Singapore-Malaysia Trip: Wing Heong Dried Meat

This is known by so many different names. Westerners will probably refer this as jerky but I think a lot of people just calls it dried meat. Dried Meat is a popular (an expensive) snack in Malaysia and Singapore. In chinese, it is known as bakkwa or rougan in Mandarin.

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Dried Meat is sold by the weight, typically in kg or in catty (a chinese measurement of weight). It costs over $60 for 1 kg.

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Singapore-Malaysia Trip: ABC in Suria KLCC

Sorry about this folks. I just realized that I had not blogged about food for the past three days. OK, here it is … am slowly going back to food starting with a small food review today and back to full food blog tomorrow. He he he … Suanne is enjoying herself the past 2 weeks because she did not have to post anything until my series on my Singapore-Malaysia trip is completed. Suanne had a lot of recipes piled up. Bear with me — I think I have about 1 week of blog materials left on my trip. Anyway, back to the blog for today …

At the base of the Petronas Twin Towers is a shopping complex called the Suria KLCC. The Suria KLCC is perhaps the most upscale shopping complex in KL. There are a total of 6 levels which each level laid out in it’s own distinctive style and character.

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It was the Ramadan month when I was in KL and so the Suria KLCC was decked with Malay decorations. At the lower lobby were displays of Malay culture and cultural performances. There was a man playing the angklung which is a traditional Malay musical instrument made of bamboo.

This is the first time I see a 1-man angklung performance. I recall seeing angklung played by a large group of people, each playing an octave — very much like how musical bells are played.

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Walking around the complex, I came across this sign below — PREMIUM paid toilet. Oh yeah, Malaysians called washrooms toilets. That is daylight robbery. In Canada, no one pays to use public washrooms but it is quite common in Malaysia to pay 20sen — but RM2.00 is too much.

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Singapore-Malaysia Trip: Skybridge Tour on the Petronas Twin Towers

The highest floor that is opened to the public on the Petronas Twin Towers is at the 41st floor where the Skybridge is. The Petronas Twin Towers has a total of 88 floors. The Skybridge is a double deck connector between the two towers at 41st and 42nd floor.

Not many people, I reckon, know that the skybridge is opened to the public. It took me quite a while to find the reception to the Skybridge visit. It is tucked down a narrow escalator with a small sign pointing the way.

I got to the counter at about 11:30am and they were then issuing tickets for 3pm. That works out fine by me because I had planned to hang around the KLCC, do some shopping and check out the restaurants there. BTW, the tickets were free of charge.

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I returned to the reception and waited to be called in. There is a room with interactive exhibits about the towers. Most of the exhibits were pretty tacky.

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We were then issued with coloured tags. They guide each group by the colours issued at a time. We started off spending about 15 minutes watching a video of the towers. It was very informative and speaks to the genesis to the eventual completion of the buildings.

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Singapore-Malaysia Trip: The Petronas Twin Towers

The Petronas Twin Towers was the tallest building in the world for a brief time until they were surpassed by the Taipei 101 in 2004. When the Twin Towers were nearing completion in 1996, there were some controversy over the height of the building.

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At that time, the world’s tallest building was the Sears Tower in Chicago. However, when the Twin Towers were built, the total height of the building included the spire which extends just over 9m higher than the Sears Tower. The spire itself represents almost 10% of the entire height. Of course, there were protest around this. The Malaysian government argued that in previous classifications of tall buildings, the total height of buildings includes spires (case in point, the Empire State Building).

So, in response Sears Towers put up an antenna that protrudes higher than the Twin Towers. However, the Council of Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat (the people who bestows rankings for tall buildings) ruled that the antenna on the Sears Towers were not an integral part of the design of the building and hence does not count toward the height. In fairness, the Council split the tall building categories into four distinct categories soon after.

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The Twin Towers were built over three years. During those times, we saw how the building took shape and marvelled at how high the towers grew day after day. At its peak, they put up a floor every 5 days. The two buildings were built by two different companies (one Korean and the other Japanese), competing with each other to top up faster.

I remember then there were so much rumours about the towers. For one, there were rumours that the pilings were lost into a huge cavity underneath the site of the original location for the tower, resulting in the Towers being located at the fringe of the KLCC next to a very busy intersection. For sure, we know that the road next to the Towers developed huge sink holes during the construction. There was even a bungalow about 150m away that just collapsed in 30 minutes upon developing cracks then.

Oh yeah, the locals used to call that building “jagungs” which is Malay for corns.

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Singapore-Malaysia Trip: KLCC

No visitor to Kuala Lumpur will be able to miss the imposing Petronas Twin Towers and inevitably the Kuala Lumpur City Centre on which the Twin Towers are located. When Malaysia wanted to build the tallest building in the world, there were only one parcel of land in the city centre huge enough to hold the infrastructure required for the project. That piece of land was the old Selangor Turf Club which was relocated to the outskirt of KL in the 1990s.

The masterplan calls for a masterpiece of landscaped park surrounded by various high-rise buildings, the highest of which is the Twin Towers.

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Suanne used to work about 3 minutes drive from the Twin Towers and I used to pick her up from her office after work. Because of the rush-hour jam, we used to spend time at the KLCC while waiting for the traffic to ease off before heading home. You see, the KLCC is also located smack in the middle of the Golden Triangle which is basically the downtown business core. Although there were many high-rise buildings, the roads were not built to cater for the volume of traffic.

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The KLCC has this tranquility that is so odd when you think that you’re right in the middle of the busiest section of KL. At the centre of the KLCC is the Symphony Lake where the musical fountain plays at regular interval. I wanted to take shots of the musical fountain but apparently the fountain was under maintenance on the day.

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ch as possible where they once stood. So, as one walked in the park, you will see quite a lot of such trees below. This is a rarity in Malaysia where in many other parts of the country there are wanton destruction of nature.

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Singapore-Malaysia Trip: May King’s Lam Mee

May King was one of my favourite lunch places during my days working at BAT. This place is located next to a huge wet market called Pudu Pasar. Their specialty is Lam Mee and Curry Mee. This place is always packed during lunch time. It was so packed then that the restaurant owner forces all customers to share tables — shoulder to shoulder! Like a lot of popular restaurants here, you have no choice because the owner could ask you to leave if you don’t like it!! Well, that was years ago … so I am not sure if this still happens.

John and I went to May King at about 3pm, way past lunch time. It was not busy at that time. The bad thing was that they had ran out of curry mee. John was my frequent lunch partner.

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May King used to be hot and humid with extremely poor ventilation. I remember eating with sweat pouring down my back and forehead. The shirt sticks to the skin — extremely uncomfortable but then I could just ignore that discomfort.

Today, May King is fully air conditioned and they also have new tiles on the floor and walls. This is definitely more comfortable compared to what I remembered of this place. The service appear much better too — but then maybe it’s because there were not many customers at that time I visited.

I started with ordering a refreshing glass of boiled sugar cane with ice.

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The below is their famous Lam Mee. I have no idea what Lam Mee is made of — anyone knows? I just know they were delicious. Oh, see that small plate of chilli? Well, you get ONE for each order. If you want extra chilli, you need to pay 20 sen for each! No where else does a restaurant had the gall to charge for extra chilli. Well, May King could because they are the best … and you can leave if you don’t like it! 🙂

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Singapore-Malaysia Trip: Soo Kee Restaurant in Jalan Imbi

I went to the Soo Kee Restaurant in Jalan Imbi TWICE this week. John and Jeff took me to this place on separate occasions. The Soo Kee Restaurant is famous for its “sung har meen” (fresh water prawns) and fried beef hor fun. It is not located exactly on Jalan Imbi but just around the detour/bend when one try to get into Jalan Imbi.

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I was told that the owner of the Soo Kee restaurant was from the original Lebuh Pudu’s “tai see tow”. Across the road from Soo Kee is another restaurant that specializes on the same thing. It’s called Soo Kee’s Son Restaurant. Does anyone know the story behind this Soo Kee’s Son restaurant? Is it really owned by Soo Kee’s son?

Anyway, it is Soo Kee Restaurant that is busier. It’s a favourite among the lunch and dinner crowd. Their kitchen is just by the roadside. You can see a lot of cars and buses driving past the congested area.

In terms of comfort, Soo Kee is terrible. It is hot and the restaurant poorly ventilated. Despite this, the restaurant is packed with diners every day. Service wise, it is extremely poor by western standards. However, the food is superb.

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Their signature dish is the sung har meen. It is a fried noodle dish with large fresh water prawns. This dish alone costs RM25 (about CAD$8) — very expensive for noodles in Malaysia where noodles could be bought as cheap as RM4. It is the huge prawn that is costs the most.

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Singapore-Malaysia Trip: Kim Kee Bah Kut Teh in Jalan Ipoh

When I was a teenager, I used to wake up my parents in the middle of the night when I was hungry. No matter what time of the night, they would just bring me out for supper. Sometimes it is as late as 2am in the morning! We would always go to Kim Kee for Bah Kut Teh.

So, the night I am back in Malaysia, I asked that we go out for dinner at the same restaurant. It was reminiscent of the time we had then … the late night drive into downtown and the empty streets. It felt good. The brightly lit Petronas Twin Towers and the KL Tower looked beautiful.

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Kim Kee used to be one of the most famous Bah Kut Teh restaurants many years ago. They were opened 24 hrs. Today, they are no longer what it was then. The restaurant no longer operates 24 hrs and it is not as busy anymore.

The original chef is no longer with them anymore. The quality is not the same as it used to be.

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