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Preview: A Malaysian Kitchen in Manchester

A Malaysian Kitchen in Manchester





Updated: 2018-03-05T12:43:27.122-08:00

 



I Am Pho - Chinatown, Manchester, England.

2013-05-29T05:26:32.540-07:00

There has not been much new as far as east Asian food is concerned in the restaurants of Manchester over the last few years. However, here is one… I am Pho is the name of the first ever Pho (Vietnamese Beef Soup Noodles) restaurant in Manchester. There has always been a large Vietnamese community in Manchester, and I have always wondered why a place like this has not sprung up sooner. Anyway, I have decided to give this place a try last month. It was located in Chinatown, next to the strip club, so if you go in the evenings, don’t let the sight of the burly bouncers put you off. One word of warning … do not park your car outside the strip club. The bouncers will lean and sit on it. Because they look big and mean, they know no one will tell them off and they don’t care that they annoy the car owners.Once in the restaurant you will notice that the layout was more like a café than a restaurant, but that is fine, because it felt clean and comfortable. However, the prices were not café prices. You could go to most Chinatown restaurants and order most noodle dishes at around the same price… about the £7.50 mark.On the table is a range of good quality sauces and dips.Of course, I ordered the signature dish, beef pho -  with the beef rare, so that it is cooked in the soup. There were other dishes on the menu but 80% of them were a variation of the pho soup noodles, with a few rice dishes and the customary Vietnamese summer / spring rolls as sides.The verdict:The soup was light … very light. It tasted refreshing but lacked flavour, as if it was a little bit too diluted or not enough beef was used in the stock.The noodles were fresh as opposed to the dry / reconstituted type, which is better than the only other Pho in tried in Manchester, in a café in Ancoats.The beef were sliced thicker than I would have liked it, making it slightly tough. They (the beef) somehow tasted rather detached from the soup .. hard to explain, but you know the taste you get when you feel that the ingredients do not belong to the dish because the taste is too different? Maybe this is because of the lack of beefy taste in the soup.The portion was generous and adequate for most hungry diners. I would return if I needed another pho fix, but not too often as I do not think this is good value. I think under £5 would have been a fair price for this dish which does not consist of any expensive ingredients. [...]



FOOD PORN: A visual delight!

2011-08-08T23:17:29.417-07:00

About time for another trip to Malaysia! My blogs have been sporadic over the last couple of years mainly due to lifestyle changes and also laziness! During that time, I have never stopped taking pictures of food wherever I went and I will take this opportunity to post a mixture of images from previous trips to Malaysia dating back to 2009. If you are an experienced blogger, perhaps you can advise on how I can make the process easier and quicker so that I can update more frequently. At the moment, I find the process quite laborious.... What I do now is: 1. I load each photo into photoshop to resize it (otherwise, 5mb per image will take too long to load!) 2. Then I upload them to imageshack.us 3. Then I write my blog 4. Then I click on each thumbnail of the photo I uploaded into imageshack and copy the url tag and paste it into the html code of the blog I am writing. I can only do this one at a time as imageshack does not display ALL the html tags on one page. If I can find a way of displaying all the tags on one page, it will make life a lot easier! 5. Once done, I save it and publish the blog. So, if anyone can make this process easier, I will be able to upload more updates in the future. Below is an Esquire Kitchen special - Kung Po Chicken. A "must have" whenever I eat there. 1-Utama branch. A steamed pomfret at Oversea Restaurant @ Asiajaya, PJ. Fresh but quite bland as it lacked seasoning. A Yook Woo Hin (Petaling Street - Chinatown KL) speciality - Char Siu. You won't find much better in the city. Another Yook Woo Hin dish - Beef ho fun. Absolutely delicious! Super tender slices of beef in a rich egg sauce over a bed of smooth flat rice noodles. The two pics below are the display shelves at Jin Xuan Hong Kong Dim Sum @ Damansara Jaya.See my full review here. Ji This lovely Sang Har Meen was taken at Paramount cafe at Sungei Wang Plaza. I found out about this place from Lyrical Lemongrass' blog here. The two pics below were taken @ Uncle Duck restaurant @ Berjaya Times Square in KL. Considering the name, the duck was decidedly average and the black bean beef ho fun was one of the worst I ever tasted! 4 dishes from Sri Suria cafe in Amcorp Mall in PJ. All looked lovely, but tasted worse than most hawker vendors. Worst of all, two out of the five of us who ate there had diarrhea the next day! Not a busy restaurant even on s Sunday, so the food must have been not too fresh. Nasi Lemak - probably their best dish. Fried Rice - bland but looked nice! Chow Kuey Teow - terrible! No wok-hei .. must've been fried in a skillet! Wonton Noodle soup - again, bland! This was my half eaten lunch at Lumut bus station. Beef Rendang and water spinach. Cost a lot less than in KL and tasted very nice! [...]



Sapporo Teppanyaki, Manchester

2011-08-05T13:41:06.179-07:00

This was the first time I had ever been to a Teppanyaki restaurant in the UK. Its only my second time in a UK Japanese restaurant. The first was an awful experience 10 years ago and it had put me off them. On this occassion, it was a works do and I thought it was a good time to try again. The fact that this restaurant was rated the number 1 restaurant on Manchester on Tripadvisor gave me some optimism!Unlike most city centre oriental restaurants, this one was not located in or around Chinatown, indicating to me immediately that they cater mainly for western diners. When I saw the menu, my thoughts were confirmed. I was a bit disappointed that there was no squid in the menu, but understandable as it is not a popular ingredient among Brits.However, as the evening progressed, the whole dining experience was rather interesting. It was not like anything I had ever experienced before. But before that our starters arrived. I had a rather large portion of bbq spare ribs. Unlike your typical Chinese restaurant ribs, these were really tender and succulent. I suspect they have been twice cooked .... steamed and then baked. Great start so far.Before the chefs began cooking our meals they went throught a few unusual rituals, which were very entertaining and engaging for the diners. However, I am certain there was nothing traditional about them and certainly does not appear to have anything to do with Japanese dining rituals, but please do correct me if I am wrong.Firstly, the chef heated some scalloped potato slices and tossed them in the air, to each of the diners to catch with their mouth. He will keep trying until you catch it, leading to food all over the floor!Next, he juggled some of the cooking utensils, like the bartenders in Cocktail juggled bottles. Then, just for show, he lit up the flat pan with some alcohol.When it comes to cooking the food, we could see exactly everything they put into it. I kept waiting to see if there was going to be a secret ingredient but there was nothing obvious.And here is my portion. This alone was £17. To their credit, all the ingredients were super fresh and you could have extra portions of rice if you wanted for free. It may not look much, but I assure you it was more than I could eat.I must say however, that the food tasted very home-cooked, and not difficult to reproduce yourself. The flat pan meant that there was no "wok hei" taste in the food. However, I ended the night satisfied enough, as the price we paid was for the entertainment as well as the food. It was definitely worth experiencing, but I dont think it is something you can do on a weekly basis without wearing out the novelty value.Location:Sapporo Teppanyaki91 Liverpool RdManchester M3 4JN[...]



Gordon Ramsay in Malaysia - C4 UK

2011-05-24T13:05:45.001-07:00

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Last night I watched a fascinating episode of Gordon's Great Escape. In this series, he travels around south east asia to sample the food and learn how to cook some of it from the locals. Along the way, he will feature some bizzarre foods that most people do not consume, at least not in the west.

The episode on Malaysia was perhaps a little bit tame compared to the last couple of episodes due to the lack of unusual food. The only "weird" food featured was a bulls penis curry soup. We did see the harvesting of birds nest, but this was mainly for the export market and its not something commonly found in roadside cafes.

However one amazing revealation I noticed was that Gordon does not appear to know how to cook rice! He had no idea how to use a conventional rice cooker and made a mess of his coconut rice. Who would have thought!!


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Gordon pictured struggling with nasi lemak


If you are in the UK, you will be able to watch this online here.

At around the 40 minute mark, you will see him struggle with his rice!





Prawn fried rice

2011-04-23T11:57:14.733-07:00


Its been awhile since I blogged but been so busy recently. Here's a quick and simple dish I cooked tonight. Thought that the tiger prawns looked nice in the rice, hence I uploaded this picture. Personally, I think having too many prawns spoil the taste a dish. In future I won't use more than 4 or 5 large ones, and add other ingredients instead to enhance the taste of the rice.
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Gong Xi Fa Cai - Happy Chinese New Year 2011

2011-02-03T12:14:20.527-08:00

Gong Xi Fa Cai!

Have a prosperous and stomach filling new year!

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House Special Chow Mein - Wong Wong Bakery, Manchester

2011-01-23T06:45:11.120-08:00

At last I have managed to find a cheap compact mobile phone with a camera AND a battery that lasts up to 2 weeks between charging. Now I can take pictures anywhere I eat and do not have to plan ahead to take my camera with me.

One such occassion was when we were passing a branch of Wong Wong Bakery near Openshaw in Manchester. It was actually a little cafe attached to a Chinese warehouse and serve a limited amount of dishes to a mainly Chinese clientele. Hence their dishes are authentic and near restaurant quality but a bit cheaper.

This is the most expensive dish on their menu coming in at £7 for a large single portion. A stir fired mixture of fish balls, fish cake sliced pork, char siu, siew yook, roask duck, prawns, squid and straw mushroom over a bed of crispy noodles. Taste great and better than some more upmarket restaurtant in Chinatown.

Highly Recommended!




Sambal Seafood Medley

2011-01-02T01:32:08.859-08:00

Happy new Year 2011!
Here's a posting to get me back on track with the theme of this blog, which is cooking.

Sambal tumis with seafood, especially squid is one of my favourite Malaysian dishes.
I managed to pick up some prepared seafood from a local supermarket and thought I'd make some fresh sambal (chilli ) sauce to cook this.
The ingredients for the sauce are red chillies, onions (preferable shallots which I did not have at the time), garlic, toasted belacan (fermented shrimp paste) and tamarind juice.

Its best to pound it manually in a pestle and mortar but I was lazy and used a blender. I added salt and sugar during the blending process.
Then heat plenty of oil in a pan, brown some sliced onions, then add sauce and fry till fragant.
Then add seafood and fry for 3 - 5 minutes. Not too long or it will turn tough and dry, especially if you are using octopus.
And finally here is the dish. Would have looked better with some coriander garnish, but I had none at the time.






Take That - Progress - An album review and more!

2010-11-10T12:00:37.722-08:00

Its been 2 years since their last album The Circus was released and here is the long awaited new album to be released on Monday 15th November. This time, we have the return of the FULL line up, which includes Robbie Williams. I do not really have much time for pop music anymore these days but I will always have time for this lot, who I regard are the purest purveyors of pop music.  Read on to see what I thought of the aibum.The FloodThe current single and opening track reminds me of the opening track from TT's first comeback album, Beautiful World, called Reach Out. I loved that song as I do this. Watch the embedded video below. Great video!SOSMark leads with some from Robbie and Gary in a high energy dance tune. Sounds quite dated like something from the 90s, not unlike something from Pulp. Not exactly a bad thing for TT fans.WaitSang by Robbie and would be at home in one of his solo albums. A mid tempo electronic dance tune with a catchy chorus, like No Regrets. Definitely one to please the Robbie fans.KidzMark on the lead again! Does Gary not sing anymore? Peculiar song, quite unlike anything they have ever done before. Its like a chant all through the song but not one that others would chant along. One of the weaker numbers and I doubt it will be a future single.Pretty ThingsMore electronic shenanigans from TT. Robbie takes the helm again, or at least his voclas were the most prominent as they were harmonised right through the song. A fairly mellow song that reminded me of Joan of Arc by OMD in tune andHappy NowA fairly pedestrian song that reaches no highs nor lows. Still with the electronic theme, it has a subtle fat synth bass right through the song and just plods along like the album filler it is.Underground MachineRobbie on the leads again. Some guitar riffs perpetuate throughout this number which tells us that they are no longer a boyband. A mature sound which may not appeal to TT fans of the old .. or even those who latched onto the bandwagon since 2006.What do you want from meAnother Mark lead. Starts of rather mellow but soon picks up pace with a fairly addictive dance beat. However the title and melody does not make this a completely upbeat and happy song.AffirmationNot sure if this is Jason or Howard singing here. Similar to the previous song in pace but lacks its catchiness.Eight LettersFinally a song with Gary in the lead! TT does not sound the same without him leading! Also the only real ballad in this album. Now this is the TT that fans have grown to love over the last 20 years! They have definitely left the best till last!.... and dont forget the customary secret track at the end of the album!My verdict...Is this a Robbie Williams album? If you have been in outer space for the last 20 years, you might have thought that Robbie has always been the lead singer of this group. Also, I suspect that Gary did not write most of the tracks .. yes I know the group was credited with most of the songs for the last two albums but we clearly knew who was behind the composition of most of the songs in reality. So, despite my tepid reaction to this release, I must say that I did enjoy it and you do too they please go out and buy it to support the group.©Kalau anda ingin dengar lagu-laguyang tersebut dalam kualiti tinggi, sila tekan sini.TMLink ini akan tamatselepas satu ratus muatturun atau satu minggu. ®[...]



FC Barcelona - an UEFA Champions League Camp Nou experience

2010-11-07T05:51:34.475-08:00

We had a short break in Barcelona last month and managed to get a lot of photos, so I will spread it out over a few postings. The highlight of our trip was a visit to the Nou Camp for a UEFA Champions League match against FC Copenhagen. I planned the whole trip by obtaining information from various forums on the net and hence, I have decided to start this posting with a pictorial guide on how to get to the Nou Camp. This appears to be one of the most asked questions about Barcelona and I took these pictures with this in mind. Hopefully, whoever manages to find this link will find it useful. Feel free to leave a short comment if it has helped you.Here is the coveted ticket! Bought it from here. All I had to do was provide passport number and credit card number. Then I get a reference number to collect it from the FNAC store in the Triangle shopping mall at Plaza Catalunya up to 72hrs before the match.Note: UEFA rules state that you cannot buy tickets from the home team if you are from the country of the visiting team. Of course if you have a passport different from your country of residence, then it would not be an issue!   A Pictorial Guide on directions to FC Barcelona's Camp NouFirst, you need to plot your journey to arrive at the Maria Cristina metro station. You can use other stations too, but the green line is the most popular one with visitors as it passes Plaza Catalunya, the "centre" of all the action in the city. It takes about 15 - 20 minutes from Plaza Catalunya.When you are exiting Maria Cristina, follow the signs for the "Av Diagonal" (name of a street) exit. There are only 2 exits anyway, so it is hard to go wrong. Once outside, you will see this wide pedestrianised pavement in front of you, with a busy cycling lane to the right.Turn to your left and you will see two dark buildings across the road. I think they have "La Caixa" on the top of both.Walk for about 200m, keeping those buildings to your left across the road and you will soon see some shops on the left, same side as those buildings.Keep walking for another 50m and you will coome to a set of lights. You can see across the road, a tall hotel called Princesa Sofia. This is where you need to cross the road. EVEN WHEN YOU SEE THE GREEN MAN, STILL LOOK L & R AS CARS AND BIKES WILL CARRY ON DRIVING IF THEY CANNOT SEE A PERSON CROSSING THE ROAD!With the hotel now in front of you, walk past the front of it and turn left immediately.You are now on the final 400m leading to the stadium and soon you will be able to see its bright lights, if you are arriving for an evening match.At the end of that stretch, we are now in front of Gate BLike any stadium in the world, lots of UNOFFICIAL stalls selling merchandise outside. Most are overpriced and are complete rip off. Fake FCB shirts with Nike logo were going for 50 euros. Can buy a real one in UK for £44! Unofficial scarves start from 10 euros. If you want official stuff, then you need to go inside the gates, where they cost even more! About 70 euros for a FCB shirt!The FC Barcelona match experience1 hour before the match and the stadium was stil sparse. There was no pre-match entertainment. We got the cheapest tickets and ended up behind the goal, to the left of the dugout, about 6 rows from the top. Despite the height, we had a very good and unobstructed view. The height actually helped as, any lower and the goal would have obscured part of our view.15 minutes before kick off and the stewards troop onto the pitch. To wave the huge UCL logo.10 minutes to kick off and the stadium was filling up.Then the teams emerge from the dugout to massive applause and lots of flashes. Managed to capture this on video too!Here we see Messi's teammates congratulating him for scoring the opening goal. However, it was actually quite a subdued affair on the whole. We may have b[...]



X-Factor 2010 Lookalike

2010-10-24T07:07:52.983-07:00

Separated at birth?

Just watched tonight's x-factor and noticed a startling resemblance between that human skeleton, Cher Lloyd and Dead or Alive's Pete Burns during his prime in the 80s. Now we just need her to sing You Spin Me Round and we will have a perfect tribute act!

Pete

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Roti Canai available all over UK

2010-10-12T14:17:28.684-07:00

Feast your eyes on this picture. Looks like the real thing, doesn't it? It could have easily been taken from a cafe anywhere in Malaysia. I have never met any Malaysian born person who claim to dislike the Roti Canai. In fact, I would go as far as saying that this should be known as Malaysia's national dish, instead of the more popularly acclaimed nasi lemak. After all, it is uniquely Malaysian, despite it being seen as "Indian". You will not be able to get this dish in India, I am sure .. not this version anyway which, although is a variation of the "paratha" it has evolved quite significantly from its Indian roots.

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However, the twist here is that I did not cook this dish! Not properly anyway. It was bought frozen from a large supermarket - and not a specialist Asian one - and simply lightly fried in a skillet, like a pancake. It will slowly rise and fluff up, just like the real thing.

It is available all over the UK and has been for a number of years. I have yet to see anything that resembles nasi lemak in our supermarkets here. As this is the most popular uniquely Malaysian dish widely available in the UK, I must conclude that to most non-Malaysians, this is the national dish.

The brand below is one of about 3 or 4 available. Only cost around £1 for a pack of 5.

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Just to add.. a fresh handmade dish like this would be almost impossible to sell in the UK .. each piece is rather laborious to produce. I would estimate that it would cost about £3 per piece to make it cost effective. At this price, I doubt it would sell. Hence I cannot ever see it taking off in restaurants over here.




Satay Chicken

2010-09-14T11:35:17.805-07:00

It was the middle of summer and it was the barbecue season. I thought it would be a great time to try making satay, Malaysian style, for the first time. However, I was feeling a bit lazy and did not feel like cutting the chicken into little pieces. Hence, I decide to marinate the chicken in quarter portions. Nothing wrong with that ... after all, they often sell it this way in the streets of Bangkok.

So I concocted a mixture of ground coriander, fennel, cumin, ginger, garlic, coconut milk, and some salt and sugar to taste. It all looked and smelt fine and I marinated the chicken for about 4 hours.

Then the rain came down. We have had quite a wet second half to this summer and our hopes for a bbq in the garden was thwarted. So, I decided to pop the chicken into the oven.




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After turning them over about 4 times, it is ready. I basted it with its own juice / oil throughout the cooking process.

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I served it with shop - bought peanut sauce and rice. Tasted fine, but could have been a lot better with the charcoal bbq taste to it!

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Manchester Caribbean Carnival 2010

2010-08-15T12:27:56.905-07:00

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Last weekend we had the annual Caribbean Carnival in Manchester. The event was held at a local park (Aleandra Park) and there were a lot of cultural events as well as contemporary shows featuring local hip hop and r&b artistes.

However, as this is a food blog, I will just report on this event from a culinary point of view.

There were a lot of stalls there with traders selling their wares with a caribbean theme. However, every third stall is one selling food and they were almost all selling the same dishes. By far, the most popular is Jerk Chicken - barbequed chicken marinated with jerk (jamaican herbs and spices) seasoning.

Here are a couple of pics from a stall.
Also watch the video link above to see what the event looked like.
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We did not stay long but managed to bring home a couple of delicious treats.

Jerk Chicken with rice and salad. Not heavily flavoured but very nice!
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Jamaican Curried Goat. Also very nice ... the closest comparison I can think of is Yeo's canned curry beef ... similar but nicer!

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A Chinese Christmas in the UK

2010-08-08T11:06:14.273-07:00

I think it is customary all over the western world that Chinese restaurants lay on special Christmas banquet menus adapted for the local taste. It is a bit late, but this was what we had when I went out with my office last Christmas (2009). I would say that this is a rather typical menu in most Chinese restaurants in the UK catering for the local people.We had a regular and a vegetarian banquet at this (lol, honest!) restaurant in Manchester.Starting with this Chicken and Sweetcorn soupWe also had this vegetarian sweetcorn soup, which tasted almost identical to the previous one, but with veg bits instead of chicken.Then onto this mixed vegetarian starter - apart from the salad, spring rolls and gluten I do not know what the rest were, but they were quite nice.This was the meat starter, consisting of some popular dim sum bites like har gau, siu mai, fried wonton, spring rolls and curry samosa (is this Chinese??).Then onto the crisy shredded duck wraped in pancake rolls. Very nice but very typical of most western Chinese banquetsThe vegetarians had this nut and veg stir fry to be wrapped in lettuce leaf instead. It was very tasty but I much prefer the duck.This first main course was beef stir fried in a very sweet tangy sauce .. I think its OK sauce. My favourite dish of the evening.SOme mixed veg dish for the veggiesAnd another! Both were ok but tasted very similar.Chicken satay (not Malaysian satay sauce, but Jimmy's Sate sauce like this). Very nice tasted like it had citrus juice in it, which I have since started using it myself too.And a rather generic chicken and mixed veg stir fry which was ok only.Side dish was young chow fried rice. Nice but not exceptional. The veggies had just egg fried rice.Overall a satisfying banquet and we got exactly what we expected.[...]



Hainan Chicken Rice with Roast Chicken

2010-07-26T00:05:14.999-07:00

Its been 4 months since my last blog. Hope I have not lost too many readers as I have sort of neglected this blog due to other interests I have discovered. However, I am still as interested in cooking and eating as ever. Just that I seem to have a bit less time to blog about them now. But anyway, here is an update on one of my favourite dishes.


Back in 2008, I wrote a comprehensive guide to how I cook Hainan Chicken Rice with lots of images. Sadly, the host have now taken all the pics down. One day, I will upload them again. But in the meantime, here is the link anyway. You will get the idea even if you just read the text.

Click here.

This blog basically is the same except that the chicken is actually roasted instead of poached.

Normally a chicken lasts 2 days for us. On the second day, I reheat the chicken in the microwave, let it cool a bit and then chop it. On this occassion, I decided to roast the chicken for the second day. This adds extra taste to it to compensate the loss of smooth texture as a result of reheating.

All I do is rub a mixture of dark soy, honey, 5 spice, salt and pepper to the dry cold chicken. Then let it dry at room temp for an hour. After that, put in a VERY hot oven, so that it cooks the surface quickly and not cook the inside for too long. After all , the chicken is already cooked.

These are the results.

Btw, I glazed the skin with its own fat dripping, but not too much to retain some form of crispiness. Commercially, the vendors would bathe the skin with hot oil to get an even golden brown colouring.

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Sambal Sotong ( Chilli Squid )

2010-03-15T11:51:20.239-07:00

Everytime I make some sambal paste, I freeze some and use it for various dishes at another time. Here is one, which is essentially the same sauce I used for this Nasi Lemak dish here.

Such simplicity! Fry the sambal, then add the cleaned squid and cook for 10-15 minutes and that's it. One of my favourite Malaysian dishes which you cannot buy anywhere, but in Malaysian restaurants, and even then, the quality is unpredictable.





Lee Chong Wei - 2010 All England Mens Singles Champion!!

2010-03-14T13:17:36.743-07:00

(image) (image) Great achievement! Second singles Malaysian player to win this prestigious tournament in 44 years. However it was not without controversy as we clearly saw in tv replays that his winning shot was indeed out, but called in. I would lodge a protest if I was in the Japanese camp. But anyway, that aside, it was a great moment for Malaysian sport, and I hope it goes some way towards uniting the nation in these politically turbulent times.

Wel done, Chong Wei!



Good Luck to Lee Chong Wei in All England Final 2010!

2010-03-13T05:45:51.618-08:00

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Just watched him destroy Peter Gade in the semis this afternoon. Looks like this will be his year, especially since his main nemesis, Lin Dan, got knocked out of the tournament the day before. I suppose Malaysian badminton fans all over the world now has a date with the TV tomorrow, Sunday, 14th March, from 12pm GMT, to cheer Chong Wei on! For those lucky enough to be at the NIA in Birmingham, I envy you - the atmosphere looked great on TV!



A tribute to Fred Chan

2010-03-04T06:04:04.508-08:00

(image) I dont think anyone here know him, but he is one of the many people who inspired me to start a food blog. More specifically, he is a Chinese living in the north west of England, like myself, with a passion for food. Sadly he passed away recently after a long illness, so RIP, Fred. You will be missed.

You can still view his food blog here.



Eason Chan is coming to Manchester

2010-02-27T08:09:56.750-08:00

(image) It is indeed a rare privilege for Mancunians to be treated to a performance by a a Cantopop superstar in our city. From the details below, you can see that it is not exactly cheap and they seem to have also chosen a rather small venue, probably not very confident of being able to fill up a large arena. However, I think they are underestimating his popularity here and I am sure the tickets will sell out very quickly. I think anyone who has even the slightest interest in Cantopop will want to go, whether they are a fan of Eason or not, as I cannot remember there ever having been an east Asian singer ever gracing our city. So get in there fast if you are from Manchester. Dont say you havent been warned!
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And here is a clip of a song from the album above!

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Happy Chinese New Year 2010!

2010-02-15T11:01:42.177-08:00

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Manchester's Chinatown was awash with colours and people and noise yesterday, Sunday 14th Feb 2010 to mark the beginning of the Chinese Year of the Tiger. Here's wishing all Chinese visitors Gong Xi Fa Cai!

And here is the video of the dragon dance.
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Yook Woo Hin - Another visit - KL Chinatown

2010-01-18T15:22:18.975-08:00

We visited this place back in Oct 2008, but on last year's visit, we had to go again as we realised that we did not know about one of their signature dishes then.

Located at No. 100, Jalan Petaling, this place was a bit busier than our last visit. It was about 12 noon and there were quite a few diners in there, most ordering either Singapore Meehoon, or beef ho fun, as pictured below.

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What an amazing dish this was! Noodles were fresh this time and the beef was literally melt in your mouth in terms of texture, and yet retained its succulency. The sauce was also very tasty. I would recommend this tp anyone visiting this place!

We also had a dish of their char siu, which they are also renowned for. This tasted better than our last visit as it was fresher and juicier and the meat had just the right combination of fatty and lean bits within.

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The filler dish was this rather bland looking plate of fried rice but it tasted much better than it looked! Maybe it was the msg, but we left this place quite satisfied, if not a bit puzzled as to how this lot somehow came to around rm30.

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Ma Po Tofu ( Spicy beancurd with minced meat )

2010-01-01T02:29:38.922-08:00

HAPPY NEW YEAR - Here's a dish for the cold January wintry evenings.

I think this is actually a Szechuan dish, but it is quite well known around the world. After having tried various ready made sauces for this dish unsatisfactorily, I have settled on this particular recipe which I personally find has the best balance of spiciness, saltiness and sweetness. I have not added chillies here, although I do think it is an essential ingredient, but this is only because my son cannot eat food that is too spicy. Hence, I used more capsicum as a substitute.

Ingredients:
Sweet Thick Soy
Hot Fermented Soya Bean Sauce
Chilli Sauce
Capsicum
Onions
Garlic
Ginger
Blackbeans
Cornstarch
Chicken Stock
Plain fresh tofu
Mince meat
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Firstly, I brown all the veg and blackbeans together. Then I add the hot bean sauce - this needs to be fried till fragrant of the whole dish will taste very different.
(image)

Then I add the meat and sweet soy and chilli sauce and fry till cooked.
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At this stage, I add the tofu - it is very soft, so needs only to be fried for a couple of minutes to avoid it breaking up and becoming mushy. Then add the stock and corn starch to thicken.
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And here it is served!
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Visiting UK from Malaysia? Do it now!

2009-12-16T13:04:45.194-08:00

According to this article, from next year, Malaysians will probably require to apply for a visa before visitng the UK, at the price of RM1200.

RM1,200 !!!!

That's almost as much as the return fare for KL to London, althought it wuld have to be an AirAsia promo fare! Still, it is a lot of money and is sure to put many people off. So, if you have any plans to visit the UK, do it now!