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Malaysian Food Blog, Travel, Diving & More

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For the hardcore Blackberry fans out there, this is definitely a great news. The Blackberry 9900 is finally here, and this is a model that signifies Blackberry’s commitment in the battle of smart phones.

The 9900 is a beautiful device, and most of all, the hardware is now up to date with the best out there, while the previous models have sometimes been criticized as a little dated, there is no such problem at all with the 9900.

Here’s the short specification for this new BB:

  • 1.2 GHz processor
  • 768 MB RAM, 8 GB eMMC
  • up to 32 GB uSD memory card
  • 640 x 480 2.8″ high res display
  • 5MP camera capable of 720p HD video capture
  • Tranmissive TFT LCD (touch screen)
  • QWERTY keyboard (35 keys)
  • 6.3 hours talk time, or 12.8 days standby
  • Blackberry 7 OS

Of course, within every Blackberry is that unbeatable email system and BBM, not to mention a host of other applications you can now get via their app store. I have experience using other platforms but frankly speaking, Blackberry still does email better than anything else, it is fast, simple, and very very efficient.

BBM too is still the best chat client there is, very stingy in data usage, and seemingly never ever had downtimes. It is as reliable as you can get (even better than SMS I think).

The 9900 is now in Malaysia and you can get it with the widest network coverage in the country under Celcom – for as low as RM 1,288.


With Celcom Exec


With Celcom Biz

I used to have the Blackberry 9700 and always thought that it’d be a perfect phone if only the processor was a bit faster, has a better camera, and if it comes with a touch screen. The 9900 seems to answer that call and then some.

Check out www.celcom.com.my/smartphones for more information.

For those of you who are Torch fan, Celcom is also bringing in the Torch 9860 pretty soon. To get the inside scoop, check out www.facebook.com/xpaxfb

There’s always been one and only important mission whenever I am in Penang – to eat as much as possible. So in between late lunch and dinner, I slotted in another meal.

My initial plan was to find the famous mee sotong at Esplanade, but it was already closed by 5 p.m. Feeling a bit adventurous, I parked my car near Jalan Kapitan Keling in the older part of Penang town and got on my foot to search for something to eat.

Update 30/3/2017: it’s reported by a reader that this stall is no longer in operation

kedai makan fok kee, penang
kedai makanan Fok Kee, and old school kopitiam

Quite a few old school kopitiams are already closed by this time of the day since this area is not known to be famous for tourists when it comes to food, then I walked by Fok Kee kopitiam and saw that they have this interesting item by the name of Taiwan Fish Maw noodle, I just had to try it.

I had absolutely no clue how this was going to turn out.

fish maw noodle with pork
pork skin, liver, tofu, and minced meat too

I sat down, order a bowl of fish maw noodle and a glass of nutmeg juice (I don’t know if you can find this outside penang, grated nutmeg and sour plum, I love it!).

The chef went to work, and a few minutes later I was presented by this big bowl of “noodle” that, frankly, looked a bit weird. But thank goodness the taste was actually quite delicious, if not just a bit different from your usual hawker food.

fish maw noodle and nutmeg juice
fish maw noodle and nutmeg juice, yums!

The “noodle” is actually made from fish paste (like those you get at steamboats) shaped into long strands then deep fried. Soup is half way between loh mee and clear soup in terms of consistency, and the served with vegetable, tofu, minced pork, liver, and pork skin.

The combination was actually quite good, and goes especially well with pickled chili padi. I wouldn’t say this is a must-have if you’re heading to Penang for vacation, but it  was definitely worth the RM 3 or RM 3.50 that I had to pay, have your char kueh teow, laksa, and other must-haves first, and if you want to try something different, this wouldn’t be a bad choice.

map to fook kee restaurant, Penang

Address:
Kedai Makan Fok Kee
Jalan Kaptian Keling,
10200 Penang

GPS: 5.417741, 100.338333


Xpax Advert

Out of the 4 people that live in my house, 3 are now using Blackberry, just one more to be convinced. Best thing is, we’re all under Celcom/Xpax packages, the same network that is known for to be most reliable among the big telcos in the country.

On a somewhat related news, Xpax is still running the XXL double bonus promotion until the end of the month, reload and get up to 16% discount!

Sometimes last month I got an invitation for a food review EEST, Westin. As it turned out, the PR lady, Yoke May, had invited Suan to the same session. Which made logistics a simpler matter to sort out since it was to be on a weekday evening.

The decoration of the restaurant was nice and inviting, an open kitchen, a bar seating area, a section of raised floor, comfortable chairs, big round tables, and a beautiful view.

chef Kuan of Westin
the slightly eccentric but very friendly Chef Kuan

Our mission of the day was to try their Hurry Slowly Signature Lunch Box. The eccentric (not in a bad way) and very friendly Chef Kuan explained to us that they have 5 different cuisines – Malaysian, Chinese, Japanese, Vietnam, and Thai. Each type comes with its own type of soup, main dishes packed in a lunch box, and dessert.

We were to sample the three most popular lunch boxes, Malaysian, Chinese, and Japanese. Since there were basically only two of us in the review session.

dimsum at eest, Westin Hotel
refreshing mint drinks, char siu pau, har kao, siu mai (dimsum)

To start, I was served with this refreshing mint drink to open up the appetite. I can’t remember what was the ingredients, but there were definitely mint (like duh!), and some mixture of juice that tasted not exactly unlike umbra (kedondong.)

We also sampled their char siu pau (chicken), siu mai (also with chicken meat), and har kao (prawn dumpling). I gotta say that they actually tasted quite good despite the lack of pork as this is a Muslim friendly restaurant like most other hotels.

westin lunch box - Malaysian cuisine
Eest lunch box – Malaysian cuisine (with wagyu beef cheek rendang!)

Our next serving was the Malaysian cuisine lunch box that comes with soup soto, spring roll, rojak (pasembur in Penang), fried bean sprout with salted fish, and nasi pulut with rendang.

The beef rendang was actually made from wagyu cheek and was officially the best tasting rendang I’ve ever had. In one box you get a taste of typical Malaysian Chinese, Indian, and Malay dishes at the same time, and with good quality ingredients too.

westin lunch box - Japanese cuisine
Japanese cuisine – tempura, miso, salmon, tofu, garlic fried rice

The Japanese lunch box came with a bowl of miso soup with straw mushroom, three huge prawn and a few other types of tempura, garlic fried rice, grilled salmon, and tofu with spinach.

I particularly like the spinach tofu, silky smooth and the spinach really added a different dimension to its taste. A dash of ebiko gave it a bit of texture and the Japanese touch too. Grilled salmon was excellent as well.

westin lunch box - Chinese cuisine
Chinese lunch box, love the black chicken herbal soup

Then there’s the Chinese lunch box, with soup, dim sum, three cup chicken, brocolli, and pickled cucumber and jelly fish. The three cup chicken was very tender and packed a kick with it’s dried chili, I liked it. I think it’ll go well with just a bit of rice.

The dim sum was of good quality too, about as best and you can have it without any lard/pork in it. However, my favorite item from the Chinese lunch box has got to be the soup. The double boiled black chicken herbal soup was very sweet and fragrant, reminded me of the way mom used to cook them.

desserts and glaced gravilax with fish roe
the three different desserts and chef’s special smoked salmon

Just about when we were filled to the brim, came the three types of desserts for the lunch boxes.

Ice kacang for Malaysian cuisine, longan tong sui for Chinese, and the Japanese box came with mochi black sesame ice cream. They were all quite tasty, but I think the sesame ice cream a bit more special.

Chef Kuan was in a very joyous mood and specially created a dish not found on the menu for us – smoked salmon with scrambled eggs, salmon roe, flying fish roe, truffle and beetroot oil. The salmon, with the combination of other ingredients was so savory and tasty I was literally in heaven! Thanks chef!

KY and Suanie at EEST, Westin
KY and Suan at EEST, Westin Hotel

The lunch box is priced at RM 42++, quite a decent value considering the ambiance you get and the quality of food provided. The restaurant is only opened from Wednesday to Friday, 12pm – 2.30pm. The ingredients of the lunch boxes may vary from week to week (probably according to Chef Kuan’s mood), but I trust that they will be equally good.

map to Westin KL

Address:
Eest, Westin Hotel
199 Jalan Bukit Bintang,
Kuala Lumpur

GPS: 3.147758, 101.714591
Tel: 03-2731 8333

Xpax Advert

If you’re on the go and needed to tether up your mobile to surf the net with your laptop, Xpax actually has daily and weekly unlimited data services. Instead of the usual 5 or 10 sen per kilobyte charges that can easily run your prepaid balance dry very quickly, you only need to pay RM 6 per day or RM 20 per week. Very nifty during emergencies.

To activate, simply hit *118# on your mobile if you’re on Xpax. The Nov & Dec double bonus is on going as well.

KartQuest at MAEPS is now both my favorite and most tragic place for karting, more on this later.

I have been on go-kart less than a handful of occasions in my life. My very first experience was probably in Genting, which did not exactly leave me at all impressed. The karts were super slow and you could floor the accelerator all the way without spinning out or worried about hitting anything. That was some ten years ago.

gokart at kartquest
hello my name is KY, I’m a karting hero

About 2-3 years ago, I went karting with Gareth and got to know Yee Hou at ELITE track. It was fun and competitive, but they were a little too strict and so we somehow did not do it again.

Then we discovered KartQuest, and already been there twice this month.

A total of 10 of us went the first time, with Jaclyn not driving cos it was “too hot” and she wasn’t prepared. I, however, brought my own helmet, wore long sleeve, proper shoes and all. We had a blast, and I also ended up with a huge blister on my right palm after 2 x 10 minute session of intense karting (RM 20 per session). We went all out speeding.

karting with the bunch of noobs
dree & gf, eric, damien, terence, horng, KY, galvin, amy

Last Sunday, Terence, Horng, Rachel, Kerol, Jaclyn, Eric, and I went there again. This time around I was a bit less prepared, no long sleeves, no proper shoes, and I was only wearing shorts. It turned out to be huge loads of fun, I think the guys gave us more than 10 mins per session.

Instead of going all out in speed, we were more towards nudging each other and trying to fish tail the person in front of us. There was quite a lot of almost unintentional accidents, and Horng even broke the tyre wall and created new route by himself.

blackberry scratched, nokia n86 shattered screen, but still working
Blackberry Bold the smartly escaped. meet the new N86 shattered edition

I ended up being the villain of the day by banging everyone else on the track, it was just so addictive and so fun!

But karma has a way of biting you back. I made the mistake of keeping the phones in my pocket while on the track.

They fell, and the Nokia N86 (where majority of the photos on this blog were taken with) probably got rolled over a couple times.

Amazingly, both phones still works 100%.

Who wants to go karting again maybe this weekend!?

XPAX Advert:

Some FAQ about the new XPAX plan

Why is it special?
The first prepaid plan to offer BEST RATES to 15pax across all networks. Voice at 12 sen/min and SMS at 1/2 sen (within celcom) and 6 sen to your 15 fav numbers

How about to other general numbers (those not in 15 chosen ones)?
Voice at 38 sen, SMS at 10 sen, and MMS at 35 sen to any network

To activate new Xpax plan if you’re already an Xpax user, just type MIG XPAX and send to 28882.

For more, go to Xpax FAQ page

I remember many many years ago when I was really young, there was this incident of contamination with a batch of lou shu fun that was served in a primary school somewhere in Malaysia that resulted in death of several small children.

After that tragic incident, the popularity of this unique noodle went down (at least in Penang) for quite a number of years. In fact, I don’t think it has fully recovered.

KY and Cheesie at Mama Kitchen restaurant
KY and Cheesie at Mama Kitchen Restaurant, TTDI

I recall we used to be able to order lou shu fun at most kueh teow soup places, these days, you only find them in several specific lou shu fun places. One of the more famous ones is Mama Kitchen Restaurant at TTDI.

Cheesie and I went there the other day for dinner. We ordered the signature clay pot lou shu fun, rice with fried roast pork, and spinach with century egg soup.

lo she fun, vegetable with soup, rice with fried roast pork
clay pot lou shu fun, spinach soup with century egg, fried roast pork with rice

The clay pot lou shu fun (RM 8) came with plenty of minced pork and that signature raw egg on top. You usually mix it all up and let the egg gets cooked in heat still retained from the pot. Very rich and flavorful

What is better than roast pork? Fried roast pork (RM 6) of course! If you haven’t had it yet, give this a try. There are plenty of fried garlic to go with the crunchy roast pork too. It was not bad at all.

The vegetable dish (RM 6) was ordered to give some sense of balance and a dosage of vitamin C (basically for cheesie to show her mom).

map to mama kitchen, TTDI

Despite the popularity of this place, I like the fact that they still manage to keep the price very reasonable. With drinks, the bill came to less than RM 25 for the two of us.

Address:
Mama Kitchen Restaurant
No. 48 Jalan Datuk Sulaiman
TTDI 60000 Kuala Lumpur

GPS: 3.142177, 101.629457
Tel: 03-7729 3030

XPAX advert:

For those of you who uses Xpax prepaid services, including the new Xpax BB users, there’s good news.

xpax_comparison

Xpax now launched the “Every Month Bonus XXL“, you get double bonus in November and December if your usage is more than RM 50 per month. Basically everyone who uses the BB 250 plan qualifies for this. Check out for more details here.