Avenue K is greeting year 2018 CNY celebration with the campaign themed ‘Bloom of Grandeur’, which transform the mall into a garden of beautiful blossoms. The ground level is set up with 13 CNY booths offering a variety of festive treats and goodies.
We were invited to the launch for this month-long event that will lasts from 19th Jan to 25th Feb. Other than CNY booths, there’s a series of CNY themed workshops from crafting paper lanterns to designing CNY cards made from AngPows for kids aged 4-12.
Flower Power CNY At Avenue K
From 19/1 to 15/2/18, spend a minimum of RM 388 (max 2 receipts) and you get to join the AK Prosperity Draw with Asia Miles and be one of the five lucky winners to walk away with 60,000 Asia Miles points redeemable for a pair of return tickets to Hong Kong and RM 1000 Shoes Gallery by Parkson gift vouchers. There are also consolation prizes of RM 500 (x5) worth of cash vouchers to be won.
For those spending up to RM 288, there’s the AK Wheel of Prosperity in which you get to spin and win prizes. With RM 188 in a single receipt, you’ll get to redeem exclusive AK Ang Pow packets.
The highlight of the event will be on 23/2/18 where there will be a Lion Dance Money Showering session, yeap, literally having acrobatic lion dance throwing money to shoppers. There’ll also be fire crackers lighting ceremony followed by dotting of the lion’s eyes. Then, there’s ‘Rolling in the wealth’ segment in which there will be rolling of mandarin oranges from the main entrance of the mall, to ensure that prosperity will flow into the building. All in all there’ll be 8 pairs of lion performing on the day. It’ll be quite a sight.
Dolly Dimsum with special CNY menu including yee sang
Of course, since this is a food blog, what I am particularly interested in this period is what some of the restaurants are doing. For this, we were invited to Dolly Dimsum for their special CNY menu.
CNY special menu at Avenue K
For the CNY period, Dolly Dimsum, which is one of the few halal dimsum restaurants in the city, offers a special set of CNY menu priced at RM 62++ per pax (6 pax group dining). The good thing is, the limited time dishes in the menu is also available ala-carte basis, and we got to give them a try.
scallop dumpling, golden kamquat dumpling, lucky 88 noodle, szechuan tofu
The dishes include a yee sang (RM 65) with plum sauce & fresh salmon. Scallop dumpling (RM 17.8) which was one of my favorites, huge chunk of scallops with a base of prawns underneath too.
Then there’s the Lucky “88” Noodle (RM 36.8), fried yee mee with really generous amount of crab meat, prawns, and again those delicious scallops that I absolutely love. Then there’s also the Schezuan Tofu (RM 23.5) that comes with really soft tofu, chicken, and the sauce that has a bit of those szechuan kick, tho personally I probably want it a bit more spicy.
nian gao with fresh coconut, lunar blossom mocktail
For sweeter ending, there’s the Golden Kamquat Dumpling (RM 9.9), basically mung bean paste wrapped in mochi skin. Their version of nian gao, called Happiness Kuih (RM 11.8), is one of the rendition that I actually find not overly sweet while still carrying that unmistakable CNY spirit, I think having fresh coconut coating was the right way to go.
Last weekend when we went to Penang for a bit of a gluttony affair, our first stop was at Tanjung Bungah for a plate of mee goreng. That stall did not open for business, so we turned our heads to the Goreng Pisang stall opposite.
Goreng Pisang stall at Tanjung Bungah, Penang
The place did not bring about any special recollection until my sister commented on instagram about a piece of childhood memory we share.
See, back when we were kids, dad will take us to Teluk Bahang for picnic and “korek siput” session by the beach almost every weekends. This goreng pisang stall then served as sort of a half way point where we would tapao some snacks to be eaten later in the morning. Thinking back, this was almost 30 years ago, and I’m really glad that the same stall still exists and operating well by the original owner’s son, now in a van instead of tricycle.
my favorite fried nian gau
Anyway, my favorite from here is their fried “nian gao” (RM 1.50). It is basically a slice of nian gao (Chinese New Year’s cake) sandwiched in between slices of sweet potato and yam. When eat hot, the nian gao is in a half liquid state, together with the sweetness of yam and potato covered in the crunchy batter that is just ever so slightly salty, it is awesome!
They also serve goreng pisang (fried banana), cempedak, kuih kodok, ubi keladi, ubi kayu, kuih bakul, ubi keledek, and kacang hijau.
One of the best things about sharing my food adventures on this site is that I do get a lot of good recommendations from readers. From the previous post on the char kuih teow at Mei Sin kopitiam, missyblurkit commented that I should try their nian gao (kuih bakul, 炸年糕, or fried gold cake), and another reader, May, mentioned that I should try the Ipoh kai si hor fun.
A couple weeks later, I did just that.
fried nian gao at Restaurant Mei Sin
For those who aren’t familiar with nian gao, also known as Chinese New Year cake, it is prepared from glutinous rice and very generous amount of sugar. It is sweet and sticky, and most consumed during Chinese New Year as the name nian gao 年糕 sounds like 年高, which symbolizes a higher (better) next year.
I love it smacked between layers of sweet potato and yam, and deep fried in batter.
nian gao in between yam and sweet potato, superb with coffee
The end result is a lethal dose of calorie that is crispy on the outside, firm in between, and soft in the middle. This delicacy is best consumed piping hot, it is mainly sweet, and I think goes best with coffee (even better with Vietnamese coffee).
The same stall also offers other deep fried goodness such as sesame seed ball and banana.
I remember having this first time when I was a small kid back in Penang, from the then famous (or perhaps still) stall located right in front of Island Plaza (of course back then there was no Island Plaza) in Tanjung Tokong. This is the first time I had a good one in KL, any other places offering the same thing?
kai si hor fun at Mei Sin kopitiam
The nian gao was of course, the dessert. My main meal for the day was the Ipoh kai si hor fun, and as suggested, I tried the dry version.
It was a pretty simple dish, with hor fun (or kuih teow, if you like) served in some combination of dark/light soya sauce with bean sprout, smooth steamed chicken and plenty of fried garlic on top. It actually tasted good, and I bet would be even better if I ask for thigh next time. (mine came with chicken breast, I don’t like chicken breast)
Address: Restaurant Mei Sin No. 16, Jalan Melati Off Jalan Imbi, Kuala Lumpur GPS: 3.14396, 101.714768