Kway Teow Soup at Restoran Xing Ho, Gelang Patah

Singapore has a lot of good food. Our noodles are world famous and everybody loves a good bowl of bak kut teh. But I think the hawker food in Singapore doesn’t even come close to what is available in Malaysia where not only is it cheap, but the hawkers think nothing of throwing in all sort of ingredients. Just compare our bak kut teh with the Malaysian version. Or our minced meat/fishball noodles with this version:

This bowl of kway teow soup comes with generous amount of pork liver, stomach, meat ball, fish cake, prawn, sotong, minced and sliced pork. I don’t think there is anything comparable here in Singapore. And this cost just RM8. There is a smaller serving at RM6 although it certainly isn’t actually small. It is still a pretty solid portion. There is also a seafood version which comes with a slice of abalone and some small oysters!

This kway teow soup is popular with the locals in Gelang Patah, Johore Malaysia and is located in a coffeeshop Restaurant Xing Ho, at 24, Jalan Medan Nusa Perintis 8, Taman Nusa Pertinis 2, 81550, Gelang Patah, .

Some of us Singaporean will baulk at the way they do the cooking. An open stall next to the road and very messy.

I think if this is in Singapore, it won’t even get a D from NEA. But since this is Malaysia, who cares about the grade. Got good food just whack. And that what this little stall have.

4 Uniquely Singapore Sandwiches

Some time ago, some “ang mo dude in the United State of Awesomeness~” mocked and dissed one of our beloved sandwich – the delicious heat busting ice cream sandwich that can be found in street corners all over the island and in Malaysia and Indonesia. Now why is it that I am never surprised at the fucked type mentality of these people who thinks they know what is best for the rest of the world never mind that the guy had never even tried it. For those of us who have eaten this, this must surely ranked as one of the best treat whether you out shopping at Orchard Rd, or at the beach or just walking out of the school compound.

Ice Cream

Ice Cream (photo from foodinmouth.com)

That post got me thinking though. Beside ice cream sandwich, we have some other sandwich that is really shiok and unique and which even the Malaysian and Indonesia cannot claim is their heritage food. Here are 4 of the best. For illustration purposes, the photos are taken with a single slice of bread instead of the usual 2 slices.

Pork Floss Sandwich

Most of us are familiar with the pork or chicken floss bun made famous by Breadtalk and now sold in every single bakery in Singapore and other parts of Asia. But before the pork floss bun, there was the Pork Floss sandwich.

Pork Floss

Pork Floss Sandwich

Seen here is crispy pork floss on a single slice of bread. Best eaten together with a thin spread of butter on the bread. I prefer the non crispy floss but the Mrs prefer the Crispy version. Either way this is great for breakfast.

Barbecued Pork Sandwich

Practically every one of us ie the non Muslim must have eaten barbecue pork or bak kwa before. But how many have eaten it between 2 slices of bread?

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Barbecue Pork or Bak Kwa Sandwich

This is one of the best treat when one is out in the trails and doing a long race or ultra. Oh… the kick that you  get from just biting into one mouth of this when you hot and tired after hours and hours of hiking and running. If you never try this before, pack one for your next hike/race. You won’t regret it!

Hae Bee Hiam Sandwich

This is one of my favourite especially if it is my Mum’s version of Hae Bee Hiam or spicy dried prawns. A slightly different twist to this is to use pork instead of Hae Bee.

Hae Bee Hiam

Hae Bee Hiam Sandwich

This is best eaten with the Hae Bee Hiam hot. Spread a thin layer of margarine or butter on the bread. Toast the Hae Bee Hiam if it is not hot. And then spread them liberally on the bread. Best as a tea time snack or even a full meal by itself.

Braised Pork Sandwich

Last but not least, my personal favourite. A big piece of succulent braised pork tucked between 2 slices of bread with just a little bit of the black sauce. This is similar to the Kong Bak Pau that is served at Hokkien restaurant and sometimes funerals.

Braised Pork

Braised Pork Sandwich

I usually eat it with the pork steaming hot and sometime throw in the skin or egg that is usually served together with the pork. Best eaten? Anytime!

What other unique local sandwich have you eaten before?

Koel & Dove

I like birds but there is one that I really dislike and that is the Koel. I wrote about this previously and most of us in Singapore will be familiar with its very loud and distinct  noisy call early in the morning. And yet although it is everywhere, it is so difficult to spot one. And since I started this bird photography thing, I mean trying hard to get a shot at one of this noisy and yet elusive bird. I got one sometime ago but it wasn’t really a good photo.09-TEG_4292This I believe is a male koel.

Then I got lucky last week at the Tampines Eco Green and managed to spot this female koel.Koel

Another bird that I saw and which I mistook for a pigeon is this White Spotted Dove.Pigeon

At first I thought it was a Pink Neck Green Pigeon but than on closer examination there was this patch of white spot on the back of the neck. So I asked around at the BICA FB page and got my answer.

2 new species to add to my spotted list!

Buta Ramen

There this little ramen outlet that I passed by often at Far East Square that always catch my attention because it has this big sign:DSC_0394So of course have to try right. Rope in a friend and we ordered theseDSC_0395 DSC_0396

One spicy and one Tonkotsu ramen.  Frankly I think it didn’t deserve the accolades. One thing, is the ramen was too soggy. Overcooked. I asked my friend who queue up for it who cooked it. He said it was a local lady. Not a Japanese chef. And he said the ramen was pre-cooked in a pot and the broth was just poured over it! Ah sodesu! Maybe the lady did it to cope with the lunch time crowd but what it did for me was a very big disappointment after seeing the hype on the banner.

Maybe their speciality is not the ramen but the pork belly and ribs or the grilled Kakuni buns but I didn’t try those so I can’t comment but if the ramen is not right… no matter what else is good, a ramen outlet without good ramen????

Food in Kota Kinabalu

Was in Kota Kinabalu a few weeks back and had a great time eating the local street food. We stayed in the Gaya area and there was absolutely the best food around. We went with the flow and ate mostly at the crowded shops although we did dine at some of the not so crowded and we immediately knew why they were not crowded!

Our first stop was dinner at this Bak Kut Teh place. The place was absolutely swamped with people from the minute it opened in the afternoon till it close at night.

This is the typical Malaysia style bak kut teh and comes with all sort of side dishes like pork ball, intestines, livers, stomach etc

Next up was breakfast at this place just across the road from the Bak Ku Teh store. There were 2 stalls inside the coffee shop, one selling Sarawak kolo mee and the other Sarawak style laksa. The kolo mee was the more popular stall. But I thought the laksa was not too bad too.
Kolo mee
Laksa
On the way back from race pack collection, we had lunch at this place that one of the guys recommended. The place was crowded and hot. There were many people ordering the noodles from one of the stall within but we went for the fried noodle stall and sadly the food were so so. Dinner was zhi char food at a shop next to our hotel but it was just passable and so all these shall not get a mention here. 
Breakfast on Sunday was at a dim sum shop. We had dim sum and noodle but these were normal and nothing to rave about. 

The only reason the dim sum shop get a mention and a picture here is that they used those 3-in-1 packet for the teh tarik that we ordered! Either they must be darned proud of their Sabah produced 3-in-1 tea or that is the way tea and coffee are made in the country but I don’t really fancy those commercially produce tea.
For lunch we went to what must be the most famous Western food outlet in town, Little Italy! See we are kinda  weird, we do our carbo loading after the race and not before! Our party had pizza, pasta, salad the usual Italian stuff. Was the food really that good? I guess if there is a scarcity of such food in the country, it will be considered good and of course we wolfed down the food but frankly I think there are better pizza and pasta back home.

Dinner was the highlight for us of course. For both Saturday and Sunday night, we went to this place which we also went during our last visit to KK. The Seri Selera Seafood centre at Kampung Air, a sprawling semi-open place with a few seafood stalls together much like the carpark seafood place, Top Spot Food Court in Sarawak. 

Both nights we were there, we had fish, crab, tofu, prawn, vegetables, beer etc and the food cost us about RM$190 for our first night 3 of us; and around RM450 for 8 of us on the 2nd night. Of course we went to different stall but I believe the prices are thereabout.

The food was not really that great but it was great value for money and when I come back again next year, I will be back eating seafood here. 
We did went to the waterfront where there are another lot of seafood stalls but managed by the Malays. There were barbecue galore but I was disappointed that the seafood were pre-barbecue and left in the open and reheated when somebody ordered them. So in the end I didn’t eat them although our group did ordered a few items to try.
Our last meal in Gaya before we flew home was at another “famous” stall.

This one specialises in a type of kiam chye soup with dry ee-noodles. Sort of like our zhu-zhar tang or pig intestine soup with noodles but without the kiam chye! But this was good or rather, unusual which makes it good and apparently the whole of Sabah seems to agree because it was packed like hell!

So the next time you are in Sabah – go try these few stalls. No regrets!

Rong Cheng Bah Kut Teh

I love bak kut teh. And I make it my mission to go to all the “famous” one in Singapore. So far I have tried all those that have featured in newspapers, blogs and tv programes. My favourite so far is still the humble little stall at Ang Mo Kio. Worst so far was the Johore Bahru Bah Kut Teh at Tampines.
Recently, I went to this outlet at far flung Midview. Okay it isn’t that far but it was located right in the middle of an industrial park.

Like all bak kut teh that are located in their own premises, prices here are not cheap cheap. Each serving of the ribs comes with only 1 big rib and 2 smaller pieces.

I am also crazy over pork trotters and so we also ordered one to go along. 

Overall, we didn’t find the bak kut teh to be that spectacular to warrant coming all the way here. But one man meat is another man’s poison and obviously judging by the good tutnout, some must have consider it good enough.