Updated: 3rd Nov 2014; This restaurant is closed according to Urbanspoon.com.
Please allow me to be excited. I am really thinking this is a good restaurant to check out. We did and we like it a lot. The reasons are several … we thought we had tried all kinds of noodles already. What are the common types of noodles? I think this list below pretty much covers 99% of the most commonly know noodles:
- Egg noodles
- Rice noodles or koay teow
- Vermicelli or Mee Hoon
- Mee Sua
- Mung Bean noodles
- E-Fu noodles
- Wheat noodles
- Udon (Japanese) or Lai Fun (Chinese)
- Ramen (Japanese) or La-Mien (Chinese) or doll noodle
- Sweet potato noodles (Korean)
- Shanghai noodles
- Lo-shee fun (mouse noodles)
So we were excited when we were alerted to a type of noodles that we had never heard of before. The noodles is called Chan-Cheun-Fun which is loosely translated to English as noodles from the village of Chan. And then in the process of trying this noodle, we also found another type of “noodles” … and it is in the shape of little balls. So this was a lot of discovery for us.
To add to that, the food is very cheap too.
It was Julie who wrote to us about the Chan-Cheun-Fun that she had in the Kam Wah Loong Seafood restaurant. We were instantly intrigued by the description she sent us in Chinese and translated (very poorly) to English using Google Translate:
廣東順德的陳村粉已經有近80年的歷史。 1927年，順德陳村人黃但創制出一種以薄、爽、滑、軟為特色的米粉，聲名鵲起，當地人稱之“粉旦（但）”。 此後，他們將粉送到外地，外地人以“陳村粉”名之。 由於制作精細，陳村粉產量不高，一天只能產粉幾百斤，因而顯得格外“矜貴”，在外地不易享此口福。
Here is the translation from Google:
Chan Cheun Shunde, Guangdong noodles for nearly 80 years. In 1927, Chan Cheun Shunde Huang but to create a kind of thin, cool, smooth, soft as the characteristics of rice noodles, to fame, the locals call it “noodle once (but).” Since then, they will powder sent to the field, outsiders to “Chan Cheun Noodle” name of. Because of the fine powder yield is not high Chen Cheun, a day producing only a few pounds of flour, which makes it especially “expansive” in the field difficult to enjoy the delicious food.
Chan Cheun noodle has three important features: First, fragrant rice, and second, the thickness of very thin, only 0.5-0.7 mm, the thickness of the conventional powder in 1 mm or more, the toughness of the three is moderate Chan Cheun noodles than the ordinary noodle. Well, it can be said flexible full and tender and smooth.
Chan Cheun noodle is the most appropriate way steamed with seasoning mix, Shanglong Zheng five minutes on the line, and serve hot pepper sauce dip. Chan Cheun steam after a good meal, with a layer of shiny, has a surprisingly Effort to eat up.
The most traditional way is fermented pork ribs steamed powder. Cut pork ribs were very small, with starch and fermented taste like a good tune camel hat covered in pink, the steam was gravy from a high cross flow to the lower, white powder and dark red juice mingled with aroma slowly.
OK, it is not the greatest of translations but I think you get the gist of it.
The Kam Wah Loong restaurant is located on Kingsway and Knight. Even though we had drove past this place a lot of time, we had never paid much attention to it. I think it is because of the big mature trees that kind of obscured the view to the restaurant.
The dining hall is quite big. We counted about 20 tables in all. It actually looked bigger than it really is simply because of the mirror that they had installed along one side of the wall.
We like that down to earth atmosphere here. There is a certain casualness with the customers and it does seems like it is very much a neighborhood slash family restaurant. The customers are mostly dressed casually. Yeah, pretty much like an old-school Cantonese restaurant.
The service was prompt and quick. Despite this being a very busy restaurant, we did not have any issues getting what we needed. We were attended to quickly but as in most Chinese restaurant of this type, you can forget about expecting them to smile at you and greet you pretending you are their friend. You know what I mean.
Kam Wah Loong is known as Yuet Kwai Heen in Cantonese. While the English version of the restaurant name is retained, they had discarded the Kam Loong Wah name in favour of a more eloquent Yuet Kwai Heen. For those who understands Cantonese, the word Yuet means Cantonese cuisine and Kwai is classy (something like that!).
We were curious and asked the person who attended to us about the name differences. She looked like she is the boss or something. She said that they changed the name because every other restaurant is “Kam-kam-kam” (Kam=gold) and that Kam Wah Loong is very common and unimaginative name. So they changed the Chinese name to avoid confusion.
Before I get on to the food proper, here is the menu of KWL. You may click on them to show a larger image.
The above two pages is their dim sum and lunch menu. The dim sums (left image) are $2.50 each which is quite OK price-wise. We did not have the dim sum and so don’t know how they are. Most of the lunch-time customers had dim sums. However, we don’t find the dim sums particularly exciting. It is just the common dim sum stuff.
On the right is where you will find the Chan-Chun-Fun. It is S36 on the menu and is written simply as “Spareribs with Special Rice Noodles”. They did not know how to translate the Chan-Chun-Fun and translated that in such an unfortunate name that the poor Chinese-illiterate customers (like us!) will miss ordering it.
The above three menus is their combo items. They are quite interesting and seems like quite a deal too. Check it out.
I was attracted to the bottom right most dinner (right most image) which is called Supreme Dinner for 10. For $370, you get:
- House Special Deluxe Appetizer Platter
- Deep Fried Stuffed Crab Claws with Shrimp Paste
- Dried Scallops Braised with Egg Tofu
- Sharks’ Fin Soup with Crab Meat and Dried Fish Maws
- Two Lobsters in Supreme Broth
- Abalone Slices with Sea Cucumber and Greens
- House Specialty Steamed Chicken
- Steamed Live Fish
- Fried Rice with Seafood on Lotus Leaf
- Braised E-Fu Noodle with Crab Meat and Mushroom
But too bad this is for 10 people … unless some of you want to help Suanne and I make up a table.
This is the Chan Cheun Fun a.k.a. Spareribs with Special Rice Noodle. This $7 noodle is served in a claypot.
This dish is rather … oily just so that you know.
This is it … the Chan Cheun Fun. It is layered and the taste reminds me a lot of “What Tarn Hor” (egg-swirl rice noodles).
The fun part is this … you can unravel the layered noodles and it is like cellophane tape. It is very thin and is almost transparent … just like it is mung bean noodles except that it is flat and rolled up like rice roll.
The multi-layered Chan-Cheun Fun absorbs the sauce really well which makes it good to eat with just the noodles and the black bean sauce. Very flavourful.
The spareribs were equally just as good and plentiful too. For just $7, this is a really satisfying dish.
Then there is this dish called the Salty Rice Ball in Soup. Believe it or not, this is just $5.
For the novelty of it, this is interesting because we had never imagined having a “noodle” dish served in balls.
The sticky (glutinous) rice ball are soft and very much like tang yuan. The pork broth is savory and rich. In the bowl are some pork slices, suey choy and daikons. For just $5, one can’t ask for more.
Because the “Specialty Chicken” was mentioned so many times in their menu, we also ordered the Specialty Chicken on Steam Rice.
If you think that the ball noodles at $5 is cheap, wait till you hear how much the above is … $4.
While the serving is huge, it is the rice that makes the bulk of this bowl. For someone who are on budget, this is the best value for money.
They told us that the chicken is called “Sar Keong Loong Kong Gei”. It is free range chicken and served with the brownish bits you see on top of skin. Those brownish bits are called “sar keong” which is translated as ginger-sand … something like that. I like the sar keong which is salty-sweet and is kind of crystalized. So it give a little crunch which goes well with the yellowish skin.
It is worth trying this dish … it is only $4 and I think you will like it too.
For dessert we wanted to order the Pan Fried Sweet Potato Paste with Ginger Sauce but it was sold out. So we ordered the above Steamed Sponge Cake with Olive.
While it tasted nice (eggy) but I find it a bit too dry and crumbly.
I prefer Suanne’s version over this anytime. Check out Suanne’s recipe for Chinese Sponge Cake here.
Look at that … it is just $22. And there were too much food that we took home the partly eaten chicken rice and dessert.
They have a number of parking spots at the rear of the restaurant.
The question of the day is this: Do you know of any restaurants that serves Chan Cheun Fun also? This noodle might be more common that some of you might think but for us, this is the first time we had come across this.
Thanks again, Julie, for sending us this tip. Great find.
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Kam Yuet Heen in Richmond has Chan Chuen Fun on their dim sum menu too, it’s part of the Specials section. It’s made with spareribs too but not exactly like the one you ate. It’s really good as well!
Does Kam Yuet Heen come by another name in English?
I was also trying to google Kam Yuet Heen and I’m not getting any result. I hope Elaine can give us more info on this restaurant.
Sorry it was just a direct translation from the Chinese name 金粵軒 I know LMAO I think Ben wrote about it before, let me just go through your posts.
Hey Ben, it’s called Empire Chinese Cuisine!
If you look back to the picture of the menu you took:
Top right under their specials, (H) is the Chan Chuen Fun. They also have it under their regular dim sum menu Steamed Deluxe Rice Noodle with Mince Pork for $5.95, but I suggest you get the special for $6.80 as it is a much bigger portion (and more meat I think).
Sorry I remember reading that post and reminding myself to comment to tell you to try that Chan Chuen Fun but I don’t know why I never got around to it. It’s definitely one of my favourite dishes to order at Empire Chinese Cuisine. It’s also my favourite place for dim sum cuz I am really picky with dim sum given my HK background =P And also, I think it’s a great idea to order from their specials section because it’s definitely great value!
Thanks a lot Elaine! Time for a return visit. 🙂
Interesting, Elaine. Could you do me a favour? Could you help me translate the specials from A through J? I can’t read Chinese and there are no English translations for the specials.
I’d love to help Ben but I have no idea what the Chinese dishes are called in english. I actually learned a lot of their english names from your blog =S I think I recognize a few of them from your past posts but that’s about it. The others I have no idea what they are in english…
I can try to translate them word for word with the help of Google until someone who actually knows it give it a try.
(A) Abalone sauce fried rice with scallops and fresh shrimps
(C) Beef chow mein with vegetable heart/tender greens
(E) Singaporean Vermicilli
(G) Roast pig hand
(I) Salted fish and chicken fried rice (your boys’ favourite lmao)
The other column let me Google first lmao…
(B) Stir-fried beef with flat, wide rice noodles (hor fun?)
(D) Shredded duck and (potherb mustard? winter vegetable? salted vegetable? preserved vegetable?) with braised e-mein
(F) Scrambled eggs and fresh shirmps with stir-fried hor fun
(H) Chan chuen fun with spare ribs
(J) Leek sprouts (chives?) and shredded pork chow mein
I think this is it =S I hope you understand and they don’t switch around their menu…
Thanks a lot Elaine, much appreciated. What I sorely need is an iPhone app that can take pictures of Chinese characters and then do a translation from the pictures. 🙂
What an interesting noodle: thanks for the post!
The noodles look very satisfying! It just make my stomach go hungry again!
Thank you too Elaine for the tip and the translation. I really want to try that spareribs with special noodle. The roast pig hand sounds interesting too. I wonder if its similar to the Filipino crispy pata (pork hock).
Hey Ben! This restaurant sounds awesome. The Salty Rice Ball in Soup is what my mom used to make.
Saw this in a travel newsletter:
Don’t you wish you could have had a quick translation of that French menu item before you ordered the snail sauce? Well with a new Google app, you can do just that!
That’s the ultimate vision behind the weirdly named Goggles Translate—an app that turns your phone into a point-and-shoot translator. It’s a free download for phones that use Google’s Android operating system, such as the T-Mobile G1 and the Motorola Cliq. It’ll eventually be available for other phones, too.
I tested the app this weekend at a French restaurant in New York. I was interested in trying andouillette, so I took a pic of the word. On the phone’s screen, a blue line appeared and moved across the image of the menu. About 20 seconds later, Google let me know that andouillette is sausage made from pig intestines.
Thanks for coming by my site 🙂
I use to make those rice balls with my mom. We made a savoury and sweet version of it. The savoury was similar to the one you had while the sweet one had a gingery-sweet base. The riceballs itself was super easy to make…just a lot of kneading involved to get the right texture.
My mom also makes the savory version of glutenous rice balls…usually to celebrate certain seasonal milestones ( I forgot which).
They are small and plain, served in soup with shitake mushrooms, hand made meat balls, dried shrimp, siu choy, really anything goes!
I’m definitely going to try this place out with the fam. Thanks!
My mom and I went to there today and we were very satisfied with the dim sum there. Our review:
Prawn dumplings: nothing spectacular, but nicely made. Plenty of shrimp and the dumpling skin was easy to chew and not sticky.
Beef tripe in satay sauce: we were least satisfied with this dim sum. In fact, we right out hated it. We could not taste the satay flavour and the tripe was too oily. We highly do not recommend this one.
Kam wah loong special baked buns: these were basically a fusion take on bbq pork buns. I can’t quite describe the bun part, but it’s like what you would find at a bakery. Sort of flaky, but not like a soufflé-kind if that makes any sense. They were pretty large, hot and smelled really good. We liked this dim sum a lot.
Egg tart: it was a special: $1.99 instead of $2.50. They were pretty good. 4 small egg tarts and the crust was flaky.
Spare ribs on clay pot: my mom was sort of disappointed with this one. The rice was good: wasn’t too dry or undercooked. But the spareribs were not very good. We expected them to be exactly like the spare ribs that you would get from a separate dim sum dish, but they weren’t. I found them to be okay; my mom thought they were below average. Something about the meat being too chewy or rough. Something like that.
Pan fried rice flour rolls with soy sauce: the rice flour rolls were extremely soft and smooth. I thought it was a bit oily and there was soy sauce at the bottom of the dish! I guess it’s for people who think the flour rolls were not salty enough, but I’ve never seen soy sauce actually in the dish before. They provided the hoi sin sauce, but not the sesame sauce (is it peanut butter? I don’t know the exact English translation).
Soup noodle with BBQ pork: the noodle’s didn’t taste like they should (lai fun). It was a bit strange eating them, but not so much that we would spit it out. The bbq pork looked like they made them themselves and they were pretty good. I think there were 8 thin slices of pork and two pieces of vegetables (don’t know the English translation). For $1.99, it was okay.
Overall: we’ll definitely be coming here again! Although it’s a 1/2 hour drive from our house, we concluded it’s worth it. Plus, it’s 10% off for the dim sum! Also, the tea was pretty good; they were the last bit of tea leaves like other dim sum places give their customers. I think we drank 5 tea pots full lol.
Oops, a few more things to add:
Parking was pretty terrible. Lack of parking spaces are a definite turn off for this location. We saw a lot of cars parking in the neighbourhoods and they fill them all up quite nicely lol. We managed to find a parking space right in front after a couple of tries. They were parking spaces at the back, but not many.
And my mom found a mistake in the menu: for the Chinese translation of Shrimp and BBQ Pork Fried Rice, the word “Chau” is the wrong one. Instead of saying “fried rice”, it says “fork rice” lol
Hi Eric: I know what you mean about the parking. There is another Chinese restaurant of the similar size just next door. And that stretch of Kingsway is pretty busy too business-wise. Yeah, we had to make one round around the block before I decided to park in front of some residential houses. Ben
Hi Eric: Thanks for the report. You did not try the Chan Cheun Fun, did you? Ben
No we didn’t. Did it taste like plastic, not that I would expect you to have tasted plastic before lol.
I tried the Chan Cheun Fun the last time I visited. It was really different that anything I had eaten before. It was really soft and flavourful from the sparerib sauce. I had fun unrolling the noodles 🙂
Hi Eric: Ever since that first encounter with Chan Cheun Fun at Kam Wah Loong, I had the same in other restaurants. Apparently it is available in many restaurants but it is just that it does not have a standardized English name for it that it gets kind of lost in English language menus. Glad you like it. It is the unraveling of the noodles that is fun and the folds just captures the flavour so well. Ben
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