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Malaysian Food Blog, Travel, Diving & More

Monthly Archives / June 2010

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 😀

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

Just got back from a 3 day 2 night trip from Redang last night. It was my 4th diving trip for the year and my first time to Redang since September 2005. Original cast from the previous trip – Terence, Kerol, and Kim were on this trip, but we’ve also added FA, Haze, Joe (who went to Tenggol with us), and of course, Horng who got himself certified with PADI Open Water.

It looks like we’ll be going on more island trips soon, Kerol and Kim both did discovery diving and loved it, and the gang now already has 4 certified divers.

Will blog more about Redang very soon, about the place, the crowd, the food, diving, and more. But in the mean time, here’s a lovely picture of nemo and friends that I shot on the 4th dive of the trip with superb visibility.

Nemo at Pulau Redang
nemo and friends at Redang Island

Sipadan, Tenggol twice, now Redang, where’s next! I’m already missing it.

Thursday night futsal is a regular fixture for the past few years now, other than being immensely fun, it also gives me a somewhat valid answer to the question “why aren’t you fat already?”.

Answering “I play futsal” is so much easier than convincing people I don’t eat huge portion, and blessed with this really vain gene that does accept myself to put on unnecessary weight.

ming tien food court at taman megah
ming tien at taman megah must be one of the largest food courts

Since futsal falls on 10pm, I usually have very early dinner on Thursdays, which makes good excuse to have supper! That was exactly what I did last night.

The venue of choice is usually somewhere nearby, Haze and I went to Ming Tien since there’s a pretty good selection of hawkers foods, they operate pretty much around the clock (23 hrs a day I believe), and I can walk there from home. 😀

cuttlefish with kangkung, waffle, haze and KY
waffle and cuttlefish with kangkung

I ordered cuttlefish with kangkung (RM 8, small), a pretty famous “luxurious hawker dish” from Penang that I never really got to eat as a kid since it was always a tad too expensive. The rojak sauce that came with plenty of peanuts was thick and flavorful, cuttlefish had a good firm texture, and for those who like it spicy, you can ask for more sambal too.

The same stall sells boiled cockles too. Kim and I shared a plate a few days ago and it too was pretty good. They made it just enough to leave the cockles pretty bloody. Tastes good, but not for the faint hearted.

The cheese and lemon sauce waffles (RM 4) Haze got turned out to be quite nice too. I prefer it over the A&W version.

Ming Tien used to be a place I only go when I absolutely had to. The quality of food was so bad back then I sometimes rather have indomie goreng at mamak stalls instead. However, things took a change for the better over the years, I guess the bad ones were weeded out by natural selection.

Address:
Ming Tien Hawker Center
Jalan SS24/8, Taman Megah,
Petaling Jaya, Selangor

GPS: 3.114334, 101.611658

Ahhhh, asam laksa, the other Penang hawker food that makes up the big three must try dishes whenever one visits the pearl of orient. The other two, of course, are char kueh teow, and prawn mee.

wholesome penang laksa
the glorious Penang laksa, look at the amount of fish!

While you can find pretty decent char kueh teow (aunty gemuk at Kelana Jaya, Seng Lee at Damansara Height), and behind and prawn mee (such as this one at Yon Lee, TTDI) in Klang Valley, getting a good bowl of asam laksa outside Penang proved to be much tougher.

The best asam laksa I’ve found this side of Peninsular Malaysia  would be the stall at Alisan, SS4. While it ‘s pretty good and positively edible, there’s still quite a big departure in quality when you compare that to those from Penang.

penang laksa stall by jalan gottlieb
Laksa at Taman Emas kopitiam, opposite Peng Hwa high school

While the Ayer Itam stall often gets the nod as one of the best Penang laksa, many locals from this part of the island usually prefer this stall within Taman Emas kopitiam at Jalan Gottlieb.

This is the same stall that used to operate at the intersection between Jalan Bagan Jermal and Jalan Tanjung Tokong, some half a kilometers away. I remember mom used to tapao from there over 20 years ago.

popiah, chee cheong fun, chai kueh, and laksa
popiah, chee cheong fun, chai kueh, and laksa

The laksa, selling at RM 2.80, comes with fresh cucumber, lemongrass, vegetable, torch ginger flower, pineapple, sweet prawn paste, chili, and that asam based broth thicken with porch and shredded ikan kembong meat. Heaven!

The stall also sells deep fried pohpiah that goes very well with the broth, and the chai kueh is not bad either.

KY and Shiang
KY and Shiang

For those who might not fancy laksa as much, there’s curry mee and char kueh teow stalls too. We ended up tapao-ing 10 packets of laksa to KL. Note the number of pre-packed noodle they’ve prepared in the photo above to give you an indication of how popular this place is.

The shop operates from late breakfast to afternoon. Try it!

map of taman emas kopitiam at jalan gottlieb

Address:
Taman Emas kopitiam
Jalan Gottlieb
10350 Georgetown, Penang

GPS: 5.433316,100.302864

Mamak style rojak (also known as passember in the northern region) makes one of the best afternoon snacks.

For one, parking isn’t usually a problem since they are located at random street corners. Secondly, you get the great Malaysian al fresco ambiance. Finally, they also usually serve chendol, the perfect remedy for crazy hot max afternoons.

Rojak Mamak at Kelana Jaya
rojak mamak at Kelana Jaya

I’ve drove past this particular mamak rojak stall countless times, but this was actually the first time I’ve ever tried it. We ended up there when the rojak craving hits, and since it was already over 5pm, I know that my regular rojak stall at Taman Bahagia would be closed by then.

Taman megah mamak rojak, now this is my kinda food truck that's been around for decades. #kyeats #halal #rojak #passembur

A post shared by KY (@kyspeaks) on

Like other similar operations, this stall sells rojak, rojak mee, mee rebus, chendol, and also ABC. We ordered a plate of rojak each and I added a bowl of chendol too.

Rojak and Chendol
mamak rojak, chendol

The rojak came with the typical ingredients of sengkuang mengkuang, tofu, prawn fritters, and those other things with probably tamil names I never really knew. The sauce was flavorful, sweet, and not overly spicy (tho I’m sure you can ask for more chili). I actually like it better than the Taman Bahagia version, if only this one also comes cuttle fish…

Haze and KY
Haze and KY

As for the chendol, other than the typical green thingy and red beans, they added “leong fun” and a bit of sweet corn into the mix. I find it pretty interesting. Would prefer if they put more shaved ice instead though, the mamak version of chendol is always a bit too watery for me, was still pretty good nonetheless.

The 2 plates of rojak and chendol came up to less than RM 10, pretty decent deal for an afternoon quickie.

map of kelana jaya mamak rojak

Address:
Rojak Mamak
Jalan SS 24/1
Kelana Jaya, Selangor

GPS: 3.113097, 101.607501