Zealand seafood also gone?

I had blogged about Zealand seafood in Gurney Drive many years ago. However, we have stopped going for a while and recently, discovered that the original owners are no longer around.

So many eating places are either closed down, change owners or changed dishes. It is quite sad that the authentic old style Zealand seafood is no longer in business. It has been around for decades and now, it is taken over by some new management.

The new management no longer serves foods like the old Zealand used to.

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This is the sweet and sour crabs from the new Zealand management serving from the old Zealand place. Sigh…the foods are not that good, the prices expensive and basically, there is no attraction at all. I don’t think I will be going back there anymore.

Tell you what’s good to eat at Tanjong Tokong food court

The place has no funny Chinese name but just mere ‘Tanjung Tokong’. It is located after Metrojaya, next to Petronas at Jalan Tanjung Tokong. So, if you are a tourist staying in the Tanjung Bungah area and aren’t sure how to hunt for foods in town, you can get most of the foods here at the food court. It is open only at night, close on Wednesday. During the day, around 11 am onwards, there is a Muslim stall selling Chinese style Hokkien prawn mee. (but I shall blog about that another time).

Around this area, there is another one call Viva Food court but this Tanjong Tokong is preferred by me because it is airy, has nice marble tables, plenty of parking and less crowded. It is our regular place to have dinner if I am too lazy or too tired to cook.

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So, what are some of the better foods to eat? They have a wide variety but we usually ate just a few ones.

Try the tang yuan, which has really kick-ass ginger syrup. They also have the Geylang Lor 9 frog porridge. Then, there is the Weld Quay beef koay teow. I had also tried the fried spring chicken. My little boy’s favourite is the Jinggo Tomyam stall fried rice. The uncle likes my little boy and sometimes, give him extras like chocolates and candies, simply because my boy love his rice and finished the whole plate.

The claypot rice is horrible though. The chicken and duck rice is a little dull. The curry fish head is nothing to shout. And the bak kut teh is so-so as well.

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Instead of going to Gurney Drive, we can now have the crispy, grilled sotong from a stall here. The owner also sells chee cheong fun and kangkong sotong.

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The heng-jin peng is really kau, if you like heng jin.

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Then, there is the satay stall. I like the satay kambing minus the sauce because it is sweetish and has the kambing smell.

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Satay kambing is RM8 for 10 and satay ayam is RM5.

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I like the char koay teow as well. So, is the orh-chien.

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I forget to mention the Hokkien prawn mee is not bad, and my children always order the wantan mee.

So, if you are not sure where to go in Penang when you are here, just head to the food court and you can get pretty decent foods without hunting all over town.

Pulau Tikus wet market hawkers

I like to drop by the Pulau Tikus wet market for breakfast when I do my marketing there. There are several coffee shops nearby but they are usually very crowded. So, I like the little corner hidden at the back of the wet market because there are less people jostling for a table or people hovering over your shoulder, giving you killer stares to fast fast finish your foods or lagi chialat…..some old uncle sharing a table with me, giving long lost friends the impression that is my husband or sugar daddy, depending on how well uncles dressed.

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So, I usually settled for the less famous Hokkien Mee (compared to Bangkok Lane) or the koay teow thng or char koay kark. The funny thing is there are only a few stalls and yet, they sell the same thing. There are two koay teow thng stalls. Their stalls are placed diagonally. One is manned by brothers, one by a couple.

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Normally, I settled for the couple stall which is next to the char koay kark. The koay kark is nice but rather pricey as you get only flour and bean sprouts with not a single prawn in sight for RM2.50. The portion is really tiny, so I sometimes have a bowl of koay teow thng and a tiny plate of char koay kark without egg in one sitting.

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The koay teow thng is not bad as well.

It is high time the Pulau Tikus market is given a facelift. A few other wet markets are undergoing upgrading by MPPP, one of them being Cecil Street (chit teow lor ban san). The part I hate about Pulau Tikus market is the chicken section which is so suffocating and smelly. Then, the pork section is so crammed, you get the butchers shouting to you to buy from them. I hate being accosted by them as I am not sure which stall to buy my pork from and usually head to the one where I had made eye contact. I am such a sissy, eh? Cannot even make up my mind which butcher to please. :)

I call it the ‘Lim Guan Eng’ koay teow thng

This coffee shop has photos of the Chief Minister all over their walls. Left wall, right wall, front and back. So, you can’t help but wonder if those photos actually help to sell more bowls of koay teow?

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The owner obviously loves to promote their koay teow using politicians photos. There are several DAP Exco members photos and also Gerakan Teng Hock Nan.

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Above is one of the newspaper cutting which they have proudly displayed in a frame. I wonder if I can ask CM if I can franchise those types of photos? Since I am his photographer/videographer, I can follow him around at every hawker place, take a photo, process and let the hawker hang it. Of course, I must add ‘Visit www.penangfoods.com for the best Penang foods review’!

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BTW, if you are a hawker, don’t try to ‘belanja’ them (i.e. CM and his senior officers) because they do not like the idea of eat-for-free offer. However, some hawkers may ‘kah liu’ (add ingredients) as compliments.

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So, which kopitiam is this? It is the Pitt Street koay teow thng which is now located at Carnavon Street. I don’t exactly like it very much because I find it too plain. I prefer mine with duck’s blood and duck meat. This is more the eel balls and plain pork version.

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However……I recommend you try their hup toh soe (or walnut cookies) and the fresh and hot coconut tart. I love coconut tarts baked in the traditional way and was ‘allocated’ three today. The tarts were actually reserved but the lady sold me three because I was so disappointed when she told me they were reserved.

In a tiny lane call Lorong Tok Aka – wantan mee

You have to explore the inner city of Georgetown, go on the heritage walk and discover for yourself how beautiful this city caught in a time warp is. Even as a Penangite, I still marvel at the architecture of the old buildings and amaze how some of these places have survived the years.

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Two days ago, my sons went to Komtar to pick me for lunch. Since I have a driver to take care of the driving, I actually have time to relax, sit back, hang a camera on my neck and enjoy the sights.

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My sons and their friends took me to Lorong Tok Aka, at the junction of Lebuh Melayu. It is hard to tell you how to get there so please Google map it yourself. :) It was a hot afternoon and yet, people do not mind sitting under the umbrella, in the hot sun, at some road junction to have their lunch.

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We couldn’t get a table under the umbrella by the wantan mee stall. So we headed over to the coffee shop across the street as they will deliver the wantan mee to us.

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And this is what everyone was waiting for. A bowl of wantan noodle which is rather firm and QQ (springy) and certainly taste like homemade noodles. They give generous amount of sambal belacan. Normally, I hate eating wantan mee with sambal belacan but since it was already given, I took it.

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The wantan mee is not entirely like the best I have ever tasted. However, I guess people may have other opinions on it and patronise the stall even under scorching sun.

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This is the coffee shop we had our noodle. It has sparse furnishing, and almost like a home instead of a coffee shop.

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The stall owner has his cart parked in the shop house. Everything is so authentic Penang.

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The Hokkien Mee is not bad at all. It is not overly ‘prawny’ smell and the soup is sweet.

This coffee shop is along Lebuh Melayu. If you go further down towards Carnavon Street end of Lebuh Melayu, you can find a famous koay teow thng in the morning.

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One of the old building has these beautiful old ‘guards’ on it’s door. I hope they do not destroy the building and will preserve and conserve it. Now, Penang has strict by-laws to ensure that our heritage is restored.

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Buildings like these will stand because the owner cannot just knock it down for new buildings.

Just like the buildings, many hawkers and hawker foods have stood the test of time and will remain eternally original, I hope.