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Delights at Miss Ellie Teahouse

If there’s a place that you should go to for respite & be filled with an afternoon of treats, it would have to be at Miss Ellie Teahouse, a classic Tudor-styled English teahouse. The teahouse is located in the heart of a housing area in Taman Melawati & having opened less than 6 months, they are already whipping out more than 2 dozen kinds of main course, pastries & desserts to accompany your tea! Stepping into this teahouse was like stepping into someone’s home, decked in wooden furniture from the British Colonial days with wrought iron shelves displaying their finest selection of teas complemented by the rustic wooden beams on the ceiling! And it doesn’t even look old.

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The thought put into this place to complement Chef Justin Wong’s culinary creations was a combination of his preference for offering top class whipped delights in a cosy ambience replicating a homey feel when one sinks their teeth into his delectable desserts! He spent a great deal of time in Australia studying culinary arts before continuing as a chef in their shores. After several years of learning the trade, he returned to supervise the church’s ”˜cafeteria ministry’ before deciding on opening his own tea house. Assisted by his mother, Nancy Wong, elder brother, Nigel & Auntie Helen, they embarked on a journey of keeping their hoards of foodie friends sated. With each dish served, one covets the next till just about every tooth is satisfied.

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Scones with strawberries & cream!

Starting the lunch course with Beef Casserole, it was followed by the creamiest of Creme Brulee & their signature Pandan Panna Cota. Staying a bit longer, the call of Scones was too powerful to ignore & we called upon Chef Justin to give us some of his classic concocted pleasures!

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Panoramic view from inside.

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Treats like these makes you want to have tea all day!

At Miss Elie Tea House, corners are created for you. Perfect if you are alone or when you need some privacy in this extra homey tea house. Even the washroom is decorated to make you feel like visiting twice.

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Everything is made with love!

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My favourite Créme Brulée……

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Unless you live in Taman Melawati, don’t trust your instincts to get you there. You need a GPS & Waze app preferably. They are located at 7 Jalan H3, Taman Melawati, Selangor, Malaysia & using Waze, by searching for Miss Ellie Teahouse using Foursquare connection. The GPS coordinates are GPS: N 03° 13.658’ E 101° 44.675’. Call them if your GPS fails – +603-41620113 or +6012-2055171.

They are found on Facebook at http://bit.ly/MissEllieTH. Like them for new stuff on the menu!

Crispy Oyster Omelette – A Decade in Business!

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Oh-chien (Hokkien pronunciation) or Ho Cheen Tahn (Cantonese pronunciation) is a favourite dish amongst the Chinese from the world over & in Malaysia, there are lots of varieties of this oyster omelette. Bringing you my favourite oh-chien hawker whom I had been patronising for more than a decade, Mr. Yee opens his stall for business in the cluster of hawkers at Sang Kee Restaurant in Makhota Cheras, Selangor. Returning from his break of 4 months after he moved from Ampang, his unique omelette cannot be rivalled anywhere.

This month, Tourism Selangor brings you to the crown of Cheras to bring you the people’s favourite!

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The batter of potato starch is poured onto the grill to make the base while the eggs that have been whisked with chives & diced Choy Poh (preserved radish) are added onto the batter. Mr. Yee then pushes the batter aside before throwing in a generous amount of diced garlic onto the grill. His wife assists him by scooping a ladle-full of big oysters & handing them to him in a sift. I counted them. Mine had 10 pieces & they were succulent & juicy! He adds a few kinds of sauces & pepper before tossing them about to seal in the flavour. He artfully uses both hands holding wok ladles in each to stir-fry & coat the batter with oil. Finally, he takes the crispy, golden brown batter to cover the oysters & picks them up onto a plate. Served with a dish of chilli sauce for that zing though it’s not spicy, it complements the taste of the eggs, choy poh & oysters.

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Mr. Yee also does Lobak Ko – a kind of Chinese carrot cake & I have been eating his special omelette since he had a stall at Taman Desa for a number of years before moving to other locations in the 12 years that I have known of his amazing oyster omelette. Nowhere else does it this good & if you have not tried this style of omelette, you will never know what you have missed. Watch how he cooks it here:-

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The coffeeshop restaurant is at Jalan Temenggung 1/9 in Bandar Makhota Cheras & you can use these GPS coordinates to get there:- N3 03.051 E101 47.426.

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He’ll add in something special if you tell him you were sent by Pummkin!

Butter Coffee & Drunken Noodles in Banting

Banting is a town near Port Klang that bridges coastal areas like Morib & Tanjung Sepat. On our way to Tanjung Sepat, one stopover that you should not miss is the Banting Butter Brew coffee & Rice Wine Mee Sua, situated side by side at a row of government-owned shoplot. The coffee brew has a legacy of 60 years, left behind by the keeper’s father of Hainanese descent. The specialty black coffee is brewed & then a dollop of butter is added to give it a creamy taste. They serve the usual fare of toast with kaya (coconut & egg jam) & butter & half boiled eggs throughout the day.

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Beside this shop is Wo Jia Restaurant & I ordered their special Rice Wine Mee Sua, vermicelli noodles in rice wine soup served with an egg poached inside. It was absolutely divine as the wine in the hot soup brought out the flavour of the vermicelli & egg. My friend ordered a Pumpkin Pan Mee, hand-pinched noodle with pumpkin in soup.

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This row of shoplot is located near the bus stop & parallel to a huge monsoon drain. Perhaps the authorities should look into beautifying the area that hosts delectable street food along this entire row of shops. The outdoor seating beneath the big trees is quite a pleasant experience. We forget that when we live in & around concrete jungles. I got the shopkeeper to relate his thoughts to my friend who could speak Mandarin so if you speak the language too, do watch the video!!!
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Banting Butter Brew is in a shoplot called Sin Guan Huat & right beside it is Wo Jia Restaurant. My entire meal for two only costs less than RM15.00. Unbelievable but true. You have got to try it yourself to see what value you are getting. You can find them on Foursquare or at the coordinates here:- N2.810275, E101.502419. Make this your definite stopover as the trade of his butter brew is dying since his son has indicated no interest in continuing his business. The very few heritage trades of Hainanese left in Selangor”¦”¦

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Passionately Prized Fruit Blended with Ice in Tanjung Sepat

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Led by the sound of ice being shaved, I drew near to where a stall sits underneath a huge ficus tree. A Vespa, two dogs lazing & a man was sitting at the table beside the stall. This man runs both the stall & the passionfruit farm behind it. The look of curiosity on our faces paid off, as my girlfriend & I were invited to see how this unique fruit is planted & harvested. The tendrils of the passionfruit plants climb the trellises that Mr. Khor had built & his two runners (dogs) aptly named ”˜Pai Xiang Kuo’ (Passionfruit in Chinese) & ”˜Sen Qi Kuo’ (Miracle Fruit) watch over them with great interest. The fruit starts out green & ripens to a rose pink hue that is ready to eat. He was cutting fruits for us as he gave us a tour! Yummy…..

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The name “Passion” in “passion flower” refers to the passion of Christ. The name was given by missionaries because the parts of the flower seemed reminiscent of the torture (the Passion) of Christ prior to his crucifixion.

  • The tendrils represent the whips used in the flagellation of Christ.
  • The ten petals and sepals represent the ten faithful apostles (excluding St. Peter the denier and Judas Iscariot the betrayer).
  • The flower’s radial filaments, which can number more than a hundred and vary from flower to flower, represent the crown of thorns.
  • The 3 stigmas represent the 3 nails and the 5 anthers below them the 5 wounds (four by the nails and one by the lance).

Very interesting discovery even though I feel that the 12 apostles should always remain as twelve because after Jesus rose from the dead, He went to Peter & asked him if he loved Jesus, 3 times, in a manner that would allow Peter who had denied Christ 3 times, to redeem himself & be restored by Jesus. The symbolism of this flower that bears such a marvellous tasting fruit is truly great! The flower is not to be an object of worship neither should it be idolised. God made all things good for mankind & passionfruit happens to be exceptionally delicious!

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Pai Xiang Kuo

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Sen Qi Kuo

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We ordered a cup of ice-blended passionfruit puree & it was the best drink I’ve ever had! The fresh, tangy & sweet fruit was the best thirst quencher for the afternoon stroll. You can take home some passionfruits at RM12 per kilogram or RM3.50 per cup of ice blended goodness. I should’ve bought 2 kilos. Escorted out by Pai Xiang Kuo & Sen Qi Kuo, I thanked Mr. Khor for taking us on a tour of his farm while explaining how the plant flourishes as the good leaves are pruned.

Watch the video here!
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Mr. Khor’s bonding session with Pai Xiang Kuo who seemed to enjoy these moments with his master!

You can reach Mr. Khor at +6019-3776616 to make appointment for a visit to his farm or his stall at Qinren Qiao Fruits Farming at No. 19. Jalan Bawal 12, Taman Mutiara, 42800 Tanjung Sepat, Selangor. Bring a treat for Pai Xiang Kuo & Sen Qi Kuo when you visit!

GPS Coordinates:- N2.657982, E101.556631

Exotic Combination For Ramadhan Celebration 2012

It’s fasting month! What a way to enjoy your food after a day of reflection! Holiday Inn Kuala Lumpur Glenmarie is offering patrons an array of delectable international cuisines ranging from Mughal to Chinese-Muslim, from Arabian to authentic Malaysian. For the entire month of Ramadhan commencing 18th July to 18 August 2012, over 150 local and international dishes featured at the hotel’s Kites Restaurant will whet your appetite for the breaking of fast.

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A group of guest chefs from across the globe has been flown in for their wealth of experience in their specialty. Chef Ebrahim Mohd brings 25 years of experience in Arabic delicacies all the way from Damascus, Syria. He will whip up Middle Eastern foo, which is a complex and spice driven cuisine, using black pepper, garlic, cinnamon, clove, cumin and coriander to create a delightful mix of meat based dishes, with lamb and mutton being the most popular. He’s preparing a selection of his specialty grilled meats, kebabs, and koftas throughout the celebration along with another Middle Eastern favourite, Hummus, a dip or spread eaten with pita bread made from cooked and mashed chickpeas, blended with tahini, olive oil, lemon juice, salt and garlic which origins date back to ancient Egypt.

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Chef Ebrahim

Our Indian guest chef is Santosh Chaniyal who hails from Nainitaal, India and specialises in Mughlai cooking, a cuisine with a rich history dating back to the 16th century kitchens of the Mughal Emperors who occupied Northern India. Influenced by a mixture of Indian, Persian and Middle Eastern cuisine, Mughlai cuisine uses ingredients like exotic aromatic spices, nuts, raisins, cream, yoghurt and milk to create rich and spicy dishes with a unique aroma. With a considerable influence from Muslim cooking, this cuisine is absolutely not to be missed. It’s almost like bringing India to Malaysia & is my personal favourite.

Chef Santosh will be bringing a collection of his favourite recipes to town for our special guests to enjoy; for a special and unique taste, try the Kashmiri Rogan Josh made with goat or lamb meat cooked with intensely fragrant spices that deliver a mild and rewarding curry. Another dish that should not be missed is the Chicken Biryani. This dish is particularly known for its many layers of flavours and is cooked over a longer period of time to allow the flavours to blend together. The spices used in making the dish are typically not used in everyday cooking, making it a very special dish for guests of Kites Restaurant to sample. Another must try item will be the Jhinga Til Tinka; King prawns marinated with fresh aromatic spices, dipped in a butter made from eggs, green chillies, ginger, garlic & cardamom and cooked with breadcrumbs and sesame seeds. Dum Ka Murgh is another special and popular dish, generally eaten with roti or paratha that uses yoghurt and exotic spices to create a rich and complex meal.

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Chef Santosh

Vegetarians will love to try Quasar-E-Pukhtan, otherwise known as Shahi Paneer. With the name embodying royalty, this dish is fit for kings and is made with the richest of ingredients available. One should not miss out on other vegetarian dishes such as Tarkari Tawa Masala, Dal Bukhar, Dal Dhabe Wali. Other items on the Mughlai menu are Biryani (Gosht ,Murgh , Jhinga), Qurma-E-Firdaus (Hyderabadi Muttom qurma), Khade Masale Ka Gosht, Mahi Sarsom Wali, Tawa-E-Jalpari, and Avadhi Gulnar pari.

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One of the other delights that one can expect at the Ramadhan feast is brought to you by Chef Charles Huang from Zhengzhou, China. His special talent, to prepare hand pulled noodle is a complex craft that produces a wonderful spectacle, and just as importantly, incredible noodles. Made from plain dough that requires incredible dexterity to transform them into beautiful noodles, they are fascinating to watch being created by our food artist Chef Charles Huang as he works feverishly to twist the dough then stretches them delicately by waving the arms and body. Next, the dough is untwisted, looped to double the strands, and then repeated. When stretching, these highly skilled chefs coordinate waving their torso and arms to increase the potential length of the noodle beyond that of the puller’s arm span.

Chef Huang is bringing other Chinese Muslim cuisine delicacies such as mutton noodles, mushroom and chicken noodles, homemade mutton soup, steamed buns and pan-fried egg dumplings during the Puasa month.

Apart from the specialties on offer from our three special guest chefs, Kites restaurant will be maintaining the many popular dishes that were so well received last year. Some of the popular dishes making a comeback this year will be Gearbox Soup – braised beef knee together with a traditional mix of spices, served with condiments such as fried shallots and fresh lime. When mentioning the hot and popular dishes from last year we must mention the Kambing Mamak, a spicy and fragrant lamb curry. This special (and secret!) recipe is one that you won’t get any other day as Executive Chef, Francis Lau has kept this dish only for the Ramadhan celebration.
If you have any room left, why not try our resident Malay Cuisine expert Chef Haniff’s signature dish ”“ Udang Galah Masak Kalio, king prawns cooked in coconut milk with chili padi (chili), lemon grass and turmeric leaves.

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Chef Haniff

Other Specialty Dishes:

Gulai Ikan Sembilang Tempoyak
Catfish braised with fermented durian paste which is then cooked using turmeric leaves and other spices. The specialty of the states of Pahang and Perak.

Tulang Rawan Masak Lemak Cili Api
Short rib braised with turmeric leaves chili and coconut milk

Other items include Mutton Varuve, Udang Galah Masak Kalio, Pucuk Paku Masak Lemak, Kum Heong Fried Squid, Daging Rendang, Kambing Kurma, Ayam Percik Sri Menanti, Minced Chicken Patties with Scallops Sambal, along with authentic Malay desserts to complete your dining experience.

This year our remarkable buffet will be extended to the poolside and Gazebo, adjacent to Kites Restaurant which will be decorated into a setting of a conventional Ramadhan feast combined with a contemporary backdrop. At Holiday Inn Kuala Lumpur Glenmarie you can break your fast under the evening sky, decorated with black canopies and a myriad of food stalls. There will be areas designated for the Mughlai, the Arabic and the Chinese-Muslim cuisines alongside the lavish Malay buffet inside the Kites Restaurant.

The buffet dinner at Kites is priced at RM 94++ for adults while for children and senior citizens it is priced at RM 55++. There is a special price from 18th ”“ 24th July where the buffet dinner is priced at RM 84++ for adults and RM 45++ for children and senior citizens.

The hotel also accepts group or company bookings for ”˜Buka Puasa’. Surau facilities with an ”˜Imam’ for ”˜Sembahyang’ are available at the hotel.

Book early before 10 July for substantial discounts – terms and conditions apply.
For booking and reservations please call +603- 7802 524 (9am ”“ 5pm) and +603- 7802 5200 (after 5 pm) or email them at ramadhan@holidayinnkl.com.my

Ming Kee Bak Kut Teh In The Heart of Old Town, PJ

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Collage of Bak Kut Teh dishes!

Tender pork ribs that simmer in a bowl of herbal soup make the best meal on a cool, breezy night in Old Town, Petaling Jaya. Popularly known in its Hokkien term called ”˜Bak Kut Teh’ which translates to ”˜meat bone tea’ in reference to the pork ribs used, the generous sprinkles of star anise, cinnamon, cloves, tong kwai, fennel seeds and garlic are just some of the spices & herbs used to make this tasty soup that forms the ”˜tea’ in this dish.

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Panorama photo of the place from outside.

Light and dark soy sauce are also added to the soup depending on whether you are patronising a Teochew or a Hokkien-inspired style of preparation. Arriving at Ming Kee Bak Kut Teh with my cousin Damien & his associate, Ruben, we ordered the usual fare of ribs & meat, mushroom & tofu puffs side dishes, choy sum (vegetables) to go with rice. There are tables on the inside of the coffeeshop & outside in the open, enabling us to have dinner under the stars on that cool night. For Klang Vlley residents, this place is easily accessible without the hassle of going to far for a delicious meal of soupy goodness! The soup has been cooked to the right consistency with the infused herbs, complementing the ribs & side dishes. You will come away with a very good feeling in your tummy.

Located at the junction of Jalan Othman & Jalan 1/21, this corner lot Chinese coffeeshop is where Ming Kee Bak Kut Teh sits.
GPS Coordinates is at N03.086544, E101.64614

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Tofu/beancurd puff!

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Choy sum!

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Aunty preparing the dishes.

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The interior.

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Our dinner!

This is another entry for Selangorlicious contest! Please vote for me & leave a comment here! :- http://bit.ly/OtbcOc

Footnote:- Selangorlicious has a personalised purpose for me.

Superb Mee Goreng Rojak by Aunty Zainab & Hamid – Selangorlicious

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Mee Goreng is a local favourite fried noodle dish, usually garnished with sprigs of beansprouts, strips of carrots, leafy vegetables & diced chicken with soy sauce seasoning but at Hamid Mee Rebus Penang, the authentic Penang-styled Mee Goreng is the standard thoroughfare seasoned with pasembur (rojak) sauce, tauhu (beancurd) & kelapa rojak (coconut condiment)!

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When Dian brought me to Taman Melawati, we were hunting for bookbinding supplies & she recommended me to have this awesome Mee Goreng for tea break. A business operated by mother & son, the Mee Goreng had potatoes, tauhu (beancurd), kelapa rojak (coconut condiment), beansprouts, shaved shallots, half a lime & lots of goodies! As I watched Aunty Zainab in action, she put in what she had from the pots of sauces that she had prepared. Watch how she tosses the noodles in the whole frying process in the video included!

The exterior is lined with a row of other food vendors, and being slightly elevated from the street, you would miss it if you hadn’t known what goodness laid within. The last stall by the roadside, Hamid Mee Rebus Penang serves both Mee Rebus (Noodles in Hot Sauce) & Mee Goreng plus drinks to quench your thirst. A panorama picture is included for your reference & a map to help you find it in Taman Melawati. You should look for it under Google Maps or Foursquare to conveniently navigate yourself over for a tasty, sizzling hot plate of Mee Goreng Rojak at Hamid & Zainab’s stall!

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Footnote:- Selangorlicious has a personalised purpose for me.

Selangorlicious is a contest & I’m in the running! Please vote for this entry on this page -> http://bit.ly/N71G0O

Venturing Selangorlicious-ly

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Salivate, if you must but if you are not tantalised by the subject that I’d be bringing you over the next 2 weeks, you are missing out on life. Not your usual go-to-be-seen food joints, the stalls & eateries are run by folks with legacies. Evident in their coarse hands & years of toil on their faces, these vendors you have patronised over the years have given their daughters dance lessons, tuition for the boys & the little pleasures in life to substitute for the time spent earning a living. These are the vendors who go to the market in the wee hours of the morning to get the freshest supply of ingredients to whip up a good bowl of something for you. These are your neighbourhood familiars who recognise your eating preferences & know your favourite drink. Join me as I search for gastronomical joints that have closely-guarded recipés kept for generations. As they stir up their best, let’s give them mores reasons to stay in business for two generations more!

My quest in the Selangorlicious entries would be to show you fuss-free eateries, unpretentious settings that serve street food & to appreciate them like a true Malaysian, you need to discard all uppity to come in your most comfy attire to savour whats served. I appreciate your Armani’s or Versacé’s when you’re out with me but I’d rather you not mess up your fine threads & slurp as loudly as you like when you are at it.