Bak Kut Teh infused with seafood is not exactly a recent invention in the land where this uniquely Chinese-Malaysian dish originated, and of the various different variants of bak kut teh, it is probably the most rare, hence it is no surprise that many bak kut teh fans does not know about the existence of seafood BKT.
Yun Heng kopitiam, at Klang Utama
My love for seafood bak kut teh started with Ah Tao at Teluk Pulai, a place where I’ve returned multiple times. Sadly, Ah Tao returned to the maker this past CNY period and the place has been closed down (or on haitus) since.
This prompted me to start looking for another good spot to satisfy that cravings.
After a few attempts with limited success, I think I finally found one that’s worthy to be Ah Tao’s replacement in my book – the unassuming BKT stall at the corner of Restoran Yun Heng at Klang Utama (not far from another one of my go-to Hong Ba + BKT place – Swee Xiang)
fish head, and that glorious bak kut teh with lala
We went there last weekend when my brother was in town, and for the three of us, we had 1.5 portion of bak kut teh with lala, and another portion of fish head.
The bak kut teh soup really did hit the spot for all of us, it was a perfect balance of hotness, herbal note, and really strong seafood sweetness from the lala. They may not have the variety of seafood available as with Ah Tao, but lala is all you need, especially if it’s done as well as they did here.
fish head also had chicken feet in it
We didn’t plan to order the stewed fish head dish, but since they were a bit low on pork (we got there past 1:30 pm) and the owner suggested it, I thought why not?
The dish turned out to be pretty good in itself, it was another spicy dish but one with much thicker soup and slightly sweeter in taste. I actually enjoyed it quite a bit, the chicken feet in the stew was very good too.
Overall damage was just under RM 20 per person, and I’m 100% sure I’ll be heading back there again for some lala BKT goodness.
To shut me up, she brought us to Restoran Kari Kepala Ikan Tiga at Puchong the other day, as first recommended by her boss (who is an avid gastronomic adventurer)
Restoran Kari Kepala Ikan Tiga at Puchong (3rd branch)
While the name might suggest that this place serves fish head curry (which it does), the speciality dish here is actually the steamed fish with superior soup and a variety of accompanying seafood.
While not exactly a high end restaurant with cute interior design, Restoran Kari Kepala Ikan Tiga does offer air conditioned dining area with pretty decent hygiene and responsive staffs.
the epic steamed tilapia, emperor vege, muay choi pork
Our main dish was a rather huge steamed tilapia fish with superior soup (RM 72), accompanied by quite a lot of prawns, squid, and lala. The seafood is garnished by generous amount of finely chopped garlic and spring onion as well.
As a result of all those seafood, the rather concentrated superior soup tasted fantastic, it was super sweet and absolutely savoury. The fish tasted good, and the squid super fresh as well. By the way, you can also top up the soup ala bak kut teh style, but we felt that the first serving tasted better than the top-ups.
free jelly dessert at the end too, Kerol approves
Other than the main dish, we also ordered a Vitamin C quota fulfiller dish that is the Emperor vegetable (RM 12), and a non-seafood dish in Mui Choy pork (RM 16). The vegetable was lovely, and the pork held its own as well.
With drinks and rice, the five of us spent RM 19 per person for this meal. Not the cheapest lunch options for sure, but one that I think offered decent value for what you get. I would have no problem to revisit.
Address: Restoran Kari Kepala Ikan Tiga No 19, Jalan BPU 2, Bandar Puchong Utama, 47100 Puchong, Selangor GPS: 2.993324, 101.620637 Tel: 016-288 2829 / 019–647 7941
Back in Penang where I grew up as a kid, my family was pretty fond of fish heads. Our ingredient of choice is almost always a big garoupa head, and mom always prepare it with Nyonya style curry. This was actually the only way I knew how to enjoy fish head, that is until I came to KL and heard about steamed fish head.
According to Kerol, this is one of her aunt’s favorite place for dinner. There’s something like one in three chance that they dine at this place whenever she pays the family a visit.
these are the dishes we ordered for the five of us
Mun Kee is located at the appropriately named Jalan Lazat 1 (that’ll be Tasty Street 1 in English). The shop is sort of a food court set up with high roof but no walls, you’re sheltered from the elements somewhat, but there isn’t air conditioning any decoration to speak off. People are here strictly to eat.
The eatery gets pretty busy on weekends, so expect to wait a bit for an empty table. However, food doesn’t take overly long to get ready, so overall wait time is pretty bearable.
steamed fish head in two different styles
As with most steamed fish head in KL, the main ingredient is Soong fish, or Asian Carp. Calling it fish head is a bit of a lie, cos you do get almost half front portion of the fish instead of just the fish head as the Penangites do with our fish head curry.
At Mun Kee, there are 5 different preparation methods – Nyonya Steam, Assam Steam, Minced Ginger Steam, Black Bean Steam and Original Steam.
We’ve heard good things about the Nyonya steam but unfortunately they ran out of that when we were there, so we chose minced ginger steam and original steam for this session (RM 26 per dish).
The fish head were delightful, never over cooked and there wasn’t any trace of those pesky slight muddy taste that river fish tends to carry. The original steam is great for those who likes it a bit spicy with plenty of chili padi sprinkled on top, while the minced ginger steam provides the warmth from ginger that I find myself enjoy as well.
tofu is quite awesome, ‘green dragon’ vegetable, salted egg chicken
At Mun Kee, they aren’t only good with steamed fish.
Salted egg chicken (RM 24) is one of the must-order items. Imagine salted egg squid (like the one at Sing Kee Sungai Way) and KFC rolled into one. It’s a combination that works surprisingly well and we really liked it.
Home made tofu (RM 12) that we ordered came with crab meat and egg based broth that made excellent comfort food, and the green dragon vegetable (RM 12) dish provided good source of vitamin C and fiber just in case your mom asked. All in all a great combination of dishes for dinner.
Kerol, Huey Fang, Johnny, Haze, and KY
With drinks, we spent about RM 23-24 per person for this wonderful, well-balanced dinner. Head over to Happy Garden to check Mun Kee out.
Address: Mun Kee Steam Fish Head New Happy Garden Food Court 43-A Gerai. Jalan Lazat 1 Taman Gembira 58200 Kuala Lumpur GPS: 3.077106, 101.680289 Tel: 016-491 2632 Operation Hours: 11am – 3pm, 5pm – 10pm
Steamed fish head is dish that is foreign to me growing up on Penang. Over on the island, we usually cook fish heads (Groupa preferred, red snapper is ok too) with a heavy dose of curry, and it involves really only the head.
Over at KL, Asian Carp is the preferred fish for a fish head dish, and by fish head it is actually pretty much half a fish. One of the most famous restaurants to serve up this classic dish within Klang Valley is Chong Yen steamed fish head at Chan Sow Lin. My badminton buddies took me there just a couple weeks ago for my first trial at this place.
Chong Yen steamed fish head at Chan Sow Lin
The restaurant is located at the light industrial area at Chan Sow Lin. While the restaurant is usually packed during lunch time, parking isn’t usually a difficult affair.
We had to wait for some 5-10 minutes before securing an empty table, but once ordered, those steaming hot seafood (well, freshwater-food actually) came within 10 minutes. I was quite impressed by their speed.
steamed fish head – original style with garlic & ginger
For the four of us, we ordered three steamed fish head. The classic style with minced ginger and plenty of garlic is the one I like most. The fish was super fresh, with the meat soft, smooth, and absolutely delicious. The version with fermented soya bean were good too, but I think the stronger tasting ingredient somehow masks too much of the fish’s original taste.
There are only two preparation methods here, and each portion is good enough to share between two person. Three for four of us was a bit of an overkill, but I have friends with very healthy appetites, so..
yong tau foo, pork, vege, and steamed fish head with fermented soya bean
Other than steamed fish head, they also serve pretty decent yong tau foo, rather good pork with muay choi, vegetable, roast chicken, and a few other dishes.
If you love steamed fish, this is definitely one place you should check out.
Address: Chong Yen Steamed Fish Head No. 22-24, Jalan 2/89C Off Jalan Chan Sow Lin 4 55200 Kuala Lumpur GPS: 3.11811, 101.71358 Tel: 012-231 8129 Hours: Lunch
Curry fish head is one of the Malaysian delicacies that is pretty tough to find anywhere. While most of us consume this at restaurants, it is actually pretty simple to prepare them yourself, and here’s the recipe that I hope you find useful, especially for those who are reading this outside our beloved country.
I like my curry fish head with plenty of vegetables – and here I put tomato, bell pepper, okra, long bean, and brinjal, but if you can generally substitute them as per your liking.
I also use a pre-packaged curry fish paste to keep it simple, but for those who wants it more “authentic”, you can prepare the curry paste yourself by blending curry powder with shallots & garlic, for example.
Anyway, here goes!
plenty of vegetable makes this a complete meal
1 packet of fish curry paste
1 brinjal – chopped into chunks
a bunch of long beans – chopped to 3 inches in length
10-15 shallots – whole
2 tomatoes – cut into 6 pieces each
1 bell pepper – slices
6 okras – halves
1 fish head (grouper or red snapper preferred) – cut into chunks
1 lemongrass – whole, flattened
1 packet of santan (coconut milk, even better if you have fresh ones)
salt to taste
fry the chili paste and vegetable first before adding fish
heat up the wok and fry the sambal paste till fragrant (1-2 mins)
add brinjal, okra, eggplant, and bell peppers, continue frying for another 2-3 minutes
add fish head and enough water to almost cover everything
bring to boil and then add tomato and lemongrass
add the santan
simmer the whole thing until everything is cooked (around 10 mins)
add salt to taste, and serve while hot!
add tomato, then coconut milk
The result is a huge portion of curry fish head that can feed a small family. Just add rice and it’s a complete meal by itself already. Total cooking time should not be more than half an hour too so there’s plenty of time for you to play with your kittens.