Monday, December 24, 2007

ONE-DISH TAIWANESE LUNCH @ DONG FENG PO, LORONG 1, JALAN SONG THIAN CHEOK, KUCHING

Poached Drunken Chicken

This was my first encounter with this eatery. It was pretty new then as it had photos of some of its dishes plastered on its front glass panel; that was what got my attention. I was studying the food being offer when the owner, who was sitting outside the five-foot way, beckoned us to go inside.

We pretty much ordered most of the food that was highlighted on the window. The single dish item comes with plain rice, coupled with scrambled egg and some greens (bottom left). The cold tofu that was steeped in soy sauce (top left) was the side dish we ordered, apart from the 3 single-dishes we had.

This was a better dining experience in terms of food than the breakfast we had. Pretty presentation and excellent taste to boot. The Drunken Chicken is something to look out for. Prices range from RM4.50 onwards. Quiet place with nice ambiance.

Chicken Chop

Pork Chop

Friday, December 21, 2007

MY RESTAURANT VISIT #2

Crackling Pork Knuckle

Another visit deserves another offering - a new one at that! We headed straight to the menu blackboard, which is next to the potter hole, where Walter usually sticks his head out for conversation.

Walter just pulled out a roasted pig's knuckle, which wasn't on the menu yet, and suggested we have it. Next we ordered 2 more newly listed items. I guess we almost exhausted the whole menu range scribbled on the blackboard! (except for the Aussie Chix).

The pig's knuckle is a Christmas offering, and it's good for 2 to 3 persons, costing RM50 each. We chose rice to accompany the dish; the knuckle really crackles! The lamb shoulder was juicy and tender; sure beats eating lamb chop anytime. The Mexican pork had a Concarne flavor to it. Notice the thick slab of meat... feels like beef steak but tastes different!

Roast Lamb Shoulder

Mexican Pork Chop

Thursday, December 20, 2007

SEAFOOD @ TECK SENG, PENDING SEAFOOD CENTRE, KUCHING

½ a Kampung Chicken Herbal Soup

The Pending seafood hub used to be popular once upon a time. For some reason a couple of newer eateries on the opposite end, where you can buy fresh seafood during the day, seem to getting all the crowd nowadays. It has the Sarawak River beside it that leads to Santubong. We used this route by a twin-engine long boat to Damai Beach before there was a road.

Steamed Shrimps With Chinese Wine & Egg

This particular stall has the exclusivity of being in a secluded section on its own. It's a Lau Cheo Bai (old label) so there's a sedimentary attachment to this place. It's been a while since we were here last. Menu hasn't changed a bit... still the same old, same old. By the time we finished the dinner, it dawned on us why we seldom come here... its price! But we'll be back here someday, somehow...

Fried Bamboo Clams With Ginger & Onions

At most of the Zi-Char, there seem to be some sort of steamed kampung chicken soup; that's the thing that's cooked before hand, so they tend to be pushy on disposing the item. And we, being the suckers that we are, fell for it every time. The other item that was being parlayed was the sea chicken. Like the name says, it tasted like chicken in texture; it's not worth a second attempt once it's passed its curiosity stage. It's other dishes are considered fodders by any standard.

Steamed "Sea Chicken" Fish

You know, like some eateries they hand out a pot of tea whether you order it or not, especially at Chinese BBQ shop, and charge you for it; they say it's Tipsy for the workers; others give you peanuts or other munchies.... well, this place serves sambal chilli with cucumber (was there pineapple too?); it's a refreshing appetizer before the food arrives.

Fried Bitter Gourd With Black Beans & Egg

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

SLOW-COOK SOY SAUCE STINGRAY'S TAIL


This is a gift from Ah Ming, the Sibu's fish monger. One tail is good for 2 portions. Apart from this dish, I used the other portion for Assam Curry Fish.

This is a variation of cooking method used for Ikan Molate, a thorny fish from Kapit; while extreme low flame is advocated in the cooking process to prevent the shredding of the flesh in the other method. This method is safer and ensures no misadventure with fire, as the pot doesn't come in direct contact with the wok. No worries about the fire (can be as big as you want) or burning your fish. The steam and indirect heat from the boiling water heats up the clay pot and cooks the fish.

This dish is best consumed the next day, when the sauce is allowed to permeate the fish.


INGREDIENTS


300 gm. Chopped Stingray's Tail

4 Tbsp. Dark Soy Sauce


3 Cloves Minced Garlic

15 gm. Julienned Ginger
15 gm. Chillies (Julienned)

2 Tbsp. Light Soy Sauce

1½ Tbsp. Sugar

1 Tbsp. Sesame Oil



METHOD


Pour dark soy sauce over the chopped fish, and massage through with your hand. Leave it in the sauce for 10 minutes.

Lay out the marinated fish on wire rack to drip dry in the fridge. Reserve the dark soy residue for later use.

Pour in 2 cups of cooking oil on a hot wok. When the oil is hot, drop in the dried marinated fish pieces for a quick blanch on all sides, and scoop out immediately once the color changes from its pink state.

Drain the oil off the blanched fish pieces before laying them out on a clay pot, with the bones facing down.

Sprinkle the top of the fish with minced garlic throughout.

Next comes the sugar spread.

The next layer is the julienned ginger.

The final layer is the chillies.

Drizzle the reserved dark soy sauce around the assembled garnishes, and the light soy sauces too.

Finally drip a few drop of sesame oil around to lightly flavor the fish pieces with its fragrance.

Put the lid on the clay pot, and wrap a piece of damp towel around the rim of the pot cover. Sit the pot on a piece of wire rack inside the wok, so that the bottom of the pot doesn't touch the wok. Pour enough water into the wok to cover about a ¼ of clay pot's bottom. Cover the wok.

Cook in the improvised double boiler for 2 hours. Replenish with hot water every 20 minutes. The towel prevents steamed water from seeping into the clay pot.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

FOCK HAI REVISITED: DIM SUM @ JALAN PADUNGAN, KUCHING


Fock Hai Tim Sam Café. Holy Fockerroo! That's how this shop redefines itself in its signage. If you say Fock Hai long enough without batting an eyelid and with conviction, you might get your wish granted... but if you want to fool yourself with that Feel Good vibes, this is where the locals get their pick-me-up with the dim -sum substitute. For anything beyond what this shop can offer, you'll have to ask our fearless leader or his spin doctors for that James Brown's moment.

Seriously, this shop does spin its magic with the locals with its brand of dim-sum (Oops! I mean Tim Sam). If you consume it long enough, you might convince yourself it's the greatest thing since white bread. Don't take my word for it, give it a go!



Monday, December 17, 2007

KAMPUA MEE @ THOMPSON'S CORNER, JALAN NANAS, KUCHING


For a taste of yumilicious Foochow noodle in Kuching, this is the place to be. Prepared by the Chous from Simanggang or Sri Aman as some would have it called. They have been at this corner stall for as long as there is a Thompson's Corner in Kuching. That's how long I've been a patron.

How good is it? According to a Sibu's expat now residing in Koala Lampar: "Good enough even after going through a microwave oven after a 12 hours lapse." - packs a few bags back home after being introduced to this place.

If Ragú's tagline is: "It's all in the sauce.", this one will definitely be: "It's the lard lah!" Sinfully good to the last strip. The dark soy sauce variety is the preferred choice of many as compared to the plain white one. (Do I hear some refrain: "I like the white one!"?) Those of you who are into stereotyping, there's the RM3.10 version (as opposed to the normal RM2.60) to pique your wonder lust - the focus is on the amount of noodle not the "liaw". (Another refrain: "Is that how the Foochows eat?")

This stall has a few quirks: no pian-nik (wonton) is served, and there's no white pepper in sight. If any of you spotted a pepper shaker lying around, it's mine!


Saturday, December 15, 2007

QUICKIE #2: POACHED SHRIMPS W/ CHILLI SOY SAUCE CONDIMENT


Came across these shrimps at the car park of Stutong Commecial Centre. Mostly on late afternoons or weekends, you'll find vendors selling local vegetables and the likes from their parked vans. These farmed sea shrimps of moderate size are at RM15 per kilo, quite a bargain considering it was RM16 about 15 minutes earlier!

Boil enough water in a wok to cover the shrimps. Add 2 tsp. of salt, 1 tbsp. of oil and 3 stalks of flattened lemongrass. Let the water boil for 5 minutes before putting in the shrimp. Cover the wok and poach the shrimps for 3 - 4 minutes before turning off the flame. Let the shrimps sit in the water for another 5 minutes before taking off the lid and serve.

The condiment sauce consist of chopped chilli, limequart juice with zest, light soy sauce and fruit sauce (Teochew calls it Kek-Eu), which is a citrus flavored oil.

That was lunch.

Friday, December 14, 2007

PORK GALORE @ MY RESTAURANT, SAMAJAYA COMMERCIAL CENTRE, JALAN SETIA RAJA, KUCHING

Slow Roasted Pork Rib Eye With Mustard Sauce

What seems like an advertorial for the restaurant is actually the result of 3 visits to the place over a period of 1 month. I thought I'd better posted this sooner than later, or else this will turn into a three-page spread with Walter (left) as the centerfold. You'd be barking up the wrong tree if you ask me if the place is any good.

Walter had previously worked at Carvery, one of those South American concept grill place. This one is their own husband and wife venture, which is far removed from its halal friendly past, and its present locality sticks out like a sore thumb, being in close proximity with a couple of Malay restaurants and a Malay colony close by. You'd think it's committing a financial suicide, but far from it, it's targeting the affluence of the staff from the industrial park down the road, and those who like western fare but not the beef or lamb, of which Its menu only feature a couple.

Words will not do justice to the items featured here. You've got to try it to appreciate the pork handled here. If think pork is the Chinese domain, think again; you've to tip your hat to the Austrians for their thick slabs of tender pork, done every which way but loose.

German Pork Chop

Pork Ribs & Bacon


Mushroom Pork Steak With Melted Cheese

Austrian Spicy Sausages With Bacon

Pork Fillet

French Apple Tart

Warm Walnut Brownies

Tiramisu

Banana Passion

Vanilla Ice Cream On Hot Blueberries

Most of the items here, except the dessert, are chosen from those scribbled on the blackboard, rather than from its printed menu.

ABOUT THIS BLOG

As the name implies, it's all about nothing! Kongkaying is like grasping in the air - more like hot air with occasional fartulence. Hopefully, something aromatic will come out of it! If not...

May the Farce be With You!

BAG OF TRICKS

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