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Hong Kong - Breakfast at the Mido Cafe

Mido Cafe is perhaps HK's best-preserved retro "cha chaan teng" (traditional HK teahouse-cafe), having even been featured in the iconic 1960 film, "The World of Suzie Wong".

Having breakfast here is like stepping back in time: the cafe still retains its tiled floors and booths with formica-topped tables, its menu items seemed stuck in a time-warp. We ordered:
- "Bo lo bao" with butter
- Ham-and-omelette toasted sandwich
- French toast, slathered with butter and syrup
- Crisp wanton skins with pig offal in sweet-sour sauce
- Eggplant-and-pork fried "yee fu" noodles
- HK-style milk tea
The food was passable, not outstanding. But one comes here to experience what an old HK cafe feels like, and for that, there's no beating Mido Cafe.

Address details
================
Mido Cafe
63 Temple St
Yaumatei, Hong Kong
Tel: +852 2384 6402

about 3 hours ago
klyeoh in China & Southeast Asia

Hong Kong - Shun Tak-style Dinner at Pang's Kitchen, Happy Valley

Wished you were here with us, Charles :-)

about 3 hours ago
klyeoh in China & Southeast Asia

Breakfast places in Hong Kong and Kowloon

The old Mido Café at 63 Temple St, Yaumatei, opens at 8.30am. Serves HK-style breakfast items like macaroni soup and pork-chop on fried rice. Try their milk tea.

about 18 hours ago
klyeoh in China & Southeast Asia

Hong Kong - Shun Tak-style Dinner at Pang's Kitchen, Happy Valley

1-Michelin-starred Pang's Kitchen, a tiny family-owned casual eatery in Happy Valley serves up some pretty rustic, robust fare reminiscent of its owners' Shun Tak roots. I found its offerings to be a bit "different" from those offered in other family-style casual eats around HK - this one seems to hint that its owners have perhaps lived or worked overseas - maybe London or New York Chinatown? It was a busy evening last night, so we didn't have a chance to ask owner Pang Pak-sheung (friendly chap) who looked pretty busy in the packed restaurant.

What we had:
- Pang's Kitchen appetisers: mashed yam fritters, freshwater fish & shrimps fritters and deep-fried soft tofu. These were common in Shun Tak (Shunde) cuisine and done pretty well here.
- Braised pomelo skin topped with shrimp roe: which is my favourite Cantonese dish of all time! I'd had good ones in Fu Sing, Tim's Kitchen and The Chairman, and the one here is every bit as good. (P.S. - Avoid this dish at Tasty Noodle & Congee outlets - their version's nasty)
- Fish intestines omelette - another Shun Tak-inflected dish, simple and yet satisfying. The fresh eggs & sweet onions, combined with generous ribbons of fish intestines, provided a burst of flavours and contrasting textures which I absolutely enjoyed.
- Fried milk with scallops: another classic dish done very, very well here.

We ordered the sweet-sour pork with strawberries out of curiousity from the concatenated English version of the menu, since it was the oft-mentioned dish by some reviewers and also noted in the Michelin-guide. It was pretty average, and one of the dishes which betrays its owner/chef's previous experience working in the West. We seemed to be the only table which ordered this, as the other diners were all local-Cantonese, and most seemed to opt for the Shun Tak-style fried pork with crispy garlic. Obviously, they know where the chef's forte lies.

Michelin seems to have different rating standards for Hong Kong - where else can one pay HKD750 (USD97) for dinner for 4 persons?!

Address details
================
Pang's Kitchen (彭慶記)
G/F, 25 Yik Yam Street, Happy Valley
(跑馬地奕蔭街25號地下)
Tel: +852 2838 5462

about 18 hours ago
klyeoh in China & Southeast Asia

Kuala Lumpur - Malay Traditional "Hari Raya" Food Items

True - hygiene standards in Malaysia are pretty debatable. But most Malaysians these days don't prepare "rendang" at home anymore - more Malay women working outside instead of being home-makers. Furthermore, "rendang" preparation is tedious and time-consuming: requiring long periods of slow-simmering and constant stirring. Not surprised that many opt to buy instead of preparing at home.

Back in Singapore, I remembered that our Malay neighbour used to have fresh turmeric leaves ("daun kunyit") plucked from their garden for the purpose of making "rendang". These days, I'd not even seen fresh turmeric leaves in the markets there. I think KL's Chow Kit market has them, although it's been 3 years since I made a trip down there.

Jul 23, 2014
klyeoh in China & Southeast Asia

Kuala Lumpur - Malay Traditional "Hari Raya" Food Items

Beef Rendang, with Lemang and Ketupat Palas:

Jul 23, 2014
klyeoh in China & Southeast Asia
1

Kuala Lumpur - Malay Traditional "Hari Raya" Food Items

The Muslim Ramadhan month is coming to an end in 4 days' time, to be followed by Eid ul-Fitr or, as it's called in Malaysia, "Hari Raya Aidil-Fitri", on Monday, 28 July 2014.

In the meantime, traditional, celebratory Malay-Muslim foods are already being sold all over the Kuala Lumpur-Klang Valley region, where 43% of its 7 million inhabitants are Muslims.

One of my fave Malay celebratory dish is the Beef "Rendang" (an insanely fragrant & tasty dry beef curry), accompanied by "Lemang" (steamed rice, wrapped in banana leaves and compacted in bamboo tubes, then grilled). The best commercially available version I'd found in KL is the one sold by the Rendang Atuk stall at the ground floor main concourse, Mid-Valley Megamall.

Three types of rice-based dishes were offered:
- Ketupat Nasi (rice stuffed into woven baskets and par-boiled)
- Ketupat Palas (glutinous rice and black-eyed peas, wrapped in palm leaves and par-boiled)
- Lemang (Rice cooked in bamboo tubes)

Besides the Beef Rendang, the chicken version (Rendang Ayam) was also offered.

Other traditional foods on sale were spiced chicken and beef floss ("serondeng ayam" and "serondeng daging").

Jul 23, 2014
klyeoh in China & Southeast Asia

Singapore - Street Food at Changi Airport Terminal 3

It just opened - I'd not had the chance to try them out yet.

Jul 21, 2014
klyeoh in China & Southeast Asia

Hair found in the food...

GROSS!

Jul 21, 2014
klyeoh in Not About Food

Kuala Lumpur - A&W: The First Fast Food Brand in Malaysia

Sad news - the iconic A&W drive-in in PJ will close down in December this year, with two office towers to be built on the site.

Jul 21, 2014
klyeoh in China & Southeast Asia

Singapore - Street Food at Changi Airport Terminal 3

Afraid not.

Jul 21, 2014
klyeoh in China & Southeast Asia

Singapore - Street Food at Changi Airport Terminal 3

Good news for Singapore street food fans - if you haven't had a chance to taste some of Singapore's popular street foods during your visit to Singapore, or merely transiting through the airport, you now have a chance to try them at stalls managed by some of Singapore's best-known street food hawkers at Changi Airport itself.

There'll be a Singapore Food Street section at Changi Airport Terminal 3. Most of the 13 stalls there are branches of hawker outlets which household names in Singapore:
- Changi Village Nasi Lemak
- East Coast Lagoon BBQ Seafood
- Old Airport Road Fried Kway Teow & Carrot Cake
- Odeon Beef Noodles
- Tiong Bahru Meng Kee Roast Duck
- Sin Ming Road Rong Cheng Bak Kut Teh
- Jalan Tua Kong Minced Pork Noodle
- Bugis Street Hainanese Chicken Rice
- East Coast Lagoon Fried Rice Noodle
- Newton Circus Satay/Satay Bee Hoon
- E-Sarn Thai Corner
- Kampong Cafe
- Singapore Food Street Beverage Stall

Jul 21, 2014
klyeoh in China & Southeast Asia
2

[Dunvegan, Isle of Skye] Three Chimneys

Always wanted to go there. I've only got the beautiful Three Chimneys cookbook - a gift from a Scottish aunt (she's from Perth) who dined there and absolutely loved the place.

Jul 20, 2014
klyeoh in U.K./Ireland

Mumbai street food in the UK

There's a Kailash Parbat branch in Singapore, too. They're good.

Jul 18, 2014
klyeoh in U.K./Ireland

Kuala Lumpur - Best Mexican in town at Fresca, The Gardens @ Mid-Valley

;-)

Jul 10, 2014
klyeoh in China & Southeast Asia

Madras New Woodlands: Thali at dinner? (kyleoh??)

Sorry, I'd not been to Madras New Woodlands for dinner in a long time, so can't answer your question. Anyone else can comment on this?

Jul 10, 2014
klyeoh in China & Southeast Asia

Best South Indian Restaurant in KL - Green Banana Leaf @ Cyberjaya

I think Pongal is available these days in Singapore due to the influx of Indian emigrants (spearheaded by IT professionals) into Singapore in the past 10 years, but it was indeed a rarity in commercial establishments even up to the late-90s.
My first taste of Pongal was in Bangalore in 2004. In those years, even Indian chaats (bhelpoori, pani puri) were non-existent in Singapore - but these are now commonplace. How quickly the world changes - even culinary-wise.

Green Banana Leaf here in Cyberjaya are run totally by Indian (from India, as opposed to Malaysian-born Indians) staff, as they couldn't speak any Malay, but only in (Indian-accented) English. And they refer to a "restaurant" as a "hotel", a term commonly used in India.

Jul 08, 2014
klyeoh in China & Southeast Asia

Pret a Manger, Portrait Gallery branch [London]

I grew up in Perth (Western Australia, not Scotland) - York's one hour's drive to the north, and Albany's 5 hours to the south.

Jul 08, 2014
klyeoh in U.K./Ireland

Pret a Manger, Portrait Gallery branch [London]

Pity, Battenberg sounded better to me.

Jul 08, 2014
klyeoh in U.K./Ireland

Can I bring hummus on a plane?? Please help!!

ROFL!

Jul 07, 2014
klyeoh in General Topics

Best South Indian Restaurant in KL - Green Banana Leaf @ Cyberjaya

It's a moist, savoury rice dish - cooked with milk, and flavoured with ginger, mustard seeds, fenugreek, scented with kari leaves.

Jul 07, 2014
klyeoh in China & Southeast Asia

Best South Indian Restaurant in KL - Green Banana Leaf @ Cyberjaya

Ponggal rice:

Jul 07, 2014
klyeoh in China & Southeast Asia

Best South Indian Restaurant in KL - Green Banana Leaf @ Cyberjaya

Quick, quick - if you're in the vicinity of Cyberjaya, near Kuala Lumpur, you have to make a visit to the one-week-old Green Banana Leaf in Shaftsbury Square. At the moment, it's serving, hands-down, the BEST South Indian food I'd ever tasted in Malaysia and Singapore! Not sure if they can maintain the standards - Asian restaurants are notorious for having ever-changing, anonymous chefs man their kitchens.

But, at the moment, Green Banana Leaf serves undoubtedly the best South Indian options I'd ever had in this part of the world. What I'd had in the past 4 days:
- Steamed idlis, served with a very tasty dhal curry and podi (sesame) dip;
- Thosai (also called 'dosa'), served with two types of coconut chutney (one's a green-hued coriander-flavoured version) and tasty dhal curry;
- One of the best paratha in KL (only the one at Jalan Kayu Prata @ Avenue K in downtown KL is better)
- Ponggal rice: this is the best-tasting I'd ever had anywhere!!
- Mutton biryani, served at lunch - very good.
- Vegetarian banana leaf rice - again, perfectly executed and one of the best renditions on town.

Address
=========
Green Banana Leaf Restaurant
Shaftsbury Square
Persiaran Multimedia
63000 Cyberjaya

Jul 07, 2014
klyeoh in China & Southeast Asia

Kuala Lumpur - Best Mexican in town at Fresca, The Gardens @ Mid-Valley

I don't think any "Malaysian" restaurant exist in Mexico :-D

I need to go back to Fresca and try their Mole Poblano.

Jul 06, 2014
klyeoh in China & Southeast Asia

Kuala Lumpur - Best Mexican in town at Fresca, The Gardens @ Mid-Valley

Surprisingly high standards at this 2 year old Mexican joint in Kuala Lumpur - comparable to those in more cosmopolitan Far East cities like Hong Kong & Singapore. Dinner this evening consisted of:

(1) Nachos Grande, consists of tortilla chips layered with refried beans, Monterey Jack Cheese, Ground Beef, Jalapeno Chillies, Guacamole and Sour Cream;
(2) Crumbed spicy jalapeno peppers stuffed with Monterey Jack cheese and minced beef, served with sweet mango chipotle salsa;
(3) Hongos Rellenos - Portobello mushrooms stuffed with eggplant, corn, zucchini, chile Poblano, beef bacon & mozzarella, in a tequila cream sauce.
(4) Pollo a la Parilla - grilled chicken on a sizzling plate, served with Mexican green rice and Arbol Chile salsa;
(5) Carne Asada - Mexican steak platter with with grilled tenderloin a la Tampiquena, served red rice, refried beans & enchiladas verde;

Plus desserts
(6) Flan de la casa - traditional Mexican creme caramel; and
(7) Churros with caramel & chocolate dips.

Address
=======
Fresca Mexican Kitchen & Bar
Lot G-242A, The Gardens Mall
Mid Valley City
59200 Kuala Lumpur
Tel: +603 2201 2893

Jul 06, 2014
klyeoh in China & Southeast Asia

High End Indian restaurant in Tokyo

Although it is an Asian capital, I don't think Tokyo can offer you any good Indian option. A few years back, a colleague and I decided on a whim that we'd *only* dine in Indian restaurants for the whole two weeks that we were in Tokyo - it was a gourmet challenge we set for ourselves (since it was our 10th business trip to Tokyo within a 2-year period, and we were getting a bit "bored"). We did go all over the city and dined in a different Indian spot each evening, but could not find a single one which would past muster had we been in a non-Indian Asian city like Singapore, Bangkok or Kuala Lumpur.

BTW, the most interesting Indian restaurant we came across was Nair's at the Ginza. It was opened in 1946 by Ayappan Nair, an Indian freedom fighter who collaborated with the Japanese imperial army against the British colonialists. So, he obviously could not return to Indian after the war, and opened perhaps the first Indian restaurant in post-war Tokyo (which, I surmise, was largely smouldering ruins at the time).

The restaurant is run today by Ayappan's second son, Gopalan Nair. My fellow Singaporean colleague and I were offered some dishes off-menu (including a *very* good Chettinad chicken), since Gopalan-san knew that the menu items, adjusted to suit local tastes, would not be suitable for us.

Jul 06, 2014
klyeoh in Japan

Good food in the East of Singapore (anything worth a special trip)

I made a special visit to Immigrants on Joo Chiat Rd recently after hearing quite a bit about owner-chef, Damian D'Silva's Eurasian "seh bak": a rich stew made with various parts of the pig (ears, heart, liver, lung, stomach, intestine, etc.). It was well worth it. Not a fine-dining spot, but a rather casual gastrobar.

Right across the road from Immigrant is Sinpopo, which offers old-fashioned Singapore eats in a recreated retro dining atmosphere. The "durian pengat" is to-die for.

Jul 05, 2014
klyeoh in China & Southeast Asia

what do Germans eat?

Hamburg's been pretty erratic, summer comes & goes.

Jul 05, 2014
klyeoh in General Topics

what do Germans eat?

Not yet, Harters. Really miss London, but have to do Karachi, Pakistan, next. I'll start a new thread there called 'What do the Taliban Eat?'

Jul 05, 2014
klyeoh in General Topics
2

Singapore - Best Bolo Char-siu Bao in town at Taste Paradise

Would love to, but I'm off to Pakistan around that time :-(

Jul 05, 2014
klyeoh in China & Southeast Asia