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eG Foodblog: Shiewie - A Malaysian foodblog


Shiewie
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Your dinner the other night sounded fabulous. Just as a matter of interest (from an Australian) do you get much fresh dairy or other food from Australia? How does it compare price and quality wise with the local fare?

I remember when I lived in Port Moresby we used to hang out for Tuesday's when the dairy arrived from Australia and there would be an assault on the shops as soon as it arrived to stock up for the week.

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Your dinner the other night sounded fabulous.  Just as a matter of interest (from an Australian) do you get much fresh dairy or other food from Australia?  How does it compare price and quality wise with the local fare?

I remember when I lived in Port Moresby we used to hang out for Tuesday's when the dairy arrived from Australia and there would be an assault on the shops as soon as it arrived to stock up for the week.

Think our dinners at home are fairly similar to herbacidal's - typical Chinese family's dinner though ours might sometimes be slightly more Malaysianised. My mother's got a problematic digestive system and spicy food is a problem so we tend to eat a lot less chilli than the typical Malaysian Chinese family - I remember a plate of sambal belacan at almost every meal at my gran's.

We get quite a lot of our dairy, fruits, beef, lamb and some fresh produce from Australia. It's definitely more expensive than the local stuff (if there is a local alternative which isn't always the case, for example there's no Malaysian cream, apples, oranges etc.) and not necessarily available at all supermarkets. Quality - hmmm I guess it differs depending on the item.

The Aussie milk that we get here is marketed under the Farmhouse brand - it's definitely thicker, richer and sweeter than the local fresh milk and cost probably around RM1 (USD1 = RM3.80) more - the difference is minimal to most consumers for the quality (guess this could be from a Klang Valley perspective) and I guess as a result it sells quite well and is available at most supermarkets.

On the other hand, there are sweet potatoes - there is an huge price difference between Australian sweet potatoes and the Indonesian ones we normally get. The Aussie ones cost something like RM14 a kg while the Indonesian ones are like RM1.40 a kg. As a result, Aussie sweet potatoes are sold only at the Cold Storage supermarkets in the expat areas of Bangsar and Ampang while the Indonesian ones are sold everywhere else.

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Definitely larnin' quite a bit :smile:

Are there any significant differences between the Malaysian sweet potatoes and the Australian ones?

=R=

"Hey, hey, careful man! There's a beverage here!" --The Dude, The Big Lebowski

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Are there any significant differences between the Malaysian sweet potatoes and the Australian ones?

=R=

No significant difference that I remember clearly.

The Aussie sweet potatoes we get here are mainly the orange-fleshed ones (kumara I think they're called). The Indonesian ones can be orange-fleshed, white-fleshed or purple-fleshed. There are also Japanese ones which have purple skin but are white on the inside.

Edited for typo

Edited by Shiewie (log)
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Selamat Tengahari, Shiewie! Sorry about the tawar lunch. Nice to hear from you.

Michael

Hi Pan!

Am back from my makan tengahari (midday meal) which was thankfully better than yesterday's. :smile:

Had pork noodles today - wheat vermicelli ("meen seen" in Cantonese or "mee suah" in Hokkien) with balls of minced pork and bits of "tung choy" (preserved napa cabbage), slices of pork, pig's liver, pig's intestines, "choy sum", bits of spring onion (the green part only) and "jue yau char" (crunchy pork crackling) in a porky soup. It's served with a dip of soy sauce and cut fresh red chillies and/or bird's eye chilles.

You can have it dry (tossed with dark and light soy sauce and some oil) or in the porky soup with your choice of noodles - "yau meen" (fresh wheat noodles), "mai fun" (rice vermicelli), "kuay teow" / "hor fun" (fresh flat rice noodles), "loh shue fun" (tadpole shaped rice noodles and it translates to rat's tail noodles) or "meen seen" (wheat vermicelli).

There was a brief shower so it was kind of nice to have something soupy. On most other days, we'd be sweating by the bucketsful if we have something hot and soupy in a local coffeeshop for lunch.

I also had a fresh popiah - a Nyonya spring roll with a filling of romain lettuce with some "teem cheong" (sweet sauce), chilli sauce, cooked jicama, bean sprouts, strips of omelette, "tau kwa" (firm tofu), fried shallots and garlic. Home-made versions usually have pork, prawns and crab meat.

Local coffeeshops ("kopi tiam" in Hokkien or "koh pee char poh" Cantonese) in Malaysia (and Singapore too ...but it's more foodcourts there now) are eateries where a row of stalls are set up along the side of the shop. The shop proprietor usually runs the drinks stall (as it's the most lucrative) and sells a couple of breakfast-type foods - soft-boiled eggs and toast with butter and/or "kaya" (coconut jam). The rest of the stalls are rented out to stallholders who sell a variety of hawker-type food.

Corrected typo error

Edited by Shiewie (log)
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Snacks in the afternoon:

- 1 Asian pear - the crispy yellow kind

- 2 handfuls of "keropok ikan" (fish crackers) from the common food stash at work. Fish keropok are like prawn crackers except they're made with fish of course. They vary in colour from a pale beige to brownish depending on the type of fish they're made with. The keropok I ate were the brownish kind and shaped like fries.

There are some from the east coast that are coin sized and covered with a sweet sticky chilli sauce - yumm! The east coast also has large thick cut ones called "keropok lekor" which you buy freshly fried and dunk into a chilli sauce dip - they are crunchy on the outside and chewy on the inside.

- 1 Granny Smith apple

Drank lots of water.

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You eat a lot of buah epal (that's apples for the rest of you English speakers), Shiewie? Are they expensive nowadays? Frankly, I hadn't the slightest interest in eating imported apples in the land of rambutan and tree-ripened bananas, but perhaps I'd feel differently if I were in Malaysia for years and years.

Keropok lekor, yum!!! :biggrin:

Michael aka "Pan"

 

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You eat a lot of buah epal (that's apples for the rest of you English speakers), Shiewie? Are they expensive nowadays? Frankly, I hadn't the slightest interest in eating imported apples in the land of rambutan and tree-ripened bananas, but perhaps I'd feel differently if I were in Malaysia for years and years.

Keropok lekor, yum!!!  :biggrin:

I eat a lot of green apples (generally one a day) as there are always some in the house - my mother needs to watch her blood sugar and green apples are lower in sugar than most other fruits. The fruits we eat on a fairly regular basis are Granny Smiths, starfruit, papayas, guavas, Chinese pears and bananas (Berangan, Rastali or Cavendish). Granny Smiths are about RM.70 to RM1.20 each depending on their size and where you buy them.

I love rambutans too and probably can eat a whole kg by myself in a day :biggrin:. However too much rambutans makes one "sup yeet" (heaty is the best I can translate this too) and it can be quite a chore for the bowels when one is "sup yeet" :blink:.

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just FYI, as close as I can tell there are four RMs to the U.S. dollar, which means you spend between 60 cents to a dollar for an apple. Is that right Shiewie?

USD1 = RM3.80 (easier to equate it to RM4)

A Granny Smith is around RM0.70 to RM1.20 each or approximately US 17.5 cents to 30 cents an apple. The apples could be from the US, Australia, NZ, South Africa or China.

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Ate half a slice of lemon choc chip cheesecake (made by a friend who got a lift from me today) while driving home from work.

Dinner:

Leftovers

- Chicken and Potatoes with Preserved Bean Paste Sauce

- Stir-fried Lotus Root

New dishes

- Steamed "Wan Yue" (grass carp) with julienned young ginger, Kikkoman's special fragrance soy sauce and sesame oil

- Blanched "Pak Choy"

- Brown rice

Corrected typo

Edited by Shiewie (log)
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Think our dinners at home are fairly similar to herbacidal's - typical Chinese family's dinner though ours might sometimes be slightly more Malaysianised. My mother's got a problematic digestive system and spicy food is a problem so we tend to eat a lot less chilli than the typical Malaysian Chinese family -

nah, yours are way cooler. that's why i tagged you. wanna hear about KL.

i would say more than slightly more Malaysianized.

Herb aka "herbacidal"

Tom is not my friend.

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Went down to the office cafeteria and ate half a packet of "nasi lemak" (coconut rice with some fried anchovies, fried peanuts, sambal and half a hard-boiled egg wrapped in banana leaf and a piece of newspaper)

Oh - I also had a banana maple muffin just before lunch that I forgot to post earlier.

this sounds really yummy.

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Your dinner sounds great Shiewie. Quick question - you mentioned blanched pak choy. Do you have this plain once blanced, more as a green on the side or is it dressed in any way. We are getting more and more variety of asian greens in our supermarkets and I usually just steam lightly and eat with oyster sauce (when asparagus is not in season!).

Maybe I should expand my view of these greens. :smile:

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Dinner:

Leftovers

- Chicken and Potatoes with Preserved Bean Paste

is preserved bean paste the same as fermented tofu?

(Cantonese: foo yuur)

No not foo yuur - I meant "tau cheong" or "meen sii" - the kind you can get in whole beans or a mashed up paste.

I'm not sure whether the Chicken and Potatoes with Preserved Bean Paste Gravy is Chinese or Nyonya though, just something that mum says my gran used to cook. Will check with friends who have Nyonya grans too.

It's a really simple recipe though - just stir fry some minced garlic with slices of ginger, add some tau cheong once the garlic and ginger are slightly brown. Once the tau cheong smells aromatic, add chicken pieces that's been marinated with some salt and pepper to brown with some light soy sauce. When the chicken is brown, add water and potatoes to simmer till all is cooked.

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Went down to the office cafeteria and ate half a packet of "nasi lemak" (coconut rice with some fried anchovies, fried peanuts, sambal and half a hard-boiled egg wrapped in banana leaf and a piece of newspaper)

Oh - I also had a banana maple muffin just before lunch that I forgot to post earlier.

this sounds really yummy.

Nasi Lemak?

It's one of those Malaysian dishes that are sort of eaten all day long. It started off as a breakfast item but it's now eaten at tea breaks, as something to tie you over to the next meal or for a late night supper.

What I had was the take away kind - little packets of nasi lemak are sold at roadside stalls or set in a pile at long common tables at Malay and Indian-Muslim eateries and tea stalls. It's also sold freshly served where you can add other dishes to it apart from the basic "ikan bilis" (anchovies), "kacang" (peanuts), sambal and "telur" (egg).

Here's a link to a FriedChillies site where you can read more on the Malaysian obsession with Nasi Lemak.

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Your dinner sounds great Shiewie.  Quick question - you mentioned blanched pak choy.  Do you have this plain once blanced, more as a green on the side or is it dressed in any way.  We are getting more and more variety of asian greens in our supermarkets and I usually just steam lightly and eat with oyster sauce (when asparagus is not in season!).

Maybe I should expand my view of these greens.  :smile:

Do try asian greens. You can get a good variety of asian greens at the asian grocers / supermarkets in Australia, especially if you're in Melbourne or Sydney.

I had the pak choy blanched last night with a bit of salt and sesame oil added to the water to blanch it for some flavour. We had it as a green on the side ... or rather as the green dish of a meal with rice. I was too lazy to stir-fry it in the cast iron wok last night so I just blanched it in the stainless steel wok that I was going to steam the fish in.

You can have it blanched and dressed with oyster sauce, stir-fried with some minced/slices of garlic (and some slices of ginger if you like) or add some chicken slices, pork slices, chinese roast pork, char siu, uncooked shelled shrimp or dried shrimp when you stir-fry the pak choy. We sometimes poach some chicken and then blanch asian greens (sometimes broccoli or cauliflower) in the stock once you remove the chicken and there you have it, dinner is done all in one pot.

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