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Malaysian Food Blog, Travel, Diving & More

Tag / grilled

Stuffed crab is one of those dishes that is so good you wonder why they only have it in the East Coast of Peninsular Malaysia. My best guess is that we don’t have enough very kind and toothless aunties here in KL to separate crab meat from the seafood, that or there was an agreement for that during the formation of Malaya to protect the eastern states’ interests..

After all, aren’t our government known for setting up special agreements and policies to protect interests of certain groups all the time?

Tong Juan restaurant, Kemaman
restaurant Tong Juan at Chukai, Kemaman

The first time I had stuffed crab was only earlier this year at a pretty busy Pak Su seafood restaurant near Kuantan. The experience was rather good and I have been thinking of a repeat for this dish since.

So when the opportunity to have it again arises while on the way back from our previous trip to Redang last weekend, we naturally took it. This time we went to Tong Juan at Kemaman, located at the ideal spot that is just about half way point between KL and Kuala Terengganu.

stuffed crab, this is what we're here for
stuffed crab, this is what we’re here for

14 of us went in and Terence did the ordering, and for the first (and probably the last) time, the dude did not over order.

We had stuffed crab for everyone, grilled tiger prawns, spicy squid, vegetable, fish ball soup, and fried rice. This was for lunch on a Sunday (a working day in Kemaman, feed your parking machine)

grilled prawns, spicy squid
grilled prawns, spicy squid

While those super health conscious might complain that the stuffed crab at Tong Juan is a little too oily, I had no problem with it.  The crabs were good! With plenty of crab meat plus finely chopped onion and who knows what else in it. This is definitely a must-order.

The huge grilled tiger prawns were another awesome dish. They were easily the size of my palm and grilled with a bit of stuffed garlic at the back, a nice variation, delicious.

stuffed crab, fish ball soup, vegetable, fried rice
stuffed crab, fish ball soup, vegetable, fried rice

Fried rice was pretty good as well, but I didn’t think the fish ball worth a repeat, they were pretty life less and uninspiring, if not a tad too salty too. Vegetable’s just to satisfy vitamin C quota and for color matching, nothing to report.

The bill came to about RM 27 or 28 per person including drinks, while not cheap, I think it is still reasonable and definitely worth going there again on my next east-coast trip.

location map to Tong Juan restaurant, Kemaman

Address:
Tong Juan restaurant
K-117 Jalan Sulaiman,
24000 Kemaman, Terengganu
GPS: 4.231314, 103.428383
Tel: 09-859 1346‎

The urban dictionary definition for Bubu refers to “the hottest most beautiful women out there“. The relationship of the word Bubu and Eiling, however, isn’t one that’s defined on the site (though she might disagree).

Eiling, instead, invited us to a food review at Bubu Restaurant at the little quaint Hotel Rae. If the name sounds familiar, it is because the same boss also own Bubu Long Beach Resort at Perhentian island.

Bubu Restaurant at Tengkat Tong Shin
Bubu Restaurant at Tengkat Tong Shin

Bubu is a Spanish restaurant that has a heavy dose of specialization on grilled food. While Eiling emphasized that they also serve the best paella she’s ever tasted, our review concentrate mostly on their grilled stuff instead.

I find it better that way, Spanish food is dangerously falling into what Japanese food has suffered – be associated with only a very small subset of what the cuisine has to offer. With Japanese it was sashimi and sushi, with Spanish food, paella and tapas.

grilled calamari
the excellent grilled calamari

The grilled calamari was my favorite dish from the night. A very simple dish of squid grilled to perfection and served with green chili paste with unique blend of spiciness a slightly salty/sour lime taste, the whole concoction rests on a bed of salad. The dish was as visually appealing as it was tasty.

crab cake, wine, bruschetta mushroom with cheese
crab cake, wine, bruschetta mushroom with cheese

Our dinner actually got started with some crab cake and some red wine. While the crab cake’s decent, you should save your stomach and look into other dishes Bubu has to offer.

Bruschetta mushroom with cheese, however, did serve as a delicious stomach liner before heading to the grilled seafoods. Anything with cheese and mushroom can’t go wrong.

grilled tiger prawn, grilled marlin skewer, Chateaubriand steak
grilled tiger prawn, grilled marlin skewer, Chateaubriand steak

Other than the grilled calamari mentioned above, we had grilled tiger prawn and marlin skewer. The tiger prawns were huge, and we could smell it before the dish was served. Succulent and sweet, I would have it again in a heart beat.

The marlin skewer is a new dish to me. I found it to be quite meaty, and while still juicy thanks to the cubes of vegetable and garnish sitting between the fish, you’ll need to have it with some sauce to bring out the otherwise pretty bland taste.

Then we had the Chateaubriand steak, a thick cut of really juicy tenderloin prepared medium rare. This is a dish usually shared by a couple, and I would be happier if it was arranged that way, for it was so good I wish I had more to myself.

moist brownie with ice cream, Crepe Suzette
moist brownie with ice cream, Crepe Suzette

While almost all girls believe that they always deserve desserts, guys are usually less of a fan. That said, I do enjoy occasional sweet pastry or two after meal.

The moist brownie with ice cream was decent, though I personally would always prefer molten chocolate cake instead, and the Crepe Suzette too wasn’t bad. But really, I don’t think desserts are what Bubu is all about.

ciki, haze & KY, eiling, yiling & bf, Joe
ciki, haze & KY, eiling, yiling & bf, Joe

We did have a very good time at Bubu, except for desserts, food were excellent. The allure of Tengkat Tong Shin adds to the overall experience, and of course, we had great company.

So Eiling, when are we having the paella you promised? :P

map to Bubu Restaurant

Address:
Bubu Restaurant
Hotel Rae
No. 42 A, Tengkat Tong Shin,
50200, Kuala Lumpur
GPS: 3.146515, 101.707950
Tel: 03- 2142 2988

Bubu Rooftop Restolounge

Last week I went to Japan… or a restaurant in Subang that felt like it belongs somewhere in a Tokyo suburb.

Together with Haze, Cheesie, and Taka, we went to Sumi Ka at SS 15, a yakitori place swore by Taka, who is actually a Japanese and not some Malaysia with a foreign name (such as Gareth, for example).

Sumi Ka Yakiniku Japanese Restaurant
Sumi Ka Yakitori, with more Japanese than Malaysian customers

It was a Wednesday evening, so we did not bother to call up for a reservation. After all, how many people could possibly go to a restaurant that’s located on 1st floor in the middle of SS 15 on a weekday?

Big mistake, the place was packed, and all but a couple tables were occupied by Japanese. The place is filled with smokes not only from the grill but from the tobacco loving people, it had the smell of a proper Japanese restaurant, the cacophony of chatters in Japanese completes the foreign ambiance. I loved it.

We waited at the stairs for a good 20 minutes before getting a table by the corner. It was the correct decision despite the look of protest in cheesie’s eyes.

quail egg, chicken cartilage, gizzard, chicken butt
uzura tamago (quail eggs), sunazuri (gizzard),
nankotu (cartilage), bonhiri (chicken butt)

Since the language on the menu wasn’t very agreeable with me, I left the task of ordering to the pro. Taka got  us 7 different types of yakitori, 3 rice bowls, potato salad, and the customary cabbage salad too.

The yakitori were insanely good. We started out with uzura tamago (quail eggs, RM 3 each) and some sunazuri (chicken gizzard, RM 6). They were really good, but not exactly the type of ingredients that are difficult to grill well.

Then came nankotu (chicken cartilage, RM 4), which is actually the piece of “soft bone” from the center of chicken breast. The texture was superb, slightly crunchy and mixed perfectly with the little bit of meat on it.

Then there’s the bonhiri (chicken butt/bisho’s nose RM 3) that was just out of this world. There wasn’t any gross splashing of liquid fat in your mouth, it was just a mixture of fat, salt, skin, and meat that came together like an awesome symphony. You gotta try this one even if you aren’t particularly a big bishop nose’s fan.

chicken skin, grilled lamb, gyutan (ox tongue)
kawa (chicken skin), lamb yakitori, gyutan (ox tongue)

Kawa (chicken skin, RM 3) was up next, again I failed to understand how massive amount of salt on grilled chicken skin could taste so good, but it was exactly the case. Baffling. I need more!

We also had beef and mutton yakitori (RM 4) that Haze described as the most awesome yakitori she has ever tasted. The gyutan (ox tongue, RM 6) was also one of my favorites. Just the right texture and that ox tongue flavor that carries the taste not particularly related with french kissing a cow.

potato salad, rice bowls
potato salad, oyakodon (chicken & egg), yakitori don, tea rice thingy

Other than the yakitori, we had some yummy potato salad (RM 12) and a few rice bowls to help fill up the stomach. These tasted rather good too, authentic and true to the taste.

I learned that the chicken and egg rice bowl is called oyakodon (RM 14), which directly translate to “parents and children”. Chicken and egg, whole family murdered, just for our consumption, ahh, I love being a human.

Yakitori don (RM 14) proved slightly redundant, it was good but I think on hindsight we should have tried something else. The tea rice bowl thingy that Cheesie ordered was perfect to sorta wash off the greasy taste after all those grilled food though.

cabbage salad, cheesie, taka, KY, haze
Cheesie, Taka, KY, Haze at Sumi Ka Yakitori

The meal was excellent, and I am going to get the list of restaurants to go to from Taka. This dudes really has good taste. By the way, don’t go to this restaurant, it is already packed as is, and Cheesie won’t be happy if she has to wait again, she’ll blame me. FML

You can instead go to Yakiniku at Cheras which is quite a lot cheaper to get your fix, they serve pork there. Go there instead, the food tastes decent, don’t go to Sumi Ka, leave the empty seats for me instead :D

sumi ka yakitori map

Address:
Sumi-Ka Restaurant
No. 19, Jalan SS 15/4
47500 Subang Jaya, Selangor

GPS: 3.075327, 101.588677
Tel: 03-5632 9312/016-224 9312

I first read about this Thai Fish Farm Restaurant from the post on Kim’s blog. It is a place hidden in the jungle of Hulu Langat, situated at the other end of Klang Valley from where we stay (if you can still consider Hulu Langat to be within Klang Valley), and less than a couple kilometers away from the famous “look-out point”.


grilled crabs, fresh vegetable, Thai Fish Farm Restaurant

It took us close to an hour’s drive to get to Hulu Langat from northern part of PJ on New Year’s day, partly due to the holiday’s heavy traffic, and partly the annoying rain.

It is advisable to go there with a car that has at least decent ground clearance as the last kilometer or so (from the turning off Jalan Hulu Langat KM 4) consist of unpaved road within the jungle.

It felt like we were smuggling contrabands in golden triangle than going for dinner, it was as remote as it was dodgy. Once we reached there, however, there were dozens of cars parked at the clearing and the place was full of people we had to wait over 20 minutes to secure a table.


Thai steamed siakap, vegetable, snail meat, omelete

For the 10 of us, we ordered seven crabs (we wanted more but they ran out!), two types of fish, squid, snails, vegetables, lamb, and vegetable. We ordered some rice to go with all these, and coconut drinks as well as some toddy with Guinness to complete the illusion of being on vacation since we were sitting on stilts by a body of water anyway.

The steamed siakap (barramundi) was delicious, the chili padi and garlic a Thai signature. Vegetable was super fresh, and the omelet, well were just omelet.

The snail meat though, was quite special. Fried in (most probably) curry paste/powder with lime leaf and long bean, it was chewy and flavorful. Tasted like a slightly harder version of escargot but with stronger taste, I liked it a lot.


grilled crab, squid with salted egg, salt grilled fish, grilled lamb

Dinner at Thai Fish Farm is not complete without some grilled crab. Like at Hing Ket in Kampung Jawa, the crab is grilled without any additional seasoning to preserve the original taste of the crustacean. They were not overly grilled and still rather juicy, was quite good to be honest.

The grilled lamb was alright, but I prefer the kampung jawa version. Squid with salted egg though, was a bit of a disappointment. Instead of having the squid fried with salted egg, the “salted egg sauce” was poured on separately, it was a bit weird and slimy, not something I’d order again.

The salt grilled fish is something that I have seen when I was in Thailand but never had the chance to give it a try. The fish, Tilapia in this case, is simply applied with generous amount of salt and grilled. While the fish meat, being Tilapia, was still quite tasteless, and this is where the salted fish skin comes in. Apply a little bit of fish skin and it goes so well with the meat, a rather interesting combination, no soya sauce needed.


kerol, FA, Kim, Gareth, Horng, Ruby, Suan, Eric, KY, Jac, and Terence (hidden)

The bill came up to slightly less than RM 40 per person including coconut juice for everyone (around RM 350+ in total if I’m not mistaken). A very satisfying dinner at exotic location at a decent price, and most importantly, with the company you want to be with. That, was a good new year dinner.

Address:
Restaurant Thai Fish Farm
Km 4, Jalan Ampang Hulu Langat,
68000 Ampang, Selangor

GPS: 3.130077, 101.803586
Tel: 017-251 5235, 019-260 6493

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