December 31, 2011

El-Duero-Madrid

We stumbled upon this restaurant, we we needed to rest our feet.  In addition, we were looking for a few items on our 'food to eat' list. We were looking for bravas and oreja (pig's ears).  They have it here.
The restaurant was quite empty at the time we arrived.  It was around 3:00pm.  As the clock ticked, more patrons trickled in.  By the time we finished our snacks, the place was full. I saw that most of them like both of us were there for just snacks. It was near Christmas and El Duero is located near Puerta Del Sol.  
The Bravas-alioli was not out of this world.  It was potato wedges deep-fried with some sauce dribbled on top.  To me, the sauce tasted like chilli with tomato sauce all mixed.  There could be some kind of herbs and pepper added too.
The oreja was some experience. I thought the plate served consisted more than just pig's ears.  Hubby said it was too oily. There were lots of fats in the pieces of ears and stuff.  I thought it was an acquired taste and bite.  There is a pungent smell of pork and the bite was slightly hard with the ligaments.  It was a new eating experience for both of us eating the ears.  I would describe it as quite tasty but not exactly heavenly.
The ensalada mixt (mixed salad) was a great choice.  The lettuce, tomatoes, capsicum were all very fresh.  There were chunks (yes chunks) of tuna in the salad.  It was nothing we have seen in salads served back home (Malaysia).  
Don't you think that Spanish people are big eaters.  By the time the cordero asado (roast lamb) arrived, we were too full.  The plate of lamb came served with rice and potatoes.  That was really too much.  We asked for it to be packed and we will take it home.  I found out that they do not have boxes or containers for the food to be packed. The food was wrapped in tinfoil, placed in a bag and given to us.  The waiter who attended to us was very friendly.  He speaks all Spanish and we speak only a few words of Spanish (by then).  He tried his best to accommodate our requests and was always…smiling.  Such was the hospitality of the Spanish people. El-Duero is very popular with the Spanish people and highly recommended.
EL-DUERO located at: C/. Espoz y Mina, 4.
Tel. 91 522 52 02
:o)

November 13, 2011

Bak Moi (Pork Porridge)....so yummy

The above (picture) is a bowl of ‘bak moi’ (pork porridge).  You can see the many pieces of mince pork.  They are so juicy and tasty.
This (above picture) is coarse rice noodles (chor bee hoon) served with minced pork and pig's offal. The piece near the chopsticks (circled) is pig's brain. Yes! Pig’s brain. The piece in the centre, that is pig's kidney, sliced. There is also the pig's intestine, liver and minced pork. Urghhhh...for those who are not used to eating pig's offal. It tastes good actually. The only thing to worry is your cholesterol level.
This is by far, the best bak moi I have tasted. The broth is the yummy part. We enjoyed every morsel of it and even the broth was licked clean! I would think most uses lots of MSG but not this stall. I did not feel very thirsty after the eating. Even if MSG is used, it is minimal unlike others who sell such stuff. By the way, the man cooking, he is the third generation operating the stall. If you intend to try this, this stall is located on the street, Kampung Malabar, Penang. (at the T-junction near Penang Raod) :o)

November 12, 2011

Rὸu gῠ chά KiNG...'Bak-kut-teh'

Roh..Roh ku...erm, I had always wondered what the restaurant offered.  I am a 'banana' so I could not make out the name.   My family and I had walked past this restaurant many times before. Rὸu gῠ chά KiNG a nondescript restaurant situated among a row of shops.  We decided to pay it a visit. I had to find out what it had to offer. 
We placed our order after looking through the menu.  The waiter recommended that we take the Double Value Meal (rm31.90 for 2 pax), and it would be sufficient for us.  Right until then we were still in the dark as to the kind of food served. All I knew was it would have meat and vegetables.
All the dishes (small plates/bowls) came in pairs.  It was a different kind of dining or so I thought.  'Ewe Char Koay' (deep-fried batter), bean sprouts, and two eggs boiled in herbs.  It was so neat; the portion was good for one person per plate.
The aroma of the dish drifted out and reached us before the bowl physically touched our table.  "Oh, it is Bak Kut Teh" I exclaimed.  Now I know what Rὸu gῠ chά meant. Rὸu gῠ meant (translated meat bone) and chά meant tea.  We had a good laugh.  Moreover, I thought there was something exotic from the name. The Rὸu gῠ chά (Bak Kut Teh) was good.  The meat was tender.  It did not seem over-boiled or overcooked.  I could still taste juice in the meat.  The broth was thick and full of flavor.  
The dry version of the Rὸu gῠ chά caught us by surprise.  After so many years of eating it in soup form, the dried version was interesting.  I thought it tasted like there were some salt fish added.  I did not ask.  Hubby tasted and told me there were fermented black bean in the dish (he thought).  He did not like the taste and thought it was rather over powering.  I enjoyed it right to the last bite. The ' deep-fried fu pei' (soy sheet) blended with the thick sauce gave it a very new kind of taste. I scrapped the bowl clean. It ended up with hubby taking the remaining bowl with soup.
Hubby decided to find out if the pastry sold was good.  He ordered a plate of sesame roll (rm4.80-two pieces). The pastry was not good.  It was tough, soggy and soaked with oil.  There was some kind of bean paste inside.  We decided not to try any more of the dessert.  We were actually quite full by then.
The above is a cute container of 'Kwai Ding Gou' (black herb jelly) and it came with the set. (Free)
The time spent at this restaurant was pleasant. The young waiters were friendly.  The place is small but neat and tidy.  I would definitely go back for the dry version.  Rὸu gῠ chά KiNG is located @ Lot 4-47, Penang Gurney Plaza, 10250 Penang. Tel: 04-2287187 :o)
**10% Service Charge.

November 1, 2011

BAR B Q...This is Thai Style!

One round, two rounds...both hubby and I could not make up our minds on what to eat.  We were at the basement of Gurney Plaza, Penang looking for food.  We made up our mind when a young man who stood outside Bar B. Q. Plaza eatery handed us a leaflet.  Oh, BBQ.  We trotted into the restaurant and were seated.  In my mind (and right until the grill pan was brought out), we had the idea that we were having Korean BBQ.
Bar B Q Plaza looked clean and bright.  The interior is simple but attractive.  I liked the furniture arrangements.  There is ample walking space.
The menu showed wide array of meat, vegetables and many others for the B B Q.  Since, it was our first time we opted for the Super Mix Combo (RM33.90) which was an offer item. 
"Is this the grill?" I asked.  "Yes."  Hmmm, this is so different from the other Korean BBQ we visited. "Oh! This is not Korean BBQ.  "It is Thai" the waiter replied.  What?  How we laughed.  We did not know what we were having for dinner.  The grill pan was first filled with broth and lighted up.  This grill pan is quite special.  There is a 'longkang' (drain) for the broth. You can see the broth boiling (with bubbles) in the above picture.   
A plate consisting of different cuts of meat from the pig (we do not take beef), a few pieces of chicken, calamari, a few meatballs, prawns and shredded vegetables.
We placed the meat on the grill after it was heated.  Both of us looked quite stupid, as we did not know what we had to do. Trying to put the vegetables into the tiny 'longkang' without any spillage was quite difficult. In simple words, the groove by the side of the grill was too shallow.
I have in the picture above a piece of lard.  See how ignorant we were, we did not know what the two pieces of fats were.  Actually, we were supposed to pick the fat up and rub it over the top of the grill!  By the time we were informed, the pieces of meat we had placed on the grill; they were all stuck.  I had no complaints as I actually enjoyed myself.  I told hubby that this is like playing 'masak-masak' (child's play). The broth was nice and with the shredded cabbage added, it tasted even nicer.  Other than the yummy broth, the meat tasted ordinary even after the BBQ.  
They should have made the 'longkang' of the grill wider.  It was not wide enough.  The shredded cabbage and stuff were all over the table. By the time we finished, we were nothing but two messy people dining at the table!
The set also included a plate of deep fried (sinful) bacon.  I felt so sinful adding extra fat to my waistline.  I have to say this, the plate of bacon; not to be missed.  We behaved like we (hubby and I) were in a competition eating those tasty pieces of bacon. (laughters)
The picture above showed how the dip should be.  Pour the chopped garlic, bird-eye chilli and squeeze the very tiny piece of lime all into the sauce.  I almost asked for soy sauce when the piring (small saucer) came with only the garlic, bird-eye chilli and lime.  The brown sauce came separately in another small bowl. 
A bowl of rice and two glasses of green tea comes with the combo set.  Do not be such a fool like yours truly...asking for refill of tea.  I was not entertained when I asked for refill.  I thought all the waiter could have done was bring me another glass of tea (inform me no refill).  He merely walked away and never came back.  I got tired of waiting and since we were finishing the food, I made no fuss.
There will be refill of the brown sauce, chili and garlic and the broth.  Ask for them when you see the cart (above picture) pass your way.  I found that to be rather interesting.  

If you feel you want a different kind of dining (for a change) head to B B Q Plaza,  B1-05 Basement, Old Wing, Gurney Plaza, Pesiaran Gurney, Penang.**10% Service Charge. 6% Government Tax.  Have fun. :o)

September 29, 2011

Bee Wei Seafood Restaurant

I could not remember how long Bee Wei Seafood has been in operation.  (I did ask but I cannot remember the information now.)  All I can remember as I type here is the choo char (stir-fry) is reasonably priced and good.  This place is clean (washroom too!). Hubby cautioned me about 'putting' this eatery here.  He thinks it will make the owner increase the prices of their food.  Hmmm...I sure do hope the owner would not.  I believe in this adage 'good things are meant to be shared.'  In my case, the good food I have tested and tasted.
 
We had visited Bee Wei a number of times before for dinner.  I find the dishes served are tasty and not expensive. Dishes served here are quite similar to those found in the other 'choo-char' eateries. Dishes such as belachan (prawn paste) chicken, curry fish, sweet-sour pork, deep-fried pomfret, steam-fish, etc.
Tonight we had the yau-mak (small romaine lettuce) stir-fry with 'tau-joo' (fermented bean paste) (RM6). I said plain stir-fry but it came with prawns, my arch nemesis added (especially in vegetables). I frowned but Si Thau Por  (lady boss) assured me that they were fresh. Hubby's exclamation, "Just take a look at the size!" left me without much choice. It was deliciously cooked. The look was not that appealing due to the tau-joo but the lettuce was still crunchy. That meant it was not over cooked.
The next order was a plate of marmite chicken (RM9).  Hubby was not too pleased with the chicken.  He complained that it was a bit dry.  I think it was over deep-fried.  I liked the taste of the pieces of chicken.  Even though the pieces of chicken were a bit dry; it did not bothered me as it added to the fragrance.  As, the amount of marmite used was generous. It was simply delicious. I licked my spoon clean of the gravy.
Steamed-fish is a dish hubby will not order unless we are at a proper restaurant.  Most of the time as he put it, the fish are 'half-fresh'.  We ordered red snapper-teochew chueh (teochew style steamed fish)You would not believe it.  Si Thau Por (lady-boss) gave us the assurance that if it is not fresh, we get our money back.  That is how fresh the seafood here is.  True to her words, the fish was 'juicy fresh'.  The teochew chueh fish (fish @ market price RM26) was done perfectly.  There were enough kiam chai (salt preserved vegetables), snui puey (salted plums), tomatoes, tofu and others.  In simple words, 'kau liau' (full of oomph).  
Drive up to Air Itam (towards Kek Lok Si).  After Chung Ling School, look out for the Muslim Orphanage on your left (if you are driving up from town).  Drive straight after the crossroad traffic lights (look out for an Indian temple ahead).  Bee Wei Seafood is on your left as you approached the Indian temple.  The picture above shows the Indian Temple.
The above picture shows the road running by the side of Bee Wei Seafood. It is Jalan Satu, Air Itam.
Bee Wei Seafood located at 4J Jalan Air Itam, 11500 Penang.  Contact: Sally--012 4789207. Closed once a fortnight on Wednesday at around 11:00pm. :o)**No Govt & Service tax.

September 24, 2011

Suffolk House Restaurant..

Suffolk House, ermm...where is it? A shame...I (We) must be to Penangites. All I knew about Suffolk House was it had something to do with Captain Francis Light. Then after Captain Francis Light's death, it became the house of the Governors of Penang. I decided to 'drag' hubby to Suffolk House just to find out where this building is. I heard (from a friend) it had a restaurant inside so the trip was to have lunch. (made a few weeks back)
Ooh, the place looked splendid.  A mansion surrounded by lush greens.  Photography was not allowed inside the building.  We walked around the building.  Visitors can take a tour of the building/site at RM10/pax.  If you are dining, you would be allowed to take pictures of the restaurant.
Suffolk House Restaurant, Bagan, Eclectic (wonder if it is still there), No. 68 Kelawai Road (ceased operations), The Mansion; they are all under the same owner.  The owner (I think) has a knack for colonial buildings. LOL.  The interior of the restaurant impressed us.  Curtains hung from the ceiling to the floor.  The side furniture in white, blended well with the chairs in dark coloured wood.  Antique looking mirrors on the wall together with the plants gave the interior the classy look.   
The day we were there for lunch the place looked almost empty.  There were only two tables occupied.  A set menu of chicken (RM46), lamb (RM48) and steak (RM50) was what we ordered. For the set, you have a choice of either salad or soup.  Dessert and coffee/tea came with the set menu.  
A plate of greens with couscous. Couscous is a type of North African semolina made from crushed durum wheat. The greens with the couscous were something different.  It was not common to find salads served this way.
The mushroom soup was good. The way it was served was nice too. 
Minced chicken wrapped up in pastry was how my dish was served.  I was the one having the chicken.  I think it did not strike me in any way.  I had no notes on it! (Sorry)
BB had the steak. He did not like the steak very much. So-so was his comment. The steak was not tender enough. Hubby said the meal was not impressive. 
We did not end our meal in despair.  The last thing served...sweet and delicious.  It was bread pudding.  That had us drooling!
After lunch, we took a walk over the bridge with Sungai (river) Ayer Itam running below. It was in the afternoon but the walk was relaxing.  The decision made to visit Suffolk House not that bad.  Hubby did not enjoy his meal.  Price as expected (as with all the other outlets) was rather steep.  Ah well, this is fine dining. I would say, been there, done that.
Suffolk House located at 250 Jalan Ayer Itam, Georgetown, 10460 Penang. Contact: 04-2283930.
Lunch: 12:00 noon-2pm. Tea: 2:30pm-6 pm. Dinner:7pm-10pm. 10% Service charge & 6% Govt Tax.:o)
** (Read more on Suffolk House...click)