Thursday, June 4, 2009

Kedai Kopi Ming Fong

A quick post. My internet connection is very slow again. I went to my hub's office last night to make some online payments and was taken aback by how fast the internet connection was; the page appeared right after clicking which seems like magic to me. I'm used to watching the what-do-u-call-it go round and round as the page tries to load and reload, stops, stalls and I have to start all over again.

We don't normally have late night meals now that we are our age and our size. But since school's out for Wey, we take him out once in a while because he needs 5 meals a day, especially just before he sleeps.

My sis told me about Kedai Kopi Ming Fong behind the burnt-down Servay Supermarket in Penampang whose young cook used to work at 'Bamboo Inn' (my translation) up on the hill slope near Taman Century in Shantung Au. I'm sure you know the Bamboo Inn. It was a very popular place to bring tourists for a very local meal because they served game such as wild boar, 'flying foxes', snakes, whatever else that I'm not aware of, in a wooden shaky open hut perched precariously on a hill side. I used to dread eating there because the hill was kind of spooky at night, although the air was very fresh and it freaked me out that my food may be contaminated with the blood of those exotic animals. It is also because of this reason that I don't go to Hong Kong or southern China in winter, because that's snake-eating season. Anyway, despite the large crowd, the place was closed down a couple of years ago after the landowner sold the property. Once in a while, I wondered where the restaurant relocated to. According to the young cook, all of them have gone on to work for other restaurants but he stressed that he'd work long enough at Bamboo Inn to come up with the same dishes, and the dish I wanted to eat was what I called 'Sabah mi fen' and what he called 'Fish sauce mi fen'. Btw, if you liked the guotie they used to serve at Bamboo Inn, the couple and son also relocated to Ming Feng. Gone are the days when people couldn't find a table. The concrete structure of the coffeeshop does not have that quaint wooden ramshackle-hut-in-the-jungle atmosphere so people don't bring their cousins visiting from Germany or Ireland here anymore. I suppose ambience was the real puller for Bamboo Inn. But I'd suggest you give the young cook a chance because he cooks pretty well and fast (okay, including us there was just another family in the whole restaurant).

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Sabah style mi fen RM5/US$1.40, also known as fish sauce mi fen, is thin rice noodles fried with fish sauce, dried shrimps, sometimes salted fish, Sabah veg (vital) and a sprinkling of bird's eyes chilies, the hottest chilies in this country. 'White mi fen' is not easy to fry, since there's no soy sauce to lend any flavor, so there must be enough wok hei (heat of the wok that gives a smoky char flavor). The fish sauce, salted fish or dried shrimps and Sabah veg contribute to the subtle but yummy taste of this dish, best eaten with a belacan sauce or a lime-chili sauce.

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Watan ho RM5/US$1.40, flat rice noodles with an egg gravy. It was okay, lots of wok hei but not exceptional in taste.

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Guotie, pan-fried wheat flour snacks, was RM0.60 each and tasted like regular Malaysian-style guotie with a meat and onion filling.

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Deep-fried quails, RM4.50 each, were lean and tender but a little too much for hub and I because Wey wouldn't touch it. "It's a little bird!" Yes, but so is chicken. "I don't like chicken anyway."

Bill was about RM26/US$7, cheaper than eating a pizza.

Ming Fong is in the middle of the last row of shop lots on the left side (if you are facing what used to be the entrance) of the Servay plot, on the road linking to Wong Kok Restaurant.

12 comments:

Johnathan Oh said...

Its amazing imagining you posting a post every couple of days while your connection sucked over there. My salute to you Terri!

You mentioned goutie or was it spelled guotie? Actually what makes a good guotie? Your guotieposting is the post that got me started reading your blog and since then I have been making guo tie regularly and my wife loves it and would now & then requested me to make it. Perhaps it will be good to also do a simple posting on how to make those yummy chilli sauce (oil).

I had bought a couple of sauce recipe books for my god-brother but have not really got one for myself, so it would be a great pleasure to have you share this one ;)

PureGlutton said...

The white meehoon looks unique and with sabah veg, too - definitely not something we can get here!

"Joe" who is constantly craving said...

yeah the internet can b really S L O W...i get too used to office connections too..

lilblackdots said...

I searched for that place during lunch together with a couple of my colleagues and to our dissapointment (and i'm not sure if they've started operating), there's no one eating there. All tables were empty. My colleagues freakin' out, coz no ppl means not good food so we ended up eating at the kedai kopi opposite the block.

Denise ^ ChickyEGG said...

hey, i saw ur tellbox, ha ha ha! u know why u didnt loose weight? bcuz u did not eat enuff !!! no food, body keep storing the fats for energy usage ;p so, eat more ! eat b/fast pls !!
haha, wey eats 5 meals a day? ha ha ha, same like me!!!! but he loose quite a lot! not me

b said...

mystery solved! Also wondered what happened to that restaurant. We drove up and down the hill one evening with some guests from KL and got totally lost - we thought we missed a turning to the restaurant. will check this place out.

zurin said...

I detest that what-do-u call- it! hubby told me I can bring my laptop to the sony srvice centre, pay 120 ringgit and they will do some magic n it will be twice as fast! m driven round the bend to do just that.

OHH the white mee hoon looks n sounds SOOOO YUM ive actually (no kidding.. swear to god!)gulped a few times already just by looking n reading the ingredients u listed.fish sauce magic tts waht it is!

Alvin said...

Ur post makes me want to go to Sabah again. I like where the airport is situated but the fascilities can certainly be upgraded more.

On a different notes. The pics looks awesome!

Agnes said...

I wonder where I can get to try good guo ties... The one I like most at the moment is the one in Lotus Restaurant (a row of shophouses opposite Tshung Tshin Secondary).

Denise ^ ChickyEGG said...

hurray! Congratulations on 0.1kg! keep it up !:D

terri@adailyobsession said...

johnathan: haha, "sig bao fun moe si jo"

oops. it's guotie isn't it. do u mean the chili oil like those in hk restarants or just plain la you? for plain la you, go to my post on sichuan garlic pork.

pureglut: i still don't understand why ppl don't grow sabah veg in west msia.

joe: do u know our internet speed is only 0.500mb per sec whereas in korea n japan it's about 18 mb ps

lildots: oh dear, so sorry to hear tt. i think this restaurant is open at night only. my friend just told me they went last night n they enjoyed the food n it was cheap.

denise: u eat 5 meals a day? tt explains why...

b: ha, u'll need to wait a month at least, in ur condition. haven't popped yet?

zurin: tt's too much $ to pay! maybe u shd call telekom up? hey, try cooking this dish but then u may have a hard time getting sabah veg

alvin: oh, we have a brand new airport n it's really very nice with good toilets too

agnes: ah, i liked the bbq chicken wings at lotus but after i saw the melted plastic brushes, i stopped eating those wings!

denise: i've given up.

550ml jar of faith said...

I am lost! Does this mean we have to go to Sabah to try this sedate looking but amazing mi fen?? Surely we can get them somewhere in the Klang Valley? Anyone??

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