When it comes to hawker dishes in Sabah, the most famous of them all is none other than north Borneo’s very own version of pork noodle – Sang Nyuk Mian (生肉面), or raw pork noodle in Hakka, the most spoken Chinese dialect this part of Malaysia.
Melanian Sang Nyuk Mian, Kota Kinabalu
To be honest, the difference between this and the KL version isn’t particularly huge. While pork noodle usually comes with kuih teow, yellow noodle, meehun, or mee suah, sang nyuk mian usually has their own version of noodle that is slightly more refined and perhaps a little closer in texture to Japanese soba.
The other reason this being called the equivalent of “raw pork noodle” is the method in which it’s prepared, usually with raw pork slices and offal made to order, thus ensuring freshness and to retain the soft texture.
There are usually two versions to choose from – “kon lou”, or dry version comes with noodle being mixed in dark sauce and the porky goodness in soup, or soup version having the noodle and porky bits all in the same bowl.
Sang Nyuk Mian with extra pork kidney
If you find yourself at KK town, one of the places to try out his famous local dish would be at Melanian 3 kopitiam, a short walk away from the city center.
Over here you can get a bowl of Sang Nyuk Mian anywhere from RM 7.50 to RM 11 based on the ingredients – pork slices, kidney, tendon, liver, pork ball, intestine, and even heart.
I had mine with extra pork kidney but otherwise a standard dry version with inclusion of liver, intestine, pork slices, and pork ball.
The soup was more subtle but still sweet and flavorful, and true to its intention, the meat & offal were fresh and soft, but above all, I really like the texture of the noodle used in this version compared to KL’s. Definitely something to try when you find yourself in KK.
Address: Melanian Sang Nyuk Mian 21, Lorong Lintas Square, Lintas Plaza, 88300 Kota Kinabalu, Sabah GPS: 5.984318, 116.076363 Hours: 6:30 am to 4:30 pm daily
While Sarawakian street food has been making its way to Klang Valley, Sabah hawker fair is still largely confined to Northern Borneo. So if you find yourself at Sabah, one of the dishes you should definitely try is Tuaran Mee.
Kentin Bakut, Sabah
Tuaran mee is a type of noodle originated from Tuaran, located some 30 kilometers away from Kota Kinabalu. While the original version that comes with chicken, meat, or seafood is plenty good, my favorite has got to be the version served up at Kentin Bakut – specifically their Fried Tomyam Tuaran Mee.
Kentin Bakut is some 25 or so kilometers from town, but conveniently it is situated along Jalan Tuaran Bypass, the road that you would take going from KK town to Kundasang, and if you’re going to KK, you should visit Kundasang anyway, so this place makes a good natural food/rest stop.
fried tomyam Tuaran mee
Kentin Bakut actually serves quite a number of different dishes, they have fried rice, hor fun, mee hun soup, kon lou mee, and even bitter gourd soup with fish fillet.
But if you have only space for one meal, make it the fried tomyam tuaran mee. Yeap, it is as you would expect, the unique springy texture and flavor of tuaran mee packed with spicy tomyam paste, expertly fried with charred bits plus those prawns and deep fried fish filet makes for a plate of rather unique goodness I’ve never had from anywhere else. Remember to squeeze the lime for that extra kick as well, it’s good! So good I would drive that distance just to have it.
seafood tomyam meehun
I also tried their seafood tomyam meehun, which did not disappoint either. Spicy tomyam with fresh Sabah seafood, you can’t really go wrong here.
The dishes cost RM 7.50 and RM 8 each, and yes, I’m going to go over again when I have a chance. This place is pork free and you fit for Muslim friends.
Kota Kinabalu has always been known for their seafood, undoubtedly due to its location as well as the local’s preference in how they get their protein. Since I’m a fan of fish noodle in general, I do make it a mission to try the various offerings they have on this North Borneo town.
One of the latest places I got a chance to check out was Mdm Ing Fish Noodle at Jalan Penampang.
Madam Ing fish noodle, Kota Kinabalu
The restaurant is located about 15 minutes away from town by car, so you would definitely need a ride to get there. Parking isn’t an overly complex exercise at the area, much like most places at KK. However, on weekends, there’s usually a crowd so locating a table may require a bit of patience.
Mdm Ing offers quite a variety of ingredients and choices revolving around fish, you can have it with fish slice, fish innards, fish stomach, roe, skin, fish head, fish tail, fish face, mouth, and more.. yes, fish face! The prices range from RM 10 to RM 26 and up, if you go crazy with it.
They serve garupa, red snapper, tabong, and kakap fish. As for soup base, you get to choose between tomato with salted vege and tofu, bitter gourd, with milk, or clear soup. Then of course there’s yur choice of mee, meehun, mee suah, or kuih teow.
mdm Ing fish noodle with salted vege and tofu soup
I had mine with fish slices in salted vegetable and tofu soup. The bowl comes with quite a generous amount of fish and a couple slices of fish cake soaked in the soup base that reminds me of salted vege/tofu soup that mom used to make.
The seafood was fresh, but the thing that stood out from other such outlets in KK was the sambal at Mdm Ing. It carries quite a bit more kick, and with a squeeze of limau kasturi it was also very refreshing.
garupa fish fillet, and their “sambal”
I think I do owe it to myself to try some of the more exotic ingredients when this place has to offer on my next visit.
Thanks Yann May for being my ride there!
You can also check out Fatt Kee and TaukeFish if you’re into fish noodle at Kota Kinabalu.
It is somewhat of a fashionable thing to be talking about the negative things about the various social media channels that are popular these days, such as how you only view the highlights of your friends, and how that elevate the whole “grass is greener on the other side” mentality and so forth.
However, like many things in life, if you use it right, great things can come out of it.
Delicious Curry House, Kota Kinabalu
Case in point – I got to know about both about Delicious Curry House from my instagram connection, a fellow user who hailed from Sabah and have since moved to Klang Valley some years back. Additionally, my makan buddy at Kota Kinabalu too, is someone I got to know from the same channel.
Who said it’s all negative? 😀
Anyway, Delicious Curry House is situated about 15 mins or so from the town center at Taman Ridgeview, a small commercial area that is pretty quiet in the evening (translation – easy to find parking).
The menu is not overly large, but covers a decent selection of dishes that includes seafood, vegetables, poultry, both in spicy or non-spicy forms.
paku pakis, squid with lime, asam prawn, bitter gourd with salted egg
For the two of us, we ordered four dishes (obviously too much).
The asam curry prawns (RM 32) was one of my favorites of the night, the broth was flavorful and packs a punch in terms of spiciness. If you love asam pedas, you’d find this version satisfying, especially with KK quality prawns.
Thai style steamed squid (RM 18) provides another jolt to our senses with its lime, garlic, and chili padi ingredients. The huge squid was of course, fresh and juicy.
four dishes was a bit much for two pax
For greens, I took the advise from fellow instagramfriend and went for their salted egg bitter gourd (RM 13.80), and a paku pakis (RM 13.80, sometimes ‘branded’ as Sabah vege).
These two are some of my favorite vegetables so they obviously did not disappoint. I thought the portion was a bit too big though for two pax, and maybe the paku pakis dish was just a tad too oily. Those bitter gourd would also make for perfect snack to go with beer.
Overall the dinner was super satisfying and offers rather decent value. Would not hesitate to go back there again.
On my previous trip to Kota Kinabalu, I was feeling a little bit under the weather due to a bout of not entirely moderate case of flu. My KK buddy was kind enough to take me to some comforting food fit for my condition – Seafood Porridge at Foh Sang.
How Lee Coffee Shop Seafood Porridge
The operation is located at How Lee Coffee Shop by the shop lots at Foh Sang that’s packed with quite a few other restaurants that aren’t short of customers during dinner time. After a couple rounds of circling the premise, we found a parking spot, and another few minutes of waiting, we finally landed on a table for two.
At this place, the star is their seafood porridge, but you can also have them with chicken, pork, scallop, crab, fish fillet, or prawns. Additionally, this is also a full fledge “tai chao” operation, so you get to order a pretty good selection of accompanying side dishes, or even have rice or noodle if porridge isn’t your calling for the night.
seafood porridge, choi sum, asam chicken, salted egg
For dinner, we ordered a standard bowl of seafood porridge with a salted egg, a plate of deep fried asam chicken, and a portion of choi sam for fiber and vitamin.
The porridge was certainly top notch, and as expected of any seafood dishes, the quality was top notch and super fresh. The vegetable was probably produce from kundasang, crunchy and sweet. However, the asam chicken was perhaps a little too over fried for my liking, the slight bitter after taste didn’t really do it for me.
wholesome dinner especially when you’re under the weather
Overall dinner came to about RM 60+ for the two of us, I’d say that’s decent value for the quality of seafood we got. Will not hesitate to go again.
Address: Seafood Porridge How Lee Coffee Shop No. S-26, Lorong Mawas 1, Jalan Kolam, Taman Foh Sang, Luyang, Kota Kinabalu 88300 Sabah GPS: 5.957661, 116.088143 Tel: 016-839 1938