Last week I went back up to Penang for a bit and managed to meet up with Evon for a late afternoon “tea time” noms. The lady suggested prawn mee at Lebuh Presgrave, I am always happy to get some prawn mee in the system, so why not?
Lebuh Presgrave is also known as “3rd road” in Hokkien or Mandarin, as it is the 3rd road from Jalan Magazine, which was considered as the “first road”. This in fact goes down all the way to 7th road, but that sort of details aren’t exactly important.
The Prawn Mee (known as Hokkien mee in Penang), is locally referred to as the 888 Hokkien Mee. Essentially a house converted coffee shop with the anchor tenant being this big hokkien mee & loh mee stall.
Operation starts at 4:30 pm, and there’s usually quite a healthy line in front of the stall. It goes like this – line up, order, get your food, pay, eat.
Like many food stalls in Penang, in addition to standard bowl of prawn mee or loh mee, there’s also a list of different optional ingredients you can add. We had ours with intestine and roast pork, in addition to the usual sliced pork, prawns, noodle, egg, bean sprout, fried shallots, and even lard.
I was going to have pork ribs as well, but at that time it wasn’t ready yet (see video), bummer. There’s also apparently pork skin from time to time.
The verdict? Well, it isn’t famous and popular for nothing. The soup was on point (I had mixed broth), and everything was “just right”. Those bits of lard certainly also contribute to the overall taste. It was that wholesome feeling that I remember from childhood, would definitely go back again.
A couple weeks ago I found myself at the South of KL for some work related assignment near lunch time. Naturally, after our appointment, we went to the most famous nari briyani restaurant for some well deserved lunch.
Our destination was none other than Kafe Beriani Gam Putrajaya.
Getting there can be a bit tricky as the restaurant is located right beside SKVE, you can only get onto SKVE from the restaurant but not the other way around. However, Waze/Google Map is your friend, so do use the link below for your convenience.
It is a bit of a road side set up with upgraded roof and rather proper table and chairs, there’s also some ceiling fans, though one should still prepare to sweat it out a bit on a hot afternoon.
Ordering is simple, get your nasi beriyani, then pick the type of meat you want to go with. There’s normal ayam (chicken), ayam kampung (village chicken), daging (beef), kambing (lamb), and our favorite – kambing kuzi – all of us ended up ordering the same, with an additional ayam kampung as center plate.
The briyani rice itself were perfectly cooked, fragrant and delicious enough you can have this even just with some sauce. As for the kambing kuzi, we love the tenderness and the rather heavy tasting marinate that makes it a little sweetish, compliments the rice perfectly. The accompanying sambal was on point too.
Expect to pay some RM 20 or more per pax, but if you love briyani rice, this is definitely worth checking out.
Yam Rice is something of a specialty that’s often forgotten when it comes to Penang food, for one, it is not exactly a famous dish from the island, but rather on the mainland. Additionally, it is also a little bit difficult to call it a “hawker food” as this is more of a full blown meal best had for lunch or even dinner.
But alas, for those who loves pork, yam, or both, this is definitely a must-try if you find yourself by the lesser known half sister of Penang island – mainland Penang.
When it comes to yam rice, the go to place is Chai Leng Park at Seberang Jaya, a stone’s throw away from the infamous Penang Megamall, once the biggest shopping complex in Penang, and I believe the first to have had an ice skating rink in Northern area.
In fact, there is more than one shop offering yam rice in Chai Leng Park, each serving its own customer base. My mom’s favorite is the one at Chip Heng kopitiam, so that’s where we went.
My last visit here was over 20 years ago with my late dad, a quick lunch detoured from buying tractor parts at a shop around the area. There’s definitely a sense of nostalgia for me. Things at Sebarang Jaya does seem to change little after all these years.
For mom and I (later joined by an uncle), we ordered a big bowl of mixed pork soup, a side of braised tofu and egg, and a tiny bowl of braised trotter for lunch. These were of course, accompanied by their famous yam rice.
The soup has a sourish undertone brought on by those salted vegetable, with generous amount of perfectly cooked pork parts – including kidney, pork slices, pork ball, liver, and even coagulated blood. A dash of chopped cilantro completes the dish, and it’s as wholesome and would only be made better with a rainy, cold weather.
Those braised dishes did not disappoint either, I thought the trotter could be just a tad more tender but perhaps I was too used to the ways Klang bak kut teh is prepared.
Over all it was definitely a lovely lunch, 3 pax, and just a tad under RM 30.00.
P/S: there’s a BM Yam Rice at Publika that’s pretty decent too.
For Chinese New Year of 2020, we decided to head to Siem Reap for a short family getaway, while we may not necessarily enjoyed the local food at the Old Market that much, one thing that did not disappoint was the visit to Angkor Wat.
For those who prefer moving pictures and some of my mumbling, the three minute video below shows our experience at Angkor Wat, though for the other four temples I’ve only taken photos in the interest of not having it overly long winded (that and who’s got time to edit all those clips!).
We pre-booked our tour earlier via many of the online website and asked for a tuktuk driver for a day. The package includes visit to five different temples and lasts some 6-7 hours (or until you give up due to heat).
As scheduled, our guide picked us up at 8 in the morning.
Our first destination was to the ticket counter building, some 20 minutes away from Siem Reap city center.
Ticket was at a cool USD $37 per pax for a day pass, $2 goes to some education fund apparently. We each had to have our pictures taken and printed on the ticket as their semi high tech way of ensuring tickets are not transferable. Fair enough.
Our tour includes the following temples:
Angkor Wat was obviously the most famous site, with the huge body of water surrounding it, you’ll need to walk through the temporary floating bridge to get to the temple. For those who wants to have those iconic sunrise/sunset photos, you’d have to book a separate type of tour instead, we obviously did not do that.
Bayon temple was our next destination. It was famous for having a lot of stone faces. Thank goodness that they are all smiling, otherwise this could make for an interesting night time visit on a daring mission (though unfortunately you can’t get there at night..)
Next up was Ba Phuon where we also encountered some monkeys, and a lot of really steep steps if you’re adventurous enough to get all the way up to the top. The view was not overly impressive, but a view nonetheless. What was more impressive though was the “sleeping buddha” made of stone blocks at one side of the temple, barely recognizable due to years of erosion.
Our guide then took us to this tourist trap of a lunch place called Banana Tree, where we had our first “amok fish”, a dish I could only described as someone trying to make otak-otak and gives up half way.
Food was again overly sweet, and too pricey for what we got. Didn’t blame the tuktuk driver much.. “cari makan” lor.
Next temple was a proper ruins made famous by Lara Croft & Tomb Raider. In fact, the guide just called it the Tomb Raider temple..
Trees growing out of crumbling stone buildings, do expect line of tourists all wanting to take photos at the same first tree spots. My advise is, walk a little deeper and there’ll be less of a wait.
Our last spot was Bantaey Kdei, and to be perfectly honest, things start to look a little bit like they’re repeating itself. Also, the afternoon heat on a dry season-day starts to take its toll.
To me, one day is just nice for touring Angkor and its temples unless you’re a hardcore history fan. If you do plan to go there, bring an umbrella, plenty of sunscreen, and water to drink.
Since WCE (West Coast Expressway) is now partially opened, the travel time from where I stay in Shah Alam to Kuala Selangor was cut off by quite a bit to only around 45 minutes instead of the usual hour plus, a seafood meal at this part of Selangor is now possible without being a laborious journey.
My last seafood trip to Kuala Selangor was at Restoran Kuang Wah, so I’ve decided to give another outlet a try this time around, and we settled on Jetty Seafood Restaurant, also located at the same general area by the mount of Selangor River.
Ordering here is quite a simple affair, they have a straight forward menu with some photos, but most importantly, they prices of those “market price” seafood are clearly written on the white board by the wall.
For two pax, we ordered a couple steamed local crabs, spiky shellfish, a plate of 4 kingdom vege (long bean, okra, petai, brinjal), deep fried seafood tofu, and salt and pepper mantis prawns.
While the crabs were small-ish in size, they were fresh, having them steamed also kept the natural sweetness intact, the only way to have good quality crab in my opinion.
Those spiky snails were a bit too small, quite a bit of work to eat, would probably skip that next time.
Vege was nice with a strong belacan taste while being only slightly spicy. The seafood tofu was really good, you can taste the bits of seafood within the tofu, I enjoyed it a lot.
I was hoping the mantis prawns came intact instead of shelled, but the dish turned out pretty decent, no complaints there.
Dinner came out to be RM 124.30, with what we ordered, I thought it was a pretty sweet deal. Planning another trip soon!