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Motormouth From Ipoh

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Of Lawan Kuda's Chee Cheong Fun, Kampar's Hawker Fare, & The Slaughter

A break from the Cameron Highlands posts, giving way to photos from my stash of backlogs. Yeah, all the while watching (or rather listening to) the epic battle between our very own badminton superstar, Lee Chong Wei, against China's great wall, Lin Dan. Why bother blogging at now? Well, let's just say, it's tough watching Lee fell in the 1st game, and til now, still being "slaughtered" by Lin Dan left and right. Sigh .... Guess RM300k is adequate?

Remember the old couple's faces, as the shop has no name

Still remember The Star's Sunday Metro's recommendation of Lawan Kuda's Chee Cheong Fun (Rolled Rice Noodles)? Lawan Kuda is a small town near to Gopeng, about 30km from Ipoh.

Many may associate the name of the town with "weird" food, from fruit foxes to terrapins, and snake's blood soup to squirrels' meat. Therefore, it was an eye-opener for me of sort, reading about this stall selling Chee Cheong Fun (CCF), and supposedly quite famous for it. Suffice to say, this stall warrants a visit in my book, and the opportunity came when work took me over to Lawan Kuda.

Their homemade stuffed fish paste (Yong Tau Foo) to complement the CCF

Locating this stall was not hard. Situated on the main road of Lawan Kuda, this stall opens only a few days a week, from Thurs-Sunday (reference : Sunday Metro), from 12pm onwards. The stall is next to a Chinese medicine shop, punctuated by TWO big, colourful umbrellas. Opens only during lunch hour, we were amazed by the endless queue for the CCF once the stall started operating. Students, housewives, workers etc swarmed the stall as soon as we took our orders. It was a good thing we arrived earlier.

My plate of CCF with Curry Pork's Skins and Long Beans, and sides of Yong Tau Foo (RM4.70)

They serve the CCF with curries or plain with soy sauce, and the obvious popular choice would be the curry pork's skins. That's not all, the extensive array of Yong Tau Foo, supposedly homemade, are the perfect partners for the noodles.

The springy fish-pork balls, steamed and deep-fried varieties

So, how did the CCF fare? The flat rice noodles were indeed very smooth, served plain with NO dried shrimps unlike Ipoh's version. And fried shallots is an optional garnishing, remember to ask for them, or take them yourself from the container.

The Yong Tau Foo were passable, some hits, some misses. Particularly yummy was the deep-fried balls (fish/pork), a signature item. The curry on the other hand, disappointed us as it was plain oily. So oily in fact, that the chopsticks and plates they serve the CCF on were all greasy from the previous person's indulgence. Yeah, grab a tissue along before you tuck in.

If you're sitting at their stall's area, drinks are not served. But they can order for you from the market opposite their stall. Sugar cane juice was the beverage of the day. Diluted, not sweet, but quench our thirst nevertheless.

Kampar town, south of Ipoh

If you're going south bound, after Gopeng, you'll reach the town of Kampar after 15-20 minutes. A popular stop for tourists occupying the trunk road, Kampar is famous for a variety of food, such as the Claypot Chicken Rice, Roti Kari Ayam (Curry Chicken Bread), Ais Kacang, Lou Shu Fan (short rice noodles), and a myriad of hawker delights.

The main food court in Kampar, next to the morning market

To sample a little bit of everything, it is highly recommended that you pay a visit to the Medan Selera next to the morning market, situated on Jalan Pasar.

Memorize the stalls' number, if you can't read Chinese (like me)

With what could possibly be hundreds of stalls (OK, I'm exaggerating, but there are at least 50?) around, the area is separated into 2 sections, one serving halal food, while another with mainly Chinese stalls. Once you step into the food court, you'll be at lost for directions. There are so many stalls, with so many patrons, it is generally tough to make a decision on where to park your butt. Rule of the thumb? Sit where the crowd are. You can't go wrong. Unless you order what others are NOT ordering.

Gorgeously sinful

Stall No 42 has been serving their famous glutinous rice and yam cakes for years. The locals mostly throng the stall during breakfast hours, and the glutinous rice is a hot commodity, wiped out before lunch. So be sure to arrive early.

Savoury glutinous rice, complemented with "char siew" slices, peanuts and scallions, doused with curry (optional). Sheer bliss scooping the grains into your mouth. Simple, unpretentious, but got the job done. At roughly RM2 per plate (with curry), it was a good start to the day.

Notice The Star's coverage of this humble stall?

Still craving for more? Or looking for something lighter, and healthier? Check out this porridge stall, manned by 2 ladies. Signature item? Pork porridge.

Food for the Soul?

A bowl of smooth, creamy porridge with chunks of minced pork meat and pig's liver cost RM2.50. Though for some, all porridge tastes the same. But to differentiate a good porridge from an average one, just sip/taste the consistency, and the flavour of the grains. Here, the porridge is smooth, indicating hours of boiling, and the taste is sweet, from the meat, and probably from the stock used to cook the boiling hot concoction.

What a way to start the day ...

A good ol' bowl of pork porridge and a cup of frothy hot coffee. Subdue your hunger pangs, and the caffeine will jolt your brains into activity. But, longing for more? :)

Nyonya kuih stall, outside the food court

Buy a piece or two, or maybe three, of the sweet or savoury snack termed "Nyonya Kuih", from the stalls lining the road outside of the food court. As ration when hunger strikes, or something sweet to tempt the palate while walking/driving to your office?

Out-of-topic Rant : Geez .... As expected, the slaughter ended quick, and painless. Or painful. Malaysia lost to China 21-12, 21-8, in about 30 mins. Well, there's always another Olympics, ya?


minchow said...

Heavens! The glutinous rice has got my pulse racing! After the horrendous loss to China, so glad to see there's still hope and good things in store!

Anonymous said...

gosh..all these small town food looks reli good..yeah lawan kuda has some reli good yeh mei shop..

Ciki said...

fish pork balls looks good.. hard to find. how much was it for 1 piece of YTF?

Anonymous said...

wahhh terbang kereta kah...15-20 mins from Gopeng to Kampar???
There are 2 things u can perhaps cover abt Kampar in the future:

1) Egg Tart - this is immensely popular with the local and apparently the guy who sells it only makes a limited amount which is ready at 330pm everyday (first come first serve)

2) Claypot Chicken rice

p/s 12 + 8 from LCW is not even good enough to win one set.

backStreetGluttons said...

the prices in Lawan Kuda Chinese Restaurants seem very cheap. Once 4 of us had a decent 4 dish dinner under RM30 . A lady told us here thrilling xperiences with eating snakes, monkey etc. she din say what happened later at night

J2Kfm said...

550mL jar of faith : yeah, there's hope in food, comfort food for the soul?

kampungboycitygal : yup, I'm game for the "yeh mei", problem is that I can't find ANYONE at all for a binging session. :(

cumi & ciki : roughly 50cents and above I supposed. I din asked. Took 6 pieces, with the CCF and curry cost RM4.70.

genuiness : egg tarts from which stall? oh I LOVE tarts! :)
the claypot chicken rice only at night, thats why pretty tough to cover. we go mostly daytime for work. maybe someday ...

BSG : that night? =P haha ... too much ...HEAT?

Anonymous said...

Weird food... hehe... well, I never take exotic food. But some dai chow in Lawan Kuda are pretty good.

Anonymous said...

small town foods are the best. i always prefer to blog about them than restaurant ones. they just look more special and attractive to me :)

Hulk said...

Actually..Kampar produce quite good hawker foods. Fren of mine, though no longer heading the Bank branch will make a point to travel at least once a month to have his meal over there..from Ipoh. Now all the way from Cameron Highlands. Unfortunately, to lazy to follow him.
Heard the Clayport rice is good over there.

BTW...just to inform that Ipoh finally have Sate Kajang near Petronas Kioks & McDonald. Back row of main shops. Behind a budget hotel.

HairyBerry said...

i gave up seconds after the second game. what's with all the half-court returns?? sigh....

on the other hand, glutinous rice with curry! now that's a classique! delicious!

J2Kfm said...

jason : yeahloh! asked you already, aiya ... put them in your mouth and pretend they're chicken la! :)

vkeong : yeah, maybe cz not commercialized, therefore they put more effort in the preparations?

hulk : Kampar's Chinese community is expanding, which probably explains the endless choices of Chinese food.
The sate kajang I know, but heard from a Malay fren the service and food is rather disappointing. therefore I took her words and havent visited. maybe some night, when I'm at lost for food.

nic : yeah, maybe under pressure?
a silver will make-do. there's alwiz a silver lining. ;)

sc said...

the food served there still looks like it'd in the 1970s.. so nostalgic! oh yeah, and i heard, it's RM300K one off and RM3k monthly till he dies wor...

Anonymous said...

I actually forgot the name of the shop selling the egg tarts.. but its pretty popular with the locals and gets sold out really quickly (within 15 mins of going on sale) I plan to make a visit some time this weekend since I hv plenty of time on hand.

And imho the claypot rice there is probably one of the best especially with extra salted fish (this is coming from someone who doesn't like rice...)

JeromeFo 令狐冲 said...

Fantastic Foods shots again.
The porridge damn cheap -rm2.50
only with pork meat. My area there sell RM4 -_-

J2Kfm said...

sc : RM3k monthly until he dies? wow, he can retire with that much. how lucky.

genuiness : oh you make me drooling over your description of the rice. me no fan of claypot chicken rice, but willing to give Kampar's version a try.

jeromefo : yeahloh, depends on area one ma. this is Kampar, a just recently developing town.

Anonymous said...

Ya, ya, the slaughter was painful to watch. We were eating dinner at a friend's home and we went from cheering to groaning. The poor fella... :(

J2Kfm said...

sigh, probably under too much stress. the whole nation's looking up to him after all.

wmw said...

Aiyah...chee cheong fun! My all time fave. And now I gotta find my way to Kampar to eat that absolutely mouth watering glutinous rice! Looks so good!

J2Kfm said...

wmw : yeah, the almighty CCF Queen, the nasi pulut is indeed, good stuff. we packed a few after the breakfast session. as for the CCF, erm, stick to your Canning Garden's version I guess.

Anonymous said...

wei.. dun worry.. ur yeh mei's dream will come true soon... haha.. juz beg Mrs 'CK' and her special someone to go along with u la.. i think she's willing to do so at the moment... :) and for sure she can recommend the BEST to u... hehe...

J2Kfm said...

kca : haha, you're very cruel la ... luckily she doesnt c my blog. CK? or KC? =P

mycroft said...

hey, the name of the shop of eggtart is kam ling? mayb because i am from Kampar so the food may not appeal tat much, but anyway, come to think of it, dang proud of kampar food

J2Kfm said...

oh, Kam Ling I think I know where it is liao. got dimsum during the day, rite?

there's so much to discover in Kampar! I'll be sure to drop by Kam Ling soon. Thanks!

JC @ Jessey said...

Wow~ I'm searching for some good foods on net and found you! Kampar, Oh Kampar.. I have stay there for 2 years while taking my certificated at TARC 5 years ago.

Small town but have discovered lotsa foods there.. Think have tried most of the "lou shu fun" there. lolz.. Miss the time..

J2Kfm said...

hi jc @ jessey, you missed Kampar, didnt you? I wanna try the 'Fun Chai' there. one of these days. :)

Anonymous said...

Last Sunday (30th Nov, 2008), my friends and I decided to nip to Kampar for breakfast. We sat somewhere behind stall no. 42. I ordered Wan Ton Mee nearby and waited patiently for 30 mins. Nothing happended...All those waiting curbed my appetite for Wanton Mee, so I ordered some chicken kueh tiao, also nearby. And waited...again, nothing happened. Really pissed off with the bad service.

J2Kfm said...

ah lock : oh i sympathize with your tragic outing. were there a lot of ppl? I never tried the wantan mee or chicken kuey teow though, so no idea which stall is it. did you remind the stall owners? said...

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