Wednesday, August 30, 2006
posted by PabloPabla at 4:40 pm

According to the Chinese almanac, I am born in the year of the Tiger. So, I am supposed to have tiger-like qualities. Hah! Not that I believe into it though I must say my appetite is quite tiger-like. Give me meat anytime!

Anyway, yesterday took me to Kuala Pilah, Negeri Sembilan for a continued trial involving a road accident case. It was a FRUITFUL trip in many ways because the matter was finally settled out of court after much bargaining with the claimant's solicitor.

Kuala Pilah is approximately 110 kilometres southwards from Kuala Lumpur and takes about 75 to 90 minutes travelling by car. Take the South bound lane of the PLUS Highway (North-South Highway) from Sg. Besi and exit at the Seremban / Senawang Toll plaza. From the Senawang Toll plaza, drive straight wherein you will pass 10 traffic lights. You will then reach a T-junction. Turn right and you are on your way to Kuala Pilah.

The drive is quite scenic from then onwards as it goes up a hill. I found it great driving a Perodua Kelisa weaving through the tight terrains of the hill. The Kelisa can really drive!

Anyway, after you pass a small village called Ulu Bendol, you will find some Dragons along the way. No kidding! I am talking about the Dragon Fruit aka Pitaya and a host of other scientific name.
Dragon Fruit

You won't just see the fruits being sold along the road but you get to see the plantation as well.

Dragon Fruit Stall

Dragon Fruit Plantation

Fruiting plant

Dragon Fruit zealously protected with netting from hidden tiger

Dragon Fruit harvested already

Flowering...blooms at night only.

Yesterday was my third trip and I never ceased to stop to buy the juicy Dragon Fruit home. The Dragon Fruit sold here is the red skinned red flesh type. It is akin to a kiwi fruit where the seeds are really small and black in colour.

Healthy drink

They are sold at RM10.00 per kg and are freshly harvested from the plantation. Apart from the Dragon Fruit itself, you can also get for yourself Dragon Fruit Juice in cans as well as Dragon Fruit Enzyme Juice (I was told it has marvellous healing qualities). The Dragon Fruit Juice in cans come in the white flesh variety as well as the red flesh variety. Needless to say, the former is clear in colour whilst the latter is red. I bought a can of the latter for RM1.60 and it's not bad at all. Good refreshing drink for the drive ahead.

Try your luck with the cutting?

You can also buy the Dragon Fruit cutting to plant them at home if you fancy some homegrown Dragon Fruit. Cuttings are sold at RM8.00 and RM10.00. The former takes approximately 8 months to bear fruit whilst the latter takes approximately 6 months. All you need is to shove it into the ground, water it everyday and fertilise it once a month. Is it that simple? Well, that is what I was told!

Facts that matters. Click on it to read.

The Dragon Fruit especially the red fleshed variety is highly nutritious and packed with Vitamin C. It is also touted to be full of anti-oxidants. Best eaten chilled! Otherwise, you can also use them to make Dragon Fruit Jelly - beautiful and delicious!

Litigation travels can be a real fruitful learning experience!


Monday, August 28, 2006
posted by PabloPabla at 2:34 pm

Previously, I was raving about the great naans and tandoori chicken at Restoran ABC.

Recently, I went there with my office colleagues for lunch. Birthday lunch actually. It's a tradition at our office to have birthday lunches. Most of the time, it was KFC or Pizza Hut deliveries. This time, we decided to take everyone to Restoran ABC for a change. Actually, since the first time I stepped foot there, I've gone there 4 times and each time , the restaurant delivered.

I've tried the kaja naan (cashew nut naan) and butter naan, pepper chicken masala (too hot for me), chicken masala, fish curry, fish tandoori and button mushroom masala in my visits and have found them to be good.

Today, however, I would like to share with you the Briyani Rice which I had during the birthday lunch. I had Briyani Chicken Rice to be exact.

There are actually many versions of Briyani Rice available in Malaysia not to mention those available in other countries. Here in Restoran ABC, the meat (chicken, mutton etc) is cooked together with the rice and is really tender. By reason of the cooking style, the meat and rice are both flavourful especially after absorbing all the spices used. Basmati rice is used for the briyani here and is fluffy and moist.

Clockwise from left : Briyani Chicken Rice, Sliced Onion in Yoghurt,
Dhall and Briyani Mutton Rice

The Briyani Rice can be served on either a plate or banana leaf and comes in a brass pot. For those who eat little, this pot can serve 2 persons! The rice is accompanied by Dhall and Sliced Onion in Yoghurt. You can ask for curry (chicken, fish or mutton) to flood your rice if that's your preference.

The Briyani Chicken Rice costs RM8.50 and is highly recommended. The Briyani Mutton Rice costs RM9.00.

For details on Restoran ABC, click here.


Friday, August 25, 2006
posted by PabloPabla at 3:01 pm

It rained heavily yesterday evening. If you had read my previous post, the answer to your question would be "Yes, I washed my car yesterday morning". It looks like all the Government need to do is to pay me the car wash fees instead of spending thousands (of millions) on cloud-seeding fees.

Traffic was really bad yesterday. As predicted, whenever there is a heavy downpour accompanied by "kiling kolong piling palang" sounds from the sky, there will be flash floods here in Kuala Lumpur, the city of the Petronas Twin Towers. I think most KLites are quite immune to flash floods already. It has become quite a norm rather than a rarity in a city which boasts the (used to be) tallest buildings in the world, tallest flagpole in the world (is it still the tallest?) and other forgettable number ones in the world.

It is no wonder that traffic comes to a standstill at some areas in the city whenever there is a heavy downpour and it gets worst when there are flash floods. My wife took 1 1/2 hours to get to my parent's place when the usual journey time can be as short as 15 minutes on a Sunday morning.

Authorities have blamed flash floods on "freakish weather". Spend a couple of billion ringgit to create tunnels and flyovers and such. That should do the trick.

But I really suspect, mother nature is not all to blame. These motorists are also to be blamed.

I don't care if I block you as long as I cross the junction first.

Do you notice that these drivers who stop in yellow boxes usually pretend not to see you or the motorists which they are blocking? They just gaze ahead at the long queue of vehicles in front of them as if it is the first time they saw the existence of the long queue. Perhaps they are practising some magic gaze to move the vehicles away.

The authorities should just erase the yellow boxes. Nobody follows the rule that you are not supposed to stop or cause an obstruction in a yellow box. That goes for the zebra crossings as well. We don't recognise them maybe because zebras did not originate from this country. Stripes on roads do not make any sense or purpose.

Or perhaps, we should blame the police for not enforcing the rules. Who's to be blamed?

Welcome to Malaysia where the blame game rules!


Thursday, August 24, 2006
posted by PabloPabla at 3:04 pm

Life as a litigation lawyer can be exciting at times. Food wise, I mean.

I get to travel to different towns in Malaysia, some of which I have no idea where they are on the map of Malaysia. Anyway, I travel to Klang Court once in a while and it's been more than 2 years since I had the Bak Kut Teh in Klang.

Klang is arguably the birthplace of Bak Kut Teh, which is basically pork cooked in herbal soup. It is so famous that most Bak Kut Teh stalls in Malaysia or even Singapore will have their signboard saying "Klang Bak Kut Teh" to attract customers. Sometimes, the Bak Kut Teh is so forgettable that it is almost sinful for them to associate their so-called Bak Kut Teh with the ones in Klang.

So far, I have been to 3 different shops in Klang selling Bak Kut Teh. They are different from one another. Some sell thicker type of soup whilst some are clear. Today, I finished my matter in Klang Court rather early and decided to stop by at the nearest shop for a hearty Bak Kut Teh breakfast!

Kedai Makanan Seng Huat aka Under the Bridge

I went to Kedai Makanan Seng Huat which is also popularly known as the Restaurant "Under the Bridge". It is located along the same row of shophouses next to the Port Klang KTM station. The other landmark to look for would be the Ibu Pejabat Polis Daerah Klang. Basically, this restaurant is a corner lot. You can either sit in the restaurant or outside the restaurant. Outside meaning, under the overhead bridge.

Polly put the kettle on

Upon walking into the restaurant, you will see many kettles placed strategically around the tables. These kettles are boiling water and are meant for customers to brew their chinese tea. Take a seat and the waiter will bring to you a basketful of tea leaves in bags for you to choose from. I am not really a "chinese tea" expert, so I just choose a nice looking packet instead :)

Tea for you, Sir?

There are 5 really small chinese tea cups with one equally small tea pot for you to brew your tea. Apparently, I was supposed to first put the tea leavs in the pot, pour boiling water into the pot, leave it for a minute and pour the contents into the tea cups. Not to drink, but to rinse the cups as well as to sort of "wash the leaves". You only drink the second brew onwards.

My object of desire

There are many variety of "cuts" of pork that you can choose from : fatty, lean, half-fat / half-lean, ribs, leg, spare parts (meaning intestines, stomach etc). I asked for a half-fat / half-lean portion today together with Yau Char Kuey (flour fritters) and Rice. The rice is mixed with fried shallots for a fragrant taste.

Look at the pork leg!

The soup is flavourful and has a reasonably strong hint of herbs though not overpowering. The meat is really tender and sort of melts in the mouth as a result of hours of cooking. I should have tried the spare parts as well. The Yau Char Kuey is ordinary. I would prefer it slightly crispier. Perhaps it is due to it being exposed too long. Nothing beats eating Yau Char Kuey shortly after it is fried.

Total price for my hearty breakfast is RM12.00. Pretty reasonable considering that's probably one pork leg I consumed!

I am told that this place is open everyday from 7.00am till about 1.00pm. It is then open again at 5.00pm till about 11.00pm.

Being an amateur food reviewer, I forgot to get the address as well as telephone number of Kedai Makanan Seng Huat. Pardon me, I was too satisfied by the Bak Kut Teh that I forgot all about it. If in doubt, just ask for the Klang Police Station. You'll get there!


posted by PabloPabla at 2:36 pm

It usually rains after I have my car washed.

It can be really annoying to see your gleaming car be subjected to rainfall shortly after a round of pampering at the favourite car wash. Sometimes, it HAS to rain whilst the guys are drying the car after the wash. And sometimes, you wished the guys finish their job faster as the sky is dark and it is threatening to rain and you wanna get your clean car under the shade. Either way, I don't have a choice as I don't have a car porch to park my car under.

Some say rainfall is as good as giving the car a wash. Not really, especially when the air is hazy like what we now have in Kuala Lumpur. The rainfall will leave nice little dust spots on your car not dissimilar to the snow wash you just had at the car wash centre. Makes me wonder, the amount of dust which clings to your hair if you've just had a few rain drops on you whilst you were dashing for cover from the rain.

These dusts can be acidic and dull your car's paintjob. Sometimes, it can even be permanent. Most of the time, it means you have to get the car washed again. Otherwise, your car will stand out in the traffic just like a dalmation dog (especially if your car is dark coloured).

But then again, isn't it a blessing to have rainfall in the midst of the haze that we are experiencing? It must be.

Thank God for the rainfall. It did not clear the haze altogether but it helped a little. We are still much fortunate compared to places on earth which experience drought all year long. I am longing for clear skies again.

Meanwhile, the car will be due for washing again...perhaps, vacuuming can wait till the next session :)


Wednesday, August 23, 2006
posted by PabloPabla at 4:36 pm

Today I went to Court again.

I have a matter which is fixed for decision. Parties have already filed their written submissions moons ago. Everybody is awaiting the outcome.

So, off I go. Travelling along the road, battling the early morning jam, paying the toll like most other Klang Valley motorists would do in order to reach Court before 9.00am. Courts start their sessions at 9.00am...or at least, some of them.

The first thing you do when you arrive at the Court is to go to see the Notice Board. Check which number you are on. That will give you a rough indication of how long you shall have to wait for your case to be called up.

I can't see no list today. Why? Because the Judge has gone on a Judges' Conference! &**(^%^%#$%#!!!!!!

All I get is a notice pasted (apparently dated 01.08.2006) mentioning that cases fixed between 20th till 23rd August, 2006 will be postponed and lawyers are to see the Court interpreter for a date to be fixed.

If they had put up the Notice on 01.08.2006, why can't they inform the lawyers about it? Even if they have done so, why do they need lawyers to make their way to Court just to see the Court Interpreter, record the lawyer's name on the Court file and proceed to give the lawyer the next date to appear? They could have just faxed the new date to the lawyers and saved the lawyers and the public time and money. My wife still cannot understand why the Courts work this way. I have come to slowly accept that this is how our legal system works.

Oh by the way, my case is now fixed for decision in January 2007. My client waits...


Tuesday, August 22, 2006
posted by PabloPabla at 6:33 pm

I told ja$on I will blog about this.

Yesterday was my birthday but I had a case in Court which is fixed for continued trial. It is fixed at 10.30am. Last week, I gave my opponent an increased offer based on my client's mandate. My opponent did mention earlier that she was expecting an X amount of ringgit to settle the matter. It was rejected at 5pm on Friday evening. That means, I have to be present in Court yesterday to conduct the continued trial.

Nevermind. I was all ready for it. Did my homework and poured over the documents again and again to prepare myself for the courtroom battle.

I arrived at 10am. My client was in Court. All ready to testify. The claimant was also there and so was my opponent.

"Case will be postponed again" says my opponent. "What the??". "Court got other priority cases which were filed in 1999 and 2001. Ours was filed in 2004, so, we have to take another date" my opponent continued.

If the Court has no intention of hearing us in the first place, they should have the decency to call us lawyers and tell us about it so that we need not waste our time as well as our client's time. Mind you, my client is in his late 70s and came in a wheel-chair. His son had to take leave and fly all the way from the East Coast to bring him to court.

This is not uncommon practise, of course. It happens regularly. And I had to try to explain to my client why his case is postponed again (4th time) and that he has to come again, in his wheelchair with his son taking another day off.

On the other side, the Judiciary has issued press statements saying that lawyers are the reason for postponement of cases which resulted in many cases being dragged for years.

Usually, when a case is being postponed at the instance of the lawyer, more often than not, both sides to the litigation have already agreed to the same and has no problems in postponing their case. They were prepared to have their case delayed. The litigants are not complaining.

But when you get cases where it takes more than 2 months to seal a summons (that means, to affix a Court seal onto a Summons to give it effect) upon filing the same or having your file not listed in the list of cases fixed for the day (which results in you having to write in to Court asking for the file to be fixed with a new date - which can take a couple of months) etc, who is willing to take the blame?

Anyway, to conclude my day at the Court, I left at 11am and headed home (I was actually on leave). Cooked this plate of bee hoon to destress and spent time with wife and kids.

Always look on the bright side of life.

I could have been spending the whole day in Court instead.


posted by PabloPabla at 10:57 am

Sarawak Laksa is a very well-known dish which originates from, surprise! surprise! Sarawak, Malaysia. Whilst Malaysia is blessed with many types of laksa, Sarawak Laksa remains one of my favourites. There was a recent article in the Star Newpaper which highlighted the uniqueness of the Sarawak Laksa and how it brings communities together.

Last Saturday was no different. This was the 3rd time we cook Sarawak Laksa at home. The first try was the best, the second was not so good and frankly, I was rather disappointed with how it turned out on Saturday.

We invited our group of friends from our Church Small Group (Cell Group) and a few other friends to join us in a session of eating and chatting. As an emergency measure, we bought some fried rice just in case the Sarawak Laksa was insufficient.

Some of the ingredients used

Cooking started at about 11am in the morning by preparing the prawn stock as well as chicken stock. Not less than 1 kilogramme of prawns was used whilst we had 1 1/2 chickens to boil the chicken stock. We took our time, really. Since this was the third time cooking, we pretty much know what comes next and the cooking time required.

By 5pm, I was cooking the Laksa using 3 packets of Sarawak Laksa paste which was left lying in our kitchen cabinet for more than 3 months already. However, tried as I could by "tweaking" the taste with salt, sugar and coconut milk, I could not get the ideal full-bodied taste that I wanted. It was definitely lacking something. Perhaps, it was just waiting for a squeeze of lime when served.

Sarawak Laksa served with a squeeze of lime

We had a good crowd of about 16 that night and we had a good time chatting with one another. In fact, we chatted till about 11.45pm that night. It was great and memorable. Not the laksa though.

After a bit of "post-mortem", we reckon it could be the Sarawak Laksa paste. You see, the first time we cooked, we used the "Double-Swallow" brand of Sarawak Laksa paste. It was good and has a strong hint of spice and body. This time, there was only one "Swallow". Perhaps there is a difference there!

When the food did not turn out good, blame it somewhere else!

Anyway, there shall be more Sarawak Laksa adventures to come in future!

I MUST perfect the recipe!


Friday, August 18, 2006
posted by PabloPabla at 12:04 pm

I woke up this morning with a stiff neck.

Not exactly a nice way to wake up to. Feeling tightness and rigidity in my neck muscles with discomfort in turning my neck. It is not the first time but I cannot remember the last time. Thankfully, it is not a common recurrence.

I believe it is in my bad sleeping posture. People who have seen me sleeping can testify to this. I suppose I sleep with my pillow the wrong way. But you see, I have a bad habit of making my pillow being at a certain height and position coupled with acceptable degree of softness before I find it comfortable to sleep. I wonder if others have such a habit. Some prefer hard pillows, some prefer super soft pillows.

No wonder you can find some pillows which sells for a couple of hundred ringgit boasting the right contours for your head and neck. For me, I still prefer the good old pillow stuffed with cotton. Then I can press and squeeze the pillow to my preferred height and position.

In cantonese, stiff neck is pronounced as "ngan keng". It is also translated as "stubborn". Judging from my sleeping behaviour, I guess I am a stiff necked person after all!


Thursday, August 17, 2006
posted by PabloPabla at 12:11 pm

I am back from Kuantan.

The trip was okay. At least the trial proceeded. More about that later.

I left Kuala Lumpur at approximately 3.15pm and headed straight for the KL-Ampang Elevated Highway. I have always enjoyed using this highway as traffic is light. The highway leads me to the Middle Ring Road which joins the Karak Highway. I was at the Karak toll booth (KL side) at 3.40pm.

The East Coast Highway all to myself!

I used the new East Coast Highway to get to Kuantan. This highway is connected to the Karak Highway and it by-passes the Karak town. It is very light on traffic and has mostly straight stretches. At Karak, you will be greeted by a toll booth (toll booths are not an uncommon sight in Malaysia) and you will be given a toll card.

This is the first time I come across a toll card which is like a credit card. Not of the paper type. Anyway, the card has some useful information such as interchanges along the highway as well as emergency telephone lines. The card also highlights interesting parts of the highway.

On my way to Kuantan, the card highlighted the Sungai Pahang bridge whilst on my way back, the card given to me highlighted the Temerloh R&R stop.

I did come across the Sungai Pahang bridge which is located just before the Temerloh R&R stop (if you are coming from Kuala Lumpur). Nothing spectacular but the number of lamp posts along the bridge makes me ponder how much was spent. There were no less than 30 lamp posts spanning each side of the bridge which measures not more than 400 metres. Frankly, I don't appreciate the beauty of it at all.

Count the lamp posts

Anyway, as I travelled further, I came across the Gambang Interchange. What surprised me was this exit also takes you to Segamat in Johor! More surprises to come later.

I paid RM19.60 for the use of the East Coast Highway. I think it is quite reasonable considering that it is a much safer option than to use the trunk road where many heavy vehicles ply. Having exited at the Kuantan interchange, I have to drive another 15 km or so to reach Kuantan town.

I then saw this signboard.

I've been travelling more than 2 hours and you
are telling me I am heading to Kuala Lumpur???

Am I in the right direction or am I going to where I came from? Roadsigns in Malaysia can be quite confusing at times. I stuck to my instinct and proceeded in the direction of Kuantan though it also means going to Kuala Lumpur!

I reached Kuantan at 6.15pm. That's 3 hours' drive with a short 10 minutes stop at the Temerloh R&R. I quickly found myself at Vistana Hotel located along Jalan Teluk Sisek. Jalan Teluk Sisek takes you to Teluk Cempedak, the famed beach in Kuantan where Hyatt Regency is located.

Anyway, check-in was quite a breeze but the receptionist kept calling me by my middle name rather than my surname. Not once but 3 times. The keycard system was not working at that time and one supervisor brought me to the room with a special card to open the door.

Hotel room corridor. I like the lamps.

The hotel looks really spick and span. Room corridors exude a nice boutique hotel look and I quite like the carpet design.

The room decor is minimalist and zen-styled. In other words, clean lines everywhere. Not a single picture frame in sight. Which is fine with me considering some ugly looking pictures I have seen in some hotel rooms. The decor is mainly light beech coloured and the colour scheme is pleasing to the eye.

The room comes with one king-sized bed and one day bed. The day bed is useful for reading, as I found out that night when I was reading my files. Why was I using it? Well, the table lamp was not working, that's why. I could not be bothered to get the housekeeping to sort it out.

The reading desk is actually a long piece of table which also double up as a television cabinet. You get your usual selected Astro channels with terrestrial channels here. The only stationery you get is a note pad (probably 5 sheets) and a ball pen. No envelopes and such.

You do get a box of matches with ash-tray though. But I wonder....I requested for a non-smoking room and yet, they give this smoking facility???

There is the usual complimentary coffee and tea and yes, the electric kettle is working well. No unsightly calcium deposits on the heating element. The minibar is only stocked with a couple of cans of soft drinks.

An electronic mini-safe is available for guests in case they decide to bring their family heirloom with them on their travels. Clothes hangers are ample and sufficient and you are also provided with a shoe mitt to polish your shoes before that important meeting or before attending Court. Ha!

Oh yes, I must not forget the bathroom. Now, the bathroom has always been one of the places a guest checks out upon checking in. First impression matters. It is always nice to be using a pleasantly looking, functional and luxuriously stocked bathroom. Vistana did reasonably well.

Simple and elegant

You get to use a modern styled wash basin and the taps are working fine...including the shower. I've been to hotels where the shower is nothing but a bigger version of the household tap. Gives you a headache or head massage, whichever way it suits you. Anyway, a hairdryer comes in handy here.

How about the view? No, since this is a hotel located in town, you don't get the view of the beach. I was staying on the second floor and what I had was this.

Rooftop view with sunset

The morning buffet breakfast is unfortunately, disappointing. Lack of variety considering that this is a 4-star hotel in comparison with some other hotels of similar ranking.

Would I come back to stay at Vistana Hotel, Kuantan? Definitely. The room is much better in cleanliness and comfort compared to M.S. Garden Hotel. It could do with some improvements such as using feathered pillows (instead of fibrefill pillows) and having face towels available. Oh yes, the buffet breakfast needs a real revamp.

As for my trial, it was a long wait till 4.20pm before my case was called up. We only proceeded with one witness and the matter is fixed for continued trial in March 2007.

Such is the life of a litigation lawyer.


Tuesday, August 15, 2006
posted by PabloPabla at 2:06 pm

I'm off to Kuantan in about an hour's time. This will be my 3rd trip.

First trip was sort of a business-honeymoon trip back in October 2001. We got married on a Saturday and the following Wednesday, I had a trial in Kuantan. So, my wife and I took a drive early in the morning to reach the Court by 9.00am with the purpose of supporting my opponent's application for an adjournment of the case. Yes, a 3 1/2 hours drive to adjourn a case. We did not mind really because we took the opportunity to drive around the town and headed off to Teluk Cempedak and Cherating to see what the fuss is all about regarding the beaches there. We went up as far as Legend Hotel, Cherating before heading back to Kuala Lumpur after buying some foodstuffs (mainly sea produce) in Kuantan town.

The second trip was in May 2005. It was also to attend a trial. I flew there the night before and put up at M.S. Garden Hotel. The next morning, I attended Court at 9.00am after a hearty buffet breakfast at the coffee house anticipating the trial will proceed as scheduled. Waited till 3.30pm for the judge to inform that she is unable to hear us as she could not finish with the other matters which she was then hearing. So, another trip wasted.

Today, I am taking a drive. I heard that the Karak Highway which now extends all the way to Kuantan is quite good and has cut short travelling time. Praying for a smooth journey with God's protection as always. I will put up at Vistana Hotel. M.S. Garden Hotel is fully booked by a group. Thing is, I find that hotels in towns outside Kuala Lumpur are generally quite expensive comparing to the ones available in Kuala Lumpur. Vistana Hotel's rate is RM230.00 nett for one night with breakfast and RM207.00 without breakfast. Hyatt Regency Kuantan in Teluk Cempedak which fronts the beach quotes in excess of RM300.00 excluding taxes. Pretty steep, I must say. I wasn't really impressed with M.S. Garden Hotel the last time I stayed considering the rates I paid. Let us see what Vistana Hotel has to offer. I was informed that broadband access is available in the rooms for free but I don't have a notebook with me. Unless I bring my desktop pc...which is ridiculous anyway.

Trial is fixed for tomorrow. Let us see whether it proceeds as scheduled.


Monday, August 14, 2006
posted by PabloPabla at 6:24 pm

I have 2. Actually, 3. But one cannot be counted because I don't have enough time for it.

What are the three?

You are reading one of them. The other is Hochiak! Delicious Asian Food and the third is Asian Recipe Finder.

This blog which you are reading now is basically on whatever things or issues that crop into my mind. It can be something regarding food, family, politics or even Christianity. But there is no camwhoring. Yeah, I don't think I will indulge in that and subject my readers to my average man on the street look. Why should my reader be interested anyway? I am neither a vain guy who is out to attract attention with animated funny faces nor a guy with sufficient good looking muscles to parade. I guess I am just who I am. A child of God who is trying to live a life of purpose according to His will.

And why another 2 blogs since I have one blog here?

Well, yours truly once had an ambition to be a chef. That did not materialise (not because I am hopeless in cooking) but rather, I thought I could earn more being an advocate and solicitor. I was perhaps wrong. I seriously think chefs earn much more than what I am earning now.

Anyway, back in university days, when I have much time to spare, I used to have a recipe homepage. It was hosted on geocities and has since been wiped out by the server when there was a change of server ownership.

Now I am back with a vengence in my recipe site known as Hochiak! Delicious Asian Food. It comes with photographs of the dishes I cook thanks to the new toy I acquired recently. Below is a photograph of something I cooked on Saturday.

Cooking is still very much my hobby and I look forward to weekends when I will get to cook something to share with my family.

As for the third blog named Asian Recipe Finder, I shall have to find the time to increase my posts there. It was an ambitious plan to review asian recipe sites on the net. Too ambitious, I think. Unless I become a full-time blogger.

Who knows? Perhaps? My readers decides.


Friday, August 11, 2006
posted by PabloPabla at 2:36 pm

My office is located along Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman, Kuala Lumpur. Most of the food stalls, coffee shops and restaurants around here sell predominantly Malay and Indian cuisine. Not too long ago, there used to be a coffee shop (known as "kopitiam" here in Malaysia) near my office which is operated by a chinese owner and sells chinese food. The kopitiam has since closed as the owner of the building sold it off to somebody else. There goes our morning breakfast and tea joint.

It was replaced by a spanking new look restaurant and looks up-market. Today, my boss and I decided to give it a try and see if it is a worthy successor to our kopitiam. The new restaurant is simply named ABC (Always Best Choice). We have always noticed that the lunch time crowd is good.

Anyway, it is located on the ground floor of Selangor Mansion along the famous Jalan Masjid India. By the way, it is a corner lot, as you can see from the picture on the top left. A menu table is placed outside the restaurant for you to browse through and it states the prices as well. The pictures in the menu looks good and we decided to head in. Of by the way, there is also a friendly waiter outside the restaurant who greets you and opens the door for you.

Restoran ABC serves Indian, Western and surprisingly Chinese food as well. Since we intended to check out the Indian food, we did not spend too much time pouring over the Western and Chinese Menu sections.

Papadums for you?

We decided to order 3 garlic naans, 2 tandoori chickens, one portion of mutton kurma and one portion of gopigobi vegetable. GopiGobi vegetable is cauliflower florets marinated in spice and deep fried. It tastes good and the spice is not hot at all. Very unique way of cooking cauliflowers, I must say.

GopiGobi Cauliflower garnished with cabbage and carrot slices

Whilst we were waiting for our food to come, we were served with papadums in a basket. These papadums are freshly fried and not oily. Good for some bites whilst chatting over the table. The kitchen is open-concept type and separated by a clear glass window. You can see the chefs working their way in the kitchen and it is during this time that I saw one of the chefs mixing the marinade over the cauliflowers prior to frying them.

Mutton Kurma

Before long, the dishes came. They look very good indeed. The mutton kurma comes in a semi-thick fragrant gravy and very fresh indeed. The mutton comes in reasonable portions and the dish is excellent. It goes well with the garlic naan.

Garlic Naan

The garlic naan is thin but not baked till it is too crispy. The size is about your average personal pan pizza. The garlic and butter smell is absolutely heavenly and tastes just as great. It does not have the floury taste that is associated with some poor quality naan served at some places and it is as good eaten on its own. (Sounds like Gardenia bread advertisement) But seriously, this garlic naan is worth eating.

Tandoori Chicken

The highlight of our lunch was the tandoori chicken. We get a sizeable portion each as reflected in the picture above complete with sliced onion salad and half a lime. Oh yes, I must also mention the mint sauce that came with it. I finished all of it. It is THAT good! The tandoori chicken is freshly baked in the tandoori oven and the flesh remains tender and juicy. This must be attributed to the skills of the tandoori chef working in the kitchen. The marinade is also just nice, fragrant and not too overpowering.

We thoroughly enjoyed our lunch and will definately bring our clients to this restaurant when they come to our office. The restaurant is very clean inside and the decor is simple but cosy. The wash basin is also kept clean and separate from the dining area and comes with ample supply of soap and paper towels. Hey! Tandoori must be experienced with your hands for great effect!

Our bill for the day reads like this:
  • Garlic Naan : RM2.00 each
  • GopiGobi Cauliflower : RM5.00
  • Tandoori Chicken : RM6.00 each
  • Mutton Kurma : RM8.00
  • Cold water : Free
You can also have their set-lunches at RM7.50 each consisting of rice, meat (chicken, fish or mutton) and side dishes.

Restoran ABC is open everyday from 11am till 11pm.
It is located at No. 1009, Selangor Mansion, Jalan Masjid India, 50100 Kuala Lumpur.
Telephone number : 603-26933314


Wednesday, August 09, 2006
posted by PabloPabla at 5:53 pm

Today, Jason and I met at Restoran New Lay Sin, Brickfields for lunch. As I have previously reviewed in this blog, Peter's Pork Mee is available at Restoran New Lay Sin. What else is good here?

Brickfields is famous for its curry houses. Basically, southern indian food. In Kuala Lumpur, one mention of Banana Leaf Rice will leave one imagining the sumptuous spread of food served on a banana leaf. No plates used. As for utensils, you shall have to use your paws for best effect. Somehow, using a fork and spoon does not taste as nice.

Here in Restoran New Lay Sin, there is one stall selling good Banana Leaf Rice. The stall belongs to Murthi. His stall is located next to Peter's Pork Mee. If you see the top left hand side of his stall, you will find a review done on his stall by the Star Newspaper. I am not the first to review his food. It is good!

This stall was originally opened by a guy called Mathai. It is well-known for its fried fish [black pomfret (bawal hitam) or mackerel (tenggiri)]. Murthi took over and has been successfully maintaining the quality of the food. The fish is marinated in a secret recipe of herbs and spices and tastes absolutely "out of this world"!

Dried chicken curry (Chicken paratel, I think)

Apart from fried fish, you can have Curry Fish Head (Tenggiri), dried chicken curry, mutton rendang, fried chicken or fried fish roe as the main dish. There are other types of main dishes but being an amateur food reviewer, I did not take notes. The rice is accompanied by an array of vegetables eg. long beans, pumpkin, bean sprouts, gourds (don't know the name), potatoes, cucumbers, etc. The type of vegetables available differs from day to day.

Fish Head Curry

When you first order the rice, expect to be served like a king. A banana leaf will be laid on the table and the stall assistant will bring a three-in-one container (I should have taken a photograph of that!) which contains the vegetables. The three types of vegetables of the day will be scooped and placed on your banana leaf.

Mutton rendang, anyone?

Next, comes the rice. If you are feeling famished or intend to have a great workout later that part of the day, banana leaf rice is the way to go! The stall assistant will heap scoops of white rice on your banana leaf. Remember to say "stop" when you have enough. Otherwise, you'll end up having Mont Blanc in front of you.

Then, just order your main dish and voila! It will also be placed on your banana leaf. Add a couple of pieces of papadums and top it off with a pour of your favourite curry over the rice. I had a piece of fried tenggiri cutlet today as my main dish. Side vegetables are long beans, cucumbers and some type of gourd.

My lunch today

Price for today's lunch? RM7.00. That's less than USD$2.00. Well worth the money and the experience!


posted by PabloPabla at 11:14 am

With the increase in crime rate in the city, I have taken liberty to train my daughters to look tough and be equipped in martial arts.

They have taken to the training well and have shown much improvement in their "act tough" look.

Don't believe me? Scroll down...

What are you looking at?

Kung Fu Siblings (in pyjamas)

Daddy taught me kung fu kick

I shall put on a mask to look cool

I am the Masked Raider

Sigh, the things I do to my kids when I am on leave. It's fun though :)