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

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Gurney Drive @ Penang

Like a lost soul, one has to resort to the usual tourist spots for "good ol Penang food", so it was as we headed down to Gurney Drive, with the hangover cured from a good cocktail while lying down on the deck chair enjoying the sun.

With an ultimate objective to sing karaoke and visit Red Box like it was another tourist spot, where else can i go but down the street to Gurnery Drive.

Gurney Drive then sing Jay Chou, ohh what a brilliant combination when we stepped into the long alley of stalls.

Quench your thirst with soya bean and their gula melaka or was it their ginger sugar? RM 1.20 per cup and we gulped down 3 cups before we left.

We had to have the classics, and the assam laksa was bearable, but i have no idea which stall we bought it from, because you got like 3-4 stalls selling assam laksa, its crazy! Do they even have such demand with such supply around this area?

Another classic, or chien, and this also was quite impressive too..

Prawn Mee, this was not the special one that i had in Batu Feringghi that came with huge prawns. Edible i suppose, but no wow factor, mainly because that time i was drowning in my own sweat.

Some rojak to cool down, and before i knew it..my friend presented a nice big plate of lor bak..(or in this case, it was called deep fried lok lok)

The chicken gizzards were the highlight of the whole dish. The minced meat roll was also filled with flavour, avoid the puffy thick battered prawns, save your stomach for something else.

When you think we slowed down, we got back straight up with our cholestrol clogging exercise, another decent seafood laksa with blood cubes and various kinds of seafood. It wasn't great again, but i suppose it was an eye opener to all of the Penang delicacies that exists in the small island.
Wah, one of the worst char kuey teow, crappier then the Lorong Selamat one. With that, ended up our quest to find a decent char kuey teow in Penang, till next time.

Ended with a nice plate of lala and ikan pari (god knows where the picture is), spicyness all the way.

If you are looking for a bite here and there that shouts Penang, here is the place to go, but if you really want to find the gems among the bush, then i suppose you got to try every single stall out to find out, evident from our search, some were great and some ok at most.

With a full and satisfied tummy and a dwindling hangover, it was finally time for Jay Chou.

That though, wont be posted as i avoid losing any more readers with 3 emotional guys singing heart breaking love songs..

The End..

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Infamous Char Kuey Teow @ Lorong Selamat

A case of reputation exceeding expectations? Or was it a case of expectations superceding reality? Maybe just a case of denial and not realising that life is never as good as our expectation and reputation of oneself?

In any case this was somewhat the thoughts that ran through, when i had my first sniff of the infamous Lorong Selamat Char Kuey Teow.

The last time having queued ages, and taking the hot sun in stride as we dug into the hot and delish plate of noodles.

This time around? Situated inside the Heng Huat coffeeshop, there is a helper to take your orders!

Price to pay? RM 6 for a standard plate and RM 8 for the bigger portionl; hardly a dent to some people's wallet when they pay more then RM 10 to eat in an air-conditioned mall.

Tastewise, it just fell flat of everything; reputation and expectation. Oily, with no signs of waxed sausages and pork lard, it wasn't even worth ordering a second plate.

Worse still was my friend who went 2 hours earlier then me, said it was one of the best he ever had, goes to show what luck.

Despite lacking flavour, it still look darn good on picture.

While waiting for the noodles to be fried, which was damn long eventhough the place wasn't packed, we ordered ais kacang. Refreshing to say the least.

Another failure? My friend had this as well 2 hours earlier then me, and said it was a bomb, mine was just well, not creamy enough and soaked with steam water.

Lesson learnt, never come here at 3pm, or just go to where the locals go.

What a bummer, the char kuey teow wasn't just up to par.

Location: Lorong Selamat, Penang

Monday, October 20, 2008

Something cute before i go back to food reviews

I must have done something right recently, like procrastinating to resume back to good ol food blogging.

Looking at the records, i haven't done a proper review for god knows when, but then again everyone goes through this kind of phases.

After weighing myself and finding myself with pants that don't fit me anymore, it can get quite hard to eat with enthusiasm but yet find yourself indulging so sinfully without a damn, after all how much would new pants cost?

Haha. In any case, i am heading towards the gym in the evening and promise that i will upload pictures onto Flickr at night (taking into consideration how fast Streamyx can be at certain days (worse then a girl's PMS fling)

To start off Monday, a nice little gift from my Ipoh relatives when they came down for the Raya break.

Edible Turtle Bun

The texture wasn't super smooth but had a nice chew to it when steamed. Cut a chunk of butter to let it melt in the middle, a brilliant start for Breakfast.

Apparently not available all the time? Well i will never know.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

What is in my wallet..

Received a "meme" or more like a request to be busy body and let me see your wallet now, kind of tag.

Since i had neglected the camera and you know, since it was the lack of libido, it was seriously pretty hard to get it standing and zooming at the max of 85mm.

Poor camera..

With wallets, i haven't had much luck with cheap wallets. Remembered that i was still using the Quiksilver wallets in my first year of University.

Then proceeded to a L shape Polo Ralph Lauren wallet that got thrashed within a year.

Got a Ted Baker wallet from the Girlfriend as a birthday present that also died within a year plus.

Sod it, i am going italian. After all, the best leather wallets come from there no?

Read the lines properly and thou shall find the hidden brand of my wallet.
Clue: It isn't LV or Gucci, those are just for show offs.

If you insist, the Prestige card is the latest addition to my humble wallet. Insurance card, IC, Credit Card, Gym Card and some pictures of the Girlfriend and I (in my skinnier days) and my name cards for impromptu meetings.

Ok, there you have it, hope my camera recover soons and zooms away without any resistance then, shall we?

Monday, October 13, 2008

Err, I need help..Anyone know any caterers?

I sincerely apologise for the lack of pictures. My poor camera has been osctracised in one corner of my room for the last good two weeks or so. Must be the lack of libido.

Had a very very long night on Friday, didn't end till 4am with two friends that passed out to dream land. Thank goodness for that supplement, it worked! well almost or maybe i wasn't drinking enough.

Saturday morning started at 6am, and it was treasure hunt! Thank goodness for my treasure hunt member Nikon D80, i snapped pictures of that all-exclusive grand price, Jonker Street Cendol!

Sunday was sleeping.

Ok, back to what i need.

Anyone know of any caterers that does office functions? RM 30- RM 40 per pax preferably with some cocktail drinks and appetisers, followed by a few mains (buffet style) without too much fuss?

Please leave me their contact details on my comments box.

Ok thats it for now, next up, what is in my wallet, (Damn meme)..

Thursday, October 9, 2008

How to quickly blog something relevant to food blogging without food..

If you are an active reader of food blogs, you will surely have heard of this infamous blogger out there who likes to capture pictures of something she passionately loves, other then food; toilets.

So i thought i do a Tummy Thoz Toilet Special and show you the actual seat that i sat in to release what i ate in Pangkor Laut.

Hahaha...don't worry no residuals..

Don't have to fight when you want to wash your face or brush your teeth, individual basins..

The nice clean toilet..

The bath tub? Lets say that has been censored heavily to a nice white screen.

Been damn busy entertaining, guest from Hong Kong, scratching my head now, no time to blog, panda eyes at work, *yawns* followed by a Melaka weekend.

Busy like no body business!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

The lunch where you drown your sorrows after the happenings in Malaysia

What can one do but lament with a sigh, when all one sees in the newspaper is nothing but reports of people bickering like 3 year old kids fighting for one piece of candy in a candy store.

I suppose other then a sigh, our dear part time professional celebrity baker / generous host / blogger and etc etc etc had something else in mind and decided that such news could only deserve nothing less then a champagne brunch. A toast to my dear Friend.

The definition of brunch as been re-defined from 11am to 5pm. For, we were dining and wining for 6 hours during our "brunch".


Every time he hosts, he never fails to amaze his guests with the amount of food he churns out from the kitchen, from appetizers, main and right up to desserts. Today it was eureka as the meal was accompanied with virtually free flow champagne / prosecco (if i remember correctly, he said he ran out of bubbly but came back from his kitchen with another bottle, 3 times!).

At 5pm, the bubbles hit right up my head, the phone started ringing and questions like whether i was coming home for dinner started to digest in my intoxicated brain as i drove back, well err lets just say i wont have pass a roadblock, i think.


By dinner, the alcohol really tipped the scales in the blood and lets just say the moral of the story is, drink quicker during your brunch and sober up before dinner. *Kidding*

Anyways, time for the pictures.


While most of us order pate as a starter, we get a nice tin of foie gras pate flown from France to be accompanied with some home made lavash.

There was cheese and the good old butter that went well with the crunchy crackers that were sprinkled abundantly with sesame and poppy seeds.

Home made chocolates while you wait for the array of dishes to arrive? Ordered from Lauras Selection. Brilliant chocolates, i tell you.

Some thing that i havent seen for the longest of times. Reminded me back to the good ol days of Delifrance where they served corn beef sandwiches. Although yes, it does look abit like dog food, but trust me such a basic item can be a breakfast bliss when stir fried together with some onions.

Another compulsory item on the breakfast menu, fresh button mushrooms.

Maybe some creamy wild mushrooms instead?

Baked beans!! At this point, this really seemed like a breakfast buffet but this is nothing but the beginning.

A nice Bacon and Mushroom Quiche really got us perked up. Pity we were really chatting and laughing way too much till the poor thing turn cold.

The famous Meng Kee Char siew. Now when it is self service in determining how thick of a slice you want, all your dreams comes true. A thick chunk of caramelized roast pork being chewed slowly in your mouth instead of those stinged thin slices that you are accustomed to. The "siew cheong" i.e. liver sausages were awesome too, remind me to order some the next time i go Meng Kee.

With this plate of sausages x 2, we were all prepared for the flowing champagne.


Some salad to balance things, and some strawberries for the champagne.

Just when we were in a dreamy daze and gaze, being entertained by the intelligence of an 8 year old telling us how he knew the Lehmann Brothers filed for bankruptcy (i mean quoted from someone "and you would think teenagers probably ask who are the Lehmann Brothers, a pop band?), desserts came out.

Lemongrass infused mixed fruits, obviously to honour her.

The Lemon Tart was tangy and just invited you to have another slice.

The Dark Choc Mint Mousse with a Tiger biscuit? base had a very mature taste to it, i mean who in the young generation still eats after dinner chocolate mints?

By then the booze continued to the early hours of 5pm, when everyone realises that there is dinners to attend and not enough time to sober up for drinks meant to be drunk at the saner time of night.

Awesome.

Monday, October 6, 2008

I WANT MAMMA MIA TICKETS!!!

I got no mood to blog about food.

Got hold of the ticket prices.

Seat the top tier (after discount) from RM 120-160

Premier tickets (after discount) from RM 360-400

You think what? Malaysians made out from money ar? Recession ler.

I wonder if the fellow came up with the prices converted pounds into RM.

Ridiculuous, i dont care, i shall go to axcess and get tickets la.

Maybe i AM made out from money.

---

UPDATED:

I got my tickets, going to be dancing with queens and having dreams on New Year's eve. Looking forward to the traffic jam home after the show.

YEAH!

Friday, October 3, 2008

Exactly the thing you need over a weekend, a very long weekend.

Lets face it, given that "muslims" are the only ones who don't drink (although i have seen plenty who do), the rest of readers must surely indulge in abit of alcohol, don't they?

Given it is a bloody long weekend and only i among the whole throng of Malaysians chose to disrupt it with a senseless day of working on Friday, i thought i recommend something that my friend swears by especially on heavy drinking sessions.

Since most clubs and pubs most be packed to the brim, perfect opportunity to get yourself smashed to the grounds without a care in the world, 3-4 days back to back, i would like to reveal thy 9th wonder of the world.

A dose of ultra strong Milk Thistle.

The Friend swears by it, i am still having problems trying to pronounce the name to the pharmacist before i decide when to get smashed.

*2 tablets before drinking and 2 tablets when you are smashed*

Enjoy your holidays and drive safely back from Kampung!