Friday, August 29, 2008

DINNER #2 @ SIMON'S SEAFOOD, JALAN SEKAMA, KUCHING

Roast Pork Knuckle

On this visit, we got to sample its roast pork knuckle, but it was all chopped up when served. To get a true picture of the whole leg you have to approach the rotisserie where they are displayed in all its crowning glory. The skin was indeed crispy and the meat had the taste and feel of a Chinese roast pork belly (Sui Yuk).

Buttered Shrimps

The buttered shrimps was a bit different from the usual that it didn't have those flossy butter bits. Nonetheless, it had the buttery flavor and a fried crispy texture. And the sour fish curry didn't disappoint either. It was just moderately hot despite its feisty amber look. It had all the right moves to make this the stand out dish for the evening.

Assam Curry Red Snapper

Spinach With Century Egg

The simple spinach rounded out the evening's dinner for a RM97 meal.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

BREAKFAST @ FOOD AVENUE, 4½ ML. JLN. DATUK TAWI SILI., KUCHING

Assam Penang Laksa

It was either a Sunday morning or a public holiday when we were here. The place wasn't as packed as when we were here the last time. We opted for noodles from 2 adjoining stalls - one Penang and the other Taiwanese.

The Penang stall, as I mentioned before, was formerly located at Central Park's Siang-Siang. It's known more for its Yam rice and other rice delights. The laksa wasn't bad, rich in flavor for its broth. It packed enough Oomph in the spice department, but it didn't have me scratching my scalp or break out in sweat... not too stingy with the Hair-Ko (shrimp paste) either. Of all the food I have tried from this stall, they are all decently prepared and cooked, and they are reasonably priced.

Taiwanese Spicy Noodle

The Taiwanese noodle, however, is a whole different kettle of fish. Its hotness really packed a punch, and its hot chilli oil wasn't just for show... fragrant too. Despite all the praise that can be heaped on its noodle, the same can't be said of its service. Having 3 persons in the kitchen, and 2 doing the delivery, they could only mustered our noodle more than half and hour later.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

MERDEKA OPEN HOUSE 2008: FRIED BEEHOON (VERMICELLI) WITH KOU ROU & CABBAGE


This entry is part of the Merdeka Open House Celebration, with this year's theme entitled "Mee and My Malaysia", orgainzed by Babe In The City - KL.

This is another 'out-of-the-can' experience with fast-and-easy fix-it meal; your meal can be as simple as opening a can of whatumacallit and
then complimenting it with rice or noodle. In this case, it's the rice vermicelli with canned Chinese-made braised pork belly. I use 2 small cans, which were on sale from my wholesaler friend. (You get to save quite a bit if you cut off the middleman.)




INGREDIENTS

2 Layers Vermicelli

2 Cans Kuo Rou

1 Wong Bok Choi

3 Cloves Garlic

5 Medium Chillies

½ Carrot





METHOD


Soak the 2 pcs. vermicelli with tap water for 15 minutes until soften; it turns white. Drain off water.

Mince the garlic. julienned the chillies and carrot. Cut the Wong Bok Choi (Chinese cabbage) into large chunks.

Oil the wok thoroughly with 6 tbsp. oil on medium heat. Throw in half the portion of garlic; as they are about golden, toss in the dry vermicelli. Coat with the garlic oil. Then up the heat. Spread out and toss, bottom up.

Add a tablespoon of dark soy sauce and one light soy sauce. Use a thong or chopsticks to jiggle the vermicelli to evenly brown it. It should be done it about 3 minutes.

Spread out the fried vermicelli onto a plate.

If your wok is well greased, you don't have to wash it before making the meaty sauce; the vermicelli won't stick to the wok.

Fry minced garlic and julienned chillies with 4 tbsp. of oil on medium heat.

Throw in the chopped Bok Choi, toss a few times to thoroughly coat with the garlic oil.

Next, put in the julienned carrot. Give it a few turns.

Empty the 2 cans of the Kou Rou (braised pork belly). Mix well.

Lower the heat, cover and let it simmer for 5 minutes. Add a bit of water if you require more sauce.

After the simmer, adjust the taste if necessary.


Thicken the sauce slightly with cornflour slurry. Scoop out and top the vermicelli. Garnish with scallions.


Tuesday, August 26, 2008

CHENDOL: THE HAW HAW WAY, HO HO CAFÉ, LORONG TUNKU OSMAN 4, SIBU


This Chendol from this coffee shop is an unknown entity, in the sense that this place is more known for its fried noodle, which is whipped up by the owner's wife. The owner is from Mukah and his specialty is the Umai, raw fish with its salsa type of dip. Whenever he gets his delivery of fresh fish, he'll strut his stuff; only those in the know get to taste his elusive creation. A few of the Umais featured before was from his kitchen.


Scoop in red beans, Chendol, Siang Chow, jelly & Atap sugar • Add coconut milk

Add Pandan syrup • Affix ice block

Shaving the ice

Squirting flavoring syrup • Drizzle evaporated milk

Monday, August 25, 2008

LUNCH @ POH SENG CAFÉ, CHONGLIN PARK, JALAN TABUAN, KUCHING

Fried Cantonese Koay-Teow

This stretch of commercial blocks has more massage parlors than anywhere else in Kuching. It has a few watering holes, and some decent eateries. But this isn't one of them.

This is one of my Chin-Chai-Chiak (random eat) outing, trying unknown sources in the hope of finding a gem. This corner shop was well patronized when I was there for lunch - must be office workers from the surrounding establishments.

The fried flat noodle was in a complete puddle of globby-glob of crabsticks and whatever else might be floating in there. To make the matter worse, the noodle wasn't the type that was meant for frying, which made it sticky when fried.

The fried ginger pork rice fared better, but only so slightly... the meat was a bit tough. It was the sauce that pulled it through. If you're not pressed for time during your lunch break, you'd be better off if you venture elsewhere.

Ginger Pork Rice

Friday, August 22, 2008

NOODLE @ LIAN FUNG GARDEN, KENYALANG PARK KUCHING

Claypot Noodle Soup

An innocuous breakfast at Kenyalang Park while taking the bags' zippers for repair at the upholstery shop at the corner. The 2 noodle were ordered from different stalls within the coffee shop. This is one of the livelier eatery during the morning, while the one opposite is having a half-siesta.

The noodle above doesn't have much 'liaw' (meat & stuff) in it; just a few slices of pork, small shrimps and curly veg. The noodle used is similar to "Mamee Snack", the ones which you can eat right off the packaging. Its curly noodle is mildly flavored already. It tastes like those Kung-Chai Mein with a clear soup.

Pork Chop Kolo Mee

The second items looks and tastes like your regular Kolo Mee except that the Char-Sui is replaced by deep-fried batter coated pork strips, nicely flavored ones too. Both items are priced at RM3.50 each.


Wednesday, August 20, 2008

WINGED BEANS KERABU


This is a cold salad with a citrus tang to it, a reflection of the Thai papaya salad. Kerabu is the dressing that is similar to the fish dip I did sometime ago.

The only cooking involved is the blanching of the beans; the rest of the work goes to the dressing, which involves slicing and dicing of the chilli, shallot and dried shrimps. I use the tiny shrimps, so a little dicing is required to make them into smaller bits. You want to have a feel of the 3 ingredients when you bite into them.

INGREDIENTS
125 gm. Wing Bean • 1 Chilli (Seeded) • 2 Shallots • 1 Tbsp. Dried Shrimps
4 Limequart (Juice) • 1½ Tsp. Sugar • 1 Tsp. Light Soy Sauce
1 Tbsp. Water • Pinch of.Salt • 1 Tbsp. Desiccated Coconut • Sambal Belacan



METHOD

Sambal Belacan Ingredients: 1 large & 1 medium chillies (20 gm.) and 8 gm. Belacan (Shrimp Paste)

Blend in a processor the chillies and belacan into a paste. The medium size chilli packs more heat. Also the chillies give the rich red color to the sambal. If your sambal is a dull grayish color, you've too much belacan in it; add more chillies (seeded to reduce heat) to compensate.

Dice the chilli and dried shrimps; thinly slice the shallots.

Put all the sliced and dice ingredients, plus the sambal belacan into a bowl.

Squeeze in 4 limequart (about 3 tbsp.), 1½ tsp. sugar, 1 tsp. light soy sauce, 1 tbsp. water, and a pinch of salt to make the dressing. Make some adjustment to suit your taste. Set aside in the fridge.

In a dry pan, lightly roast the dessicated coconut until golden brown. Let it cool and set aside.

Discard the sharp ends of the beans. Slice the beans at an 45° angle to ½" thickness.

Bring water to boil on high flame; quickly blanch the beans for about 20 seconds.

Remove and drench in ice cold water to arrest the cooking process.

Drain and keep cool in the fridge until it's time to serve.

Apply the dressing on the beans just before it's time for consumption. Toss well and finally topped with the roasted dessicated coconut.


Laryngitis for the rest of the week...

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

SARAWAK LAKSA @ 1st TOP FOODCOURT, JALAN ANG CHENG HO


This Laksa stall used to reside inside the Kiaw Chung coffee shop farther down the road from its present location. That coffee shop was bustling with activities; more so because of its Laksa - the other stall was selling the usual Kolo Mee. Probably by 11 a.m. they would be packing up. With business that good, the coffee shop owner used to take time off whenever he felt like it, thus closing the whole shop down for a few days. This represented lost business opportunity for the Laksa stall. So when opportunity arose in the form of this food court, it decided to uproot and that its business elsewhere.

Flash forward to the present... Kiaw Chung is still around despite the Laksa absence, albeit at a slower pace - no more Kar-Liew, Kar-Liew! So how the Laksa stall doing at its new place? Let's just say it's still hobbling at its slow pace way past 1 p.m.; orders are sporadic, and not as brisk as its wonder days. Those into Fung-Shui, care to explain the phenomenon? It all defies the positioning and location logic? Are you a Lilian Too (as in also) to put in your 2 sen's worth?


By all accounts, the Laska tastes as good as it was in the old days. Sure, price has been adjusted over the years, but the rest remains constant; notice the rich red body of its broth. It still ranks as the top few edible ones in my book; it even has a sign at its stall that says: "Genuine Laksa". Need I say more?!!!

Monday, August 18, 2008

DINNER @ TAMAN SELERA MUHIBAH, JALAN PEDADA, SIBU

Venison With Chillies And Onions

It's was a Zi-Char dinner at this open-air (alfresco) hawker center courtyard on the outskirt of town. I didn't even know this place exists even though I pass by this route numerous times. We ordered our food from stall 38. Nothing out of the ordinary here... usual fare. Can't complain much as it was RM25 for 4 dishes with 3 plates of rice.



Fried Kailan With Mushroom and Woodear

Thai Inspired Chicken

Simple Fried Lady's Fingers (Okra)

But then the Zi-Char is a mere distraction for the main item we came to sample - Foochow dried squid Tofu soup. It's a specialty from stall 11, which is actually a drinks stall manned by Ah Kok. Those not in the know would have missed on on it.

It's a simple slow simmer soup with the neutral taste tofu absorbing the pungent aroma of the dried squid. It's a love-hate affair... my first encounter was when my housemate at Elm Drive (not Elm Street, mind you), Lay Sing, stank the whole house with the pong. Since then I've acquire a taste for it.


Another surprise to be had from this stall 11 is its Kompia (Foochow bagel) with stuffed pork belly. Yup, you didn't read wrongly... braised pork belly. Not the minced pork type, although he has that too.

Unfortunately, Ah Kok ran out of Kompia; it was just after 7, and started his day at 5 in the afternoon. But no worry, he obligingly scoured some Kompia from the nearby stall. For those of you hankering for Ah Pek's Kompia from Hoe Ping Road, this is as close as you can get to the original (maybe lacking garlic a bit). Far better than the Tiong Hua Road's Teochew lady's. The Kompia is crunchy toasted... seems like old times!

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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