Last installment this Penang trip...covering the same 3 basic Penang Hawker essentials...Char Kway Teow, Hokkien Mee and Lorbak.
Today's main feature is the lor bak. We have come to the best that Penang has to offer...IMHO.
Perhaps not the healthiest dish...heck, none of the dishes I featured in this Penang route is healthy...all deep fried, with strong, powerful stock. But tastewise, these are the best on offer.
The essentials are the lor bak...literally translated from Hokkkien as gravy meat. It usually features a sliver of fillet pork, with spices...wrapped in a bean curd skin, deep fried. The best, like this one here have the pork still succulent, juicy, tasty, and the wrapping light and crisp. Yes, I did say light, despite the deep frying, the best lorbak somehow manages to give the impression of being relatively grease free.
Then there is the prawn fritters
Prawns, often with the shells still on, encased in a airy batter. The batter is special, rendered super crispy, but yet still manages to stay light and airy...a bit like tempura in this respect, but altogether different in all others. The flavour of the prawns permeate. And dipped in the gravy...the lor...and a little chilli...is quite heavenly.
This is for me the best lorbak in Penang. The gold standard.
The coffeeshop which houses this lorbak also sells the standard hawker staples...the Hokkien Prawn mee
Quite good. The broth is deep with prawn flavour, slightly sweet through the use of rock sugar. The tiny prawns which garnish the bowl with the deep fried shallots are powerpacked with flavour. The tinge of chilli completes the taste.
And the char kway teow
Not the best, when compared to Ah Leng or Google Lady, but still holds the flag high. Nice flavours, good wok hei. Fresh ingredients.
Another rather interesting aspect is that although the star of these shops are the various food offerings, almost always the shops are owned by the coffee vendor. Here, still plying the coffee trade the traditional way.
Certainly highly recommeded to stop here for the lorbak and prawn fritters. Best of breed.
Kafe Kheng Pin
Corner of Penang Road and Sri Bahari Road
Kafe Kheng Pin