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Posts Tagged ‘Char Koay Teow’

Lam Heng Cafe is a corner coffee shop at the end/beginning of Macalister Road. It’s in this place that the sisters operate their business. The kopitiam also offers Assam Laksa, Mee Jawa and their own Otak-Otak. They say the Laksa is also of superior quality but I haven’t tried it out yet. Next time…

2007 Picture courtesy to Jay Jun's blog

2007 Picture courtesy to Jay Jun's blog

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Regarding the Sisters and their reputation, I admit being a tad sceptical. No doubt that their Char Koay Teow is among the better on offer in Penang but I must say that the quality is lacking consistency, especially when the skinny Sis is stirring the wok. Sometimes it’s completely out of balance, like on our visit in June, but then again, last week the plate was perfectly cooked. I don’t know how to explain those inconsistencies unless maybe that the girls are getting older and are loosing some of their skills. Not impossible, as I experienced the same with some elderly members in my own family.

I prefer the CKT cooked by this sister:

IMG_0934Anyway, my biggest complaint regarding this stall/cafe is their use of styrofoam plates and throw away chop sticks. Ok, there is no need for using their best china plates, porcelain spoons or high-end ivory chop sticks. Good hard plastic plates/spoons/chop sticks will do, thank you very much.  I’m thinking to bring my own plate and chop sticks but am a little bit afraid that might cause a tantrum… Anyway, someone with more guts than I have, ought to tell the sisters that they are really a lazy bunch, apparently oblivious regarding the impact on the environment. We, our kids and grandkids do really appreciate.  NOT!

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Ah Leng

Location :  Kafe Khoon Hiang, Jalan Dato Keramat/Corner with Jalan Dunlop, Penang. Opening hours are from 8am till 2pm and their closing day is Thursday.  It’s situated in the same  neighbourhood as  Padang Brown food court and Kedai kopi Classic. A highly recommended area for food lovers.

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Anyway,  after some 12+ visits in 5 years, [trying  to make that now a 4 times visit per year] I’ve made up my mind about the Penang Char Koay Teow. It’s basically a great dish but at some places it’s way overrated. So, I stopped asking for the special or extra add-on stuff, as I personally feel that the basic dish is the right one. No need for extra big shrimps or prawns, neither for (too sweet) mantis prawns. Just K.I.S.S. =  keep it stupid simple.

I’ve had the CKT at various places and personally I prefer it with regular chicks… Oops, I mean chicken eggs, instead of duck eggs.  Anyone out there tried with goose egg? (Grin).

Thus, when we made our way to Ah Leng, I already knew I was going for the regular dish and boy, THE WORKS! It was simply a great treat!

IMG_1334 Tastewise?  The fast frying-and-tossing-noodles technique of the wokmeister plus a professional handling of the heat, resulted in a most delicious Char Koay Teow dish.  Malaysia, truly Asia? CKT: truly Penang!

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Another stall in the same Kafe was selling Hokkien Mee. As I’m a big fan of that dish, I could not resist and ordered a bowl.

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IMG_1337It looked very nice but after tasting, it was a bit of a disappointment. Not spicy, not sour, the soup tasted sweet.  A pity for sure, but then again, who am I to judge? Lots of people, looking like regulars, came and ordered the Hokkien Mee. So, lets agree to disagree and accept that personal taste is very different from person to person.

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We flew Air Asia before in 2004 but this was a first for a direct return flight from Hong Kong to Penang. Not a disappointment at all! Agreed, one has to walk a bit more to get to the airplane and you have to walk up a flight of stairs to get in the plane. So what? Even the POTUS has to do that on AF1!

3 hours and a few minutes after take off we walked through immigration, got us a taxi ticket and were on our way to savour Pg Food Paradise for a week. After getting rid of our luggage at mom’s place, we took the car and went for FOOD!

Kedai kopi Sin Hwa, Burma road, Pulau Tikus: here we come!IMG_1222

 

Sin Wha coffee shop

It happened to be “Malay New Year” this Monday 21st, so the place was crowded. No problem to wait for about 30/40 minutes because at the end of the tunnel there was something better than light: namely Char Koay Teow!

In the mean time we had some refreshing drinks and then, 75 minutes after landing + 40 minutes waiting:

CKT at Sin Hwa coffee shop  

However, the CKT was ok but did not convince me as being one of the best. Maybe the cook was under much pressure because of the many customers that day. It seemed to us that the dish was a bit off balance and a little too oily. I noticed he made batches for 4 to 5 plates at one go. Perhaps that influenced the finesse of the taste?

 Then again: hear, hear… are we too picky? We will try again on a next visit. And yes, even if we are critical, the CKT still was tasty!

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At the corner of the street, facing Kopitiam See Kong was a hawker stall selling Malaysian pancakes. A big crowd around was telling the best marketing publicity story ever… One day I’ll try the pancakes, even if I don’t have a sweet tooth!

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