Sunday, 29 July 2012

Yao Yao Bing @ Rawang

Remember those younger days when we go crazy over ice potong when the ice-cream man come cycling your neighbourhood?  Well, at Yao Yao Bing @ Rawang, you can find a similar treat that can remind you of those old days.  The form may be different but the taste is exactly the same - after all these years, this stall still manage to maintain the taste.

Come in various flavours - red bean, assam boi, lychee, cendol and sweet corn - the crushed ice are scooped and packed tightly into a paper cup.  These inexpensive treat is very nice and refreshing on a hot afternoon.  Each time I go to Rawang, I must stop buy to buy one cup.

For me, the red bean flavoured ice is my favourite.  This not-too-sweet ice has a lot of sweet red beans in it and a right balance of coconut milk.

Yao Yao Bing
Jalan Welman, Rawang
(in front of TOTO shop)

Saturday, 28 July 2012

Afternoon High Tea

There are few hours in life more agreeable than the hour dedicated to the ceremony known as afternoon tea -- Henry James

The idea of an afternoon tea was first introduced in England by Anna, the 7th Duchess of Bedford.  Back in those days, when there were only breakfast and dinner, the long hours in between was too hard to go by without ever feeling hungry.  Tired of feeling down & hungry, it was then that the Duchess got a briliant idea to have a light snack in the middle of the afternoon, accompanied by a pot of freshly brewed tea to stem the hunger.

Initially started off as her own private enjoyment, this idea quickly became a fashionable hit among other socialites to hold events in the afternoon to sit around, sip tea and nibble sandwiches.  

Until today, this old British tradition still stays as one of the popular afternoon activities.  Whether it is a simple afternoon tea or a luxurious spread, everyone will find something to indulge in.

Afternoon tea usually consists of finger sandwiches, scones with cream and jam, sweet pastries and cakes.  Then, there is a choice of coffee or tea to go with it.  It may or may not be served in tiered trays, but if it does, it is a wonderful feast to the eyes.


Ever since both KS and I started to go crazy over the idea of afternoon tea, we are now making a point to try out different places serving these wonderful creations.  While some qualify as a traditional afternoon tea, there are also some that are just variations of the more traditional setup.

1)  A lovely, highly recommended afternoon tea @ Delicious, 1 Utama & Marc Residence
(yet to be published)

2)  A traditional afternoon tea @ Grand Dorsett, Subang Jaya

3)  A gourmet high tea @ Ettora, Solaris Dutamas

4)  One of the best high tea @ House, G Tower

Click here to read more on House's high tea

5)  Warm, cosy high tea @ Ten28ight Boutique Cafe, Desa Sri Hartamas

Click here to read more on Ten28ight Boutique Cafe


A must yet to try..The traditional afternoon tea at Carcosa Seri Negara, Kuala Lumpur - a must-try for the true experience of a traditional afternoon tea within the grounds of a historical heritage mansion.

Gourmet High Tea @ Ettora, Solaris Dutamas

When I first hear gourmet high tea, I had a huge expectation for rich flavours.  Well, at least something worth paying extra more to indulge in the experience.  Despite the disapproval mark from KS, I insisted to give it a try - at least a one-in-a-lifetime experience.

Here goes my experience of a gourmet high tea @ Ettora, Solaris Dutamas.

So what's in this gourmet tea?

  • Large Cookies (4 pieces) - Hazelnut Shortbread, Oatmeal Raisin, White Chocolate Cranberry and Luxury Oat Almond
  • Belgium Mousse Chocolate (2 pieces)
  • Curry Puff (2 pieces)
  • Belgium Chocolate Cupcake (2 pieces)
  • Date Walnut Brownie (1 piece)
  • Fruitcake (1 piece)
  • Drinks - Swiss Iced Chocolate & Iced Peach Tea

Bear in mind, the portion above is for two person.  To be honest, I strongly feel the portion is just too small for one to really taste the cookies & cakes.  If you ask me, we barely could remember what each of these tasted.

For each of the cookies, I only had half a bite since they only gave one flavour each and I wanted to share with KS.  Plus, the description of "Large cookies" was pretty misleading - think it is just slightly larger than the Oreo biscuits (you know what I mean).  But I must admit, the cookies are quite nice (just that I can't remember exactly what was good).

If you look at the picture, you can also notice how small the brownie and fruitcake are, which you can finish off in one bite, if you want to.  The level of enjoyment is just not there - you only get to enjoy food when you know you have more bites to go after the first.

The curry puffs are pretty typical, just lacking the spicy kick and not fragrant enough.

But I must strongly recommend you the Belgium Chocolate Cupcake (RM 5 each).  Oh, we love this so much.  I think this rich cupcake is the highlight of this gourmet high tea (without this, we would have felt really cheated to fork out that money).  This small cupcake is very moist and with every bite, you can feel the creamy, gooey melted Belgian chocolate hidden in every part of the cake.

Another worth mentioning are the Belgium Mousse Chocolates.  Both KS and I felt the vanilla mouse coated with milk chocolate is quite nice and not too sweet.  On the other hand, the strawberry mousse coated in white chocolate is too sweet - wouldn't really recommend it as the combination does not match very well.

For the drinks, the Swiss Iced Chocolate was a huge disappointment.  I think any kid could have made a better chocolate drink than Ettora.  I was expecting a rich, creamy chocolately drink but all I got was a super diluted drink.  Try imagining an iced Milo left out in the room for hours - that was pretty much how it tasted.  Sorry, but I couldn't make myself to finish this drink.

The peach ice tea is pretty standard, pre-mix fruity drink.  At least, I enjoyed this more than the chocolate drink.

But then again, Ettora's core business is on their cookies & Belgian imported hand-crafted chocolates, so it will be pretty unfair to pin them down on the drinks.

So, if you want to try some luxurious cookies & chocolates, you can drop by Ettora.  Their products are homemade using imported ingredients.  But be mindful, it does come with a very hefty price (which in my opinion is not worth it).

D1-G3-07, Solaris Dutamas,
No. 1, Jalan Dutamas 1 
50480 Kuala Lumpur
Tel:  03-6211 5416 

Thursday, 26 July 2012

Bangkok Chicken Rice @ Q Thai Restaurant, KL

Q Thai Restaurant, the No.1 Best Tom Yam in town!

I'm not sure how true this tagline is, but I know that they serve pretty decent Thai food.  At least, an affordable and tasty meal around Kuala Lumpur.

I used to come here for the Thai-style Fried Kuay Teow but of lately, I find it a bit getting too oily.  But ever since they started to offer individual rice options for dinner, I have been sticking to the same choice.

Bangkok Chicken with Rice (RM 8.90) - spicy boneless chicken served with rice & assorted vegtable fritters.


What I like about this dish is that they have used chicken meat from the things.  The chicken, with its skin still attached, has been pan-fried before cooking with the spicy sauce.  I always feel that anything that has been pan-fried will taste better.

Although you can find a lot of chillis (both red and green ones) and chilli seeds in the sauce, you will not find it as spicy as you had thought when judging by the colour of the dish.  Somehow, I find the sauce closely resembling the fermented soybean-based sauce of the Chinese spicy steam fish.

If you come during lunch time, it is super packed with people and you may need to wait for a quite some time for your food (and not to forget, the portion size may vary also).  But if you come during dinner time, the restaurant is a little less crowded (as seen in the picture above), and the quality of the food is much better.  They will take the time to set the food in a more presentable manner.

Q Thai Restaurant
Kompleks Antarabangsa
Ground Floor
Jalan Sultan Ismail
50250 Kuala Lumpur

Dinner @ North 28' Restaurant, Subang Jaya

This is one stall which I strongly feel has been maintaining the quality of their food.  Since my younger days, I have been going to this restaurant for dinners, and until now, I never fail to crave for their food.

Previously, this Chinese "tai chow" stall sits in the restuarant that sells the famous pan mee during daytime in SS19, Subang Jaya.  But since a few years back, this stall has moved.  Now, you can find this stall at North 28 Degree Restaurant, USJ 4.

During the weekends, it can be very packed and sometimes, we need to wait quite a while for the food to be served.  If you don't like waiting, you better not go during the peak dinner time.  Otherwise, it is worth waiting.

The one dish that I love very much is their Fried Onion Chicken (洋蔥雞).  Until now, I have not found one that taste as nice as theirs.

As a young girl, I always pestered my parents to order this dish so much so that my Dad now treats this dish as a must-order dish on any special occasions for me (encouragement dinners, celebration dinners or even after-get-well-treat dinner..haha).

This juicy fried chicken is topped with generous amount of fried onion rings, drizzled with BBQ-like sauce.  The chicken is very tender and the plus point is that the chicken is not coated with a thick layer of flour/batter, so you get to fully enjoy the crispy skin.

Given the hot weathers recently, we were also craving for some soupy dish.  So, we ordered the Chinese Spinach in Superior Broth (上汤菠菜).

Served in a claypot, the vegetables comes with a very flavourful soup, topped with fried silver anchovies and slices of century egg.  I cannot stress how nice the soup is.

One thing I like very much about this stall is that the taste is not commercialized - a lot of old flavours and homey feel - something hard to find nowadays.


The Thai-Styled Fried Chicken is also something I liked very much too.  Topped with a lot of shredded cucumbers and onions, this dish has a very refreshing feel.  Not too spicy or too sour.

The Kung-Po Sliced Fish is also nice.  Unlike most Kung-Po styles, this is a bit less spicy, which I prefer since it does not masked the sweetness of the fish.

North 28' Restaurant
Jalan USJ 4/9G
47600 Subang Jaya
(corner shop fronting the Persiaran Tujuan, opposite the USJ 12 secondary school)

GPS:  3.045361,101.575609

Saturday, 21 July 2012

Dinner @ SUBWAY

In conjunction with the Ramadan fasting month, SUBWAY is having a special all-day promotion from 21 July - 18 August 2012.  A combo meal consisting of a regular 6-inch sandwich, a small drink and a cookie for only RM9.90.  The only catch is, it is limited to 3 choices - Chicken Slice, Italian BMT and Chicken Teriyaki.  

Well, not bad, all my favourite choices :)

Since today is the first day, KS and I decided to drop by the nearest SUBWAY for a sandwich dinner.  Love those chewy cookies, especially the Double Chocolate Cookie.

Also realized they have a new sauce, Honey Mustard - sweet Dijon mustard sauce.  The combination of the Honey Mustard, Sweet Onion & Ranch sauce is just yum-yum!

Looks like I can look forward to more SUBWAY lunches for this coming month.

Healthy Lunch @ Surya Yoga, Aman Suria

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), approximately 1.7 million of deaths worldwide are attributable to low intake of fruits and vegetables.  Five servings of vegetables and fruits actually go a long way to ward off many diseases & cancers while maintaining a healthy, strong body.

But for many people, the thought of healthy eating is a turn-off, especially when it comes to vegetables-only meal.  There's always a wrong perception that eating healthily usually means bland and tasteless food.  For me, I strongly believe that if one has a good understanding of the natural flavours packed inside the vegetables & fruits, you will be able to create a tasty meal.

For Surya Yoga's Juice & Salad Bar @ Aman Suria, they have done it the right way.

For starters, we had the soup of the day, which is pumpkin soup topped with croutons.  As the soup is not served with cream, it does not have the kick.  But, it is still a very sweet & nice soup.  The only complain I have is that it is lacking a bit saltiness to bring out the flavour.

For mains, we ordered Rice Salad & Thai Salad to share.

The Rice Salad (RM 6.90) is a healthy rice dish mixed with capsicum, celery, carrot, mushroom, mix nuts, vegan ham.  It may looked like a typical fried rice, but it is no fried rice.  This warm, colourful rice salad is very flavourful and you would never believe that a vegetarian dish could taste that nice.  Trust me, this dish definitely can fool those must-eat-meat people.

Another delicious dish is the Thai Salad (RM 6.90).  This Thai-inspired salad has chicken, tomatoes, cucumber, green salad leaves and pineapple, topped with cashew nuts (it was originally peanuts, but we're staying away from peanuts due to health reasons and requested for a change to cashew nuts instead).  But the X-factor to this dish is the special Thai chilli dressing.  This acidic, creamy dressing with a touch of spiciness brings this salad to a whole new level.  With such nice dressing to complement the greens, I see no reason to say no to vegetables.

For drinks I ordered the Red Monster (RM 5) while KS ordered After-Workout (RM 6), both highly recommended by the waitress.

Red Monster is actually beetroot and green apple.  This red drink is very nice and sweet, not as scary as I thought.  A very nice, thirst-quenching drink.  I love this very much.  Definitely will come back for this again.

After-Workout is a mixture of apple, celery & cucumber.  Well, after drinking that sweet Red Monster, this green-ish drink is a bit bitter.  More to a vegetable drink than a fruit drink.

But one thing I can be sure off is they did not add sugar to these drinks - 100% pure vegetables & fruits.

It is indeed a light, refreshing and nutritious lunch, accompanied by relaxing yoga music in the background.  If you feel like detoxing once in a while, try stopping by here for a meal.  They have healthy set lunches (RM 9.90) that comes with a selection of vegetables-packed meals and a choice of soup, side salad or yogurt.

Surya Yoga is a yoga centre and they offer a range of yoga classes from beginners to advanced levels, from toddlers to adults.  One thing I find very special is that after each class, you will be rewarded with a glass of freshly squeezed juices.  Talk about a complete detox process.

Juice & Salad Bar @ Surya Yoga
C-1-9, Jln PJU 1/45,
Aman Suria, Damansara
47410 Petaling Jaya

Tel:  03-78036044

Friday, 20 July 2012

Dinner @ Sam U Claypot Restaurant, PJ

Everytime when we go to PJ New Town, we always think of the famous duck rice.  But this time, we decided to try the restaurant just beside it, Sam U Claypot Restaurant.  This restaurant, which is apparently the branch of Sam You (which is just nearby serving a more formal Chinese dining - nice and affordable), has been open for quite a time, but we never tried it until now.

The first dish was the Fish Maw in Sing Kong Style.  It is basically a claypot filled with fish maw, slices of chicken, tofu and mixed vegetables topped with egg-drop sauce.  It may not look very appetizing, but the sauce is very nice as they have used quality stock.  I ended up drinking the sauce as it was very hot and tasty.

The next dish was the Claypot Kangkung in Belacan.  This is definitely not the usual spicy kangkung belacan.  Nevertheless, it tasted quite nice as the belacan taste in the sauce is strong.  The kangkung is not too mature, and hence, very crunchy.  

The last dish, which was supposed to be our snack, is the Fried Yam Abacus.  If you are not aware, this is a traditional Hakka dish that is pretty hard to find around in KL (at least not the tasty ones).  Here, this dish is very nice.  They got the texture of the yam abacus just right - not to dry or too chewy.  The only thing I felt could be improved further is the level of saltiness, probably due to the combination of dried shrimps and salted radish.  Definitely will come back here again as yam abacus is my dad's favourite.

Another unique thing about this restaurant is that they serve steamed rice.  It is quite rare to find restaurants cook the rice this way as the usual would be using the rice cooker.  Steamed rice is fluffier and the moisture is retained.

Sam U Claypot Restaurant
12 Jalan Tengah
Off Jalan Yong Shook Lin
Petalling Jaya

Lunch @ Xenri D'Garden Terrace, Menara Hap Seng

Xenri D'Garden Terrace @ Menara Hap Seng is a fine-dining restaurant serving Japanese kaiseki cuisine.

Kaiseki, a traditional multi-course Japanese dinner, is a type of art form that focus on the right balance of taste and presentation.  So such a meal would be satisfying not just your taste-buds but also your eyes.  Of course, with such complexity involved, it comes with a hefty price.

During lunch time, Xenri offer a more casual version of kaiseki cuisine (or what we normally term as lunch sets), with a slightly lower cost.

My chance came when my boss decided to treat us for lunch at Xenri.

I had the Shake Minute Steak To Agedashi Doufu Teishoku, which translates to a Salmon Minute Steak with Deep-Fried Beancurd Set (RM 34).  It comes with chawanmushi, miso soup, pickles & fruits.

The main dish is the salmon steak, served with generous stir-fried vegetables and fried garlic, accompanied by a bowl of fluffy rice.  The salmon, which is very fresh, is well-cooked and juicy.  The sauce is very unique, not the standard teriyaki sauce - a little bit acidic, sweet & creamy (very close resemblance to the wafu dressing) and it compliments well with this dish.

I love the chawanmushi very much.  The steamed egg is very smooth, and most importantly, it is very flavourful.  I had a feeling they have used many ingredients into the stock for the egg mixture.

The agedashi tofu or deep-fried beancurd is very soft, and me, being a lousy chopstick user, had a hard time picking up the tofu.  I like the texture, quite like pudding.

The desserts, which were fruits, were a little disappointing.  The mango was quite mushy while the rock-melon still tasted like it had not been defrosted well.  Not what I would expect to come from such a restaurant.

But all in all, the meal was satisfying, with more surprises than disappointment.  To top it, there's a sense of peacefulness when you step in to Xenri.  Perfect to unwind and truly indulge in your meal.

Xenri D'Garden Terrace
Lot 2-04, 2nd Floor
Podium of Menara Hap Seng
Jalan P. Ramlee
50250 Kuala Lumpur
Tel:  03-20786688

Handmade Oyster Mee Sua @ Shihlin Taiwan Street Snacks

When I think about Taiwanese snacks, the first thing that came to my mind is the mouth-watering Handmade Oyster Mee Sua  ( 蚵仔麵線) from Shihlin Taiwan Street Snacks.

Came to first know about this simple but delicious bowl of noodles when KS introduced it to me.  From then, I am totally hooked to it.  Each time when we feel like getting snacks in-between meals, I would begged to go to Shihlin.

Each bowl is filled with handmade mee sua served over a hot-piping flavourful soup, topped with generous amount of oysters & shredded chicken.  And the extra kick to this mee sua is the chilli paste, giving it a nice touch of spiciness.  It is also not too starchy, so every spoon of it just makes you keep wanting it without feeling bloated.

Oh no, I am already drooling for it now..

This popular franchise serves a variety of popular Taiwanese snacks, and another snack which I always order is the golden and crunchy Sweet Plum Potato Fries.  These savoury sweet potatoes are battered and lightly fried, seasoned with plum powder.  Not too oily & a definitely healthier snack compared to french fries.

You can find Shihlin almost everywhere is most shopping centres.  Perfect to stop to rest your tired feet while munching on the delicious snacks before continuing your shopping spree.

Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Lunch @ Palate Palette, KL

Hidden among the old shophouses along Jalan Mesui lies a quiet, relaxing restaurant & bar, Palate Palette.  In fact, you will have not noticed it if you were not actually looking hard for it.

But if you do, you have just found a very nice place to unwind during your lunch hours as it is usually not crowded (maybe no one actually noticed that it was a restaurant to start off with).

They have furnished the shop very nicely, with a lot of colourful murals drawn on the walls - it's as though you just stepped into an art class.  The ambiance is very relaxing with dim, cool lighting accompanied by soft music in the background.

We had the soup of the day, which happens to be pumpkin soup.  This sweet, creamy pumpkin soup is very nice, and to date, would have been one of the best pumpkin soup I've ever had.  I love the consistency - not too watery nor is it too starchy.  Very tasty.

For mains, we had the Asparagus and Smoked Chicken Pasta (I had the fettuccine while KS had the penne).  KS initially ordered the Grilled Chicken Aglio Olio, but the kitchen somehow messed up the order, so both of us ended with the same pasta.

The pasta is served in creamy white sauce topped with asparagus and smoked chicken breast.  I didn't enjoy this as much as the soup as I found my fettuccine not properly cooked well & hence, still has a little taste of flour and felt quite dry-ish.  On the contrary, KS pasta tasted much better with a lot more sauce.  Otherwise, I enjoyed the smokey taste that the smoked chicken breast brings to this dish.

Palate Palette offers set lunches that comes together with a cup of soup of the day and a variety of mains such as sandwiches, pasta etc from RM 13.

Palate Palette
21 Jalan Mesui
50200 Kuala Lumpur