While char kuih teow, laksa, and cendol gets all the attention in Penang, one of the must-eats for me is actually the humble old apong. Specifically, the stalls offering these tiny apong that have been operating at Jalan Burma right outside Union Primary School for decades.
Apong Guan, Penang
There are only two of such stalls on the island as far as I know, both offering very mini sized apong made with plenty of eggs, flour, ripe banana, corn, and some other secret ingredients (I think the guy will sell you the recipe for a handsome fee).
I’ve wrote about Apong Chooi back in 2011, so now let’s look at Apong Guan, arguably the more “famous” of the two.
Each Apong now goes for RM 0.60, up from RM 0.35 8 years back, and seven for RM 1.00 maybe two and a half decades back when I first got my motorbike license.
Apong Guan will usually have a small crowd surrounding the stall on weekends, an exercise in patient in these hot climate to be sure. The reward though is definitely worth it. The apong is sweet from the ripe banana & corn, savory from its egg, and perfect in every way. I suggest you order enough to lasts the afternoon, and eat them while hot!
RM 0.60 each for this goodness, must-eat if you’re in Penang
Apong Guan has been in operation for some 50 years, with no heir apparent in sight, so if you’re longing for something uniquely Penang, this is a stall not to be missed.
A couple weeks ago, Suan made me wake up at 6 in the morning on weekends, just because she needed a trail walking buddy to go to Chilling Falls (we went many years ago). She’s a friend for over two decades, I had no choice but to comply.
fried pan mee in all its glory
So we made our ways from PJ to Hulu Selangor way too early on a Sunday morning, and stopped by Rasa (yes, it’s a real town) for a pretty unique type of breakfast – Fried Pan Mee at Happy Like Coffee House.
Rasa is a pretty small town, and being situated less than 30 mins from Chilling Falls makes it a perfect destination for pre-hike stopover. The town area is plenty small and you won’t miss the time capsule of a kopitiam.
So, how’s the fried pan mee?
It is almost exactly like how you would imagine. Literally pan mee, but fried, with plenty of the same type of vege you’d find in normal soup version of pan mee. The portion here is way too big but makes for good carbo-loading pre-exercise routine. I was impartial to the taste, but Suan loves it.
Happy Like Coffee House, Rasa, Hulu Selangor
If you’re heading to Chilling Falls or any of the hiking trials nearby Hulu Selangor, this would be a worthy stopover.
bonus pic of me freezing my ass off at Chilling Falls
Address: Restoran Happy Like Coffee House Taman Rasa Jaya, 44200 Rasa, Selangor GPS: 3.496102, 101.632591
When it comes to Indonesian food, none is more famous than Ayam Penyet, essentially a flattened deep fried chicken served with tempeh (made from fermented soya bean), tofu, and those oh-so-addictive sambal.
Ayam Penyet Mak Maya, Kampung Baru
My first ayam penyet was at Waroeng Penyet just over a decade ago, and it was love at first taste. I’ve been on a look out for ayam penyet stalls in its most “pure” form ever since, for a lack of a better word.
A hunt that led me to Ayam Penyet Mak Maya at Kampung Baru, my current favorite.
Mak Maya is located at Kampung Baru, directly opposite to one of my favorite Nasi Padang restaurant. The restaurant itself is a bit of a time capsule from the 80s, with plastic chairs and laminated table.
I always order mine with extra sambal
What sets Ayam Penyet Mak Maya apart from other such stalls is their sambal. The sambal is prepared “fresh” on the spot by grinding fresh ingredients to the paste form we’re familiar with.
The result was expectedly excellent, spicy, aromatic, and pure. I love it.
ayam or ikan for you?
Other than ayam penyet (chicken), they also have ikan kembung (Indian Mackerel), and ikan keli (catfish) deep fried in the same style.
These are served with deep fried tauhu, tempeh, and a slice of raw cucumber, cabbage to go with plain rice. The sambal of course ties everything together to make a plate of super satisfying lunch.
if you love it spicy, you’d love it here
If you want a good meal of ayam penyet in the heart of KL city, this is one to check out.. before Kampung Baru is eventually being redeveloped.
Address: Ayam Penyet Mak Maya 58, Jalan Raja Muda Mus Kampung Baru, 50300 Kuala Lumpur GPS: 3.164533, 101.708807
Been hearing about this Bangkok lane Mee Goreng that’s at USJ (that would be UEP Subang Jaya as the official name) for a while now, so I decided to check it out last week.
Bangkok Lane Mee Goreng at Restoran Ehsan Maju
For those who aren’t familiar with the background, there’s rather well known mee goreng located at Bangkok Lane in Georgetown. One that I’ve had quite a few times in Penang, and while it wasn’t my favorite, they do offer a very competent plate of this Indian dish compared to others on the island.
Of course, here in Klang Valley Penang style mee goreng is hard to come by, my previous favorite at PJ SS5 ceased to exists after the owner passed on, so to be honest, I haven’t had proper mee goreng outside Penang for years.
mee goreng with sotong
The stall at Restoran Ehsan Maju in USJ 2 is essentially a ‘branch’ from the same stall in Bangkok Lane, Penang. The menu is pretty simple, there’s mee goreng with or without sotong (squid), mee rebus (wet version) in the same two variety, and rojak – essentially their mee rebus without noodle.
mee rebus and rojak available too
So, how does it taste?
I would say it’s pretty spot on, except for the huge KL style portion, it is pretty consistent with what they offer in Penang. There’s decent flavor and all the ingredients are there. The fried shallots could be improved, and those sotong are a bit too bland (I’ll order without that next time). Other than that, definitely a more than acceptable “Penang style” mee goreng.
Will go again.
Address: Restoran Ehsan Maju 21, Jalan USJ 2/2c, Usj 2, 47600 Subang Jaya, Selangor GPS: 3.057507, 101.591064
Dinner in Klang consists mainly of three big categories – bak kut teh, seafood, and taichau places. Today, let’s look at one of the older, more traditional taichau (or in Hong Kong – “tai pai tong”) that offers some rather unique dishes – Hin Kee Restaurant.
Hin Kee Restaurant, Klang
Hin Kee is located across Jalan Meru from Klang Parade, on a parking lot/medan selera sort of set up within the residential area. The restaurant itself is a zinc roof with no wall type of set up, and it’s reasonably clean, with ceiling fan to boot.
Like most of these old school places, there’s no printed menu. There is however, a few rows of dishes printed above the stall, all in Chinese characters. You can always ask the server for suggestions, which we did.
sumptuous meal at Hin Kee, Klang
We ended up ordering 6 different dishes – deep fried pork offal with ginger, duck noodle, grilled squid, lala (Thai style?), vege, and fried Hokkien mee.
The dishes did not take too long to arrive, which is always a good thing.
duck noodle, grilled squid, lala, Hokkien mee
So how are those dishes?
Pork offal – simply excellent, prepared right on point with those ginger balances porky taste. This with some beer would be heaven! Grilled squid was similarly enjoyable, with texture that’s just right, fresh, and bits of caramelized skin really bringing it to the next level. Love it.
The noodle dishes were pretty good, though I enjoyed their duck noodle quite a bit more than Hokkien mee, which I found pretty average.
pork offal with ginger
We thought the lala dish was a bit.. odd tasting. It was sort of like Thai steamed fish sort of sauce, sourish and slightly spicy, but with lala. I guess some may like it that way, but not exactly my cup of tea.
Overall though it was a very positive experience, will order a different type of lala preparation and perhaps skip the Hokkien mee next time. Pork offal & squid would be the two dishes I’d definitely order.
Address: Restoran Hin Kee 26, Jalan Dua, Taman Meru, 41050 Klang, Selangor GPS: 3.063454, 101.451322 Hours: Open for dinner