Malaysian Food Blog, Travel, Diving & More

Monthly Archives / January 2014

Every four years the whole world toss aside their differences to come together and participate in the single biggest sporting event – the FIFA World Cup. Not surprisingly, it is also the most anticipated event for many of us this year.

FIFA World Cup 2014

Side note:
My whole life I’ve had to watch World Cup in the wee hours since it was always held on the other side of the world (this year included), and during the Korea/Japan world cup of 2002, I was actually living in US. Such is my luck with World Cup.

Most of us will be glued to the TV watching the World Cup come June, but if you’re a Maybank VISA Credit Card holder, I have a good news for you.

By spending RM 100 with your Maybank VISA Credit Cards, you stand a chance to win tickets to the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil. Yeap, a trip to watch the World Cup finals, all the way to the other side of the globe!

The contest is pretty simple:

  • Every RM100 spend with Maybank VISA Credit Card will give you a chance to be in the running to win for any of the prizes
  • You can also multiply you entries when you:
  • 5X entries when you use Maybank Manchester United, Petronas or SonyCard VISA Credit Cards
  • 5X entries when you use ANY Maybank VISA Credit Card at Sony Store, Sony Online and Sony Centre
  • 5X entries when you use ANY Maybank VISA Credit Card at PETRONAS stations/Kedai Mesra

The only step you need to confirm your participation is by sending SMS WORLDCUP <space> 12 Digit NRIC no and send to 66628 (Cost of SMS will be borne by Cardmember)

The prizes are:

  • 2X Grand Prize – a trip for 2 to Final in Rio De Janerio
  • 3X First Prize – a trip for 2 to Semi Final in Sao Paulo
  • 300X Bonus Prize – VISA FIFA Merchandise

So regardless if you’re a football fanatic or just a part time soccer enthusiasts, participate and if you win and don’t want to go, I am always available to take over your place. 😀

I’ve been slacking on the updates on my invisalign journey. It’s been a little over a year since the last update, and it wasn’t until a reader emailed me about my progress that I realised it is about time to provide a progress report. So thank you for the email, Pinky Tan.

late november 2012, 3rd set of invisalign
late november 2012, 3rd set of invisalign

Over the course of last year, I’ve been visiting MyDentist pretty regularly to get my new invisalign aligners.

The change of aligners is usually done every two weeks, with the appointment lasts not more than half an hour, so I usually get it done over lunch time. If you’re unable to make the next appointment, extra set of aligners can be requested so that your next appointment is in 4 weeks’ time.

As always, the aligners will feel a bit tight in the first couple days, follow by some 10-12 days of not even realising it is there.

As a bonus, since I have to remove the aligners every time I eat, snacking is almost nonexistence, which probably contributed to me losing a couple KGs.

december 2013, after gum contouring procedure & 26 sets of invisalign
december 2013, after gum contouring procedure & 26 sets of invisalign

At my 26th set, which was about half way through my rather complicated program (some people only need 20+ sets in total), my dentists decided to do a total do-over since my top aligners weren’t engaged perfectly, so a new set of moulds were taken and I’m currently waiting for new aligners. They are perfectionists like that at Mydentist.

One of the more interesting procedures that was done on me was the gum contouring process that addressed my gummy smile problem.

The procedure basically removed a few millimetres of my gum to show more “white vs pink” ratio, resulting in a better smile. While this sounds painful, it was actually pretty mild. The whole process, including anaesthetic (local and general) and the actual surgery itself took a little over an hour, and then I was sent home for rest.

There a bit of pain and discomfort for the next 3 days or so, and the gum was completely healed in 2 week+.

So  ya, I now technically had plastic surgery, and couldn’t be happier with the result!

On my last trip back to Penang, I caught up with my sister for late lunch, and since she is a lot more well versed with Penang food than me (not having stayed on the island the past 20 years), I naturally asked her to suggest a place.

We ended up at Hai Beng kopitiam for some good old fashion Hainan Lor Mee (卤面)

Hai Beng kopitiam at Pulau Tikus, Penang
Hai Beng kopitiam at Pulau Tikus, Penang

Situated at the junction of Jones Road and Burma Road, Hai Beng kopitiam is a typical Chinese run coffee shop that serves breakfast and lunch with a variety of hawker stalls, including the lor mee and a Malay nasi kandar stall which is rather popular (another post on another day).

Parking isn’t too hard to come by, and with plenty of trees around the premise, the restaurant is rather comfortable too.

plenty of extra ingredients for your choosing
plenty of extra ingredients for your choosing

The Lor Mee has been around since the independence of the country, and offers many add ons if you crave for extra porky goodness. This includes lor bak (卤肉), pig’s ear, 3-layer pork, pork knuckle, intestine, and so forth.

wholesome loh mee, we added some pork skin

wholesome loh mee, we added some pork skin

For lunch, we ordered lor mee with pork skin. It comes with the usual ingredients of noodle and meehun, bean sprouts, pork slices, hard boiled eggs, and those thick, flavorful gravy. Splash some home made chili sauce and fresh garlic paste and you have a bowl of awesome hawker delights worthy of instagram, and your stomach.

Unlike most hawker stalls that offers lor mee in conjunction with Hokkien mee (also known as prawn mee), this stall specialized only on lor mee, all for RM 4 (small), and RM 5.50 (big). Of course, you pay a bit more for additional ingredients.

Now, I need to find a good version in KL.

map of hai beng kopitiam, Jalan Burma, Penang

Hainan Lor Mee
Kedai Kopi Hai Beng
Jones Road  & Burma Road, Penang
GPS: 5.42902,100.314096

Paradise Group, originally started in Singapore, has been making inroads to the local Chinese restaurant scene as a worthy competitor to the likes of Dragon-i and Din Tai Fung. Definitely a good thing if you ask me.

Last week, I had the chance to sample their Hakka Poon Choi (盆菜), a limited-time CNY special at Paradise Dynasty, Bangsar Village II. The session was organized by HungryGoWhere Malaysia.

Paradise Dynasty at Bangsar Village 2
Paradise Dynasty at Bangsar Village 2

My previous experience with Paradise group was at Paradise Inn, Sunway Pyramid. While Paradise Inn serves some of the best double boiled soup, classic tea, and desserts along side Chinese dishes, Paradise Dynasty concentrates on northern and southern Chinese cuisine with an innovative touch. There are dishes you find in one but not the other, though there are certainly many that overlaps.

The kitchen is only separated by a few pane of glasses from the public, where you can observe the crafty chefs preparing xiao long bao (小龙包).

modern interpretation of xiao long bao, hot and sour soup
modern interpretation of xiao long bao, hot and sour soup

We started the night with their signature 8-flavor xiao long bao (RM 24++). They come in multitude of colors with each consisting different ingredients in them.

  • original (translucent white)
  • foie gras (orange)
  • black truffle (black)
  • crab roe (light orange)
  • cheese (yellow)
  • ginseng (green)
  • minced garlic (grey)
  • Szechuan (pink)

I tried the black truffle, foie gras, and ginseng variety and found them to be pretty unique and rather well made. While the foie gras/truffle tastes weren’t particularly strong, you can still tell what they are even if eating with your eyes closed. A little gimmicky, yes, but one that works for me.

The hot and soup soup was thick and quite flavorful, though I’d prefer it to be slightly more spicy. I’m glad that this soup that was impossible to find just a few years ago is now quite common in Malaysia, it was one of the dishes I missed from US.

Hakka poon choi, this is what we're here for
Hakka poon choi, this is what we’re here for

Then came the poon choi, (RM 388++ for 4-6 pax, RM 688++ for 8-10 pax) and what a handsome dish it was. The dish is served in a clay pot to retain heat, and we were explained that since the dish comes with thick abalone broth, having a heat source underneath the pot would burn the dish, which isn’t going to be a good thing.

how many ingredients can you spot here? there are 16 in total
how many ingredients can you spot here? there are 16 in total

There were 16 different ingredients in all, including abalone, goose feet, fish maw, sea cucumber, fresh scallop, prawns, dried oysters, mushroom, brocolli, and more.

We really enjoyed the dish, and my only minor complain was that the goose feet could perhaps be made just a bit softer, but I finished it nonetheless, it was positively wholesome.

By the way, they are also available for take-away.

crab meat with egg white, crystal prawn with salted egg, spicy chicken with dried chili
crab meat with egg white, crystal prawn with salted egg, spicy chicken with dried chili

We also tried their crab meat with egg white and yolk, a pretty unique dish that is made from egg white, yolk, and some seafood but without any crab. However, it ends up tasting a bit like crab meat, which is rather interesting. As explained by the PR person, this dish was invented because the empress wanted to have crab but it was not in season, hence the chefs came up with this to avoid a head/neck separation incident. I don’t know how true is this but it does make a good story.

The other two dishes we sampled were crystal prawn with salted egg that was good enough to eat with shells and all, and a spicy chicken with dried chili dish (辣子鸡) that I can’t seem to stop putting in my mouth (only I wish there was beer).

KY & May Ying, with HungryGoWhere users and more
KY & May Ying, with HungryGoWhere users and more

map to Bangsar Village 2

Paradise Dynasty
Lot 2F-17, Level 2
Bangsar Village 2
Bangsar, Kuala Lumpur
GPS: 3.13071, 101.67146
Tel03-2201 7022

Earlier this month, I decided to bring Haze to somewhere quiet and relaxing for a short birthday holiday after a super busy end of 2013.

After a bit of research, I chose picked The Dusun for a night stay, recalling the blogpost kinkybluefairy wrote about the place a couple years ago.

vacation in the rainforest, The Dusun
vacation in the rainforest, The Dusun

Dusun translates to plantation in Malay, and this is precisely what this place was, and still is, a small family run resort situated within a durian and other tropical fruits plantation about an hour away from KL city.

Started in 1984 as a private family retreat, the couple turned it into a nature resort in 2009. It started out with two houses, and since expanded to five unique houses  that fits 2-5 adults each.

our room at the Berembun House, with a bathroom and kitchen
our room at the Berembun House, with a bathroom and kitchen

Each houses come with bathroom, a private kitchen, BBQ set, and are situated apart from each other. We chose Berembun House for the night as it is closest to one of the two infinity pools at the resort, with an expansive view over the Berembun forrest reserve.

lovely infinity swimming pool
lovely infinity swimming pool

While the chalet style room is only big enough to house a queen size bed and a small furniture somewhat resembling a closet, there’s a huge deck and a big outdoor carved bench to laze about.

There isn’t air condition units nor you really need one at this resort. The Dusun is located about 250 meters above sea level, making it a few Celsius below average and rather windy and comfortable at night.

took a well deserved afternoon swim
took a well deserved afternoon swim

The swimming pool too was gorgeous, it isn’t much for swimming laps, but that’s not what we went there for anyway.

After a dipping session while admiring the nature, we also spent some time playing boardgames that’s available with the room. It was a bliss staying away from all that city noise.

dinner was a self-cooked BBQ affair
dinner was a self-cooked BBQ affair

Being a small resort, The Dusun doesn’t have an in-house restaurant, what they provide tho is a private kitchen at every house and a BBQ pit with charcoal. So for dinner, I marinated some chicken chops and bought along a fish and a couple sweet potato for grilling. We also ended up buying some brinjal and sambal at the local grocery store 5 minutes away.

We had a great dinner under the stars that night, it was awesome.

breakfast and a walk around the fruit plantation
breakfast and a walk around the fruit plantation

Fortunately, breakfast is included, and we were served coffee, fresh juice, toast, and scrambled eggs the next morning right at the table on our balcony.

We then spent some time walking about the surrounding area before heading back to the reality of city life.

Other activities provided at the resort includes jungle trekking to a nearby waterfall, bird watching, massage, and even fishing trip. For a longer stay, those distractions will be quite welcomed.

I can get used to holidays like this.

map to The Dusun, Negeri Sembilan

The Dusun
Pantai New Village
Negeri Sembilan
GPS: 2.8018, 102.0151