Restaurant Hock Kee Ulu Yam Loh Mee

Ulu Yam Lor Mee

My better half had to do some work related banking near my place yesterday so we decided to meet up for lunch. She wanted to eat pan mee and told me so and I reluctantly agreed. Haha. I’m not a huge fan of pan mee but I’ll go along with my dear coz I know how much she likes it.

Hock Kee Ulu Yam Loh Mee

We had a bit of a problem finding parking in the notorious Jalan PJU 5/4 (Dataran Sunway) area so I left my car quite a distance from the pan mee shop. While walking there, we spotted this place – Restaurant Hock Kee Ulu Yam Loh Mee and she decided to eat here instead. I suspect it’s partly coz she knew I didn’t like pan mee but she insisted she liked loh mee as well.

Hock Kee Loh Mee

We ordered the flagship Ulu Yam Loh Mee as well as the recommended Homemade Hokkien Mee. I’ve actually been to Ulu Yam to eat their loh mee (not at the original stall though – we got lost) and had the fabulous Hennessy loh mee in Setapak so I have a benchmark to compare this against.

Ulu Yam Loh Mee (RM 6.50 / RM 12 / RM 16)

Ulu Yam Loh Mee

There are three sizes and the personal one is RM 6.50 and comes in a generous bowl filled with black and starchy egg drop soup and the thick loh mee noodles. This is a different implementation from Sarawak’s loh mee (ours is sweet) and there’s lots of pork meat and pork crackling (!!!) inside for texture.

I really liked the acidic notes, it’s quite appetizing and after a generous dousing of vinegar, the bowl really shines.

Homemade Hokkien Mee (RM 6.50 / RM 12 / RM 16)

Homemade Hokkien Mee

This is not their speciality and they mixed the pork crackling into the Hokkien Mee instead of sprinkling it on top so it loses a lot of the crunchiness. It’s pretty decent but pales in comparison with Damansara Uptown Hokkien Mee (which is just behind this outlet). That’s the one I usually go to. It’s serviceable though for a working day lunch.

Ulu Yam Us

Restaurant Hock Kee Ulu Yam Loh Mee also has the intriguing sounding Claypot Noodles with Yam (no relation to Ulu Yam, which is a town in Selangor famous for their loh mee) but they don’t have personal sizes so I’ll love to go back and try it. However, from the two dishes we tried, we’ll definitely recommend the signature Ulu Yam Loh Mee but not the Hokkien Mee.

5 of the best durians this season: Musang King (D197), Green Skin (D145), Tembaga (D118), XO, D7

1. Musang King (Mao Shan Wang/D197/Raja Kunyit)

Musang King

This beauty is from a very old tree. That’s important as older trees produce a more complex flavor profile, often described as chocolate. Like all Musang King, this durian has absurdly creamy and sticky flesh that coats the mouth with intense sticky bittersweet goodness.

D197 Musang King

The characteristic saffron like flesh is wrinkled and you can see the seeds peeking through the skin. It’s very flavorful and not for the faint hearted – the concentrated flavors of the durian lingers long and the seeds are flat and tiny.

Raja Kunyit

I got this for RM 25/kg at a new stall I discovered. It has a lot of unusual durians e.g. Durian Tembaga but their smaller selection of Musang Kings are surprisingly good grade. Me and my better half totally devoured this 1.3 kg fruit and left two seeds for her dad. It’s RM 32 for just a few seeds but definitely worth the price. I’ll go back to this stall again.

2. Green Skin (D145)

Green Skin

This is a good example of Green Skin Durian. It’s shaped like a melon and has bright green skin (thus the name). It’s designated as D145 and other popular names include Cheh Poay, Cheh Kak, Durian Hijau and Tuan Mek Hijau/Berserah. It has creamy yellow flesh which is slightly dry (in a good way). This particular Green Skin only had 4 sections, each having two (2) very uniform seeds for a total of 8.

Cheh Poay

I got this for RM 15/kg at a new shop I discovered near SS6. This particular specimen weighed 1.4 kg which comes up to a total of RM 21. Green Skin is a Penang durian (cheh poay literally means green skin in Hokkien) and this place specializes in bringing down durians from the northern states (while others do Pahang, Johor etc).

Green Skin Durian

I think a lot of new durian connoisseurs would love Green Skin – it tastes a lot like Mas Selangor. The flesh is ultra creamy and very, very sweet with little to no fibre. It’s just pure sugary goodness that melts in your mouth, and there’s a lot of flesh. Yum.

3. Durian Tembaga (D118)

Durian Tembaga

I’ve never had this durian before but I know it’s very popular in Indonesia. Durian Tembaga is called such due to the color of the flesh. Tembaga means copper. It has a strange shape with five (5) distinctive sides.

Tembaga Durian

I wanted to try something different and this seller came up with three (3) durian tembaga he was keeping for another buyer (who didn’t turn up). I ended up buying one at RM 18/kg (bargained down from RM 20/kg).

Tembaga

Durian Tembaga is an official clone (D118) but you hardly ever see it around coz it’s one of those lesser known cultivars. That means it doesn’t have the “brand power” of something like Black Thorn, Musang King or Red Prawn (Ang Heh).

D118 Durian Tembaga

That doesn’t mean it’s not good though, if you like thick fleshed durians with a rich and bittersweet profile, you’ll love Durian Tembaga. This durian breed isn’t small though, it’s a medium to large sized fruit – the one I selected weighed 2.7 kg and cost me RM 48. The seeds are small and flat though.

4. Sweet XO

XO Durians

I thought this was a rather weird experience. I bought an starfruit shaped XO and it tasted sweet with little of the alcoholic aftertaste you usually associate with an XO durian. It still tasted good and it was cheap at RM 12/kg and I just assumed it was from a younger tree.

Durians XO

XO Durians are one of the larger species out there – this one weighs 3.3 kg and came up to RM 40. I asked my dear if she tasted an alcoholic aftertaste and she did so maybe it’s me who has a left-of-center palate. I tasted bittersweet notes where she tasted sweet on more than one occasion too.

5. D7 Durian

Durian D7

D7 is a very old durian clone. It was officially registered in 1934, before there was even a Malaysia, which makes it among the first batch of registered durian cultivars. However, throughout the ensuring 81 years, it has waned in popularity (at least among the mass market) which is a bit of a shame. There were only 2 when I went yesterday.

D7 Green Skin Durian

The D7 durian is recognizable from the yellow shell and spikes of the fruit. This is in complete contrast with the Green Skin Durian (which I bought at the same stall). BTW, the color does not denote ripeness, it’s just a breeding characteristic. It’s sold at RM 15/kg for this 1.2 kg fruit. It’s a steal at RM 18.

D7 Durian

It’s very tasty and the seeds are beautiful and appealing, with the flesh pulling back from the seeds slightly. D7 durians tastes slightly moist (not the bad kind of wet like old durians, it just has more moisture than the dry durians) and bittersweet. It’s a great durian for the price.

Yee Leng & Wing Fei’s 9-course Wedding Dinner @ Jaya Palace

Jaya Palace

I’ve been to their pre-wedding dinner, become a heng tai (brother) at Wing Fei’s Chinese wedding door games, and now it’s the night of the actual dinner at Jaya Palace.

Jaya Palace Restaurant

My better half and I actually went really early coz she had to do registration and I had to help her with the corsages and ang pow collection (sounds more glamorous than it is, I was little more than a glorified bodyguard at a place which didn’t really require it smirk).

Jaya Palace Wedding

Seriously though, I didn’t know there was actually a “money room” at the restaurant where you count ang pows.

Wedding Money

There’s actually a very good reason for this – bigger cities like KL has a larger element of crime, so the point is to tabulate the money quickly and pay immediately so you don’t leave with the cash. There has been robberies in the past so people just settle the bill with the ang pows on the spot. Learn something new every day.

The 9-course dinner at Jaya Palace was quite impressive:

Palace Four Season Combination Platter

Palace Four Season Combination Platter

There’s actually four (4) items in this classic starter despite the five (5) indentations in the platter. It came out with all the bells and whistles which is becoming standard nowadays – the dimming of the lights, the procession of waitresses etc. The sweet and sour pork was nice, as well as the fishballs flanking it. I also liked the fu chuk (beancurd skin) in the middle, but the most popular item was the baby octopus – it was yum!

Double Boiled Soup with Cordyceps Flower, Scallop & Fish Maw

Scallop Fish Maw Soup

I loved the large dried scallop inside. You don’t usually get ones as big as this from retail shops unless you’re willing to pay a hefty price tag. There were also two pieces of fish maw inside, a classic Cantonese double boiled soup with premium non-controversial ingredients. The broth is based on chicken, I was pleased to see it was dark meat from the thigh.

Roast Whole Suckling Pig

Roast Whole Suckling Pig

The best dish of the night! This is a *whole suckling pig*, but you only eat the crackling and a little bit of the meat underneath. The skin of a suckling pig is deep fried to perfection and re-arranged in the general shape of a porcine being on the plate. I picked up a piece with my chopsticks and dipped it into the plum sauce – crispy, crunchy and full of flavour. I wanted to have another but by then it was gone. Seriously, that was how good this was. I did get to eat the face of the pig though (it’s quite delicacy in my hometown, not so much here).

Steamed Estuary Grouper Fish w/ Fungus

Steamed Estuary Grouper

One of my favorite fishes for steaming. I’ll order RM 22 bowls of estuary grouper fish noodles when I’m craving for some. Estuary grouper (loong tan) is a very nice fish for eating – no bones to content with and a thick layer of collagen between the skin and the flesh. Jaya Palace slightly overcooked the fish but it was still a great dish.

Pepper & Salt Fresh Prawn

Pepper Salt Prawns

The obligatory prawns after the fish dish. I didn’t get to eat this as I was walking around taking photos for the groom and although a table-mate saved one for me, I unwittingly changed my plates for the next course (each course comes with new plates) so I didn’t know what it tasted like. I would have liked prawn.

Braised Sea Cucumber with Pork Knuckles & Mushroom

Braised Sea Cucumber

Lovely! People say sea cucumber don’t have a taste of its own, it absorbs the flavour of the gravy. This is partially true, but I know people who can tell where a sea cucumber comes from (Indonesia etc) so there’s gotta be a taste element in there as well. I’m quite partial to sea cucumber and they do it very well at Jaya Palace.

Steamed Glutinous Rice with Chicken & Mushroom

Steamed Glutinous Rice

This is lor mai gai – a rice dish to fill you up if you’re still hungry. It’s individually portioned and tasted pretty good to me although I noticed a lot of people didn’t touch theirs coz they were quite full from the previous dishes. It was also quite late at this point and one table beside us just tapau their food with them.

Special Fancy Pastries

Special Fancy Pastries

These are nostalgia inducing edibles – I remember dessert being a foreign concept in Chinese restaurants back in the day, this was all we had. It’s sweet red bean paste encased in flaky pastry and deep fried for a satisfying and sentimental course. There was also a kuih made with the squiggly green bits you see in cendol.

Sweetened Soya Bean with Gingko & White Fungus

Tong Sui

I liked this one too, probably coz I didn’t eat much during the previous courses. I ended up drinking more than my fair share since most of my table mates have left and it was just the 3 of us at the table. The white fungus works very well in this sweet tong sui style dessert. It’s very Cantonese to have something like this to mark the end of dinner.

Wedding Photo

Congratulations to Yee Leng and Wing Fei on their wedding! We managed to take a photo with them after everyone had left and we had settled everything. :)

My teeth stopped hurting!

Ill Fitting Aligners

I’ve been having problems with my teeth lately…or more specifically, my gums. I’ve been on Invisalign for several months now and I noticed that the back of my jaw hurts whenever I put the aligners on.

I chalked it down to the Invisalign treatment working its magic and ignored the pain each and every time I had to put them back on after I finish my meals.
It makes sense that aligning your teeth would sting (at least a little) right?

Cutting Aligners

However, it started getting worse and the next time I was at Imperial Dental Bangsar, I told my orthodontist about the discomfort. She told me it doesn’t sound normal at all and after showing her where it was tender, she immediately isolated the problem.

It wasn’t the Invisalign treatment that was hurting my gums after all – it was due to the very back of the aligners pressing *into* my gums! It turns out that everyone’s teeth is sized differently and the standard set was a little too large for my molars so it impacted the gums.

Cutting Invisalign

I didn’t even realize it was my gums that were sore, I thought it was my teeth!

Thus, the good people at Imperial Dental Bangsar helped me to custom cut my bottom aligners. The back of the bottom right side was taken off quite a bit – scissors were used to make a sideways L cutaway so it won’t touch my gums. I tested it and found out that the ache on my right was gone but my left side was starting to smart.

Cutting Invisalign Aligners

Heh! It turns out that BOTH sides were in contact with my gums but since the right side was much more painful so I didn’t even realize that the left side was in distress!

It takes a very good orthodontist to be able to isolate and treat conditions like this. I felt comfortable talking to the people there, or I wouldn’t have brought it up. I’ve always thought I had a high tolerance to pain and tend to suffer in silence.

Fixing Invisalign

Good thing Dr. Salma and Dr. Stephanie (my orthodontists) diagnosed what was wrong and fixed the bottom aligners on both sides by cutting it to my teeth size and sanding it down so the edges aren’t sharp. They helped me cut and sand the next few aligners too, so I don’t have to do it myself – they all fit properly and painlessly now.

Invisalign Fix

It’s little details like this that gives Imperial Dental Bangsar the good name they have (really, ask anyone who’s been there about their service) and I’m glad they’re the ones taking me through this 2 year journey to a perfect smile. :)

Wing Fei & Yee Leng’s Chinese Wedding Door Games from a Heng Tai perspective

Groom Entourage

I was part of Wing Fei’s heng tai entourage for the day. Being a heng tai (the term means brother) involves having the groom’s side get his bride from her parents’ home. There will be ji mui (literally sisters, but more like bridesmaids) blocking the way and presenting challenges.

Cantonese Wedding Games

This is all done in good fun. Chinese wedding door games is a Cantonese tradition and since the groom is Cantonese, it’s as essential a part of the wedding as the tea ceremony.

Pilot

We woke up bright and early and got into costume. The theme is Triumph in the Skies – a Hong Kong drama series and involves us wearing pilot uniforms. Unfortunately, one of my buttons came off and my better half had to sew it on before we left.

Sewing Button

There was also a large roasted pig (which I promptly dubbed the wedding pig) that we had to carry to Yee Leng’s (the bride) house. I thought that was hilarious – we actually ate the pork belly from this very pig during lunch. I think the middle part goes to the bride while the head and tail is taken back to the groom’s family.

Wedding Pig

They even hired a Master of Ceremonies (don’t know what else to call her) for the day. She’s in charge of etiquette and all things wedding related, and we have to defer to her for everything. She’s also a very good singer – we called her tai ka che (big sister).

Tea Ceremony

Here’s the show of respect to the parents of the groom in a tea drinking ceremony. This is done before we all departed for the bride’s place. The bride’s family does not follow in this entourage.

Heng Tai

This is the group of heng tai flanking the groom Wing Fei before we hit the road. There is also one female brother in our group, it’s not usual nowadays to have mixed groups. The bride’s ji mui team also had two male sisters.

Bride House

Here’s us arriving at Yee Leng’s place. The bride’s house has been setup with firecrackers and the ji muis were all waiting for us inside.

Wedding Games

Let the (wedding door) games begin!

Writing On Panties

The first game involved all the heng tai putting on disposable underwear while the groom wrote “I <3 Yee Leng” on our rear-ends.

Disposable Underwear Game

It’s a classic Chinese wedding door game. I’ve seen this one (and variations thereof) many times before, it’s become a bit of a standard.

Wasabi Sandwich

The second game was eating a wasabi laced sandwich. I had two coz I was so hungry and I didn’t mind the spiciness at all. I thought it was a pretty good sandwich, which defeated the purpose of the Chinese wedding door game (it’s meant to be a challenge). smirk

Blindfold Game

I’m glad I didn’t do the third one coz I did the first two. Three guys were blindfolded and a ji mui is assigned to each one and they’re supposed to guess who kissed them.

Kissing Game

Or something like that, I totally lost the plot coz it was so funny. It turns out that there were TWO male ji muis (which we haven’t seen to this point – they were hiding in the house) and they only came out to kiss the heng tais.

Ji Mui

The fourth Chinese wedding door game had us drawing lots. I got one that said “TONGUE” with a drawing of a tongue. That didn’t bode very well.

Wedding Door Games

I also saw armpit, stomach and sifatt (technically asshole but we’ll use buttocks for the sake of propriety).

Sifatt

The person who drew the lot had to put whipped cream on that particular part of their anatomy while another heng tai licked it off.

Chinese Wedding Door Games

Our hero female heng tai did the stomach one…

Whipped Cream

…while one of the heng tais did my tongue. The ji muis made sure there was enough so no contact will be made. Haha. I spat out the remaining whipped cream.

Makeup

The fifth game had the ji muis drawing on our faces with make-up.

Chinese Wedding Games

I was transformed into a very old man.

Balloons

The sixth game had the groom using a cucumber held between his legs to pop (crotch shaped) balloons we held between our thighs. It had to be done within a minute.

Popping Balloons

Me and our only female heng tai.

Female Heng Tai

Some ang pow was also given to forgo the more extreme ones – you can buy a pass if you don’t want to participate in a game but it comes out of the groom’s petty cash.

Wedding Games Penalty

Thus, with the games done, we went into the bride’s house!

Wing Fei Singing

Wing Fei had one last challenge to go through before the door to the bride’s room was opened – he sang a song, and the obstacles were all finally overcome.

Bride Groom

This is the bride and the groom in their room.

Wedding Car

I thought it was very sweet that Wing Fei and Yee Leng has been together for so many years. They’re childhood sweethearts and I believe this is the only relationship they’ve ever been in, and now they’re married.

Wing Fei

Demystification: The bride is called Yee Leng while my better half is called Yee Ling. Wing Fei is the younger brother of my partner. I felt like I had to clarify due to the similarities in the names.

Fei HB

In a lot of ways, I am a “brother” in the truest sense of the term to the groom. Perhaps “future brother-in-law” would be a more appropriate term, since Yee Ling is his older sister. I’m glad Wing Fei gave me the honor of being one of his heng tais. I even wore his personal pilot uniform! I had a lot of fun on that day, not just at the door games but helping out at the wedding with my dear.

Wing Fei Yee Leng

Congratulations to Wing Fei and Yee Leng on their wedding! :)

11 photos from Wing Fei’s pre-wedding dinner

Mobile Canopy

It is customary for some Cantonese families to have a pre-wedding dinner at the groom’s side. This is done one (1) day before the actual wedding dinner banquet. Wing Fei’s pre-wedding dinner had 6+1 outdoor canopies equipped with fans and lights (the +1 is the mobile kitchen) and it’s quite common over here in West Malaysia. I’ve been to one in Tangkak, Johor 4 years ago too.

Residential Wedding Canopy

This dinner buffet had 24 tables in total. It actually spans from two of their houses and blocks the (public) street and 18 houses but it’s generally accepted and you don’t need a permit to do this. It’s based on the understanding of neighbors.

Buffet

Buffet spread. The food is replenished from the…

Mobile Chef

…mobile kitchen at the back with the chef pumping out platter after platter of chow.

Tiger Prawns

The most in-demand item is the fried tiger prawns. :D

Desserts

They had lots of desserts like watermelon and cempedak as well as jellies for kids and the young at heart.

Plate Of Food

My plate of food.

Jelly Watermelon

I also had several helpings of the Jello desserts.

Canada Auntie

Here’s a photo with the aunties of the groom. One of them came back from Canada!

Chinese Wedding Bed

The traditional Chinese wedding bed. The items here are to be brought over to the bride’s house the next day. You can’t sleep on it the night before and there’s a custom where you get 1 boy and 1 girl to jump on the bed to kickstart the family, so to speak. smirk

Pilot Uniform

I was given a pilot’s uniform by Wing Fei (the groom) as part of his heng tai entourage the next day. It was a lot of fun! :)

Shell #LoveMyRide Festival

Sexy KL Promoters

This has gotta be the most interesting festival I’ve been to. A lot of events are (to be brutally honest) a little dull and I go coz I have to, not coz I want to. This is the total opposite – I was up bright and early on Saturday morning coz I wanted to be at the Shell #LoveMyRide Festival.

LoveMyRide

There were more than 50 food trucks and stalls, racing simulators, 3D art fixtures, music performances and I got a free engine oil change and a tank of fuel to boot.

Shell LoveMyRide

#LoveMyRide Festival was an outreach to all car enthusiasts (attendance is free) but it appeals to practically everyone. I was particularly intrigued by the gathering of KL’s best food trucks and the ultimate engine rejuvenation experience provided by Shell.

Bay

I was allotted the 9:30 am slot and got assigned a number and a car bay to change my engine oil. The kind people of Shell gave this to 500 lucky winners who registered at their website.

Free Oil Change

My car (a Toyota VIOS) was due to have the next engine oil change anyway, so this was great timing. Shell provided the correct oil filter and changed my engine oil to Shell Helix Ultra with PurePlus Technology.

Shell Helix Ultra PurePlus

This is Shell’s most advanced motor oil and the first one ever to be designed from natural gas with PurePlus Technology. It’s the best motor oil in the market which also contains Active Cleansing Technology additives to clean my car from inside out!

You can find out more about Shell Helix Ultra with PurePlus Technology here. This is the engine oil that was provided gratis to the winners.

Shell Helix Lounge

I could chill out at the Shell Helix Lounge while my car was getting its ultimate engine rejuvenation and I took the time to enjoy the cars, music and food they had on offer.

Shell LoveMyRide Festival

Each visitor was given a limited edition map that can be used to complete fun activities and get stuff like free ice cream and Coke upon completion. You’ll also get a loaded goodie bag if you finish visiting all the attractions and activities.

3D Art

First up was a photo at one of their 3D art installations.

3D Art Me

I chose this one coz it looked really cool. That’s a real automatic screwdriver BTW.

deli2go Memory Game

There was also a deli2go where you can get discount vouchers from a memory game. The people there were kind enough to give me a complimentary iced Americano when they saw my half-asleep countenance. Haha.

Mixology Masterclass

I also participated in the Shell Helix PurePlus Mixology Masterclass. It’s was a live mocktail mixing session to demonstrate Shell Helix Ultra’s patented GTL (gas to liquid) process where you get to play around with various fruit (to represent base oil) and vegetable juices (to represent additives). I sampled my own creation and pronounced it good. smirk

Free Ice Cream

Free ice cream was provided to members of the public, which was awesome coz it was a very hot day.

Shell V-Power F1 Challenge

Next, I went to the Shell V-Power F1 Challenge where I tried to win a Sony PS4 console.

Pumping Gas

This is very interesting and as authentic as you can get without climbing into a multi-billion dollar F1 machine as you have to factor in the gas (fuel) aspect of racing as well. You’re allowed a certain amount of petrol which you have to pump yourself – more means you get to drive longer but your time is penalized.

F1 Simulator

I just made it to the cut-off point and climbed into the F1 cockpit. I tried my best but only came up to #9 at the end of the day. I didn’t get the PS4 but at least it was fun.

Fashion Bazaar

There was a fashion bazaar there was well. Like I said, this caters to everyone, not just car enthusiasts.

BMW 428i Gran Coupe

BMW was also there and featured some of their cars like the BMW 428i Gran Coupe.

BMW 328i Gran Turismo

The 328i Gran Turismo made an appearance too…

Mazda 6 SKYACTIV

…as well as the new Mazda 6 SKYACTIV 2.5L.

iamNEETA

iamNEETA got on stage at 12 pm to perform. I’ve seen their videos online before and I thought they were great. Diandra and Reza Salleh also did sessions on the stage.

Malaysian Book of Records

You can also go on test drives by Mazda and BMW if you want. I registered but unfortunately the nice people at Shell called to tell me my car was ready so I told the people at the test drive center to give it to the waiting list (there was a long one).

Shell Oil Change

I collected my car after the Shell Ultimate Engine Rejuvenation session and found out that I was part of a Malaysian Book of Records for the most number of cars to do an oil change under 12 hours. In total, 500 cars underwent the oil change during the two days #LoveMyRide was on. Pretty neat, huh?

Free Gas

I was given a voucher for a full tank of Shell V-Power Racing, the top-of-the-line fuel from Shell. I didn’t know I was going to have this so I actually filled my tank just the day before – nevertheless, they managed to get 4.45 liters inside.

V-Power

The people attending the pump were nice enough to squeeze in all that they could. I was quite impressed they could get that much inside.

Shell V-Power Racing

I’ll fill it up with more Shell V-Power Racing soon so I can do a proper review about the fuel. It comes with Friction Modification Technology which allows the engine to turn more freely.

Food Truck KL

I went back to the festival and checked out all the food trucks there. The Pisang Cheese, Little Fat Duck, La Churreria, Sangkaya and more were there. My better half couldn’t attend due to a prior commitment so I bought a lot of food back for her.

BangsarBabe

I think I spent more than RM 90 on food and drinks alone!

BMW Z4 sDrive20i

Shell #LoveMyRide was so awesome that we actually turned up the next day again. They had a “Kiddies Den” section where you can draw and do sand art activities. I have to say that this is one of the best festivals I’ve ever attended and will definitely look forward to the next similar event by Shell!

5 interesting snacks I bought back from Sibu

1. Marmite Rice Cakes

Marmite Rice Cakes

Marmite is something you either love or hate. It’s a very divisive yeast extract meant to be spread on toast. I went to Christchurch, New Zealand when I was 15 for my high school and fell in love with it immediately. I’ve since tried the Australian and United Kingdom version and but I’ve never seen their rice cakes before. Naturally, a got a couple of packs to bring back to KL.

2. Cadbury Roses Strawberry Dream

Cadbury Roses Strawberry Dream

This is a limited edition flavor of Cadbury Roses. I always make it a point to go to the local import specialty shop to get some snacks before I go back. They had a huge sale this time since lots of the items are close to expiry. I decided to grab a couple of packs since I can eat a lot of chocolate in a day, so it doesn’t matter to me if the use by date is next month.

3. White Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups

White Reeses PB Cups

I love Reese’s PB Cups but not everyone likes them. This is the white chocolate version. I wanted to bring some back for my better half to try since this variety isn’t very common. The stuff here is all made in the country of origin too – United States, UK, Australia etc etc. It’s a real blessing that we have such a bounty of imported chocolate and snacks in such a small town.

4. Twizzlers

Twizzlers

I love licorice and would buy a big pack of plain store-brand licorice twists when I was studying in Australia. I’m partial to the aniseed taste but I know a lot of people don’t like them. It’s another love-it-or-hate-it candy. I chose licorice as one of the flavors when we went to Ladurée at Champs-Élysées during our trip to France. I adore it and this is spiked with Hershey’s chocolate to boot. My dear doesn’t like it *at all* but I plan to proselytize to her. smirk

5. Whoppers

Whoppers Malted Milk Balls

OMG! This is quite rare in Malaysia. You always see Maltesers (made by Mars) instead of Whoppers (Hershey’s). The latter was invented first and is more common in Commonwealth (or ex-British colonies, like our country). Whoppers are a United States product and honestly, I prefer Maltesers since I grew up with them. However, it’s harder to find Whoppers so I got a two boxes to bring back. :)

Ikan Terubok (toli shad/Chinese herring), bitter gourd fritters, otak-otak sausage and other delights @ Eddy’s dinner

Dinner Spread

Eddy is my brother, not by something as accidental as blood, but something much stronger – by choice. He’s always been a solid friend ever since I met him in 2008. He’s usually the one picking me up when I fly back to Sibu and this time was no exception. His wife Jona is a great cook and I went over for dinner the other day.

Fried salted ikan terubok (toli shad)

Terubok Fish

This is ikan terubok (also known as toli shad or Chinese herring). It’s a very popular fish in Sarawak. Toli shad is only available here and there are two varieties – the fresh ones and the dried + salted version. You can see the distinctive pattern here coz the scales are not removed (!!!).

Ikan Terubok

You actually deep fry the entire fish and it comes out very crunchy so you can eat the scales and bones. I thought that was very intriguing – I’ve never had it this way before and wanted to get some for my better half to try. It’s sooooo delicious. You can only get this fish in Kuching though.

Meatball soup

Meatball Soup

I didn’t eat this until after I finished all my rice coz I didn’t grow up with soup so it’s not essential to my diet. I know some cultures like Foochow and Cantonese which accords soup a very important (even essential) place on the dinner table. I found the soup to be very flavorful from the meatballs and the texture of the soft vegetables (from boiling) to be quite heartening.

Stewed pig stomach

Stewed Pig Stomach

This is not for the picky eater but I love it. The hog maw is from Golden Happiness Restaurant. I’ve eaten the same dish before during Chinese New Year and they do it really well. It’s a mixture of organs – pig tail, pig ears, and duck.

Steamed vegetables

Steamed Vegetables

This is the healthiest item for the night. Eddy has two Indonesian maids and he treats them really well. We all eat together during buka puasa (the breaking of fast during the month of Ramadan for them, who are Muslims).

Otak-otak sausage

Otak-Otak Sausage

This is something new for me as well. I was quite hungry when I woke up (fell asleep at his place coz I’ve been working late nights during this trip) and had one of the otak-otak sausages before dinner. It’s very spicy and really tastes like otak-otak, although it’s not made of fish. I’m not sure what kind of protein is inside, let’s just say it’s a lip-smacking package of mystery meat in tube form. smirk

Onion omelet

Onion Omelet

A comfort food that most people has grown up with. It’s large Bombay onions chopped and fried with eggs. The sweetness from the onions make this a very familiar and welcome addition to the meal.

Pan-fried lamb chops

Pan-Fried Lamb Chops

I love lamb chops. My mom used to cook them for us when we she was still alive and all of our family like the taste of lamb. I’m particularly fond of unrendered lamb fat – it’s strong tasting and gamey to a lot of people but these very characteristics are the same reason I love the fatty parts.

Bitter gourd fritters

Bitter Gourd Fritters

Bitter gourd chips! This is thinly sliced bitter gourd that’s been battered and fried. It’s crunchy and slightly bitter – pure awesome! I’ve also never had it this way, that’s why I always like eating at Eddy’s house. Jona always comes out with food that I don’t eat often (or at all) so it’s a pleasure to sample these new dishes.

Group Photo

It was a delightful dinner. I’ve always enjoyed eating at Eddy’s place due to the splendid cooking. I tend to overeat and stuff myself but it’s worth it, coz I hardly ever eat here unless I’m back home. There’s always something interesting on the table and the fare is better than most restaurants out there.

Father’s Day dinner with my dad @ Ming Mei Shi

Ming Mei Shi

I asked my dad where he wanted to go for dinner on Father’s Day – Payung Café, Ruby Restaurant or some other place that he liked (perhaps one of the new cafes out there). He said he’s more used to eating Chinese food and opted for Ming Mei Shi.

Cinnamon Lamb Shank (RM 29.68)

Lamb Shank Rendang

This is cooked rendang style (which originated from Minangkabau in Indonesia). It was recommended as one of their flagship dishes when we asked for something different. I don’t eat lamb much when I’m with my better half since she doesn’t like it but my dad does. Granted, it’s been made to suit local Chinese palates but it tasted magnificent! The strong cinnamon and aniseed gravy goes perfectly with the rice and the lamb is fork-tender.

Butter Fried Prawns (RM 16.96)

Butter Prawns

We usually go for butterscotch prawns but wanted something different so we switched to the drier butter fried prawns. Ming Mei Shi also has big head prawns for RM 50 per prawn which I was personally interested but my dad vetoed the idea since he doesn’t really like that type of prawn (don’t know if it’s coz of the price but I know he doesn’t eat crustaceans much). This doesn’t have the nice gravy but we have 3 other wet dishes so we thought it’ll make for an agreeable change. It was delightful!

Four Heavenly Kings Vegetable (RM 16.96)

Four Heavenly Kings Vegetable

This is a classic Chinese restaurant dish that consists of 4 different types of “beans”. The quotation marks are there coz brinjal (eggplant) is not actually a type of bean. They usually use the purple type but there’s also a green variety. The four vegetables are ladyfingers (okra), squash, brinjal and long beans. It’s topped with pork mince and taucu (fermented soya beans) and it’s very good.

Dongpo Pork (RM 19.08)

Dongpo Pork

This is another one of their signature dishes. Dongpo pork is braised before being slowly stewed with Chinese wine. It comes in a huge square chunk tied with cooking twine, which is then snipped off by the waitress before the meat is cut into manageable bite-sized portions with a pair of kitchen scissors.

Dongpo Meat

Interesting fact: I was using Pleco (the Chinese-English app) to research why this dish is called such. My dad thought it was dong as in east but it turns out that it’s named after the poet Su Shi a.k.a. Su Dongpo who perfected the recipe. It’s usually very good but the execution was a little off this time since the ratio of fat to lean meat was really low despite being from the belly of the pig. I had to chew very hard to swallow the tough bottom meat.

Fathers Day 2015

My dad enjoyed the meal immensely though and so did I. We usually just order 3 dishes for the two of us but I thought we should order 4 since it’s a special occasion. The waitress warned us against the large portions but I managed to polish off everything after my dad was full. The unusual decimal prices is due to the recent implementation of 6% GST and the bill came up to RM 90.95 although I only paid RM 90 coz the owner gave me a discount.

Fathers Day Dinner

Me: Dad, you’re not smiling in the photo.
Dad: What do you mean? I am!
Me: Hmm…I don’t see it. *show my dad the digicam*
Dad: That’s me smiling.
Me:

LOL

Happy Father’s Day, dad! :)

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