Char Kway Teow, or spelled Char Kueh Teow in Penang is one of my favourite foods...call it comfort food..
Certainly it has all the vices of a comfort food...one plate easily clocks up some 800-900 calories. But eat one must, especially in Penang. One of my all time favourite places to eat CKT in Penang is at the famous Ah Leng.
The CKT is awesome...this plate is with everthing in...duck egg in place of a chicken egg...and mantis prawns.
The same fellow has been helming the wok for I guess the best part of the last 40 years...I remember eating as a small boy...but on to the description...the duck egg is alltogether a richer and more flavourful alternative to the regular chicken egg. We do not get fresh duck eggs here in Singapore...for some reason, it is banned by AVA, or so I understand.
The wok is super hot, and sears the ingredients. The wok hei is quite amazing. The prawns are large, succulent and super fresh. The mantis prawns are deep fried, and added as a garnishing on top. Makes a very fragrant savoury treat. Very good. Most of Ah Leng's clients are now tourists or visitors...as a plate as presented is RM11...a tad expensive for the locals. But converted to S$, this is approx S$4.80, a bit pricey, but not extraordinarily so. And for such a wonderful tasting dish...totally worth the entrance fee...including the calories, fat and cholesterol.
While waiting, we spied the Hokkien Prawn mee stall...then dishing out the last few bowls...we enquired...the cook said yes...I have one more!
I found the broth to be a tad too salty...perhaps this was because it had been boiling for hours...being the last bowl. The noodles were very soft...boiled, and the prawns were intensely flavoured. I don't remember ever eating prawns as intensely flavoured like this in Singapore. But this kind of prawns, small, but powerpacked is common amongst HKM stalls in Penang. Recommended, but for me, I reserve my best of breed laurel for Super HKM, which I featured earlier.
We also decided to add some lor bak, as the wait for the ckt was going to be 40 minutes.
This was de rigeur lor bak for Penang. Somewhat similar to ngor hiang in Singapore, but in a style only found in Penang.
The strips of loin pork marinated, and wrapped in a beancurd skin, deep fried, dipped in chilli and a dark sauce known as lor. Very good.
Also good is the heh chee...or prawn fritters
Prawns in batter, deep fried...till super crispy. Great flavour, dipped in lor and chilli.
Kafe Khoon Hiang
Jalan Dato Kramat/Jalan Dunlop (facing Honolulu Club)
Closed on Thursday
Kafe Khoon Hiang