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WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 23, 2017

Rainforest Garden Cafe, A Themed Cafe on the Rise in Kuching, Sarawak

Have you ever wonder what is it like to dine with nature? Enjoying your meal while being surrounded by the lush green and fresh nature, the singing of the birds and the sound of the water flowing… Wouldn’t that be great? Well, now you can!

  

 

There is a nature concept café in Kuching, called the Rainforest Garden Café, which is now a hot eatery spot for food-lovers as well nature-lovers. This is because, people are able to appreciate the nature that is around them while enjoying a delicious meal at this very café.

 

 

Rainforest Garden Café is located at Lot 774, Block 226, 5th Mile, Penrissen Road, 93250, Kuching, Sarawak and is also the first of its kind here in Kuching!

 

 

In the café, there are 7 kiosks selling different types of food for every type of mealtime; breakfast, lunch, dinner, and etc. The brand or kiosks include Lok Lok, Mom’s Kitchen, Claypot Box, and more. Here are the recommendations by the chef; Malicai Fried Beehoon, Popo Hakka Luicha, Kampung Fried Rice, Pattaya Fried Rice, Tomato Kueh Tiaw, Mee Mamak, Spice Fried Spaghetti and Tomato Fried Spaghetti.

 

 

For those who cannot eat pork meat, you don’t have to worry about that since this café serves no pork. It is also a self-service type of café.

The café is open on Tuesday to Sunday from 10am to 10pm and only closes on Monday, but opens if it is a public holiday as more patrons will drop by for a meal.

 

 

Furthermore, the café provides services such as outdoor seating, takeaways, and booking for parties. So, if you ever plan to host a birthday party or anything, you can just give them a call to book your date.

Contact them at 082-577963 or send them details on your event at dixonttk@gmail.com

Tags: Rainforest Garden Cafe | Themed Cafe | Kuching | Sarawak | Cafe | Food | Drinks | Party | Birthday Party | Friends | Family | Travel |

WEDNESDAY, MAY 13, 2015

Review of Saigon Fusion Vietnamese Restaurant, Kuching

It was on Mother’s Day that I brought my mother to try out this little Saigon Vietnam fusion restaurant at a small lane off Carpenter Street Kuching.

 

 

 

Just a few shops away from the popular pub for tourists lay this little gem. The place was decorated with some Vietnamese painting, an aquarium greeting you at the entrance and some small cloth toys at the counter, which I  imagined is for sale. Some wood painting decorated the wall, and dim light with wooden furniture all combined to create a urban oriental feel, though I felt that the furniture was a bit large for a small restaurant, as it occupied more space than necessary.

 


 

 

The restaurant is not very big, and there were a few diners already having their dinner when we arrived but the staff there was very busy taking orders and helping out at the kitchen. The ambience stayed lively with many tourists flocking in.

 



 

 

The food variety was not many, and there were some Vietnamese coffee and soft drinks at RM4 a can. We were greeted with cold wheatgrass drink each upon sitting down. Menu was simple, the usual ever popular spring rolls consisting of sliced prawn, vegetables and a slice of meat and beef noodles.

 

 

Spring Rolls

 

It being a Mother’s Day, we ordered some spring rolls at RM18 a plate, baked crabs with special Vietnam sauce ( 3 small crabs at RM42), some vermicelli with pork chop, and vermicelli with prawns stuffed over lemongrass stick.

 

Baked Crabs with special sauce

Baked crabs with special Vietnam sauce

 

We find the spring rolls a bit bland but perhaps that is how Vietnam spring rolls are like and the dish that we liked the best was the baked crab. It was a bit sweet and yet tasty. When I asked for a shell breaker to break open the crab shell, they gave me a piece of paper and the shell breaker. That was great because usually when you pound down on the crab shell, the juices from within the shell or the broken pieces of the shell would fly away and may landon your face which could be rather embarrassing. So with the paper, I wrapped it over the crab before I pounded down on it. Nice, neat and no mess except when you have to diligently pull out the broken shell from the flesh, which was also fun in eating crab meat.

 


Vermicelli with prawn stick

Vermicelli with prawns stuffed over lemongrass stick

 

After that, our Mango Sticky Rice dessert arrived. It cost RM25 a plate. It was not exactly what I expected. I remembered tasting them in Thailand, and the sticky rice with the sauce which is actually made up of coconut cream is a bit salty. Here, the sauce is sweet only, and not salty like the Thai mango sticky rice dessert. Again, perhaps this Is their own version of a Vietnam Mango Sticky Rice dessert. My brother however enjoyed the sticky rice, as he found it cooked just nice and tender. As novices about Vietnamese food, we were not sure what to expect but the simple menu and the delicious baked crab was satisfying enough and it was a very fulfilling dinner for my whole family.

Tags: Vietnam Saigon Restaurant | Vietnamese food Kuching | |

WEDNESDAY, MAY 7, 2014

All in a day's work to cook Bubur Pedas

Bubur pedas is the most difficult dish to make. It was not that hard actually, but to make this dish, you need to spare a lot of time. For most people, they need to prepare the powder mixture before cooking the real porridge. You can buy the powder mixture, but for my family, we will dedicate a day just to make the powder, since it will be for six families. This is one of the annual family gathering that we cannot miss. Plus, you will need all the help you can get if you need to prepare 15kg of bubur pedas powder.

 

Bubur pedas

 

We were supposed to meet up at my Udak’s home in Semariang at 10:00am. By the way, we Sarawakians called our aunts and uncles with names such as Wa for the eldest, Anjang, Ngah, Mok, Udak, Achik, Yak and Usu for the youngest. I believe there are others and in Peninsula Malaysia, they have different titles. I still did not manage to figure out how they arrange these titles according to their ranks, because one of my aunts is called Aunty, maybe because they ran out of titles, and since that aunt is an English teacher.

 

Anyway, at 10:30am my aunt started calling people up because nobody shows up at the allocated time. We were still at home, preparing to leave the house, so we arrived there at 11:00am. They already started the preparation process.

 

When we arrived, there were big plastic bowls on the table and people around the table were busy with slicing the ginger, onions, lemongrass and shallots while some others were peeling the lengkuas (galangal). Since I wanted to avoid dealing with the turmeric at all cost, I rushed to the only empty chair to slice the ginger. Everybody knows that turmeric equals disaster. In the end, my mother and sister were forced to peel them.

 

Slicing the ingredients for bubur pedas powder

 

“What’s wrong with the ginger? Can’t it be bigger?” my Aunty pointed out sarcastically when we were almost done with the slicing. Only then did I look at the humongous slices of ginger filling the big bowl. It was not my fault, is it? Since I am not the only one slicing the ginger, I cannot take all the blame.

 

So, when I was forced to slice the turmeric and risking four days of orange colour on my fingers, we decided to mince them to avoid my aunt’s sarcasm.

 

We stopped for lunch. While we were busy with slicing and mincing, my Udak was at the kitchen preparing lunch for us. This is one of the reasons I love about family gathering. All of my aunts are great cooks, including my mother. Even if they were not, I still love the atmosphere at these occasions.

 

We sat on the floor with the spread of food in front of us. There were plates of Ayam Pansoh (cooked in pot, not bamboo), cencaluk (fermented small shrimps), umbut masak lemak (coconut shoot cooked with coconut milk), ulam mangga and umai. The umai was made from ikan yu (small shark?) so it was less popular among my aunts and cousins but since umai is one of my favourite foods; I gobbled it down in no time.

 

Mixing all the ingredients before frying them in the wok

 

After lunch, we resumed working. The grated coconuts, spices and dried chillies were fried without oil separately. Two big woks were put on the portable stoves, and all the sliced ingredients were mixed together with uncooked rice. Then, a smaller portion of the mixture was fried without oil in the big woks. This was the most tiring stage in the whole process, because you need to stir the mixture continuously and endure the heat from the wok. This needed to be repeated until all the mixture was fried.

 

Frying the mixture in a big wok

 

All of the mixture needs to be mixed with the fried grated coconut. Then, a small accident happened when my Achik wanted to put the grated coconut into the giant pot. She sprained her leg while attempting to stand up from a crouch resulting in spilling quite a lot of the grated coconut.

 

Apart from that, the process went smoothly. We just need to put the mixture into the food processor. However, since there was only one blender, the process took about one hour to complete.

 

While saying our goodbyes, I looked at the big containers of bubur pedas powder and secretly feeling relieved as the trouble of making bubur pedas had ended for this year.

Tags: Bubur Pedas Sarawak | Sarawak Traditional Food | How to make Bubur Pedas | Ingredients to make bubur pedas |

WEDNESDAY, JULY 31, 2013

The wonderful food in Kota Kinabalu

Kota Kinabalu is famous not only for its mountains, seasports and islands but also for their fresh seafood given that South China Sea is just surrounding the Sabah state. I recently took a promotion flight with MASwings airline to Kota Kinabalu for a 3 days break. To start off the trip, my flight was smooth and pleasant with efficient service by the crew. I have always been a seafood lover and really looked forward to really dig in. For anyone who loves seafood, you must not miss their heavenly seafood when you are in Kota Kinabalu.

 

If you do not mind a rather packed restaurants at most times, and the place may be messy and crowded, with  no menu, then check out Welcome Restaurant. The seafood there is cheaper compared to other restaurants. The food is tasty too. Order dishes like sauté crabs, famous local Tuaran noodles, stir fried  vegetables with shell fish, shellfish cooked in Serai” soup, and many others, we are sure you will like it after eating there. The price is slightly cheaper compared to other touristy restaurants.

 

Another restaurant corner worth mentioning is SEDCO Village. It is actually a square corner with several restaurants operating from there. There are simply a very wide variety of seafood to choose from, from lobster to prawns and mantis to crabs that is at least Rm80 per kg and fishes of all types etc. If you have a camera with you, I am sure you will take many photos of the place with the wide variety of seafood.

 

Ikan-ikan located  in the same vicinity as SEDCO village and Welcome restaurant, is also a seafood restaurant. The price is slightly higher than Welcome restaurant but the place is comfortable, air-conditioned, clean and the waitresses there change your dirty plates quite often. The choice of seafood on display is not as much as in SEDCO but I think most restaurants sell  about the same variety of food. What I remembered about this restaurant is their pickled papaya which was a good appetizer before my main course and I enjoyed eating them.

 

If you are looking for somewhere cheap and do not mind the hawker stall food, then you should check out the food stalls near Filipino market. There is an abundant choices to choose from. It will simply leave you wanting some if you see the BBQ food there.

 

The much talked about Roasted coconut is something that is worth trying if you are in Kota Kinabalu. It is slightly further away from Kota Kinabalu city located at Kampung Salut but if you have the time, it is worth to try the roasted coconut, coconut pudding served in plastic cup and some roasted shellfish ( locally known as Lokan). The coconut water would be steaming hot after being roasted. It actually tasted like sweet soup. The flesh is fragrant and soft but crunchy. If you take the larger coconut, it may be more than enough for you to finish if you are a hungry.

 

This roasted coconut has been much talked about everywhere outside Sabah as you don’t usually get to eat roasted coconuts anywhere. So if you are there, it is worth it to try them and not missed it.

 

I definitely had a pleasant flight with MASwings airline and will definitely fly with them again to beautiful Sabah to taste their local seafood.

Tags: MASwings | Borneo Food | Kota Kinabalu | Tuaran noodles | saute crabs | serai soup | SEDCO Village | Filipino Market | Roasted Coconut | Lokan | Kampung Salut | |

THURSDAY, APRIL 25, 2013

Main Reasons Why Sabah And Sarawak Must Be your Ultimate Destinations

  Sabah and Sarawak are two different locations in Borneo Island. The word Borneo has been there since year 1839 when James Brooke made his first landing in Kuching city itself with his ship by the name of The Loyalist. Ever since then, the White Rajah has been governing Sabah and Sarawak for several generations, which eventually gave Sabah and Sarawak a new chapter.

 

  As time flies by, Sabah and Sarawak now becomes the ultimate destination for domestic and international tourist spot. Both Sabah and Sarawak have so much to offer when it comes to travel. Be it for family vacation, business trips or personal visits.

 

If you are still unsure what Sabah and Sarawak have to offer you, then here are the main reasons why Sabah and Sarawak must be your ultimate destination.

 

 

Food

  Food alone is more than enough to represent the cultures in both Sabah and Sarawak. In Sarawak, places like Kuching City, is a heaven for food lovers on their personnal blogs. Some even described the taste of food in Kuching itself, is like a fantasy and filled with all sorts of colours and presentations.

 

  In Sabah, food such as the Sago worm is an exquisite dish that you can find in the jungle. It is usually served deep fried or you can eat after it is boiled.

Culture

  Both local and international tourists have so much to learn when it comes to culture. For an example, a visit to the longhouse deep within the heart of Sarawak is something to look forward to. Although it is generally known as longhouses, the ethnic groups in Sarawak especially the Ibans are divided into a few different ethnics as can be seen from their ethnic Ngajat dance have different version in the longhouse.

 

  If it is in Sabah, the most unique cultural dance you will find is the Bobohizan dance. Performed by a group of Papar Kadazan, the Sazau Bobohizan dance will be performed by the priestess. The dance is used to send spirits of the dead to a different realm known as Pongouvan.

 

 

Challenges

  The UNESCO heritage site, Mount Kinabalu or the Pinnacles in Mulu National Park will fulfill that desire.

 

  As for Mount Kinabalu, for those who had the experienced of climbing Mulu Pinnacles, Mount Kinabalu is much easier for them, but if you are a first timer, Mount Kinabalu is hard enough to be tackled for a first timer.

 

  Both offered different challenges respectively. Then again, most tourists who took up the challenge on climbing up Mulu Pinnacles mentioned that it was not easy getting up there. It is not just only about the weather, but also the mind and physical toughness is something that you need to prepare before you can attempt the climb Mulu Pinnacles.

 

 

Beautiful Rainforest

 

  The archipelago of rainforests both in Sabah and Sarawak, have been preserved and labelled as protected rainforests in the world. Visiting either one, will let you see how these rainforests in each state tend to grow on top of one another creating a beautiful canopy like you have never seen before.

 

  If you are tourists who happen to be doing some research and looking for new medical discoveries, then you might want to try out Sabah and Sarawak as the million years’ old rainforests will give you rare insights.

 

 

 

Historical values

 

  Every city has a story to tell. And every state changes from time to time leaving historical footprints behind. The Kundasang War Memorial in Sabah is a place where relatives and families of fallen heroes will gather and reflect back on their sacrifices. Those fallen heroes, consist of British and Australian soldiers who marched a total of 160 mile and leaving only 6 survivals to tell their tales.

 

  In Kuching, one of most prominent historical site it is the Kuching City Waterfront itself. Before it was converted into a Waterfront, it was also known as a place for early settlements of the sea Dayaks.

 

  Then in year 1864, after the landing of James Brooke, Chinese businesses started to grow like mushrooms. And the historical business district can still be seen across the road of the entire whole stretch of Kuching Water Front.

 


 

Festive Seasons

 

  Due to the mix culture in Malaysia, especially in Sabah and Sarawak, you will have the Christians, Chinese, Dayaks, Indians and Malays. The different believes and ethnicities, is what makes Malaysia unique. For an example, the Chinese will celebrate the Chinese New Year, Moon Cake Festival, Wesak Day and Chap Goh Mei. As for the Dayaks, it would be the Gawai festivities. Muslims on the other hand will celebrate Hari Raya which is also known as Eeid Season by international Muslims. Christians as usual, will be Christmas and Indians would be the Deepavali.

 

  With all the mixed ethnicities, during the festive seasons, you will see different kinds of cookies and food laid out on the table.

 

 

Food is cheap

 

  Food in Sabah and Sarawak is still considered cheap. All you need to bring is RM 10 in your pocket to have a decent meal and a glass of water from those outdoor street cafes for the day.

 

 

World Rainforest Music Festival

 

  Usually held every year, in the middle of June, the sound of traditional music comes from all over the world and can be heard during this time of the year. During the event itself you will get to hear music from other parts of the world and watch live performances.

 

 

  The above reasons would be good enough for you to decide to pack your bags and head over to Sarawak and Sabah in Borneo.

Tags: Sabah and Sarawak | Borneo Island | Sabah and Sarawak Food | Mount Kinabalu UNESCO Heritage | Mulu National Park | Mulu Pinnacles | Borneo Rainforest | Sabah Sarawak Rainforest | Sabah War Memorial | Kundasang War Memorial | World Rainforest Music Festival | |

THURSDAY, DECEMBER 20, 2012

The best of Sabah traditional food

Sabah is undoubtedly famous of its iconic Mount Kinabalu and beautiful sandy beaches. Do you know that Sabah also has a special collection of mouthwatering traditional cuisine? For food lovers out there, Sabah traditional food is something that you will never forget. With its diverse ethnic population, each of this group offers their own distinct Sabah traditional food. You must not miss trying out Sabah traditional food when you are here. The unique Sabah traditional food will astound and delight...

Read More "The best of Sabah traditional food"

Tags: sabah food | sabah traditional food | sabah cuisine | sabah local food | food in sabah | traditional food in sabah | sabah famous food |

FRIDAY, JUNE 8, 2012

Find the best meals at Kubah Ria Baru

 

I would like to bring you guys to see what’s new at the Kubah Ria Baru, which is located not far from Satok area. It is just besides Satok Bridge within the Petra Jaya area. If we take the bridge from Satok we could see the place on our left.
 
As the name suggests, Kubah Ria Baru is considered new in which it was publicly opened in mid-2010. Kubah Ria Baru was built to replace the old Kubah Ria which is quite well known among the local townsfolk. Seeing that it was my first time here what I can say is the place looks beautiful from the outside.
 
The environment is clean and neat, maybe because the place is still new and well maintained by the cleaning staff. Parking lots are available for visitors but with a price of RM1.00 per hour. I you wish to avoid paying for parking fees you can park your car farther a bit and walk in.
 
 
Most of the current stalls are mostly from the previous Kubah Ria stall owner but there are some new ones as well. Pizza Ria is available for those who loves pizza but most of the stalls serve local delicacies such as satay, the infamous mee kolok, chicken rice and laksa Sarawak. There is even a stall that serves 'ayam panggang' or roasted chicken, which reminded me of Kenny Rogers seeing that the chicken was roasted on hot charcoal.
 
For those who would like to have something foreign there are also western and Japanese food available. There are a total of 45 stalls here in Kubah Ria Baru.
 
In terms of price, it is reasonable and quite worth it but you need to pick the right stall. You can choose to order your meal from any stall and sit anywhere you like. The best part of eating here is the view. Located just beside the Sarawak River, the outlook of the whole place is just gorgeous especially during dawn.
 
Be amongst the first to experience the totally new eating environment! If you would like to visit Kuching, Sarawak to see what the city of cats has to offer, you can check us out www.SarawakBorneoTour.com for the best deals or you can email us your inquiries to Ask@SarawakBorneoTour.com. 
Tags: Kubah Ria Baru | Sarawak Borneo Food | Kuching Food court | Best kuching hotels | Kubah Ria Food Court |

MONDAY, FEBRUARY6, 2012

Sarawak Laksa, Most Popular Food in Kuching City

If you love hot and spicy food, then on your next trip to Sarawak, especially to the capital city of Kuching, you must not miss the famous Sarawak Laksa. what food is it actually?

 

Well, it is actually rice vermicelli mixed with prawn or shrimp paste, topped with fried eggs that are cut into thin slices, blanched bean sprouts, steamed soft chicken slices and juicy tender prawns. Once all the ingredients are mixed together with thick Laksa gravy poured over it and ready to be served, you may want to squeeze a little lime over it and garnished with coriander leaves. You may also want to add in some “belachan” (spicy shrimp paste) before you consume it.

Belachan is a popular ingredient in South East Asia. It is commonly used in South East Asia and Southern Chinese cuisines as a shrimp paste or shrimp sauce. In Indonesia, belachan is known as terasi, ngapi in Burma, kapi in Thailand and mam tom in Vietnam.

A bowl of Sarawak laksa depending on whether it is a large bowl or a small bowl costs around rm4 to rm6 . (rm3.6=usd1). This Laksa is so delicious that after eating it, it may even send you licking the bowl too. You may even order a second bowl thereafter. This dish will definitely warms up your stomach for the whole day.

When you are in Kuching, you can easily find Laksa being sold in many coffee shops. However, the well known coffee shops that sent people waiting and queuing up for hours are the coffee shops at Tabuan Laru, another stall at Bormill third mile and in the city centre located beside Grand Continental hotel. My favourite Sarawak Laksa stall is at Foody Goody coffee shop at Tabuan Laru vicinity. I would patiently wait for at least half an hour on Sundays as there were just too many customers waiting for their bowl of Laksa.

The Sarawak Laksa is available only on mornings as they would be sold out by lunch time. The best and most delicious Sarawak Laksa in the whole region of Sarawak is still in Kuching city.

You should go check it out if you are in Kuching for work, business or leisure.

Tags: laksa Sarawak | laksa recipe | curry laksa | laksa soup | laksa Kuching | laksa Sarawak recipe | Sarawak food |