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Tag / durian

A couple days prior to General Election 13, we were invited to a food review session at PLOY to sample some dishes from their new menu.

According to their website, PLOY means Gem in Thai. It is then this pretty unique contemporary fine dining restaurant’s aim – to have their dishes be true gems of Japanese and Thai cuisine.

PLOY at Clearwater, Damansara Height
PLOY at Clearwater, Damansara Height

PLOY is located at Clearwater Residence in Damansara Heights. Parking is a pretty painless affair, there’s an underground car park in the building, and it also seems like you can park on the streets just outside of it, though legality in that is questionable.

The restaurant itself is tastefully decorated and has two separate dining halls, a fully air conditioned area, and another half outdoor for alfresco dining.

there are some interesting drinks on the menu
there are some interesting drinks on the menu

There’s a full bar at PLOY. Beer, liquor, cocktails, coffee, and several other rather interesting drinks can be ordered. My drink for the night was Apple Sour, basically fresh apple juice with sour plum in it, very refreshing. Fraps, cappuccino, and Thai ice tea were reportedly pretty good as well.

tuna wakame salad, golden needle salad
tuna wakame salad, golden needle salad

Dinner started out with a couple different types of salad. Tuna Wakame Salad (RM 23) comes with chunks of tuna cubes, avocado, and sesame in shoyu dressing, while Golden Needle Salad (RM 15) with tofu, avocado, broccoli, and wafu dressing.

Due to the pretty distinct taste of avocado, the two salads ended up more similar than different, but not in a bad way. I love the way they deep fried the string mushrooms, and if you were to choose a salad, I’d recommend the golden needle, tastes as good, and cheaper too.

tempura surprise, kabocha tempura
tempura surprise, kabocha tempura

Tempura Surprise (RM 15) is a dish with questionable usage of one of my favorite fish – seabass. The fish is wrapped in oba leaf, and then deep fried. It was a surprise alright, but not exactly in a commendable way. The combination did not work well even though I’m a fan of both major ingredients. I think they should re investigate this dish.

On the other hand, Kabocha Tempura (RM 8.50), or salted egg pumpkin tempura, fared much better. The pumpkin were delicious, and would scored even higher marks if those salted egg yolk sticks to the gourd better. I like it.

crab in wrap
crab in wrap – a maki with a hint of tropical influence

Most of us have tried Spider rolls, or soft shell crab maki in Japanese restaurants, this is PLOY’s interpretation with their Crab in Wrap (RM 28). Other than soft shell crab, avocado, sushi rice, and spicy kani, mango can be found in this roll.

To me, this is a perfect blend of Thai & Japanese influence, and one that works very well. I love the taste of Thai in the maki, very well executed.

magic puff - with goat cheese, truffle oil, and wild rocket
magic puff – with goat cheese, truffle oil, and wild rocket

Magic Puff (RM 32) does not come cheap, but it’s got truffle oil and goat cheese in the homemade crispy pastry with wild rocket. This is a dish that had to be consumed ASAP before the cheese melts into the pastry, and oh it tastes very good! Truffle oil, made all the difference, yums!

the godfather special, pasta from heaven, smoked duck breast with chicken ham pizza
the godfather special, pasta from heaven, smoked duck breast with chicken ham pizza

The trio of main dishes we shared were the Godfather Special (RM 22), Pasta from Heaven (RM 28), and Smoked Duck Breast with Chicken Ham Pizza (RM 28).

Godfather Special is a fancy name for a salmon ikura don with avocado, royu and nori (seaweed) in tempura flakes. The flakes gave it a crispy texture in an otherwise pretty average dish. It felt.. healthy.

Pasta from Heaven is angel hair spaghetti with sakura ebi (small shrimps) and flying fish roe  in truffle oil. Again, the truffle oil proved to be the salvation in this one, and I love angle hair pasta, so it worked for me. Though I’d love to have chunks of something else in it, like prawns or .. just something.

The pizza was awesome, I really loved the pizza! For RM 28 this is the real deal, plenty of real yummy duck breast on the really thin crust pizza with avocado sauce. The sprinkle of flying fish roe gave it that extra pop. It was delicious, if you love duck breast, you’ll absolutely enjoy this pizza. I wanted to have more!

sticky date pudding, durian panna cotta, creme caramel
sticky date pudding, durian panna cotta, creme caramel

When we thought the dinner was over, our host brought out these three types of desserts.

The sticky date pudding was alright, the creme caramel will satisfy anyone with a sweet tooth, but the durian panna cotta is what I really want to talk about.

It might look uninspiring, but the durian panna cotta was awesome. It’s rich, it’s pungent, and it’s an absolute must for anyone who even remotely like durian. It’s the stuff that should make some people go to PLOY just for the dessert. Try it!

Ivy, Haze, KY, chef Daniel, Marc, Hitomi and others having a good time
Ivy, Haze, KY, chef Daniel, Marc, Hitomi and others having a good time

So if you’re up to something slightly out of the ordinary, PLOY is a definitely a place to check out. While I can’t say that everything is awesome, there are quite a lot of bright spots in their latest menu. I would also say that prices are pretty competitive for the setting PLOY offers.

Thank you Lennie for the invites.

map to PLOY at Clearwater

Address:
PLOY
G-2, WORK@Clearwater,
Jalan Changkat Semantan,
Bukit Damansara, KL
GPS: 3.152327, 101.666762
Tel 03-2095 0999
Webploywithyourfood.com

A couple weeks ago I was invited to a pretty sweet offering – a food tasting session at My Honeymoon desserts at Kota Damansara.

Now desserts is often favored by female more than guys, and I think there’s a very good reason to it. DESSERTS is spelled exactly backwards of STRESSED,and are usually chilled, hence the XX portion of humankind are often the more chillax of the two.

We shall learn.


My Honeymoon Desserts

The story is, the owners of My Honeymoon went to Hong Kong for their, well, honeymoon and fell in love with the desserts during their the visit. The cravings started to mount when they’re back home, and hence the restaurant was born. Long version of the story here.


Mix Fruits Lo, Mango Special Lo

There were 11 of us at this review session, and 10 of them happened to be female, just like I mentioned earlier right?

We had quite a lot of different desserts over the night, in fact, it was the most desserts I had in one seating, and here I shall attempt to categorize them slightly:

The Lo down:

  • Mix Fruit Lo – honeydew, mango, watermelon, and more in this mixture of goodness, best of those who can’t decide
  • Mango Special Lo – the mango at My Honeymoon desserts is imported from Philippines, you can be sure of the quality. I’ve always love the mango from Philippines, even the dried version, but this one’s just superb!


Mango Cream with Sago & Pamelo, Durian & Mango Pancakes

The pancakes:

  • Durian pancake – this is one of the must-haves at My Honeymoon Desserts if you’re a durian lover, but a must-avoid if you can’t stand durian for this is the real deal, plenty of King of fruits with all it’s glory… and smell.
  • Mango pancake – yep, it’s the mango again, mango and cream doesn’t work that well for me, but some swear by it.


assorted summer special, tofu magic snow ice
sweet memory, colorful granulated ice

Sweet and creamy delights:

  • Mango cream with sago & pamelo – the sweetness of mango & sago in contrast with the explosion of citrus when you bite into pamelo sacks, very interesting
  • Sweet Memory – Durian and beans, the name is perfect for durian lovers!

Shaved ice, new age ice kacang?:

  • Assorted Summer Special – almost like a shaved ice version of mix fruit lo, best for those who can’t decide
  • Tofu magic snow ice – the healthy choice, I like the big red beans and the tofu was a bit unexpected but in a good way
  • Mango snow ice – mango, shaved ice, pearl, do I need to say more?


special baked rice cake, Rachel presenting the mellow fellow pastry

Pastry items:

  • Special baked rice cake – I felt that this one could be a little sweeter, essentially a baked  “nian gao” (chinese sticky rice cake), not oily like the fried type
  • Mellow Fellow Pastry – topped with a scoop of chocolate ice cream, the crispy pastry with it’s filling were truly awesome, a perfect blend of sweet,s lightly salty and the right amount of savory tastes.


hello, chocolate sweet ball with crushed peanuts,
sweet ball coated with crushed peanuts, mango special maruko

Pearly goodies:

  • Hello – a mixture of tofu, pearl, cincau, and mango base. The pearls are big and juicy, I like them. Could probably use a better name though
  • Mango Special Maruko – more pearls and mango, if you love them equally, this is a good choice

We’ve got balls too:

  • Chocolate sweet balls with crushed peanuts – half a dozen ping pong ball sized tong yuen with black sesame fillings served with crushed nuts and chocolate sauce, addictive
  • Sweet balls coated with crushed peanuts – same as above for those who doesn’t like chocolate sauce


7 up mint syrup with sago-blue, mango magic snow ice,
mango glutinous roll, mango pudding

Other desserts I couldn’t categorize:

  • Colorful granulated rice – I think this is a two in one type of deal where you get to have fruits and glutinous rice at the same time, main meal and dessert in one go, pretty good!
  • Mango pudding – yet another mango dessert, this one without any ice, done rather well, and the paler color shows that there’s no artificial coloring involved
  • Mango glutinous roll – the shredded coconut in this dish brings out the sweetness of mango even more


Yuenny, Mimi, CitiGal, Haze, Rachel & Karen, Fresh, Jackqie

Scarily, the desserts you see here is but 1/4 to 1/3 of what is available at this outlet, so there’s plenty of choices to fit every type of taste. Most desserts here are priced below RM 10 and come in pretty good size portion, better deal than having just a cup of coffee at many places, and a cheaper too.

Ultimately, the desserts were made even better with the company I was with, the lovely girls from Nuffnang made this possible and it was a blast!

map to My Honeymoon Dessert at Kota Damansara

Address:
My Honeymoon Desserts
No. 22, PJU 5/10,. Kota Damansara,
47810. Petaling Jaya, Selangor
GPS: 3.151556, 101.593044
Tel: 03-6150 3325

By the way, first FIVE commenter who state Karen’s last name correctly gets free RM 20 voucher! (you’re not qualified if u work for nuffnang hehehe)

Ahhh, durian, the king of fruits. The one thing that people usually really hate or really love, just like Hillary Clinton. Fortunately enough, Mell and I are both into this whole durian eating business, though she is quite a bit more hardcore when it comes to this. (remember durian flavored gelato at Freddo?)

Durian at PJ SS2
aptly named DurianSS2.com

So last Monday we decided to head to SS2 for some durian love at the stalls behind BHP petrol station (intersection of SS2/75 and SS2/24).

I remembered a couple years ago there were two durian stalls side by side enjoying equally brisk business. Then in a moment of epiphany, one of the stalls created a website and put up a big banner saying DURIANSS2.COM. Their business immediately shot up and they’ve been by far the busiest stall ever since. This was also the place we went on Monday.

King of Fruits - Durian
hand doesn’t smell if you wash it with water from the husk?

The place is a semi permanent set up with plenty of tables and chairs, a basin, and free filtered water to wash down those glorious fruit. There’s quite a big selection of durians, from Raja Kunyit, to the more common D2, D24, and Udang Merah, you can pick you choose. Of course, they are priced differently, as high as RM 22 (for Raja Kunyit), or RM9/RM10 all-you-can-eat buffet style.

Not knowing what we should go for, we told the operator to get us something that is half bitter and half sweet and ended up with XO durian. The relatively thick meat was soft and very flavorful, part bitter, and part sweet. There were about 8-10 pieces of flesh in each of the two durian we had (1.4 and 1.5kg). It was absolutely delicious!

KY and Mell eating durian
KY and Mell enjoying some durian goodness

Total damage was RM 37, which worked out to be about RM 13 per kilogram for the durian we ordered.

Mell insists that washing the hand with water off the husk of the durian will make sure that you don’t end up with leftover durian smell. I’ve heard about that many times and still find zero scientific basis to the whole exercise, besides, what’s wrong with how your hand smell if your breath is going to be the biggest concern anyway? 😀

map to Durian at SS2
the durian stalls are located behind the petrol station

Address:
DurianSS2
intersection of Jalan SS2/24 and Jalan SS2/75
Petaling Jaya, Selangor

GPS: 3.117794,101.623943
Tel: 012-234 5619 (Ah Wai)

I had actually been to Canton-i a couple of times prior to the kind invitation by Wai Kong of PRKraft for this proper food review session. I was pretty excited about the review as my previous visits were rather positive. In fact, it was my god mom who brought me there for the first time, which explains the lack of posting and photos from my prior visits.

canton-i at midvalley gardens
chef: herro I am from Hong Kong!

Canton-i is run by the same people who brought us the Dragon-i chain, same ownership, same management, and operated in a very similar style in terms of set up and the way ingredients are sourced. The biggest difference is, while Dragon-i concentrate on Shanghai cuisine, Canton-i brings Hong Kong food to Malaysia in its original form. As explained by Kong, there is always at least an experience chef from Hong Kong at the branch to oversee the operations.

roasted bbq pastry, egg yolk in custard buns, egg tart
roasted bbq pastry, egg yolk in custard buns, egg tarts

Suan and I arrived at the Mid Valley Gardens’ branch to find Sid & Sunny from BigBoysOven already there. We started out with a few light dishes you might find at dimsum places. The roasted bbq pastry was nice (something like seremban siu pao), and the egg yolk in custard buns with its rich and hot liquid ingredients reminds me of the excellent creamy and flowy custard from SOHO. As for the egg tarts, they were really delicious to the point that Suan actually asked for more to bring home for her parents.

roasted and bbq pork, veal ribs in black pepper sauce, roasted goose
roasted and bbq pork, veal ribs in black pepper sauce, roasted goose

You can never claim to have proper Hong Kong food without these roasted and bbq dishes. This session was actually my first time tasting roasted goose, and it was one of those food moments you never forget. Like the first time you had durian, or raw fish sushi. I thought roasted duck was good, but goose is just a whole other level when it comes to taste and especially the texture. Very smooth and succulent. I love it.

The bbq pork (char siu) and roasted pork (siu yok) were of pretty good standard as well. The skin from siu yok is crunchy and the meat of very nice cuts with proper skin/fat/meat ratio. Honey and mustard is served with the meat for those who prefer to have a little kick with it. The veal ribs in black pepper sauce is similar to steamed pork ribs you find at typical dim sum place, except the slightly gamy taste to it, might not be everyone’s cup of tea.

steamed pea-sprout dumpling with scallop, steamed wheat buns, chee cheong fun with yau char kuai, cuttled fish pancake
steamed pea-sprout dumpling with scallop, steamed wheat buns, chee cheong fun with yau char kuai, cuttled fish pancake

The next dim sum dish was the pea sprout dumpling with scallop which was rather sophisticated in the looks department and tasted pretty nice as well. The steamed wheat buns though, is something that’s supposed to be healthy, I thought they tasted just alright.

Chee cheong fun with yau char kuai is an interesting dish, combining two old school breakfast favorites into one. I would however, only describe it as far as being interesting. Didn’t exactly like the combination that much myself.

The cuttle fish pancake, on the other hand, is easily one of my favorites for the day. Firm texture with a slightly crunchy skin and that savory taste of cuttle fish. It was very very nice, even better than those very good fish cakes from, for example, the fish ball soup place near Atria.

shrimp dumpling wantan mee, pork ribs wantan mee, carp fish ball and lettuce congee
shrimp dumpling wantan mee, pork ribs wantan mee, carp fish ball and lettuce congee

The shrimp dumpling wan tan mee was actually one of the first dishes I’ve ever eaten at Canton-i, a pretty non nonsense Hong Kong style wan tan mee that hold it’s place pretty well. You can choose between having the dry or soup versions. However, the pork ribs wan tan mee only comes in the dry version, I believe.

Another specialty of Canton-i is the carp fish ball lettuce congee. While I didn’t exactly fancy the taste of carp fish ball, the congee itself was very smooth (and steaming hot) and delicious, I actually ordered some other type of porridge on my subsequent visit to this place.

steamed shark fin dumpling in superior soup, marinated cuttlefish with bean curd, deep-fried durian fritters, milk with ginger sauce
steamed shark fin dumpling in superior soup, marinated cuttlefish with bean curd, deep-fried durian fritters, milk with ginger sauce

As we thought our stomachs couldn’t handle it anymore, we were served even more food. The steamed shark fin dumpling in superior soup was nice, and interestingly with the soup tasted even better than the dumpling. Reminding me of the excellent soup I had at Emperor Chinese restaurant at Sheraton Subang. We also had another classic Hong Kong food, the marinated cuttlefish with bean curd. I liked the bean curd but can’t say I enjoyed eating the marinated cuttlefish though, it was just chewy and slightly sour.

For dessert, we were fed some deep-fried durian fritters which we surprisingly good (made with real durian). Then there’s the milk with ginger sauce that looks and tasted pretty similar to taufufar (soya bean curd) except even smoother and well, slightly milky.

KY, black & white evaporated milk, big boys oven, suanie
KY, black & white evaporated milk, big boys oven, suanie

I ended the meal with a cup of milk tea made with imported Black&White evaporated milk that is common in Hong Kong. This was an overly very satisfying meal, I almost couldn’t walk.

Prices at Canton-i is pretty reasonable considering the quality of food as well as its location and settings. Dishes are from RM 7 or more for dim sum, wantan mee costs from around RM 12. You can have a decent meal for as low as RM 20 per person, or run the bill a lot higher if you are into more lavish dishes. Expect crowd during busy lunch/dinner time.

Web: canton-i.com.my
Address:
LG 202 & 203A, Lower Ground Floor
Mid Valley Gardens

GPS: 3.118675, 101.676085
Tel: 03-2284 6888

Address:
G-208, Second Floor
1 Utama Shopping Centre

GPS: 3.150050, 101.615939
Tel: 03-7729 7888