Wednesday, October 29, 2008

New Beggar's Delicious Restaurant @ Ijok, Kuala Selangor

Beggar's chicken.

Did the beggar rear the chicken on the streets and treat them as pets then food thus beggar's chicken?

OR when the chicken crossed the road, it ended up in the pot of the beggar?

OR maybe some of the stories that ran around the car, during the journey to some ulu town called Ijok?

Who knew until i googled the story of beggar's chicken and i realised that none of the theories we came up with was correct!

One said that the beggar found hot natural ground aka hot springs and dump the chicken in there to cook, whilst others said the beggar dug into a hot hole and put a stolen chicken in to find that it was all deliciously cooked hours later.

True but not quite.

For the benefit of others, it all happened when a beggar spied on a mother and daughter carrying a freshly slaughtered chicken to the river. They were about to clean it before cooking it for their Chinese New Year dinner. When the young girl saw the water, she couldnt resist and in she jumped in to have a swim. Panicking, the mom jumped in as well to save her and the smart beggar came in the picture to steal the chicken away.

What was a beggar suppose to do with a raw slaughtered chicken? He remembered that there were hot embers in the temple, remnants of all the praying. Wrapping it with clay, he left it in the heat and voila! beggar's chicken.

The technique was discovered by the emperor's tutor and further refined with extra ingredients stuffed in the chicken and thus the start of our adventure to Ijok

OK, enough of history and time to start eating.

After traveling for around 25-30 minutes from Sungai Buloh and turning into a road that you will only see palm trees and on your left and right; as if like a mirage, a bustling humble restaurant appears.

New Beggar's Delicious Restaurant (I wonder what happened to the old one)

7 brave souls ventured in and demanded the 10 person dinner set.

Self service with a new meaning; taking the scissors and opening up your own prawn crackers. Beware: its RM2 a packet!

Bring it on, because apparently the beggars got rich and evolved the chicken to many more species including the duck, pork leg and rice.

Fast forward the hundred odd years and off the lotus leaves and say hello to aluminium foil. The chicken was bathed in a light herbal broth and the strips of chicken breasts teared with a nude of the fork. Whether it was cooked with mud under hot embers or simply under a stove; it didn't matter because the end product was alright at most.

One look at you know that the duck had a more earthy and deeper flavoured broth. What was stuffed inside?

Stuffed with different mushrooms, the broth tasted familiar aka bak kut teh herbal soup with its own twist; the gamey flavours of the duck. The meat was tender but it was the soup that got me guarding this dish that was situated right infront of me to ensure that i had first option.

Their Pat Poh Fan, Eight Treasure Rice; to me the biggest treasures were the ping pong ball sized salted eggs that were thrown into the rice. Pretty much a carb filler and since we were 3 people down, this was moderately picked on, and more then half remained by the time the dinner ended with our tummy bulging out of the pants.

The steaming pork leg was another delish dish when i think about it again. At that point in time, we were just too stuffed but now; (after dieting on salad, 2 days in a row) this was THE dish to go with rice. Cubes of yam and large chunks of mushrooms were thrown in to absorb the flavours and the gelatinous bits of the leg was all that really mattered when you dive in.

Expect to end so soon? Well you get what you pay for and in this case, RM328 is worth alot for a beggar, so let the seafood continue!

A steam fish garnished with pickled onions. Tangy and fresh; this was welcomed after the heavy broth and meat dishes. The fish was obviously cleaned out.

The fresh crabs were done Kam Heong style. Despite the stomach barely able to accomodate anything but a rest of fresh air, the big chunks of crab meat was calling like it was mating season. A bang and a whack there, the claw of crab meat came out of the shell and in it went to the mouth.

Then the mother of huge prawns came, juicy and bouncy, the sauce on the sweet sticky side with a hint of chilli. If you were lucky you would have bitten into the crunchy pork lard too. At this point, if a doctor measured your cholestrol level, you would probably be as good as pronounced dead.

Are we done yet?

Eat your vegetables if not, risk constipation.

While you at it, have a sip of their peppered pig stomach soup. Absolutely divine and the pepper concoction actually helps the metabolism rate a tad bit, well by the slightest.

For those who want to take pictures, the lighting well was very dim and all of the above pictures are proof of shaky hands and crap internal camera flashes. Anyone wants to donate an external flash for the pour soul here?

Overall the novelty surpasses the taste of the food. Leaning towards home-cooked and giving a "kampung" flavour, for most of us it was a one-off trip that sadly we may not have the effort to drive all the way there again. For virgin beggar chicken eaters, well worth a try. The drive, the singing and the wrapped treasures is worth at least one time.

Dirt cheap as well, dont you think, final damage RM 347 with 2 plates of mango and tea.

The only mishap being, finding a broken glass piece, half the size of my palm among our bucket of ice! thank god no one try to suck on that "non-melting" ice!

Address and contact details:

Head towards Kuala Selangor via Sungai Buloh, and look out for Ijok then a signboard on the left. Better still call 03-32791936 for directions and reservations!

Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5 stars

32 comments:

mh said...

Food looks good. I thought my uncle is the only fella crazy enough to drive all the way to Ijok for food. There's another shop that sells about the same food....but they served curry chicken and crabs (i think its sweet and sour), with freshly baked bread. We go there for the bread....wahahaha..its really sweet and fluffy!

worldwindows said...

What a feast! And for RM50 each it is worth the trip. Contemplate going Kuala Selangor last Monday but did not make it. At least vicariously I made the trip thru your blog.

CUMI & CIKI said...

golly you guys can really whack huh? lol.. think you ordered most dishes on the menu... and then some! lol. great write up.. :D

"Joe" who is constantly craving said...

c&c: yes..unfortunately so..somemore just announced goin on diet!..

worldwindows: well made it up? no! you must go and try

mh: trust me..if the itchy mouth starts..driving to gohtong jaya i also wont mind!

Nic (KHKL) said...

woah, average about RM35 per person only! if there are 10 ppl lar...very value-for-money!!!

yeah, it'll be a very interesting day tour, i'm sure. a good alternative to the weekly K sessions hor? hehehehe....

Precious Pea said...

That is really dirt cheap! I always pass by this place on my way to Kuala Selangor. Ok..so now who wants to go?? Quickly register!!

Mochachocolata Rita said...

oh gosh...juicy jumbo prawns...and no worries, i always go out in a small group of 3-4 girls...who always order a feast for maybe 8 HAHAHA

Terri @ A Daily Obsession said...

an absolutely delicious meal there. wish we could eat like tt in kk.

Lyrical Lemongrass said...

Ok. I'm going. First available weekend is next year, I think. Sigh. when did life get so complicated?

traveleo said...

looking good! hope it tasted just as good!

J2Kfm said...

Ijok again. read bout this place in Cumi n Ciki's blog, or was that the same one?

the duck and the 8poh Rice made the trip worthwhile I guess. tried Beggar's chicken before, and nothing special, typical herbal chicken.

"Joe" who is constantly craving said...

j2fkm: yeah my friend was inspired to arrange this trip after reading from c&c..the chicken is alright la i suppose..something very homey..and light..

traveleo: just the 1 time la i suppose..

ll: why is ur schedule so packed??? you still promised me to take me around brickfields..still waiting..

terri: haha no beggars in KK?

rita: if only you were in malaysia..

pp: register on my blog? hahah

nic: karaoke sessions r done on the way there in the CAR!..

Kok said...

joe,
Is the pat pou fan tasted like lor mai kai? Looks good leh!

xin said...

beggar's chicken is originally wrapped by soil n covered in the ground right? but i have never tried/seen tht in my life

PureGlutton said...

This is one helluva popular place - can see busloads of ppl there and they are only open on weekends and Wed only! So now the price of their set meal (for 10) has increased eh? It used to be just under RM300 (somethin like RM298 or 288). Even so, darn good value for money!

"Joe" who is constantly craving said...

kok: yeah it is glutinous rice that they use..

xin: yeah correct..haha you can see it here..there have ALOT AND ALOT of SOIL in the background..

pureglutton: ohh didnt knw the limited openin hours..aiyah everything inflation..somemore famous..!

CUMI & CIKI said...

to answer PEA - cumi&ciki wanna go too! count us in.

JOE - forget the diet la.. no hope.. christmas and hols means whack summore .. very soon ! hahaha

Tummythoz said...

My hits are the pat-poh-fan and heavily peppered soup. I find the chicken meat kinda 'hai-hai' (rough? tough? grainy?) but definitely will enjoy a trip with you guys!

"Joe" who is constantly craving said...

c&c: haha means can think of 2nd round already!..aiyah need to diet for christmas..! somemore i dun wear size 4..n im alr struggling with 36s...

tummythoz: another recruit?

mimid3vils said...

I missed the opportunity visit this place when my boss treat the us a dinner there, sigh~~

Jason said...

Meal in the middle of a palm oil plantation? Nice! But not now... kinda busy recently... sigh.

"Joe" who is constantly craving said...

mimi: aiyoh wat a waste!

jason: bz? its almost end of the year wor..

Precious Pea said...

Aiyah...drive you more traffic, no good meh?

tigerfish said...

Beggar chicken? I think it is similar as Emperor Chicken over here. :O
Extremes of the same chicken, huh?

fatboybakes said...

pea, me me me....

backstreetgluttons said...

it is called beggars chicken because all those who eated the thin chickens were filty rich n FAT!
( now you know )

you must also admire them oldies who immortalised the names also such as Buddha jumps over the wall and/or the heavenly coconuts dropped into da riversea
LOL !

"Joe" who is constantly craving said...

pp: of course good!

tigerfish: i think its the same..reason being is all the rich ppl wants to eat it..and obviously do not want to b associated with "something poor"

fbb: haha another one for the road..

bsg: hmmmm so the chicken is the poor 1?

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