Monday, March 24, 2008

E.T. ? Steam boat?

I love steamboat. Love it so much that even though I have limited time in Penang to take in all the street food, I couldn't resist when my sis suggested steamboat. Anyway, this shop has been in Penang for at least 10 years now. How I know? I used to visit this shop when I was still studying in Penang.

Location : No 4, Rangoon Road (cross between Burma Road and Macalister Road)
Tel 04-2266025
Rating : Above average

Besides the normal steamboat stuff, you can also order some side dishes like lor bak (marinated pork roll). Love lor bak all over Penang for its freshness. KL's kind are miserably lumpy :PYou can also order Tu Kar Shui (sour pork leg). This is more suitable for eating with rice. Ah... If you think they do not offer rice in steamboat restaurant, you are wrong. They offer rice for you to go with steamboat, not necessarily got to be noodles (like KL).And most lovely of all, every single dishes are free for you to pick and choose. It is not like KL where most are fixed with mostly fish paste products, and any additional dish are quite expensive (around RM8). The dishes here cost about RM4. And there are more fresh products including meats and seafood. I would prefer picking things I like than not having choices.If you plan to go, I suggest you take fried fish head. Even if you may not know how to eat fish head, throw everything into the soup as base. They include a few pieces of ginger. Throw them all in. You'll find the soup really fragrant and unique.

Also make sure you don't go on Thursday - Tutup*.

* Malay for Closed.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Quickie : Restoran Foon Lock

I read so much about this place. I decided one weekend that I mustx10 go no matter what, and that of course is at the expense of Ben's energy in entertaining my wish by driving me around searching for this place. We came down from Genting and took the wrong turn. We drove all the way into Janda Baik village. If you don't know how is that, it took us 2 hours drive. When I had almost given up hope of finding this place, it turned out right at the end of our journey before turning back into highway. So it wasn't at Janda Baik, but at the entrance to Janda Baik. What a joke!

Location : 84, Kampung Bukit Tinggi, Bentong, Pahang
Rating : Good

The first dish I requested was ginger wine frog in mee suah (thread noodles). The owner told me they are out of frog and mee suah. So we had to make do with chicken and rice vermicelli. It turned out a very strong ginger dish. But for a cold weather, the ginger and hot soup sure feels good.
Then I ordered some kind of fried talapia that I read about so much. The guy looked at me, as if I was from Mars. He said no such thing (I suspect he is a newbie :P). But he suggested another noodle dish called Fa Lam Sang Meen (mixed fat and lean pork with fresh noodles). I thought what the heck, we'll just have to make do. But this turned out good. The meat is crispy and fragrant of wine, soy sauce and fats. The noodles kind off soak in the fragrance too.
And we had another meat dish. Venison fried with ginger and spring onion. I don't know what's gotten into me. Maybe I expected the venison to be freshly caught from the Pahang hills surrounding the area. Whatever it is, the dish was ok.
So there you have it! An adventure or misadventure? A good find or over statement? I am afraid it might be distorted by my mixed feelings that day. It was with high hopes (search) that gradually faded (lost), then shot up again (found) only to be slapped down (out of stock/no such thing) and again compensated with other good food. One thing for sure - an experience..

Monday, March 03, 2008


600cc? What's that supposed to mean? Milk lah... my friend. Taiwan twenty years ago, was famous for papaya milk blend. And this shop brought it over to Malaysia, together with some of those sumptuous food that I can't miss whenever I am in Penang.It is a chain store in Penang. My dad used to bring us there when they open their first ever shop in Komtar. But now due to the sad withering of Komtar, 600cc has diversified and it turned out well for them.

Location: Prangin Mall + Gurney Plaza + Tesco, Penang
Rating: Good

Ben like to order beef noodles here. I can understand why. The soup is warmly thick with tender beef cubes.And the noodles are elastic yet crisp. There are mixture of vege and type of meat, making the meal more enjoyable.My favourite will be the Ma La Fun (Numbing Hot Rice) with fried fish. Don't belittle the small portion of chili gravy you saw at the top of the picture below. Mixing it all in one shot will cause you 2-3 glasses of water. I can eat really hot stuff, but even I myself can't stand it.What I like is again the variety of condiments. There are meat floss (sweet), stewed minced meat (salty), chili gravy (spicy) and pickled vege (sour). The combination is superb.Another favourite of mine will be the Ja Jiang Mien (mixed sauce noodles). Love it for its abundance of vege and meat gravy. But I can't resist the thrill of ma la fun, so I just have to sacrifice ja jiang mien.Drinks wise, of course you should order some kind of milk blended drinks. But don't get those boring stuff like melon or yam that you can get from pasar malam (night market). I suggest you either get papaya milk or peanut milk (as the one below). Erm.. sorry for the photo below. I enjoyed the drink so much I forgot to take its photos until it is 2/3 gone :PIf you like eating peanut butter straight from the jar, you are gonna like this. It feels like drinking peanut butter less the stickiness. Ow.... I wanna go back Penang now...

Saturday, March 01, 2008

Assam Laksa @ Gottlieb Road

Assam laksa is really a local delicacy. But like spaghetti in squid ink (I know there is a better name to this, but might as well make it clear), it is really an acquired taste. I recall the expression of an Australian friend who tried the dish. His face practically looked like a prune - all wrinkled up. He said it was too fishy for him. Anyway, assam laksa is a Northern/Nyonya delicacy. Its soups main ingredients are tamarind juice, fish meat, daun kesum (local herb), and other spices. The noodles are made of mung beans. And you mixed all these with a lot of veges - lettuce, cucumber, onion, chili and bunga kantan (ginger flower).
The all time famous Penang assam laksa is the one in Air Hitam, near Kek Lok Si Temple. But many people find this shop better.

Location: Opposite Penang Chinese Girl School, Gottlieb Road, Penang
Rating: Good

One thing I love about this place is the plentiful vege they included in a bowl. The usual laksa you find abundant in Penang are rather stingy with vege, causing less depth in the texture of food. Moreover, if you look at the soup, they are very thick with fish meat. The taste is generally sweet due to the hefty amount of fish meat.I personally don't prefer the clear and cylinder shaped laksa noodles that are kind of chewy. Some people tend to overcook and the noodles became too limp and soft. But I would say this shop is ok. The mixture of ingredients to make the noodles is quite right, so that it is easy to chew and yet not too soft. What is better about this place is that you can order some other snacks. My favourite is the fried popiah (spring rolls) and chai kueh (vegetable dumpling in clear skin). The popiah is crunchy and some people like to dip it into the laksa soup (just to soak in the flavours of laksa).I love the chai kueh. The skin is thin and soft. And the filling is simple and fragrant. I have tasted some that mixed is dried prawns and what nots in the filling, but the taste just got too mixed up. I like the simple sweet taste of vege and the soft feeling in my mouth. Yummy!If you would like to try out this place, please remember to go somewhere between 1-3.30pm. Not too late or you get nothing.