop…

You can see how crowded it was that morning even though it was so early – it sure looked like everyone was back with a vengeance, coming out in full force!!!

…right across the road from the centre and last year, I dropped by there again and had the same…

…another time.

This year, I got there a little early at 7.30 – I had made an appointment for 8.00 a.m.! As they say, it’s the early bird that catches the worm. It looked like I had enough time for a bite to eat so I stopped by the coffee shop to see what I could have. I did not want the kolo mee anymore and I was not enticed by anything from the other stalls there.

In the end, I asked for the sup perut babi campur from the kolo mee stall. Before I let you all see what I got in the end, let us look at the words in Malay. Sup, of course, is soup in English and perut babi is pig’s stomach. Yes, that is a very popular dish over in the peninsula – I had it once…

…in KL and my missus loved it – it was peppery and nice though I was not too sure if those were the stomach or the intestines. I asked one of the ladies if it was tu tor therng (pork intestine soup) and she said yes so I said I would like to have that.

Last but not least, the word campur in the name means mixed so I was expecting some stomach, intestines, liver, meatballs and so on and so forth all mixed together in a bowl of soup.

In the end, THIS…

…was what was served – liver, two tofu puffs and some green vegetables, NOTHING ELSE and liver is hati in Malay!

No, it was not the true blue traditional Foochow red wine and ginger liver soup…

…that we enjoy a lot – one of our favourites is the one here. What I got was just liver served in clear bone stock soup! Surely they did not hear me wrongly?

I don’t think they cooked the liver in it either as I could not detect the taste at all in the soup but thankfully, they did manage to cook the liver to perfection (RM7.00)…

The saving grace was it was not overcooked so it was soft and nice. If you overcook liver, it will become hard and will not be palatable at all. I must say that I enjoyed eating it dipped in the very nice chili sauce that they served with it…but there was so much of it that I was a little worried that I might end up with a gout attack. LOL!!!

They gave these…

…when they served my order. The one in the middle looked like red wine so I added a bit to the soup. It did not enhance the taste in any way so I decided to just leave the soup alone and enjoy it the way it was.

The next round of servicing is scheduled for November, 6 months from now and if I do stop by here again then, I think I shall just go back to the kolo mee.

CHANG LOK CHIU CAFE (2.277376, 111.850765) is located along Jalan Bukit Lima, just before the Bukit Lima roundabout, right across the road from the Proton Service Centre (NGU’S MOTOR SERVICE SDN BHD – PROTON 4S DEALER).

The very thought of you…

I thought I saw somebody mentioning that he or she was longing to have some beef noodles and that instantly triggered a craving in me. Well, you can’t blame me for this as the last time I had it was in May, 2020, almost two years ago!

I often drove into town early in the morning, around 7 something, before 8.00 a.m. and I would look to see if there was a crowd at the two-unit coffee shop and all this while, I would see a lot of cars parked in front so I did not bother to stop by. The other morning, however, much to my delight, there were only two cars, probably belonging to the people there and no customers…

I quickly parked my car beside the aforementioned two and took a seat at a table outside and placed my orders.

I had their kampua mee, kosong (no meat)…

…and their beef soup special, with a few pieces of tripe and tendon…

…added. Yes, I did notice that these days, they are using disposable chopsticks and spoons. Perhaps this is healthier than using those plastic chopsticks and spoons that you wash and reuse again and again.

The serving was huge, the noodles, especially but yes, I did manage to finish all of it and of course, I enjoyed the soup to the max and the beef, tripe and tendon went so very well with their own-made chili dip! That one sure is a show-stealer, so very very nice, indeed.

The combo is now RM14.00 a set…

…up by RM2.00 from RM12.00 two years ago. If you opt for the beef soup, regular, that is without the tripe and the tendon, with the kampua mee, it is a little bit cheaper, only RM9.00.

I would say that I did not mind the increase in price especially considering that I enjoyed it so much unlike what I had the other day and they are not charging something so unreasonably astronomical as at some places, like what I encountered here or here.

AH SIAN BEEF NOODLE CAFE (2.293063, 111.826106) is located along Jalan Tuanku Osman in the block of shops right in front of the Public Bank, Tuanku Osman branch, right before the tyre shop at the other end to its left. 

Greedy…

Last week, my girl told me that she and her mum had to go some place to do something late evening, Saturday and I told her that I could take them there and once they were done, we could go some place nice for dinner.

That was why we did not cook lunch that day but my girl did fry this very nice mee mamak

…for brunch to tide us over till dinnertime.

For our dinner that day, we agreed to drop by here where we could sit at the tables at the covered pavement outside, all nicely spaced out for physical distancing and anyway, we were early so there were no other customers at the time. The boss was busy preparing some water chestnuts, probably for the drinks so his handsome young son took my orders.

My girl loved the fried own-made tofu that previous time we were here and we liked the prawn fritters too so we would like to have those again. We did not have the mini ngor hiang balls as it was a Friday that day so of course, this time around, I asked for the combination of all three for three persons (RM16.50)…

…and obviously, that meant three of each. The ngor hiang seemed a little bigger and yes, it was as good as ever!

Normally, that would do for our meat dish but I was feeling like having some stewed pork leg after seeing what Nancy’s hubby had that day so I asked for a smaller serving. The boy said that the minimum would be for two persons so I agreed to have that with two stewed eggs (RM22.00)…

…by the side. That was quite a lot – I didn’t expect that much actually and I loved how we were not given any of the trotters/hooves nor the very fat cuts, just the lean and the skin, all that collagen. I guess without the trotters, there were no tendons at all then.

I must have been feeling real hungry or was just being plain greedy especially when I had not eaten much the whole day and I thought I would want another meat dish. I remember I had some very nice pork ribs

…here once, marinated in traditional Foochow red wine, a bit of ang chao (the residue from making the wine) and also tau joo (fermented bean curd) and then, deep fried. Unfortunately, the boy was conversant only in Mandarin and I could not make head or tail out of what he was talking about most of the time.

In the end, I settled for the sweet and sour pork (RM24.00)…

…which, in my girl’s humble opinion, came nowhere near the very nice sweet and sour dishes here and anyway, there was too much for us to eat so we hardly ate much of it and asked for it to be tapao-ed for us to take home and heat up for lunch the next day.

The fried midin, ching chao (fried plain)…

…was very nice, just as nice as the last time we had it but this was RM12.00 a plate and only RM10.00 when the dad (boss) took my orders and suggested having servings for two only and looking at that post, it looked like there was a whole lot more. Maybe this is because of the current rising prices of anything and everything and there seems to be shortage of fresh local vegetables lately, just a lot of those imported ones.

We did not eat much of the ladies’ fingers (RM12.00)…

…so we took most of it home. I liked how it was not sticky but I did not like how it tasted burnt. Maybe they burnt the belacan when they toasted the dried prawn paste, I wouldn’t know.

I missed their fish maw clear soup (RM25.00)…

…my favourite soup anywhere in town. It did taste vaguely similar but no, it did not look the same…

For one thing, the soup was cloudy, not clear. Truth be told, if this is how they are going to do it these days, I shall not be ordering it again, thank you very much.

The total came up to over RM100.00 but of course, that was because I over-ordered. We could have had more than enough to enjoy with two less meat dishes and one less vegetable, actually. I guess when you have been confined to the house for too long, the moment you get to go out, you would want to order everything and besides, we hardly ate much the whole day that day.

A-PLUS FOOD CENTRE/RESTAURANT (2.293355, 111.823653) is located among the shops along Jalan Kampung Datu behind the block of shops (where Fresh & Pay Supermarket is) near the traffic lights at its junction with Jalan Tun Abang Haji Openg and Jalan Kampung Nyabor.

Listening to you…

I did mention a couple of times already that I could not get hold of any pek chio/ikan bawal putih (white/silver pomfret) for our Chap Goh Meh steamboat dinner and the nice lady at my favourite fish & seafood stall suggested buying the pek hu/ikan putih (white fish) that she had already filleted…

She said it would be great for fish soup or fish noodles and when she heard that I was planning to have steamboat that evening, she said this would be perfect for it. In the end, I just listened to her.

There was quite a lot from just one fish. We already ate half that night and there was still so much left, RM31.00 for all that altogether. I don’t know what it looks like but I guess it must have been quite big.

My girl was not that keen on having claypot yam with fish – she just asked for it to be sliced and deep-fried, coated with tempura batter, served with roast potatoes by the side…

…and that was what we had that day, Friday – our no-meat day.

Yes, it…

…was very nice, very fresh and sweet, with its lovely fish texture though it wasn’t as smooth as the pek chio, no bones since those had been removed already and best of all, no fishy smell, none at all!

We enjoyed the potatoes…

…too – that, of course, is a lot healthier than having deep-fried chips or fries.

The next time I see this fish at the stall, rest assured that I shall grab it and buy it again without any second thought.

The fish & seafood stall is located to the right of CCL FRESH MINI MARKET against the wall at the end of the block to the right of the Grand Wonderful Hotel (2.309601, 111.845163) along Jalan Pipit, off Jalan Dr Wong Soon Kai. You can also go in via Jalan Pipit from Jalan Pahlawan. Go straight ahead till you reach the place towards the end of that road on your left.

Things are different now…

I did mention in my reply to a comment the other day (or maybe I made a comment in a friend’s blog) that on Chinese New Year’s Eve, I dropped by the coffee shop in my neighbourhood to buy some noodles as we would not be having lunch because my missus would be busy in the kitchen preparing and cooking the dishes for our reunion dinner that evening. Unfortunately, the guy said he had too many orders waiting in line so I could not possibly wait for him to cook mine. In the end, I had no choice but to go home empty-handed.

On the 2nd Day of the New Year, I drove past and much to my surprise, the coffee shop was open but I saw that there were a lot of customers there that morning so I did not bother to buy anything that day.

The next morning, I went over real early, as soon as the sun was up and yes, the coffee shop was open and yes, there were quite a lot of people there already. It did not matter as I always go through the backdoor and talk to the guy directly from there (no need to go in and walk through the coffee shop). I noticed that one of the shops was open – in the past, they would close for at least one week. According to the guy at the coffee shop, the other mini-supermarket there would open in a day or two. Things sure are different now!

I bought the char pek koi (fried white rice cake)…

– my girl’s favourite here and she specifically asked for it…

I wanted the tomato kway teow (flat rice noodles)…

…the one here is one of my favourites in town, but the guy said that the people making the kway teow had not resumed business yet so he only had bihun (rice vermicelli) but no, that did not tickle my fancy.

In the end, I asked for the Foochow fried noodles, the moon version…

…for both my missus and I. She loves this…

…that I know!

What I bought that day came up to RM15.00 altogether, RM5.00 each. I remember paying RM5.00 not too long ago for the pek koi and obviously, the prices for the other fried noodles dishes around here have gone up too. I do not mind, actually, as long as they maintain the quality – if you go and eat at some classy café, a plate of fried noodles (some here have mee mamak on their menu) will set you back by at least RM12.00 and you may even give the waiter/waitress a generous tip and will never complain.

I hurried home quickly and all of us sat down to enjoy what I had bought for breakfast that morning while everything was still nice and hot.

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.

Pouring rain…

No, it did not rain that day, it poured…like somebody up there was pouring buckets of water down from the sky. The water in the drain outside the house rose and in no time at all, it overflowed and the whole neighbourhood was flooded. Actually, most parts of the whole town was submerged!

There wasn’t anything that we could do – we just sat there and watched the water rise and prayed very very hard that the rain would stop. The water had just reached the edge of our door when the rain eased, thank God for small mercies, and the flashflood subsided. It did not stop though – it went on all through the night till morning but thankfully, it was not that heavy anymore so we were spared the threat of another flashflood.

The rain finally stopped completely soon after daybreak and the sun came out. Gosh! It was such a mess outside, the flotsam and the jetsam, mainly dried bits of grass as we just had it cut the previous week and it all stuck to the walls and the flower pots and everything around the house compound. We spent the whole morning cleaning up the mess!

Seeing that there was so much to do, I decided to go out and buy some food for our lunch and dinner so my missus would not need to do any cooking that day.

I did not want to venture too far away from the house so I went to the coffee shop round the corner because I wanted to buy their very nice barbecued pork ribs…

I think I went there in July, and that was quite sometime ago but I can’t recall exactly the last time I had their ribs.

The thing was I would go around mid-afternoon when there would not be any customers around and all the stalls except this one would be closed but most of the things would be sold out. That was why I had not been able to buy their very nice ribs…

…nor their sweet freshly-made lap cheong (Chinese sausage)…

…that my girl seems to enjoy. That is often sold out as well by mid-afternoon.

Personally, I prefer their char siew (barbecued pork)…

…to those sausages but my girl is not thus inclined. Nonetheless, I also bought some…

…to enjoy.

This time around, I did not buy their siew yoke (roast pork), roast chicken and roast duck. That was a lot already for two meals for the three of us – we just ate to our hearts’ content and saved what was left over till the next day.

MEI LE CAFE (2.313147, 111.846968) is located along Jalan Gambir, a stone’s throw away from the Delta Mall, straight ahead from the first turning to your left as soon as you turn into that road from Jalan Pedada, now Jalan Datuk Wong Soon Kai.

Send it to me…

We go back a long way, back to the days when he and his brother were running this very successful place. Yes, I loved quite a lot of things on their menu and of course, their mille crepes, their chocolate lava cake, the crème brûlée and their macarons. He opened another place serving awesome gelato and that too was well-received and it was followed by another outlet serving some really delightful stuff and all the aforementioned desserts as well as the gelato.

I managed to drop by the latter in February last year and if you go and read the post, I was taken by surprise when I wanted to pay for all that we had and I was informed by the girl at the counter that the boss had paid for everything – it was all on him and other than that, the girl said that he wanted us to pick the gelato of our choice for dessert. Of course, I felt real bad and refused the invitation considering that we already had a free lunch!

Unfortunately, in March that year, the pandemic broke out and the whole town was locked down for months. We have never really recovered since then and all this while, I have not gone back there except for this one time in May this year when I ordered a few items on their menu to take home to celebrate my missus’ birthday and Mother’s Day. He did contact me then asking me for my house address as he would like to let me try some of their gelato, the new flavours but I politely declined, saying that we would surely drop by when the situation improved (and sadly, to this date, it never did – getting WORSE by the day) and I would sample some then.

Then, the other day, out of the blue, in the evening, a car pulled up outside my gate and out came a young boy with a bag full of a lot of things that he passed to me and he insisted on taking my photograph holding that, with one thumb up! Imagine my surprise when he told me who had sent it – this time around, he did not tell me he would be sending things over and I really do not know how he got my house address, not that I mind that one bit but truly, I find it quite embarrassing when folks send me freebies. So very shy lah!

So what was in that bag that day? There was this beautiful exclusively designed box…

…of these very special mooncakes…

…and actually, to say that they are special would be an understatement. These are Italian ice cream (gelato) fine mooncakes, their own creations – not anything that one can get anywhere and anytime we like, just here.

He also sent me these little tubs of gelato…

…to enjoy and there was a special handwritten note from him…

…in the box too. Isn’t that so very sweet of him, a special treat for the Mid-Autumn (Mooncake) Festival!

Of course, we made room in the freezer to store all of these – we would want to save them for my girl’s birthday at the end of this week on the 17th/18th and also for the festival on the 21st. However, we simply could not resist it so we took one out to try – the pistachio with raspberry yolk mooncake…

it was wrapped in a layer of chocolate with a thin layer of something outside – my missus said it was chocolate but it was pink! Perhaps it was fondant, I’m not too sure.

Inside, there was pistachio ice cream with the raspberry yolk in the centre…

Boy! The taste was simply out of this world, so so so very nice and all of us loved it so much that we were actually tempted to try some of the rest as well but we managed to control ourselves.

In the meantime, my girl did try the gelato on another day – the Biscoff’ Cheesecake and she let me sample a teeny weeny bit. Yes, we enjoyed it a lot, very strong on the delightful cheese taste and that of the Biscoff came across a little like salted caramel which is something that is always to our liking..

I shared the photographs on Facebook and a friend, a retired teacher like me, commented and said that their ice cream mooncakes were super yummy and yes, I couldn’t agree more. Thank you so so much, Anthony, for this very special treat – it is indeed most thoughtful and generous of you. May God bless you abundantly and here’s wishing you every success in all your ventures and endeavours.

NICA+ or NICA PLUS (2.296883,111.825859) as it is called, is located at No, 18 & 20 Lorong Intan 6, on the ground floor of the block of shops to the right of the Old Sing Kwong Supermarket (Kin Orient Plaza) along Jalan Tun Abang Hj Openg, directly below the Kimchee Korean Bar.BQ restaurant on the first floor. For orders and inquiries, please WhatsApp Nica Plus https://wa.me/60167945449.

I had my hopes up high…

My friend classified the tee peang here, our Sibu Foochow version of the oyster cake, as her favourite in town so of course, I was keen on going there to grab some and try.

The first time I was there, it was around 9 something in the morning and they were all sold out so I went some place else. The second time I went, the people making the tee peang had taken the day off and the couple running the coffee shop kept reminding me to go early, around 7 to 8.00 a.m. as they would be sold out very quickly. That was why I had my hopes up high – they must be really good if they sell so well, like hot cakes!

I was out and about early one morning so I decided to try my luck and yes, the very nice and friendly old couple were there. Obviously, they were the ones making and they sat there selling their kuihs themselves. The couple told them that I had been there so many times and finally, I managed to get what I was looking for.

I bought the tee peang, kosong (no filling), 5 for RM2.00…

…but no, I did not think they were like what we used to eat and enjoy in the good ol’ days…

One look at it and you would be able to tell right away that they were different – those way back then did not look anything like that but yes, it was all right, nice, just that it was not the same if you are looking for the original authentic taste.

I was there early, around 7.30 a.m. and there were only five left – the ones with the meat filling (RM2.00 each)…

…and I bought all of them.

These too were nice…

…but I think I prefer the former pasar malam (night market) ones or even these homemade ones

…available at our neighbourhood shop in the next lane in the morning – go early to avoid disappointment!

I must say that I was kind of disappointed because as I have said earlier, I had my hopes up high and they did not live up to my expectations. However, if it is any consolation, their chai peah (vegetable fritters)…

…also 5 for RM2.00, were really VERY good. I loved the taste and also the lovely chewy texture plus the crispy edges, crispy but not hard like some and if I were to go back again, without doubt, I certainly would buy more of the chai peah.

You can park your car at the parking area at the back and come in via the back entrance – very convenient, no need for any close encounters with other fellow human beings who may be at the coffee shop at the time.

ZHEN SAN MEI CAFE (2.312704, 111.847134) is located in the block of shops to the right of Delta Mall along Jalan Pedada, now Jalan Dr Wong Soon Kai, beside Dynapower, the shop selling all the electrical appliances and what not.