BY CK Lam
Fettes Park in Tanjung Tokong, Penang is not only a residential neighbourhood with shops and restaurants, but also with many hawker food lover’s list of musts. Infront of Prima Tanjung in Jalan Fettes, are several street peddlers offering a variety of finger foods, deep-fried snacks, local kuih-muih, and Assam Laksa.
One particular stall that strikes a chord with the nostalgic senses of many will be the bak kua roti motorcycle stall. The bak kua roti (pork slice with bun) is a heavenly indulgent for the senses. It has warm grilled pork slice sandwiched between steamed soft rectangular bun spread with sweet savory sauce.
Clouds of smoke waft above the stall offering charcoal grilled items such as bak kua roti, bak hu roti (pork meat floss with bun), along with chicken gizzards, chicken wings, Taiwan sausages, and chicken tails.
Stepping away leads me towards a wafting aroma of assam laksa. An Indian chap on a motorcycle has been manning the stall for years now, and offerings of assam laksa, deep-fried popiah, cucur udang, and colorful sweet kuih muih are just some of the items available.
Served piping hot, the assam laksa is a crowd favourite especially for customers who like something spicy yet sourish to tickle the tastebuds. This local Penang favorite hawker dish with sour fish-based soup comes with noodles and plenty of vegetables. While the assam laksa is good on its own, it is equally well with crunchy deep-fried popiah (spring roll) filled with shredded yambean.
For something light, grab some deep-fried popiahs and dunk them in the assam laksa soup. If sweet’s is on your mind, you probably should try the assorted colourful kuih-muih.
To quench the thirst, look no further than the soya bean milk truck located just right beside the assam laksa stall. One can find soya bean milk products such as bean curd (taufufah), cold and hot soya bean milk with traditional selection of black or white sugar. Apart from that, there is the grass black jelly drink (leong fun) and packets of nasi lemak as well.
At night, do not miss Bala cafe, down the road leading to the Mount Erskine traffic light. The mamak stall parked by the right side of the road serves up a handful of curry dishes along with deep-fried fish and chicken. Many are seen stopping by for the dishes which can be paired with rice or Bengali bread.