Saturday, May 29, 2010

Hup-Hup! Sunday Simplicity on the Double!

Hup Soon's Western food stall had been edging its way into conversations about Sunday comfort food, one that usually lasts for hours as dusk claims yet another tiring day of rest and games. The urgency to visit went up a couple of notches after reading Rebecca's post on her auspicious visit to the same coffee shop during the day.

SS3 has always been a bit of a mystery to me. Particularly at the end of a day of futility, I am even less inclined to navigate my way around old Petaling Jaya. Special thanks to driver this particular Sunday!

Hup Soon illuminated for an evening of family feasting. Note: in the evenings, all other stalls are closed, so you come here either for the standard Western fare or fill up on iced Chinese tea or something.

The menu with revised pricing. I had imagined this stall to serve Hainanese chicken chop so imagine my dismay that the dialect here was anything but Hainanese.

The driver friend goes for the Lamb Stew, which commanded attention with its huge chunks of fall of the bone lamb in potent clear brew, bursting with goodness of generous dashings of pepper and accompanying vegetables. Very satisfying.

My Mushroom Soup was a bit of a modified Campbell's disaster. If you think it looks like dishwater, wait till you have a taste.

The Mexican Chicken Chop was massive slab of deep fried (you get a choice between deep fried or grilled) chop, drenched in a blah sweet & sour sauce, a masterpiece of culinary misappropriation.

My Chicken chop with Brown Sauce fared a wee bit better but I was terribly defeated by the massive serving - got about halfway through the reasonably uhh... well-fried chop? Passed the rest to my alarmingly ravenous driver friend, who had yet another serving of the same...

...Grilled chicken chop with brown sauce. We concurred that when you're in these quarters, don't even think about going easy on the grease. Hup Soon is meant to feed the coarse yet cheerful pleasure-seeker in all of us.

Despite my initial misgivings, I foresee a few more Sundays where I will need Hup Soon's heavily simple comforts. Still no clue how I'd get there though!

Hup Soon
Jalan 3/29
SS3 Kelana Jaya
47300 Petaling Jaya

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Pints and more at Tom Dick & Harry's, TTDI

Tom Dick & Harry's has done well for itself, despite having chosen to open its doors on a competitive stretch in TTDI.

We like to come here time and again because it's a comfortable place to get your pints, the service is fast and friendly even when the heat is on. They really ought to do something about the recurring power outage though.

We didn't start trying the food menu until recent visits, when it was apparent that more and more tables were dinner as well as drinking ones.

The recommended Chicken Chop - a huge slab of deboned chicken fillet breaded and served with brown sauce. It's mystifying how many places get this wrong even though it's a difficult dish to stuff up. Fortunately, TDH's is one of the better ones tried and tested. Very good with cider.

Less stellar was the Pork Ribs Curry, which was served with poppadums and toasted bread. Perhaps this dish just isn't meant to read off a pub menu, but it just didn't do much for us beyond being a token curry dish in a Malaysian joint. The pork ribs were extremely tender admittedly but the stew was too watery and lackadaisical to warrant recommendation.

These cold ones we come back for frequently. Nuff said.

They also have what looks to be a fabulous weekend breakfast menu. Can't wait to hit it next!

Tom, Dick & Harry's
Lorong Rahim Kajai 14
Taman Tun Dr Ismail
60000 KL
Tel: 03-7710 2122

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Two thumbs (and a sliced index finger!) up at Jaipur Curry House, TTDI

I was jolted out of my blogging inertia by two encounters this week. The first was dinner earlier in the week with two of the most industrious and charming bloggers I know, Kenny and Ciki, who put lazy recluses like me to shame with their consistent blitz of mesmerizing and engaging posts.

The second involved some degree of pain. See, last night, I had attempted to cook while under the influence (I have a ridiculous habit of fancying myself as some sort of Ramsay understudy after a bottle or thereabouts). While slicing this bitch of an onion, I unceremoniously let slip on the knife and came close to lopping off an index finger. Somewhat traumatized by the amount of bleeding and the herbal oil needed to make it stop, I decided to overcompensate today by eating, which led to the second inspiring encounter of the week - the banana leaf rice meal at Jaipur Curry House.

The deep fried fish arrived looking rather synthetically red but once we forked into its tender white flesh, we knew we were in good hands. Fresh and sprightly.
Chicken curry stew was a huge fat tick as well - packed with spice and pizzazz!

If I absolutely had to pick on something, it'd be the fried bitter gourd. I think there's a fine art to making this delightful complement to BLR a hit - while the crunch factor is essential, more so is the actual vegetable underneath the batter and if too heavy-handed on the latter, you basically end up with unidentified crunchy bulk, as was the case here. Still think the best fried bitter gourd resides at Sri Nirwana.

The BLR spread at Jaipur is good, really good. The curries and dhall effortlessly soaked the mountain of fluffy white rice dished out. The sides were generous and scrumptious. Even the rarely seen sweet potato chips made an appearance.

Spotted the chicken curry puff on the storefront and I can never resist such a solid looking package. The curry filling in this was probably several notches spicier than the standard Malay curry puffs, which tend to veer towards sweeter notes. There's a quarter of an egg within thinner pastry. At RM1 a pop, these have definitely inched its way into my curry puff hall of fame!

While I will not care to repeat the injury that preceeded the visit here (note to self: if I must absolutely cook after intoxication, at least make sure all the slicing and dicing's done before I begin drinking), I am certain Jaipur Curry House will be one place I will undoubtedly return to again and again. Service was genuinely affable too.

Jaipur Curry House
32 Jalan Tun Mohd Fuad Satu
Taman Tun Dr Ismail
60000 KL
Tel: 03-77282955

Sunday, May 9, 2010

The Local Fix-It, Paradiso at Taman Desa

The mad state of Klang Valley traffic sometimes leaves little option but for us to stick to the vicinity of our respective neighbourhoods, no matter how dire the offerings. Where I presently live, Taman Desa (for god knows how much longer, at the rate my long-suffered property hunt is progressing) is not exactly a culinary treasure trove. It does, however, have a smattering of local haunts that serve a decent meal, some of which may even surprise the unsuspecting headshaker.

One such is the local Italian (or well European, considering the family who runs the joint comes from Montenegro), the aptly named Paradiso. I first read about Paradiso at Cumi & Ciki a while ago and at that time, was stumped to have ignored it for so long.

The menu is a humble sampler of the usual pizzas, mains and pastas. Pizzas are a safe bet here - the ingredients are bountiful, fresh and during all my visits here, whether to dine in or takeaway, take no more than 10 minutes from oven to table. Too easy and enticing for me to not call upon Paradiso to fix the prosaic problems of the working week.

Did the PC really die on me without saving the document I'd been slaving over for the past two hours without saving? Who you gonna call?? The Pizza Quatre Stagioni (RM25) satisfies midweek rage topped with beef pepperoni, turkey salami, chicken and smoked beef.

Was that another request for a revision on a plan after you had just submitted revision #375? Stick it to the system! Choose your own toppings for RM29 - here, we went with turkey salami, chicken, mushrooms and tuna.

Just when you thought you had earned the day's wages and the client just called to seal another evening in with more documents to write? A takeaway at Paradiso will sort you straight, which was what this Pizza Paradiso (turkey salami, chicken and pineapple) did.

And on peaceful weekends plagued by the dreadry prospect of a combustive meeting first thing Monday morning? To Paradiso we go! The Pasta Polo (penne served in olive oil, vegetables, chicken and garlic sauce at RM19.50) is comforting but a shade too pale compared to the sturdy pizza offerings.

So what's your local fix-it? Before you write off any of the little-known neighbourhood joints, take a little walk around and who knows, you may just find that little whiff of paradise, not too far away from your doorstep, like how I found mine.

5-0-2 Jalan 3/109F
Danau Business Centre
Taman Danau Desa
58100 Kuala Lumpur
Tel: 03-7981 9996

Sunday, May 2, 2010

You Shall Eat Well in Penang

Who ever gets tired of Penang food porn? Not me!

So while I try to sift through the massive collection of random food photographs amassed in the camera and figure out what the hell to do with them (how do food bloggers do it? Do you guys make notes? Impose a post deadline?), here's another edition of more friendly food finds on sunny island.

Penang Curry Mee arrived at the perpetually packed New Cathay Coffee Shop, Pulau Tikus. I like this version because the curry is a notch thicker than average but not as loaded as the curry laksas down south. Cloud Nine mornings are made of this.

We also visited the poorly ventilated Sin Kim San Coffee Shop on Macalister Road. The Curry Chee Cheong Fun gets top marks with the olds because of the healthy chunks of chicken on smooth silken rice rolls. Didn't fancy the plasticware it came in, but I could definitely appreciate the robust gravy.

Also at Sin Kim San was Koay Chiap, a craft that is slowly but surely dying. The stall here serves up a perfectly worthy bowl of this herbal and somber delicacy, the handmade rice noodles springier to the spoon compared to the famed Kimberly Street's version.

To round off this day of eating well in Penang was a serving of Stewed Pork Leg, served with rice. The pork was fatty and invoked varying levels of lust. While not the best around, it was still very satisfying.

New Cathay
425E Jalan Burma
10350 Penang

Sin Kim San
Corner of Macalister Road & Rangoon Road
10400 Penang