Posts Tagged ‘Makansutra’

BY CK Lam

Street food in Penang is simply irresistible with multitude delightful culinary choices. Food stalls are set up by the road side while others are located in food courts.

But food courts are gaining popularity in recent years, unlike in Singapore, where fancy food courts dot the island. Locals find them convenient, with all their favourite hawker food under one roof and its cleaner environment.

By far the largest food court for Penang is the New World Park Food Court. In total, there are twenty over stalls serving a good mix of Penang’s street food.

Unlike any food court or hawker centre, this food court is design with exceptionally high roof for ventilation. The sitting area is brightly lit both from the natural light and the overhead spot lights. The stalls are well ventilated so much so that the smoke from the cooking does not travel into the dining area. The washing of plates and cutlery is carried out in a centralised wash area to ensure cleanness.

Like any food court, there are some stalls that are particularly popular as compared to others. One such stall is curry noodle. The lady owner is generous with the topping of mint leaves which gives the stock and noodle a green and fresh taste. The stock is not overwhelmed with thick coconut milk but rather on the lighter side. The appealing homemade curry paste has a strong spice aroma.

Penang Hawker Food at New World Park Food Court by what2seeonline.com

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BY CK Lam

The up-and-coming World Street Food Congress (WSFC) organised by Makansutra will take place on 31st May till 9th June 2013. Supported by the Singapore Tourism Board, the ten-day festival held at the F1 Pit Building and Paddock (1 Republic Boulevard) is not too be missed by all foodies and aficionados.

K.F. Seetoh, founder of Makansutra and TV host of The Food Surprise! on TLC Asia, unveiled the details of the WSFC at a press conference held last February at the Spice Market in New York City which comprises three main prongs:

- World Street Food Jamboree
- World Street Food Dialogue
- World Street Food Awards

The World Street Food Jamboree (31 May to 9 June) is a mega street food feast whereby around 40 of the world’s best street food masters gather and showcase their products. Visitors get to learn culinary cultures and enjoy new taste of hand-picked street foods from Indonesia, India, Thailand, Vietnam, USA, Mexico, Malaysia, Denmark, China and Singapore.

Keep an eye on the many exciting offerings, such as Pisang Roa (smoked fish sambal) and Kerak Telor (crispy glutinous rice frittata) from Indonesia, Banh Da Tom Hai Phong (prawn and fish red rice noodle) and Banh Khot (seafood rice cake) from Vietnam, Shrimps & Grits from United States and Bao Luo Fen from China. Not to be missed is the popular Penang Assam Laksa from Malaysia. This spicy-sour fish base soup noodle was voted No. 7 under CNNGo International Food Survey as “foods worth traveling the world to gorge on”.

Among the showcase stalls at the jamboree are Meyers Kokken by Claus Meyer (co-owner of NOMA, Denmark) and Lion City from Vietnam. Visitors can expect roasted Pork Sandwich and Seafood Teppanyaki (Singapore style).

World Street Food Jamboree Feast, Singapore by what2seeonline.com

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BY CK Lam
Occupying a site in inner George Town, the Moey She Temple is a Cantonese-style clan temple for the Chinese with the surname of “Moey”. Located on Penang Street, the temple is also where you can dine in – how about that?

Taste of Cantonese style economy rice at Moey She Temple, Penang at what2seeonline.com

Table in front of the main altar

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BY CK Lam

Just a very mention of Curry Mee and most Malaysians will be gleefully thinking about the delicious hawker food staple that has satisfied the nation for years. The dish itself is unique to Malaysia, with its combination of yellow noodles and vermicelli with the spicy coconut milk laden soup. Commonly, the soup would be spiced up with additional chilli paste, and topped with dried tofu pok (tau pok), prawns and cuttlefish.

There are several variations of curry mee in Malaysia; however this is the most telling Penang version. What differentiate Penang Curry Mee from the others are the ingredients used; besides the aforementioned there is also additional pig’s coagulated blood cubes and bloody cockles. Even though society in general is moving towards a healthier palate, most believe that Penang’s Curry Mee will not taste as good without them.

Throughout the island there are numerous stalls offering this mouth-watering curry mee, with each of them offering its own version of soup and ingredients. The soup varies from a reddish coconut based broth to a lighter pale color, affectionately known to locals as White Curry Mee.

White Curry Mee & Hainanese Chicken at Hot Bowl, Penang by what2seeonline.com

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BY CK Lam

 *** Updated July 2013 – This Bak Moi stall has since shifted into Hon Kei Food Corner, located a few shops down the road

Ho Ping in Penang is arguably a good place to head for hawker food. This double-storey coffee shop located at the junction of Penang Road and Kampung Malabar is popular with the locals and also tourists staying at the nearby hotels.

The coffee shop has rented the space to several hawkers. One popular stall is the bak moi stall serving warming, comforting bak moi (pork porridge). There is no signboard to indicate the stall which is run by Y.C. Lai, owner of this third generation hawker food business.

Best Bak Moi at Ho Ping, Kampung Malabar Penang by what2seeonline.com

The owner busy preparing the bak moi

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BY CK Lam

With its multiracial culture, Penang is a melting pot for lip-smacking cuisine. One great example would be the Mamak Mee Goreng, which some label as a “to-die-for” meal of its own. Mee Goreng served in Penang is slightly different from the rest of the nation. Apart from the usual ingredients such as bean sprouts, boiled potatoes, shrimp cake, egg and tofu, dried cuttlefish is also used, which makes Penang Mee Goreng stands out from the rest.

Just the mention of Mee Goreng and most locals will point you to the heart of Pulau Tikus, Penang. The Bangkok Lane Mee Goreng is legendary and people from all walks of life have been patronising this place for decades.

Mamak Mee Goreng at Bangkok Lane, Penang by what2seeonline.com

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BY CK Lam

Penang’s latest eatery serving giant river prawn is House of Udang Galah (HUG). Located on Hutton Lane, the restaurant housed in two renovated heritage shop houses offers fresh udang galah (giant river prawn) cooked in many different ways. Italian, Western, Malay, Indian and Chinese method of cooking is offered. The prawns are cut into halves and cooked with the head and shell intact.

One of HUG specialties is the Udang Galah in Chef Specialty Lime Sauce. The prawns steamed with garlic, chilli and ginger, made up a perky and appetising dish. Garnished with Chinese parsley, the dish costs a little fortune at RM109 (730g at RM15/100g).

River Prawns at House of Udang Galah (HUG), Penang by what2seeonline.com

Udang Galah in Chef Specialty Lime Sauce

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BY CK Lam

Mimi Nyonya Laksa is a popular little eatery in Penang for many office workers lunching around the area. The eatery, located on the ground floor of Wisma Central, was named after the owner.

Many are obviously drawn to their Nyonya delights. The daily specials are available on a rotating basis. The nasi ulam cooked with generous sprinkling of fresh herbs, garnished with daun pudina (mint leaves) and red chillies, is a firm favourite among the customers. The combination of carrots, onions, daun limau purut (chopped lime leaves), serai (lemon grass), daun kaduk (wild pepper leaves), daun kesum (laksa leaves), daun cekur (sand ginger leaves) and grated coconut layers the complex flavours of this rice dish.

Nyonya Delights at Mimi Nyonya Laksa by what2seeonline.com

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BY CK Lam

Hawker food features prominently in the culinary culture in the state of Penang. Across the industry there are always places that constantly make headlines while others tend to be excellent but underrated, and the New Cathay Coffee Shop is classified as the latter.

Located along Lorong Kuching right off the ever bustling Burmah Road, this coffee shop is one of the decent places to sample a plethora of Penang’s street hawker fare. A favorite mostly with the locals, it begins to fill up as early as 7.30 in the morning and is absolutely packed during the peak hours of ten in the morning right through two in the afternoon.

For those opting for a lighter snack, the apom manis (Indian style pan cake) stall right beside the shop is an excellent alternative. Interestingly, the owner still maintains the tradition of using charcoal stoves and clay pots.

Hawker Food at Cathay Coffee Shop, Pulau Tikus by what2seeonline.com

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BY CK Lam

Tucked away in Precinct 10, Sushi Zento has been serving up Japanese meal with pork besides other meats. The restaurant has two seating area, with an outdoor air-conditioned area with cosy setting. The other area has a Kaiten belt which services a number of tables and a teppanyaki section with an open kitchen concept.

Sushi Zento at Precinct 10, Penang

Shake Toro Sashimi RM38

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