Saturday, 17 December 2016

Vietnam Trip: A Visit to Cai Be Floating Market Site and Vinh Long Market of Mekong Delta - Part 1

Hi guys.

It has been awhile since the last time I posted an article on this blog. I had been very busy with so many things on past few months (or year I think) and now is trying to catch up my belated article writings.

Well, I was in Vietnam again on early December and it was like a tour guide to them as well as helping some friends to buy goodies here for them (and yes, I’m starting to be a Personal Shopper now but I will write it next time).

Earlier we was in Dalat & Nha Trang and soon after that, we flew to Ho Chi Minh City from Can Ranh International Airport and to spend 4 more days in town for shopping and stuff. So, one of our itinerary to kill our time is to pay a visit to Mekong delta region. I think, your visit to Ho Chi Minh City without visiting Mekong delta region makes your trip incomplete.

There are so many kind of tour to Mekong delta and I advised you to go there with the arrangement by tour agency for better logistic arrangement. Tour agency normally will offer you a tour package such as visiting My Tho - Ben Tre Island, to visit Cai Be Floating Market & Vin Long City, trip to Chau Doc and direct to Phnom Penh, Cambodia and many other options. For a safe and professional arrangement, I would suggest you to use The Sinh Tourist services which I had been trusted them since 10 years ago (the used to be The Sinh Café as their name back then). This company is located at De Tham Street, Pham Ngu Lao. The hottest backpacker area in town.

This time, we chose to visit Cai Be Floating Market & Vinh Long City with price VND269,000 per person. It is advisable to purchase the package one day before the tour and good to check the weather forecast the next day upfront especially if you are visiting Vietnam during wet season.

Our trip schedule was at 7.00am and all of us need be at the tour office as early as 6.30am for check in the trip and on board on time. We travelled by big bus from Ho Chi Minh City to Cai Be district in south west Vietnam. When you are on the way to Cai Be, please don’t sleep and enjoy the view. You will slowly see the changes from city view to the countryside view. There are few provinces that you need to pass by on the way to Cai Be district and you will see a very wide spread of green paddy field, big rivers, small villages and some small town and markets too. A short brief about Cai Be district, it is a river land or we called it delta rural district located at Tien Giang province of Mekong Delta region. Economically, the people here grew vegetables, paddy, breeding catfish and other river fish for local consume and export too.

After 2 hours journey from Ho Chi Minh City, we finally arrived to the boat jetty and oh ya! We do have a tour guide and her name is Thanh. She is very informative and I adore her determination as a tourist guide for the company. We took the boat and crossing Tien River and heading to the site of Cai Be Floating Market.

To avoid your disappointment, good to remind that this floating market is varies compared to the one you might had visited in Thailand. Cai Be floating market normally start very busy as early as 3.00am when all the boats from other places such as Can Tho, Dong Nai, Vinh Long and Chau Doc will gather here to trade their goods. According to our tour guide, there are about 400 to 500 boats will be on the river at Cai Be to do their trade. So, upon our arrival at 9.00am, there are no such scene of busy market. But more like an aftermath’s scene instead. But nevermind, I think it is still not that bad though.

It is dark, crowded and busy during that time, so how people do their trade?

Normally every big boat will come with a smaller one. The trader or buyer will row the small boat to their targeted seller to purchase goods and return back to their big boat. The selling system also quite unique. Since the market is crowded in the morning and it is hard to shout to each other to tell what they are selling. The solution is, they need to hang one item that they are selling (example like Tapioca, Pineapple, Potatoes) to the long stick which is located at the very front side of the boats. Make sure it is high enough so people can see it right from far and they will come to the seller if they want to buy it. In terms of prices, it is way cheaper than on the land markets. You even will get the best price if you do a bulk buying such as 10 kilos of mango…yumssss!

Next, we are visiting coconut candy factory, rice paper making factory and lunch time. Stay tune for more write up.

Sunday, 16 October 2016

Saturday Breakfast – Pasar Besar Jalan Othman @ PJ Old Town

Few years ago, an acquaintance of mine Patrick did some awesome photoshoot here at PJ Old Town’s Pasar or knowned as Pasar Besar Jalan Othman. Since its weekend and we are normally wake up early, so we decided to go to explore what ate the breakfast available at this Pasar Besar Jalan Othman.

From Puchong, we waze up to this location which is located about 15 minutes from my house. Nah! 15 minutes from my house and I didn’t go to this place since I move to Puchong many years back. What a shame Danial? Personally, I love PJ Old Town areas. Old houses, the government owned building and I always imagined that I will have a restaurant at this area in near future.

So, back to the story. We arrived to the market around 10.30am. The market still very busy with customers here and there. Some vegetable vendors already run out of the veggies and now relaxing. Oh yeah! Its 10.30am though and I can say what kind of people go to morning market at 10.30am. If you are wearing slipper, be careful because the floor are wet at almost everywhere at ground floor.

This is the fun thing. Normally at most of the market that I went, their food court are located at the 1st floor of their market together with clothing and other shops. But there is a twist here at PJ Old Town. You will find onions, tailor shop, dried anchovies, eggs, herbs and spices but no food court at the 1st floor. We almost give up and walk out from the market until we saw the food court area at ground floor and its facing the main road at the front side.

We did a quick browsing since but not much on photo shooting since we both are extremely hungry. The are Malay, Indonesia, Indian and Chinese food available for you to order at the food court. But at this time, my mate Chris would like to try the Penang Mee Rebus from a stall here, coincidentally I saw the stall mamak is cooking friend noodle and its look delicious. Then I ordered one serving for me.

I think the Mee Rebus is just like in other place. But RM4 for each Mee Rebus and Mee Goreng is unbeatable with other places in PJ I think. I love the Mee Goreng and I think it will be one of the reason for me to come again to this market. The Mee Goreng is very simple but it is a good one with some kuih and vegetable. You may ask for some Chili ketchup to adjust the taste up to your liking too. That is normal right?

Before we leave the market. Then only we saw another food court located next to the market. Damn! Here is the photo. I think I will try out that place for next time. Overall, the breakfast hunting this time is full of satisfaction. 

Saturday, 24 September 2016

[Taman Tun Dr Ismail] Eat The King of Fruit Like a King at 'Durian King' TTDI

Eat the King of Fruit like a King at Durian King TTDI.

My office is in Taman Tun Dr Ismail, or TTDI in short. Passing the Durian King TTDI banner on every morning when I am on my way to work was like torturing my self. I would say their banners along the lamp post was 100% work for me.

After reading some reviews here and there, I asked my bestie to go Durian King TTDI afterwork.

The location was very easy to find. If you are on Waze, just simply search for Durian King TTDI. Optionally you could refer to below address as it is located at the car park area of Pasar Awam Taman Tun Dr. Ismail.

Pasar Awam Taman Tun Dr. Ismail
Jalan Wan Kadir, 60000
Taman Tun Dr Ismail
Kuala Lumpur

Business hour:
5.00pm - 12.00pm on weekend
12.00pm - 12.00pm on weekend

We arrived here at 5.45pm and the workers are still doing the setting up. To name some, there are Musang King, Udang Merah & XO for you to choose. As of the time I'm writing this article, Durian King was RM45 per kilo and Durian Xo was RM28 per kilo.

Since we are not budgeted for the Musang King, so we choose for Durian XO for our evening treat. Our was 2.1kg, a big one. How to describe my durian, it was creamy and a bitter one which is my favourite one. It came with  a very thick flesh and small seeds which made it up to my satisfaction.

I would say this place is brilliant in cross selling their products. We ordered 2 bowls of Cendol Durian which I would describe as the best in town. The cendol is sweet and creamy. Crazily the put some durian on top of the cendol which is super rich.

If I'm not wrong, the are only 2 Durian King outlets in KL which is one in TTDI and one in Bukit Bintang. Looking forward for my next durian end of this month at Durian King TTDI. Cheers!

[Segamat]: Segarnya Cendol Segar Amat

"Segarnya Cendol Segar Amat"

That is my first impression after sipping the fresh cold cendol at this cendol shop  Bandar Segamat.

Well, for those who didn't know, I am a Segamatian. Was born in Batu Pahat here with some memories of growing up in this place.

I personally think it is a bit hard to find hipster cafes or locally famous eating out places in Segamat. I hope this article will be my good start for me and others to explore what are good here.

Segar Amat Cendol
Jalan Utama 2/3, Taman Utama
85000 Segamat, Johor

At time I'm writing this article, there is a big empty space in front of this shoplot which normally will be Hari Raya bazaar or funfair venue here.

Just like other cendol places, Cendol Segar Amat also do serve Rojak & Nasi Lemak Bungkus for their customers. There are Rojak Biasa, Rojak Kuih & Rojak Ayam for you to choose. Note if you are asking for Rojak Ayam, please ask for the tight or rib side. Or else, all you will get are the bone parts only.

This cendol & rojak place will be my regular hang out place whenever I am back in town and I think you should hunt for this place too. 

Thursday, 22 September 2016

[Kuala Selangor]: Mee Udang Banjir - A Must Try in the Area

Many of us know that the district of Kuala Selangor – Tanjung Karang, Sekinchan up to Sungai Besar is very famous with paddy field, jetties and fishing villages. But I realized that this place have more to offer to the visitors.

In this article I will share with you about the Mee Udang Banjir Kuala Selangor (Kuala Selangor’s Flooded Prawn Mee).

Mee Udang Banjir Kuala Selangor
587, Jalan Batu 2, Pasir Penambang
45000 Kuala Selangor, Selangor
Operation time: 11.00AM – 11.00PM

Direction: There is no special landmark for me to describe about this place. But if you come from Kuala Lumpur, Sungai Buloh or Ijok, this place is located on your right side before arriving to Kuala Selangor town. So, please get your co-pilot to have a long glance to the right side if you are driving here.

What so special about the Mee Udang here? Well, I have to compliment the side of the prawn and the pricing here. Mee Udang Kelabu (normal prawn) is RM9.50 per serving. The Mee Udang Galah is RM13.50 per serving and Mee Udang Laut is RM16.00. In each serving, there will be 4 or 5 prawns in your bowl which is I think good for the portion and the pricing.

Taste wise, I like the thickness of the gravies. It is more or less like Mee Rebus that we usually ate, but a bit sweet (not sure it is because of sweet potato or sugar). For me, the key of a delicious Prawn Mee is the gravies. For this one, I will rate it at 3.5 star for the gravies (acceptable under my taste rate). I am not sure if the cook make their own fresh prawn stock for the gravies, which will make the taste greater.

Overall, one should try this Mee Udang Banjir Kuala Selangor and I will definitely will come again for this prawn noodle and trying out other things in this area.

Thursday, 25 August 2016

A 'So-So' Dinner at Murni Discovery SS2, Petaling Jaya

Hi everyone. 

It has bee  really awhile since the last time I write a posting in this blog. My hectic work schedule, part time business, cookies making and stuffs really make myself busy. In fact, there are more than 7000 pcs of photos are yet to be processed in my mobile storage.

Okay. Enough mumbling! My brother Faiz was staying with me for few days and tonight we went for a quick dinner at Murni SS2. Well, many of my friends and office mate said that this place is good. Big portion... yada yada yada.

So I went there and order some of their meals on the menu. I ordered the Beef Pepperoni Fried Rice, my housemate Chris ordered Mee Raja & my brother Faiz ordered a serving of Chicken Chop. 

I have to agreed that the portion is satisfying but perhaps the taste of the foods are just so so. Chris said that he can cook a better version of Mee Raja (I think so). As for my Beef Pepperoni Fried Rice, I think its too spicy and too dry (I think). I didn't try Faiz's Chicken Chop. But I think its look boring too. 

Oh ya! I also wonder why they put the colourful (vege I think) cracker on the plating. The fact is the crackers are a bit hard to chew (for me lah). I didn't order the pasta, but I saw the carbonara pasta from next table is too mushy and perhaps overcooked.

The question is, what should I order if I go to Murni SS2 next time? How about the Nan Bread and other menus? Or maybe I won't go there anymore. The restaurants are full house at most of nights. So if you are Murni's food lovers, tell me which foods will you highlight for a difficult eater like me?