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2005.10.06

Comments

Maukitten

Great choice! I've been eating at this stall for a couple of decades at least. If you go at non-peak times, the guy will fry your koay teow to your exact specs (more bean sprouts, more chives - and only the stems etc etc), or at least he humours my "When Harry Met Sally"-type requests.

Another side dish you could order is from the pork noodle stall. I normally order just the soup with everything in it, but without the noodles. Goes v well with the koay teow.

Robyn

Yeah, I thought that this was the place SW said you'd been eating at since you were a kid (same guy behind the wok the whole time?). Many bemoan the horrific changes in KL's landscape over the years, but I sure couldn't find as many decades-old eateries in major US cities as exist in KL. That's the inherent beauty of the hawker stall. Long may they live!

I saw him adding a fried egg on top of sb's order when we were there. Q: you can get a "small", "big" or "special" --- any idea what the "special" is?

boo_licious

Yums! This is my fav place for CKT. I like going non-peak time too as he fries it so much better when he is not rushed.

Maukitten

I think a special means extra prawns/cockles. Actually I don't even know what a big or a small is - I just walk in and tell him I want my usual! And yeah, it's the same guy behind the wok all these years. BTW, if we can get a sizable group together, the chap will even come over and fry it at my home. (He says no minimum order for me, but I guess I should still make it worth his while!) May be a good idea for a New Year party?

melissa

Hi...it's been very entertaining, and visually satisfying to read your Eating Asia. the char kuey teow and pulut panggang definitely brought me memories of home. there are malaysian restaurants where i live but unfortunately, the taste cannot be duplicated. i guess i'll just have to appease myself with your blog.

umami

We are big fans of this CKT man too. Been eating his version for decades, preferring his over the more lauded Tengkat Tung Shin version.
He also wears the same shirt all the time. I looked at my archives and pulled out an older picture- only his cap has changed:
http://umami.typepad.com/photos/street_food_around_bangsa/kl_trip_sep_03_the_food_010.html

Robyn

Thanks for stopping by, Melissa. Now I'm feeling a bit of a burden -- to visually satisfy (and torture?) Malaysian expats wherever they may be. ;-)

Robyn

Umami, can you expound on the "lauded Tengkat Tung Shin" version? Where is it, and why is it lauded?
Gosh that picture you've got could have been taken the same day we took ours ... I prefer the red cap though, it's a bit jauntier. :-)

umami

Hi Robyn, it is much-lauded in the sense that many people think the Tengkat Tung Shin (TTS) version is the best in KL. People like my sister, my sister-in-law, my father, even a roving hawker critic like KF Seetoh of Makansutra. I bumped into Seetoh when he was filming the KL edition around the same time that I took the picture of Wang, and Seetoh was saying to me, in hushed tones, that he thinks the TTS version is better. I don't have a copy of the KL Makansutra guide, it probably gives them a higher rating than our friend Wang.

I think the TTS version is too wet and too black and I prefer the drier, paler Penang style.

Anyway, the stall is along Tengkat Tung Shin, in an old corner hawker centre. No address on hand, but maybe you can look at image 7 of my post below- I took the picture when I was waiting for my noodles. Image 9 is of the noodles.

http://umami.typepad.com/umami/2005/07/kl_july_2005.html#comments

shiewie

Think Edward will be more than pleased to show you the Tengkat Tong Shin version - he always raves about it - I prefer this Jalan Batai one.

Maukitten

I should try the TTS one too. But I think a couple of others worthwhile trying are at Yong Len coffeeshop in Taman Tun and the Lorong Seratus Tahun one in SS2. (I surprise myself by actually knowing the names of the coffeeshops ...) Actually, I think both those are slightly better than the Jln Batai one, but proximity and ample parking wins over taste for me :-)

pieman

Have never really been a fan of fried noodle/fried rice dishes. But you certainly make this one sound tempting. Would it be fair to call them a "dry fried noodle" - Is that a term? As you say there is no glossy greasey business in there at all.

One other thing. My only experience of Malay food is on Penang and, while good, I wasn't as blown away as I was expecting. I understand penang food is a bit different - very curry/Indianesque heavy - apart from the hawker stands.

The KL stuff is quite a different chap altogether. No?

Robyn

Well, I've nothing against fried noodles in general, I do love Thai fried noodles in particular and phad thai done well streetside in Bangkok is nothing like a version you'd have anywhere else, IMO. But this CKT was quite nice. See comment above by umami indicating other versions are indeed "wetter" and "blacker" (from dark soy, presumably). Of course I will feel it my duty to undertake further investigation.

Oh Pieman, I'm sorry but you really missed the boat on Penang. Considered by most Malaysians to be ground zero for chow (Ipoh is, I hear, another contender). We spent quite a scofftastic (to borrow your probably oft-pilfered phrase) several days there a couple yrs ago. What can I say? Sambal grilled fish to die for, laksa coming out the wazoo, those fried noodles, all sorts of Nyonya tasties, primo rojak, excellent old-fashioned dim sum in a funkly dimly lit little wedge of a place in Chinatown, and more and more and more, there simply weren't enough meals in the day. Does Air Asia fly to Saigon? You ought to get yourselves down there again at some point before blowing the Asia coop....

My understanding is that -- in addition to southern Chinese influences -- Melaka is more firmly Indian-influenced when it comes to cuisine (old trade routes and all) whereas Penang food evinces some Thai touches (many of the original southern Chinese settlers came by way of Phuket).

pieman

I hear you and to be honest I think it was half our fault. we arrived in KL and thought OK we've got a week where shall we go. And we just jumped on the next flight to Penang. It was Chinese new year and A LOT of places were closed, so our assessment probably isn't totally fair. We certianly enjoyed exploring all that was on offer, although Penang itself was dullsville.

However, having looked thru this and Makansan etc. i think a very focussed foodie trip of the peninsular could well be worth the bother. I've still to try Satay House here in Saigon...

Robyn

Satay House is really pretty good but having eaten at the source now for a while ... not as good as what's here. But that's always the case, isn't it? Nonetheless, I'm betting you'd enjoy the fish curry, kangkung fried with sambal, fish head curry (you gotta check ahead to see if they've got it), and mee siam. Most of all though, you just have to get over there for Sat lunch -- curry mee (laksa) -- the chef puts his heart into it. Lots of Malaysian expats there.

Edward

I will have to agree with maukitten that the char koay teow in the Lorong 100 Tahun coffeshop in SS2 is better than the Jalan Batai one, even when fried without lard, which I would normally do by special request. The version is dryer.

I have not returned to Tingkat Tongshin for sometime. So would not be able to vouch for the standard. I used to find the standard there a bit inconsistent, depending on who was at the wok (there's the father, the mother & the son).

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