Sunday, October 21, 2007

Quickie: Durian desserts @ Yik Kee Restaurant

Now... you don't really have to love durian. I am one of those that are indifferent to durian. Still, I enjoyed the desserts very much. In fact, I think I have overdosed on this indulgence during my stay in Genting.

Cantonese-English Translation
Yik - benefit
Kee - record or story

Location: Gohtong Jaya, Pahang
Rating: Very good

For durian lover, the "bomb" will be their favourite. The skin is fragrant and slightly crispy with a soft hint of spice. Despite the fragrant skin, the inner filling carried the pungent aroma of durian. It is not too sweet or soft. You can savor substance in them.
The next famous dessert is the durian tart. It looks like the egg tart with crusty skin. The filling has less substance and more creamy. The tart is less pungent compared to da bomb. Fair.. Again it is not too sweet.For those of you that find Genting becoming less and less cool, the durian ice-cream may help to soothe the heat. This has least durian aroma and of course even much more creamier.The best part is that the owner is wise enough to use local durian that offers more fragrance and fuller taste. As much as I don't fancy durian, I find the desserts interesting. Definitely something to try if you are in Gohtong Jaya.

The Buns Strabe @ Awana Genting

We reached Gohtong Jaya late in the evening. It was raining, so we know that the skyway will be closed. It was too early for dinner and too late for lunch, so we decided to have something less heavy. The receptionist suggested Buns Strabe.

German-English Translation
Buns - buns
Strabe - street

Location: Awana Genting Resort, Gohtong Jaya, Pahang
Rating: Below average

The setting was actually quite pleasing to the eye. It is just a small joint at the corner of Awana Resort's main entrance.
The only thing German are the beer and bratwurst sausage. Since we are not in the mood for a beer, so we decided to have the teh tarik (milk+tea) to go with the sausage. The tea was good. Fragrant and not too sweet. It glides smoothly throughout. Just nice!
Unfortunately, that's the only thing good we had.
We ordered orange cheese cake. The cake looked like it has spent quite some time in the fridge. The taste is just average. Not creamy or fragrant enough. Just average.
When the sausage came, it was obvious that it is not Bratwurst. Simply a hot dog. Worst, the staff do not even know the difference and insist that it is Bratwurst Sausage. Bad management!
Moreover, the food simply taste and feel like bar food. Sigh...
I truly believe that Awana needs to improve. I can't even rate the resort as 4 star. The entire experience is just bad. Too bad..

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Bak Kut Teh @ Restoran T.T.K

Klang Bak Kut Teh?? Nope. I don't think anyone can fight this. TTK Restaurant's signature dish is double boiled bak kut teh with additional herbs. Unless you say Klang's dry bak kut teh, otherwise TTK's soupy bak kut teh is the best so far.

If you do recall in my previous post Teluk Pulai Bak Kut Teh, there are 2 versions of bak kut teh. The Hokkiens and the Teochews. This is definitely a Hokkien bak kut teh. The soup base is darker and they also offered yam rice. Simply superb!

Location : Jalan Pandan 8, Pandan Jaya, Kuala Lumpur
Rating : Best

Eating bak kut teh, I like either rice mixed with fried shallots or white rice, so that the rice can compliment the soup. But I can't resist the yam rice here. It is rich with yam and hay bee (Hokkien for dried prawns). One bowl is just not enough.Like I said before, the beauty here is that the owner is generous in the ingredients. You'll love the sensation of soft rice coupled with softer yam combined with the rich aroma of hay bee and yam.Ah.. Let's go on to the bak kut teh itself. The shop actually offers the normal direct-boiled soup or the double boiled soup. I suggest you choose the double boiled soup. It may be slightly more expensive than the normal boiled soup, but you will not regret it. The soup is so thick and sweet with strong herbal aroma. The meat is soft and fragrant. I couldn't stop scooping up spoonful after spoonful of soup. You can be assured of the ingredients used are of quality. Just look at the thickness mushroom. Yummy!Then we have the usual yau char kwai (crullers) and tau fu pok (fried bean curd) to complete the meal. Oopss... No vege?? Hehe... They do offer vege, just the carnivorous us didn't order. Heh heh..

Friday, October 19, 2007

Restoran Lin Yuan Steamboat Kitchen

Coming back from Raya holidays, we find quite a number of shops were still closed from operation. It is during this time that it came to my mind, we had earlier wanted to visit this shop, but never really got to go. Moreover, it was quite a chilly evening after a heavy rain. Ah... a hot steamy steamboat will help to warm us up.
Steamboat or hot pot were said to originate from Mongolia, while some said it was widely spread during the Tang Dynasty of China. Whatever you call it, it is simply dipping raw food into a pot of boiling soup and consume when the food is cooked. Nowadays, there are extremely wide varieties of steamboat. We have soup base ranging from clear soup, tom yum (thai spicy soup), ma la (szechuan numbing hot soup), curry, satay sauce (peanut sauce), porridge, to pumpkin broth. And the list goes on and on.. Some may say unhygienic (coz everyone dip their chopsticks into the same pot), some say it is healthy or unhealthy. Steamboat remained a popular choice as you can see from the photo below.
Location : Jalan Peel, between Pudu and Cheras, Kuala Lumpur
Rating : Good service, Above average food

In Malaysia, many feels that dipping sauce is the most important factor when considering a steamboat success. I suppose this shop didn't let its patrons down. The sauce is fragrant with belacan (shrimp paste), chilli padi and sourish lime. We requested for a double pot, so that we could try out both the clear soup and the tom yum. The clear soup was normal. The tom yum is from the maggi cube, so there is really nothing much to shout about here.The raw provisions were fresh. They were quite standard with fresh prawns, fish paste, fish wanton, sui kow (pork dumpling), fishballs, foo chok (beancurd skins), tofu and veges.Probably what's worth mentioning is that the vege portion is slightly more. There are also 2 types of vege instead of the standard 1 type. the tofu is also very soft and smooth.One of the main attraction to us is the availability of thinly cut fresh meats. We took sliced beef. As you can see it is very thinly sliced, about 1mm width. This is best eaten by dipping it quickly into the hot pot and pick it out straight after the colour has changed. Mixed it with the chili sauce and pop the whole thing in. Voila! Love the freshness of meat and aroma of soup+sauce.
Right.. This is not the way to eat steamboat (throwing everything into the pot at 1 go). But we were just hungry animals, can't wait for the food to cook 1 by 1. But seriously, the best way to eat steamboat is to dip whatever you want to eat, one after another. The purpose is to enjoy the food when it is just cooked and still piping hot. That's why hungry people can't make a good taster.Lastly, the noodles and eggs are to fill in any remaining space in your stomach. Like I said before, noodles should come last so that it won't spoil the soup or your appetite. And if you like half cooked eggs, let me teach you how to cook it using hot pot. (1) lower the heat to simmering level, (2) crack open the egg and pour the content into the pot without breaking the yolk, (3) wait for 1-2 minutes without stirring the egg, & (4) use the ladle provided to scoop out the egg slowly. The egg white will be cooked and the yolk partly cooked so be careful not to spill it. Just add a pinch of pepper and a drop of soy sauce to enjoy the soup flavoured egg. You'll love it!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Restoran Jai Hind

Having shared with you my experience of South Indian food from the previous blog, I now share with you my experiance of North Indian food, also somewhere in Masjid Jamek area. I reckon it's not surprising as this is Little India of Kuala Lumpur.
The chef is preparing one of the specialty - chappathi.

Among the many choices of accompaniments (curries, veges, meats, etc)

Location: Jalan Melayu, near Masjid Jamek, Kuala Lumpur
Rating: Good

The chapatthi here is softer and more chewy. Chapatthi wise, this place is better then Sangeetha.
Another famous choice of rothi (bread) is the "naan". I love the texture of crunchy at the outside and soft+chewy in the inside. The rothi is very fragrant. Best eaten when warm. Yummy!
Best of all, you have the freedom to choose the type of accompaniments that you like. You can have simple chutney with dhal and green peas sauce.
Or even healthier choice of pickled vege (though the combination is a bit odd :P)
By the look of it, you would know this is my choice of accompaniments. It goes to show how hungry I am. The chicken meat is very tender and fragrant with spices. The tofu is sweet and tasty. Mixing the raitha (yogurt with pickled vege) with rothi (breads be it chapatthi or naan) is good. Find peace with peas.. hahaha.... Can't explain why, everytime I am there, this peas dish tend to induce me to take it.Noted many people like to take this vege too. I wouldn't say it is something special, but I guess it is a healthier choice.And the most famous among my friends is this - "Chicken Parattal". Again the meat is very tender and the spices used is just right, not too overpowering.Haha... And mu usual lassi. This time it is mango lassi. Love the thick and creamy lassi.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Sangeetha Vegetarian Restaurant

I realised I have not put up much about Indian food. And dare I talk about everythingasian. Sorry... My bad. Deepavali is coming, so I guess it is quite the right time to share some makan (Malay for eating) place with you.

This shop serves mostly Southern Indian food with some extension on Punjabi (Northen Indian)food. I find it interesting that the way the restaurant develop its menu is very much affected by the ethnic composition. You see, majority of Malaysian Indians are Tamils, Malayalese from South India, Ceylonese from Sri Lanka and the minorities include Punjabis, Gujeratis, Bengalis, Sindhis and etc mostly from North India.

Location: Lebuh Ampang, near Masjid Jamek, Kuala Lumpur
Review: Very good

I've been to few Indian restaurants that have good ambiance (eg Madras, Annalakshmi, etc). This shop is another that offers you comfortable eating environment.

I don't really know where to start. How about drinks first. We ordered tea and pineapple lassi (yogurt drink). I supposed the tea is a nice complement to a hearty meal. I chose lassi because I believe lassi drinks served from Indian restaurants are more natural than the usually chemically processed yogurt drinks from the supermarkets.
I was rather hungry, so I ordered Sangeetha Special Thali (meals are generally called Thali in Indian language) that comes with a starter. We had difficulty identifying the ingredients of this soup. All I can say is that it is a vegetable soup garnished with 3 toasted bread. Not a very strong soup, but nice enough, especially with the bread.
Then it came... I didn't know my selection came with 1 bowl of rice and 1 piece of chappathi. The main dishes were accompanied by 10 other wet accompaniments (kuruma, kootu, potato masala, rassam, veges, dhal, sweets, etc) and 2 dry snacks (poppadum and dried salty chili).
I love the rice. It came hot and soft. Mixing it with all the gravies just enhances the impression. Love the overall mix.
Another friend ordered a Punjabi Thali that came with Naan, Pulao Rice and Pappad. The main dishes are also accompanied by Punjabi accompaniments like Raitha, Palak, Dhal and etc. The rice is more fragrant than briyani rice. Maybe because the rice mix in a lot of veges that increases the aroma and reduces the heaviness (I know this sounds stupid, but I can't recall the right word to encapsulate the effect). The drawback is that the naan was not hot, but it still has that chewiness texture.
The food looks so appetising, but I do not think I will be able to finish the whole set by myself. The menu actually requested that we do not share the set. What a waste.
My other friends ordered the Chennai Thali. This basically means South Indian/Tamil meals, as Chennai is a capital of the Indian State (formerly known as Madras). Anyway, the Chennai Thali comes with a choice of either chappathi made from atta flour (whole grain durum wheat) or white rice. The remaining accompaniments are quite similar with the Sangeetha Thali ( I have a feeling I have been duped to pay extra RM3 for Sangeethe Special Thali, heh heh).
Another friend ordered something more different. This is called onion rava dosai or masala or something. argh... the names are confusing me now. All I can say is that the dish looks appetising enough to induce me to come again an try it.
After all the hearty meals, just down a glass of sky juice and you can feel the bread and rice expanding. Extremely filling.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Quickie : Winter Warmers @ The Curve

Ya.. I know. Not being a mainstream follower, I actually put this up. But I had a really good time last weekend. We were walking around aimlessly waiting for a brother, and bumped to this place. I thought this is a real good alternative to coffees. Although the place was crowded, the ambiance was very much compensated by the live band that sings beautiful oldies.We ordered a set for 2 that includes some snacks and tea for 2. We upgraded the tea to a pot of Lemon Verbena and another pot of mixed floral tea called Blue Moon or something (mixture of rosebuds, marigold, lavender, blue mallow). The snacks came first. There were scones, cakes, sandwiches, cookies and fruits. I thought it was quite pleasant. The Lemon Verbena is said to help ease digestion. I thought the strong lemon fragrance was quite refreshing. Girls may not like this as much (as proven by my sister).I do like the look of the leaves as they are quite huge. Normally the larger the leaves, the more expensive are the tea leaves. But this applies to Chinese Tea. Am not sure if it is the same for English Tea.The other tea is more of a lady's tea. Strong floral fragrant, especially lavender.It offers a strong aroma when you sip in the tea. I do not think it is so suitable to use transparent tea pot for this tea, as the floral mixture looked quite a mess. Unless they tie the flowers into a bouquet.Lastly we had a Four Red Fruit Freeze Tea. Very refreshing. And of all the teas we have tasted, amazingly this is the one that leaves a strong fruity aftertaste. Overall experience : Pleasant!