Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Pumpkin House @ Jalan PJU 5/4 Dataran Sunway, Kota Damansara

Dataran Sunway in Kota Damansara boasts a lot of good eateries lately. With the latest addition of The Strand and Sunway Giza, we are spoilt with choices than ever. Many restauranteurs have set up business in this area to cater for the increasing population as well as existing one in the vicinity of Bandar Utama, Tropicana, Mutiara Damansara and Damansara Perdana. Pumpkin House is one of them... trying to be creative using.. well, as the name suggests - PUMPKIN!

Ho Chak and Chui Ling (One Day Five Meal) had already come and introduced this place. Intriqued by what this place has to offer, Jenn & I came here one Saturday for lunch.. well, it's quite near my house actually :)

Most of the items in the menu have some pumpkin element in it. Pumpkin is chock full of vitamins, minerals, fiber, and antioxidants. With all those organic and healthy hypes going on around Klang Valley, the proprietor has decided to capitalise on this concept. There are so many ways to cook dishes using pumpkin alone. For one, we started with PUMPKIN JUICE RICE BALL (RM3.50). Similar to those tong sui with glutonious ball, they subsituted the usual ginger soup with healthier pumpkin juice!

Feeling adventurous, I ordered Homemade Fresh Pumpkin Juice & Yakult Ice Blended @ RM6.90. To be frank, it tasted weird but not in a bad way. It's just hard to describe :P

Dry handmade pumpkin house noodles @ RM4.90 - just like regular pan mee, topped with fried anchovies and fried pumpkin ball. Not bad at all!

Sze Chuan hot spicy homemade pumpkin noodle @ RM6.90 - mediocre

Pumpkin Rice @ RM7.90 - I don't know about you but I definitely like this dish. Actually I am a fan of fried rice... be it pineapple fried rice, salted fish fried rice, kampung fried rice or whatever!

Leo's verdict - Special mention has to be given to their homemade fried meat ball which is infused with pumpkin. Crispy, non-oily and appetising! For those who like healthy stuff especially pumpkin, this place might appeal to you.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Sher Ryn is ONE!!! Have I done a good job???

That's right!!! Time flies so fast that my daughter has reached her first anniversary in March 2010. To her dad & mom (that's me and Jenn), it is a proud moment. For a typical Chinese family, it is a big deal too. Preparations had been made a few days before the big day - my mom ordered 2 cakes, self-prepared the "red" eggs, jelly, steamed chicken as well as some fried chicken. It was just a simple celebration with some close friends and families were invited.

Sher Ryn was fascinated with the reddish eggs

Received ang pow from her grandparents (a rather big one too!) which has been saved aside for her future education.

My dad, mom, Sher Ryn, Jenn & I... she has grown a lot huh?

Well that was in Kuala Lipis... we went out to KL to celebrate the day after. Bought a simple mango cake from Zen by Secret Recipe with one candle!
She was soooo happy that she clapped as we sang Happy Birthday song to her! I really love these moments.. and then it was time to cut the cake! Of course, with a little help from Jenn :)

For dinner... it was Delicious's Caesar's Salad with Smoked Salmon and breaded chicken fillet with some dipping sauce (forgot its name)

God I miss the time when she was small! She has grown into such a healthy and happy little girl who sometimes turn into a monster when she's grumpy or when her demands are not met.

Happy family moment in the concourse area of Mid Valley Megamall... pretty sure that some of you would recognise those flowers from Alice in Wonderland movie :) but let's focus on us ok??

LOVE this picture - taken while walking to The Garden from the Megamall's Starbuck entrance. There is a mini water fountain in between the two malls and Sher Ryn was intriqued by the water show. All I had to do was to show interest in what I was looking at and her head would eventually followed mine :P

Not an easy to task to raise a newborn baby for a year but I am pretty sure that it will get harder as she reaches teenage years. My friend once told me "For the first 12-18 years you will worry on how your daughter will turn out and the rest of your life worrying when your daughter is going to turn in"... LOL! It made sense now... being parents can be paranoid~

Oh well... as long as I give it all raising her up with care and discipline, all I can hope is that she will turn out just fine. As for when she's going to turn in, there is always CURFEW!!!! Sher Ryn's arrival has made my life brighter and seem to be meaningful...

Monday, April 19, 2010

Rak Thai @ The Gardens Mid Valley

I love Thai! Love their culture (always polite with a smile!), love their people (ever friendly), love their country (with so many beautiful places to go) and most importantly... love their food! I'd say this before but I don't mind saying it again... after Chinese, my next fav is Thai food!! Just can't get enough of them :)

One of my favourite places to eat Thai food is Rak Thai located in The Garden Mid Valley. Rak Thai literally means "Love Thai" in English. After a few trips to The Land of Smiles, I could speak a few basic Thai words. Of course, I would never ever compare to those of Unkaleong or Paranoid Android who speak almost fluent Thai. The 2 guys spent a few years in Thailand!! Me??? Just went to Bangkok, Chiang Mai and Krabi for holiday so far :P

Back to the topic... Rak Thai is actually located somewhere in the middle of LG level of Mid Valley and The Garden itself. The first time we went there, The Garden has not officially opened for business yet. I remember having kickass som tam here and that was it.

Back for the second time, I noticed that business was brisk for this restaurant but not to the extent that we had to wait for table. The place was spacious and service was rather fast. Some of the workers are actually Thai and were more than happy to serve me when I spoke basic Thai with them :)

Some of the local Thai produce such as chilly paste and fish paste were sold there. To those who love to cook Thai food, they offer variety of products to choose from.

A dedicated place to make the delectable som tam.

And also mango sticky rice. The sight of those sweet mango proved too much to resist.

Since it was lunch time, we ordered their Set Lunch for 2 which was priced at RM39.60++. For the price, these are what you will get:

1) Rak Thai platter (2 pcs each) - grilled squid on skewer, pandan chicken and Thai spring roll. Note: the squid and chicken were quite oily but still within acceptable level. Delightful starter!

2) Thai pineapple fried rice - decent dish but appetising enough for me (don't forget that I'm not a fussy eater!)

3) Phad Ki Mau - Thai style of fried kuey teow plus basil leaves, and did I mention rather spicy?

4) Mango sticky rice - sinful dish but it made sure that our lunch ended in sweet note :)

5) 2 iced lemongrass drink - my favourite drink so no complain.

Leo's verdict - plus point is that Rak Thai is located in a shopping mall which made it easier for me to dine whenever I go shopping. With a family, I couldn't be too adventurous these days. Most of the time, I would take Jenn and Sher Ryn out shopping because it's cooler compared going outside. This time I didn't manage to eat the som tam but there will always be next time!

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Restoran Tua Huat @ Jalan 19/3 PJ

In the past, I would use the road from SS2 whenever I went to KL or Cheras... all the way to Rothman roundabout before heading towards Section 14 PJ & Federal Highway. Or if I was feeling lucky, I'd use Jalan University instead before turning into one of the most congested highway in Malaysia with more than 750000 vehicles using it on daily basis. What to do??? Federal Highway is FOC and we as Malaysians always look for a way to save $$$ in anticipation for Mega Sales where we would then splash the $$$ :P

This restaurant is quite hidden from the main road but if you know where Nanking Restaurant (vegetarian) in SS2 is... it's located on the same row of shophouses. I would not know about this place if not for Ipoh Mali Talak Sombong :) having a group of blogger friends has its own perks I guess... whenever they found a new exciting and interesting place to go, I would be one of the first few to know. For example, if I want to go for fine dining, I definitely can count on Sean of eatdrinkkl's fame & recently eiling :P credits have to be given to the rest of floggers whom I read almost everyday!

Back to Tua Huat... normally it would be packed during lunch time on weekdays. But on weekends, tables are relatively easy to find. This time Jenn's sister and her family joined in and therefore we had the luxury to order more dishes to sample.

For starters, we asked for their fish cake made from ikan parang. The meat was still moist despite being fried but my grouse was that it was quite oily. Skip this if you can!

Their spring roll fared better... crunchy skin and soft & tender filling.

Signature Loh Mee - it's actually the version of Ulu Yam Loh Mee. Good news is that you don't have to drive far in order to enjoy this dish. Now most people will say that in order to enjoy loh mee, you have to add vinegar. But I beg to differ as the original flavour was good enough. And the presence of pork lard further enhanced the flavour.

Claypot yam pork-rib mee - Another favourite among us. The amount of pork ribs, yam and pork lards were abundant! Served in a claypot, do not wait until it's cold as it tasted better while piping hot.

Kau yuk mee hoon - It's obvious that the canned kau yuk or stewed pork slices were used. However, it didn't lack in flavour because it was cooked nicely with cabbage and pork lards (again!)... enough wok hey I'd say :)

Leo's verdict - we actually went back for the second time after a month or so, and this time we were rather disappointed. Maybe it was about time for them to close (we arrived around 8.45pm and they actually closed at 9pm). Operated by family members, do not expect top notch or friendly service. Another plus point is that it's air-conditioned so you don't have to sweat while having meal here. Most of their mee dishes contain pork lards in it so for those who love sinful stuff, this is the right place to go.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Restoran Sim Hap Ke @ Jalan Waras 1, Taman Connaught Cheras

A few years ago when I was still working with Thule, I called Cheras my second home. Why??? Because my colleagues both stayed in Cheras area and normally we would have our yam cha session in Taman Connaught. Surprisingly, I never took notice that such a wonderful restaurant exists in this area. Frankly, I would never have known about this place if not for Precious Pea. Thanks! Once in a while, Jenn & I would go down to Cheras as her sister lives in Alam Damai (which is quite near to Connaught) and therefore, it would only mean a matter of time before both of us finally made our way here.

Some pictures of their popular dishes were pasted on the glass at the entrance.

Salt-baked lala - this is a truly different approach to making a lala dish. As far as I concern, I had only tried siong tong (superior soup) lala, kam heong lala but not salt-baked lala. Even though the lala was baked with salt, they remained juicy and thick. Naturally the meat will shrink a lot due to the extensive usage of salt in the process. They had the aroma from the slightly burnt salt and most importantly, it didn't taste salty at all. Just watch out for the salt bits scattered all over the plate :P

Thai style kailan with salted fish - appetising! The dish was sourish, salty and spicy. Perfect to go with a bowl of rice.

3 Flavour Ribs - Another winner for both of us. The usage of lemon, curry leaves and butter gave a distinctive flavour to the ribs without overpowering the whole dish. A must try dish here!

Leo's verdict - there are a lot of other interesting dishes that we wanted to try but there were only two of us. Total damage? RM38 for the 3 dishes excluding tea and rice... even with those stuff, it cost slightly over RM40! A value for money lunch indeed! You definitely can expect another post about this place soon, but if you can't wait.. head over to Cheras and try for yourself. Don't worry about what dish to order, as the friendly staff will recommend some dishes to you in case you couldn't make up your mind! Most importantly, it won't hurt the wallet :)