Saturday, August 31, 2013

Happy 56th Merdeka Day, Malaysia!


Crying Out Love 呼唤爱
Composed, Lyrics and Produced by 彭学斌 @ Pocket Music Malaysia

如果地球有一张脸   是不是一张和谐的容颜
如果希望是一盏灯   能不能照亮每一个心愿
如果生命是一首歌   是不是唱着幸福和快乐
如果爱是一种颜色   彩虹会不会出现在这一刻
抵挡不需要拳头   言语不需要战火
朋友不需要明说   微笑和眼神就足够
站在高处往下看   其实我们都一样
We are one   世界就是一个家
大声呼唤大声唱起来   让所有人知道我们有多爱
手中握紧自己的未来   不让别人主宰生命的精彩
衷心祝福我们这时代   沿途在多障碍我们一样爱
心是小孩最真诚的期待   相信明天的光更灿烂地盛开

My own rough translation:
If the Earth had a face, would that face be a harmonious face?
If hope was a light, would it illuminate every wish?
If life was a song, would it be a song of happiness and joy?
If love was a colour, would a rainbow appear at this moment?
No need for fistful resistance, no need for verbal wars
Friends need not words, a smile and a look suffice
Standing high and looking down, actually we are the same
We are one, the world is one home
Call out loud and sing out loud, let everyone know how much we love
Holding tight to our own futures, not allowing others to dictate our wonderful lives
Whole-heartedly wishing our generation, to love not matter how many obstacles are along the journey
The heart is the child's most sincere expectation, believing that tomorrow's light blooms more brilliantly


As long as there is love. As long as we believe.

Believe in a better Malaysia.

Selamat Hari Merdeka, tanahairku Malaysia!

Friday, August 30, 2013

Fong Lye Taiwan Restaurant The Gardens

For many years, I have walked past this restaurant. In fact, since it opened its doors how ever many years ago. For the first time, VK brought me here for a pitstop before our movie. He made a few recommendations and left me to make my own decisions.

I remember their drinks to be quite expensive and made a mental note not to order drinks should I visit again.


He had made up his mind on what to order even before stepping in. I think it was a ramen-looking dish with pork slices and a roasted chicken drumstick.


And then the glutton in me could not resist the temptation of pork leg. Argh, I know it is super unhealthy but it is pork leg!!! How can one not like pork leg?! The braised pork with noodle set was not too bad. Would have preferred the noodles to be cooked slightly longer for that chewy texture.


They now have a bigger, fusion version open just round the corner. Prices are steeper but they have teppanyaki and hotpot options.

Fong Lye Taiwan Restaurant
Lot T208, 3rd Floor, The Gardens, Mid Valley City, Lingkaran Syed Putra, 59200 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Tel: +60 3 2283 8699
Open daily 11:00am to 10:00pm
*Cash only

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Kedai Makanan O & S Restaurant Paramount Garden

The last time I drove past this hawker centre would be when I was still dating J. Gasp, that was ages ago! Geez...

I revisited because being the good daughter I am (ahem), I accompanied Dad to the car service centre near Jalan 222 and this place was a 5-minute drive away. And we were hungry.

"You want to have char kway teow at O & S?" I furiously nodddddddd......

To consume char kway teow in all its pork lard, charcoal wok hei and high-cholesterol cockle glory, one has to be eating this at a noisy, crowded, hot and somewhat smelly hawker centre in the midst of plastic tables and chairs. Did I just spoil the image for everyone? :D

Char kway teow RM4.50
One dish that I have not had in years is curry noodles. I remember that I use to have a bowl almost every day back in primary school. Squeeze the kalamansi lime to add some sour taste. Otherwise, the bowl of noodles with beancurd puff, bean sprouts and chicken in simple curry taste just as good with some sambal on the side.

Curry noodles with chicken RM4.50
Depending on the time of the day It is hard to find parking and a seat most times of the day, especially lunch time. But when you do, quickly place your order, tell them where you are seated and the food will come to you. Lots of waitstaff around so no worries with drink orders. Oh, and a pack of tissues is a must. :)

Kedai Makanan O & S Restaurant
39 Jalan 20/14, Paramount Garden, 46300 Petaling Jaya, Selangor, Malaysia
Open daily for breakfast and lunch

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Wat Kai Fan Jalan San Peng

I love Dad because he brings me along to many of his work-related meetings. Once, I accompanied him to a site inspection, the school hall he designed for SJKC Chung Kwo on Jalan Pudu and the reason I enjoy accompanying him is because he brings me out for good food!

Jalan San Peng is just a stone's throw away from the school and I remember the row of stalls along the road but have never bothered stopping. It is bad when your own father thinks that you are a princess and may find the place disgusting. "You sure ah? This place a lot of samseng one wor and don't have air-con one wor." Excuse me, I am not that bad, okay? But just bear in mind that it is a roadside set up, so you will get noise and other types of pollutants.


Judging from the crowd (it was slightly past lunchtime) and what they were eating, I quickly gathered that they are famous for their chicken and prawn noodle in soup. Dad did the ordering, as I had no clue but I did want some greens. Crispy and fresh. Well, how hard could blanching vegetables be? Er, did I just offend people who have not cooked before?



And then there was steamed fish. Plain and simple but lovely. The taste of ginger was not overpowering and it was at the right saltiness level. Flesh of the fish just slipped off the bones.


"Do you eat chicken feet?", Dad asked. "Of course I do, I'm Hakka, just like you!" May I say that their braised chicken feet and pork belly were AWESOME. Juicy, flavoursome and melt in your mouth!


As Dad is a char siew fan, we ordered a serving of that, too. To me, it was well, char siew. Could have had more 'char', though. Not as burnt as I would have liked it but had good texture.


If anything, we ordered too much for two. They do not have a formal name and address but do look out for this signboard at the side of Jalan San Peng, just opposite the Pudu LRT Station. That is the Telekom building you see in the background of the photo, so if you see Telekom, you are in the right place. Yellow lined road but still plenty of cars parked on the sides. If you prefer not to hog the road, the LRT station has plenty of free parking across the road and with some luck, you might just get a spot shaded by a tree.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Sambal Scott Garden

Every time I head home and drive down the extremely familiar roads around OUG, Happy Garden, and Taman Desa, I become slightly disoriented because each time there would be a new building or new highway. One such new building (or at least it was never there during my school days when I used Old Klang Road daily) is Scott Garden, a complex of shops and private dwellings facing the wet market and post office.

A stone's throw away from Taman Desa, it very quickly became a convenient meeting point for gatherings and reunions. One evening, we randomly decided to head there for dinner before Dor headed back to Auckland. None of us had any experience dining there so any outlet would not matter, which was how we ended up eating at Sambal.

I giggled when I saw the name and let out a louder chuckle when I saw the interior because the name reminded me of the Sambal in Sydney but the interior was the opposite. While the Sydney version was more 'high class', this KL place had a more kampung feel, with wooden planks and all.


And since sambal is one of the main ingredients of nasi lemak (RM9.00), we figured that at least one of us should order a nasi lemak to try. All the important stuff were on the plate - lemak rice, egg, cucumber, fried anchovies, sambal and a small cutting of banana leaf, even but my oh my, we were fooled by its appearance. The sambal (and the rendang) were SUPER SPICY! Thank goodness for the huge portion of rice that was fragrant (and the cucumber slices) that helped provide a slight cooling effect.


We also tried their fried kuay teow. This Malay version is very similar to the Chinese version of char kuay teow (RM9.00, add RM1.50 for fried egg) that we are all familiar with, minus the pork lard but plus lots of greens. Other than it being a little too oily, we were happy with the wok hei.


The staff were friendly and the place was clean and airy. Drinks were a little slow to arrive but they were apologetic about it and I was given a discount for the delay (I did not ask for a discount, honest). Would visit again to try other dishes.

1-12 & 1-13 The Scott Garden, Kompleks Rimbun Scott, 289 Jalan Kelang Lama, 58100 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Tel: +60 3 7987 7101, Fax: +60 3 7982 8277; Mob: +60 12 214 8963; Email: enquiries@sambal-nasilemak.com
Open daily 10:00am to 10:00pm

Monday, August 19, 2013

Learning about others

Admit it, there is a tendency in every one of us to point the finger at someone other than ourselves when something goes wrong. Or when we 'think' that something has gone wrong.

What we define as 'right' and 'wrong' may, and most likely, is not universal. I always remind my students that there is no 'right' and 'wrong', just 'different'. And it is okay to be different.

I found this list of questions for reflection useful. Students work in pairs to ask their partner each of these questions. However, I think that these questions work really well for self reflection, too, to remind ourselves of the things we prioritise and how those priorities came about. By understanding our own beliefs and goals, we learn to take in other people's beliefs and goals, which allows us to accept the diversity that exists in the world. I find it particularly interesting when students try to tease out the reasons behind their similarities and differences.

Maybe you will find these questions helpful, too.

  1. Whom should you obey? Why?
  2. Who makes decisions (at home, school, community)? Why?
  3. How should you behave with others (elders, children, neighbours)? Why?
  4. Whom should you respect? How do you show respect? Why?
  5. How should you act in public so you bring credit or honour to your family? Why?
  6. What does it mean to be successful in life? Why?
  7. Whom should you trust? Why?
  8. What are the sins of success? Why?
  9. What provides 'security' in life? Why?
  10. Whom should your friends be? Who decides? Why?
  11. Where and the with whom, should you live? Why?
  12. Whom should you marry? At about what age? Who decides? Why?
  13. What is expected of children when they are young? Why?
  14. What should you depend on others for? Why?
  15. When should you be self-sufficient, if ever? Why?
  16. What should you expose toe others, and what should be kept private? Why?
  17. How should you plan for your future? Why?
  18. What should be remembered from your heritage? Why?
  19. What was better when you were younger or during your parents' youth? Why?
  20. What do you wish for your children that you could not have? Why?

Source: Cushner, K. (1998). Human diversity in action (p. 133). Boston: McGraw-Hill.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Esquire Kitchen The Mines Shopping Fair

My trip back to KL is never complete without a visit to Esquire Kitchen. This is almost always the first place Mum and Dad suggest for family dinner. They boast Szechuan and Shanghainese flavours, home-cooked style. My all time favourite and must have each time I come here is the Szechuan Eggplant (RM15.00). The combination of vinegar and fish sauce, the wok hei and texture of the eggplant, orgasmic. I could have just this with plain rice and be very happy.


And honestly, I do not know what this next dish is called because every time I order it, I just point to it and go, "This one." Haha, but it is awesome, too!


My brother likes the Marmite Ribs. Crunchy and juicy. Consider this if you do not want to order their famous Tong Po Pork.


Service is quick and the place is inviting though the air-conditioning could get quite cold.

Esquire Kitchen The Mines Shopping Fair
Lot 48 & 49, Ground Floor, The Mines Shopping Fair, Jalan Dulang, Off Jalan Balakong, 43300 Seri Kembangan, Selangor, Malaysia.
Tel: +60 3 8944 1377
Open 11:00am to 10:00pm

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Mee Jawa Publika

Mee Jawa is actually the name of a noodle dish which some say is a variety of the local Mee Rebus.


The old school bicycles at the entrance caught my attention. The red went well with their signage.


They had an airy, clean, simple, open, no fuss concept. Like.


And bamboo appeared to be their feature material. The ceiling and lampshades were made with bamboo.


You cannot come to Mee Rebus and not order a serve of mee rebus, can you? For RM8.90, this was a generous serving of yellow egg noodles in gravy made from potatoes, curry powder, water, salted soybeans, dried shrimps and peanuts. Garnished with half a half-boiled egg, calamansi lime, spring onions, lettuce, chillies, fried tofu, fried shallots and bean sprouts, this version came with chicken slices, too.


For the same price, the fried version of the mee rebus was basically the same stuff without the gravy but fried in dark and sweet soy sauce. 


The Seafood Tom Yum with Rice (RM11.90) was too much for one person. Not bad for what they charged and perfect for people with a not-too-spicy palate.


We also ordered a plate of rojak to share but I was so caught up with visiting a new place that I forgotten to take note of how much it was! Lots of crunchy peanut and sesame - like much!



And yes, fail case again here, I do not recall the name of this dessert. Some tongsui with grass jelly. The cooling effect helps balance the heaty fried food.


And the next day, I brought my parents. :)

Mee Jawa Publika
A1-G2-09 Solaris Dutamas, 1 Jalan Dutamas 1, 50480 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Tel: +60 3 6205 5566, Email: meejawa_sb@yahoo.com
Open daily 8:00am to 10:00pm
*Halal (Pork free)

Monday, August 12, 2013

A tribute to Coffee In Love

This is a tribute to Coffee in Love's original location, a nursery in Sri Hartamas, which made our coffee moments ever more unique.







They have many corners and spots for us to enjoy our cuppa. Just take your pick!




In addition, there are many toys and other trinkets to play with, should the caffeine make you fidgety.








It was a very simple, no fuss set up over at the counter. There was even a Milo tin used to keep cash. So old school!




We asked where they source their coffee from and received this reply: Oh, cannot tell one, secret ma.



They do not just make your coffee for you, the made the cups, too. And each has the person's name etched at the bottom.


They have now relocated to Publika and I have yet to check out their new place. Not sure when yet but I will definitely get there!

Friday, August 09, 2013

Snowflake Kuchai Entrepreneurs Park

Have you had Snowflake? Hm, Snowflake? What's that? My friend's description were these exact words: It is like ais kacang but Taiwanese style and has lots of stuff in it.

Er, right. Okay...

It was super packed, even though it was late. Nearly 11:00pm on a Friday. Not only was there a long queue but also there was not an empty table in sight. Great.


Thankfully, by the time we place our orders, a table became empty. When my friend collected the orders and placed the tray on the table, my reaction was: Oh......... okay. So it is like Meet Fresh. They even sell the same stuff. Or at least, they look the same to me. Coincidentally, both brands were started by a Taiwanese.

Japan Combo II RM6.90
Soya Ice Series RM6.50 with sweet potato, barley and pearl toppings

Perhaps because I had something else to compare with, I found them very typical Taiwanese dessert. The texture of their toppings was chewy and soft while their shaved ice had the melt-in-your-mouth quality, and in humid Malaysia, that is always a welcome treat.

To improve, they could perhaps have more staff to come round to clear tables of empty bowls.

Snowflake Kuchai Entrepreneurs Park
18 Jalan Kuchai Maju 8, Off Jalan Kuchai Lama, 58200 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Sunday to Thursday 12:30pm to 10:30pm
Friday & Saturday 12:30pm to 11:30pm

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