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Malaysian Food Blog, Travel, Diving & More

Monthly Archives / November 2013

While most of us love to travel to exotic places and faraway land, those are nice and dandy, but also cost a lot of time and money. But if you look a options closer to home, there are actually a lot of hidden gems all within a couple hours’ drive from Klang Vally that makes for great day trips.

A couple months ago, we went to one of such places for a bit of eco-tourism at Perting Falls (also known as Lata Hammers), near Bentong. It was organized by Suan with Yen (who took us to Chilling Fall back in 2007) as our guide.

we started our journey, walking past rubber estate
we started our journey, walking past rubber estate

Take the Bukit Tinggi exit on Karak Highway and get on Route 68, the old road to Bentong. Follow that scenic route for about 16 km and try not to hit any of the many bicyclists typically found on this beautiful swerving road in the morning.

You will pass a hot spring right before the turning to Perting Valley training resort, take this exit and drive about 2.5-3 km inwards, or as much as your car can take. The road condition isn’t great, a 4×4 would be most awesome.

along the way we had to pass Sungai Perting Pandak
along the way we had to pass Sungai Perting Pandak

Since we drove normal sedans and did not want end up buying new wheels, we parked conservatively at about 2 km or so before the actual trek begins. The trail itself is almost 3 km, and reasonably easy to trek bar some overgrowth that might scratch your legs just a bit.

after 5km of trekking, the final steep descent to the waterfall
after 5km of trekking, the final steep descent to the waterfall

In total we trekked just over 5 km each way, which takes about 1.5 to 2 hours if you do it leisurely. The jungle trail itself should take only an hour if you manage to drive closer. While there are a few steeper areas, the walk isn’t a particularly challenging one, Ahfa’s retired mom had no problem keeping up, in fact, she was better than half of the youngsters. (ok maybe not youngsters anymore if you’re over 30.)

Check out the embedded endomondo trail at the bottom after the map.

Jamie had a zen moment
Jaime had a zen moment

Perting Fall has a beautiful pond with chilling cold water. A few of us took a swim in it, it was fantastic. The closer you swim towards the waterfall, the more it pushes you back, kinda like swimming on treadmill.

Like most waterfalls, there are sometimes whirlpools which present a danger. Always exercise caution and not do anything stupid. It is also advisable to bring along a small box of first aid kit with you.

Yen had a "penunu bunsen" and made tea, we tapao some nasi lemak too
Yen had a small gas stove and made tea, we tapao some nasi lemak too

Due to the distance one has to trek, this waterfall isn’t particularly crowded. Other than our group, there were perhaps maybe around 10 other people, including a few who camped overnight.

Our well prepared guide also brought along a small gas stove and made us some 3 in 1 coffee & milo, together with some nasi lemak we packed earlier in the morning, we refueled.

map to Perting Fall

We started our journey back at around 1:30 pm after spending 2-3 hours at the waterfall. Another 1 hour 40 minutes and plenty of sweat later, we got back to the parking lot and made our way back to KL, but not before having an awesome late lunch at Bukit Tinggi (it’ll be on another post).

Eco-tourism spots is aplenty in Malaysia, and something that we should treasure and enjoy. Check out waterfallsofmalaysia.com if you’re interested in trying out something like this, there are easier trails and more accessible waterfalls too.

Travelling can be cheap and fun while being healthy all at the same time!

Whenever we wanted a bowl of good fish head noodle, Woo Pin at Taman Desa usually comes to mind. The place undoubtedly serves very good and reasonably priced fish head noodle, it is far from where we stay (PJ), has lousy parking situation, and is often packed to the brim on weekends.

Last weekends, I finally tried the Kaki Bola Dua fish head noodle at Taman Paramount which is much closer to home.

Kaki Bola XO Fish Head Meehun, PJ
Kaki Bola Dua XO Fish Head Meehun, PJ Taman Paramount

The restaurant is situated just a stone’s throw away from the famed restaurant O&S. Parking isn’t hard to come by, and there’s air conditioning. All positive signs so far.

There are three types of soup to choose from – XO, shiong tong, and tomyam flavor. Of those choices of soup, you can then pick deep fried fish head, fresh fish head, fish paste, fish filet, and so forth.

three different flavors of soup to choose from
three different flavors of soup to choose from

The fish of choice here is the traditional “soong” fish. I picked deep fried fish head and specifically asked for the meaty part (which apparently you can if you’re not a huge fan of excess fish bone) with the classic XO soup with milk (RM 8.30), appropriately listed as the first pick on the menu.

I asked for more "meaty" part of the fish head, delicious
I asked for more “meaty” part of the fish head, delicious

The fish head noodle came in less than 15 minutes or so despite a heavy crowd, and it well worth it. The fish crispy and fresh, the soup rather flavorful, and most importantly, the home made chili sauce accompanying the noodle has quite a bite as well.

For those looking for a bowl of good fish head noodle in around PJ, this would be a good option. I have a feeling I’ll be back to try out their other flavors.

Address:
Kaki Bola fish head noodle
No. 23, Jalan 20/14,
Paramount Garden,
46100 Petaling Jaya,
Selangor
GPS: 3.107316, 101.625090
Hours: daily 7.30am – 4pm, 6pm – 9pm

Over the years, from business traveling, meeting with friends, and invited reviews, I’ve seen quite a few buffet spreads. Hence, for the most parts, buffet offerings don’t excite me very much.

Then again, the Bubblier Sparkalite 4Cs Sunday Brunch at Intercontinental KL’s Serena Brasserie isn’t just any buffet spread.

Serena Brasserie, at ground floor Intercontinental KL
Serena Brasserie, at ground floor Intercontinental KL

Heading the kitchen is executive chef Darrell O’Neill, originally from Australia and has since left a trail of presence across the globe in countries such as New Zealand, UK, France, Hong Kong, Dubai, India, Maldives, and now, Malaysia. During his time at restaurant Al Mahara t the Burj Al Arab Hotel Dubai, the restaurant was awarded Best Seafood Restaurant by Time Out Dubai.

this is what we came here for, the Alaskan King Crab
this is what we came here for, the Alaskan King Crab

The concept of the Sunday buffet brunch at Intercontinental KL centeres around 4Cs – Crustaceans, Carvery, Chocolate, and Candy.

Crustaceans is what excites us the most, there were Alaskan King Crab, slippery lobster, tiger prawns, and cray fish. Under this “C” also includes catch of the days such as fresh white fish, marinated tuna steaks, oysters, mussels, scallops, salmon, and more.

yeap, bubbly too, and a host of seafood ready to eat
yeap, bubbly too, and a host of seafood ready to eat

If you haven’t had a chance to sample king crab due to the price, this buffet offers one of the best values. The seafood were fresh, tasty, and most importantly, plentiful. I think I had close to 10 oysters, a departure from norm as I usually don’t get more than a couple, they tasted so good!

cold cuts and little appetizer in shot glasses
cold cuts and little appetizer in shot glasses

The next C stands for Carvery – which basically means cooked meat that are freshly sliced. Here you’ll find roasted whole ribs, prime ribs, roast chicken/duck, and more. Trimmings such as Yokshire pudding, roast vegetable, and baked potato accompany these dishes well.

roast chicken & duck, local delights, and prime ribs too
roast chicken & duck, local delights, and prime ribs too

For those who wants to sample some local delights, they are available too. A good selection of traditional Malay, Chinese, and Indian dishes are available for your picking.

BBQ meat & sausage, tandoori chicken, smoked salmon
BBQ meat & sausage, tandoori chicken, smoked salmon

They’ve also set up a BBQ area right outside the air-conditioned dine in section. Here you get freshly grilled lamb rack, chicken tandoori, sausage, baby chicken, satay, and even freshly smoked salmon and “DIY” burger stand with mini-Augus beef sliders and mini-chicken satay sliders.

fruits, a variety of cheese, desserts, and cakes
fruits, a variety of cheese, desserts, and cakes

The third C stands for Chocolate, and of course, that includes a host of other desserts as well. There are Australian lamingtons, chocolate fudge brownies and rocky road, mini Pavlovas, mini fruit trifles, banana and caramel sticky puddings, and more.

I can't get enough of the Alaskan King Crab and slipper lobsters
I can’t get enough of the Alaskan King Crab and slipper lobsters

Finally, last but not least is Candy. This actually refers to the Sparkalite Kid’s Corner, a section within the restaurant set up to keep kids busy learning the sweet art of making lamingtons and be entertained by the clown. This is a particularly great feature for parents with kids who actually want to have some food in peace.

with Umei, Josen, Haze, Evelyn, Dennis, and Damian
with Umei, Josen, Haze, Evelyn, Dennis, and Damian

The Sparkalite ‘4Cs’ Sunday Brunch at Serena Brasserie is available every Sunday from noon to 3pm. Brunch is priced at RM 120++ per person, and if you want the free flow sparkling, white & red wine and beer, it’ll be RM 198++. Kids from 6-12 is charged RM 60++ per head.

For the spread that you get, I think the price is more than reasonable, now excuse me while I go get myself more King crabs.

map to Intercontinental Hotel, KL

Address:
Serena Brasserie
Intercontinental Hotel

165 Jalan Ampang,
50450 Kuala Lumpur
GPS3.159767, 101.718045
Tel03-2161 1111
Webwww.intercontinental.com

Hidden within SS3 there exist a couple rows of shop houses that is away from the busier part of of the housing area, and at the corner of row of shop there is a kopitiam with a pretty funky name of Restaurant Pom Pom (also a name of an island at Sabah). Within this restaurant is a small stall called A&Z Western Food, and that’s our destination for dinner a few weeks ago.

update 26/3/2015: apparently this stall has moved, I don’t have the new location, if you do, please leave a comment

A&Z western food at restaurant Pom Pom
A&Z western food at restaurant Pom Pom

While there are more famous Malaysian Western food even within SS3 itself (those nearby Shell petrol station), this one is pretty special. For starter, it is non halal and actually serves pork. The menu also includes fish, chicken, lamb, sausage, and mushroom soup.

The place actually reminds me of Freddy Western at Restaurant Millenium 86 in PJ, which sadly is no longer in operation.

pork chop, deep fried chicken chop, fish and chips
pork chop, chicken cordon bleu, fish and chips

For dinner, we tried their pork chop (RM 10), chicken cordon bleu (RM 12), grilled chicken with black pepper sauce (RM 9), and fish and chips (RM 9).

While the pork chop turns out just a little dry (easily fixed with a bit of sauce), the other dishes we ordered were all pretty good. The grilled chicken was flavorful, chicken cordon bleu very crispy on the outside and goes well with the mushroom sauce, and there were no complains from the fish and chips.

Haze approved the Western food here, the mash potato's pretty good
Haze approved the Western food here, the mash potato’s pretty good

The most interesting thing about this place though must be the way mashed potato is prepared here. They’re shaped in little balls and coated with some type of sauce, I guess that makes it slightly healthier and less oily than fries, and at the same time they taste quite good as well.

For no frills Malaysian style Western food, this is a place I don’t mind going back again and again.

map to pom pom restaurant at PJ SS3

Address:
A&Z Western Food
Restaurant Pom Pom
Jalan SS3/64
Petaling Jaya, 47300 Selangor
GPS3.09667, 101.61317
Hours: lunch and dinner daily

During my stay in the US of A for more than 4 years, I’ve came across a few local dishes that were new to me. While there are many famous American dishes such as steak sandwich, clam chowder, good old fashion hot dogs and such that you can find in many restaurants, there are some that for all practical reasons, you hardly get them outside the country unless you make them yourself.

One of these dishes is a party snack called devil’s egg, and I’m going to show you how to make them.

first, make some hard boiled eggs
first, make some hard boiled eggs

I made these for a home BBQ session with the Maldives diving friends and some colleagues a few weeks ago and the reception was pretty good. It would have been better if I didn’t have to substitute paprika with curry powder, but sometimes you have to make do with what’s available in the kitchen.

Anyway, here goes.

Ingredients:

  • chicken eggs (I made 14)
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoon mustard
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • paprika for garnishing
  • 2 tablespoon sweet pickle relish (optional)

remove egg yolk & mix with seasoning
remove egg yolk & mix with seasoning

Instructions for hard boiled eggs:

  • put eggs in a pot of cold water (cover up the eggs by 2 cm), this prevents egg from cracking
  • adding a pinch of salt will allow easier peeling of egg shell later
  • bring to boil
  • cover the pot and turn off heat wait for 12 minutes
  • remove egg and peel the egg shell under cold running water

Instructions for devil’s egg:

  • cut eggs in halves
  • remove egg yolks and place in mixing bowl
  • add mayonnaise, mustard, and pickled radish (optional) to egg yolk, and mix with a fork
  • add salt & pepper to taste
  • carefully fill egg whites evenly with mixture
  • garnish with paprika, and you’re done

mix it back and sprinkle some paprika, serve!
mix it back and sprinkle some paprika, serve!

As this is not a hot dish, you can keep it in the fridge and prepare it earlier before the party starts, best consume within the same evening though.

Enjoy! Check the category list under “cooks” for more easy cooking recipes from yours truly.