Jun 062012
 


After watching a video from one of my favorite youtubers ‘Ciaela‘ on nattō, I got so curious that a few months ago I decided to look for nattō. Now, mind you that nattō is not a known food at all in Malaysia, and before watching the video, I have never heard of nattō or seen it anywhere in KL but I decided to go look for it anyway. Strange that even studying at a Japanese school before, and studying Japanese for a couple of years before that, no one had ever mentioned nattō to me.

What is Nattō?

Nattō is a very popular Japanese food, typically eaten for breakfast and mostly for health reason. It is made from fermented soybeans with some bacterias in it which leaves it looking ooey gooey. There are a lot of claims, some unverified, that for health benefits nattō can help prevent sickness and improve your health. It can also help you lose weight!

So when I went to KL last December, I decided to go to 1Utama to search for it since that place is one of the popular place for Japanese related foods and items. I didn’t think I’d find it but when I went there, I was surprised to see how much 1Utama has changed – the food section and the market has been completely revamped/renovated and there are a lot more stuff now and yes, very Japanese oriented. True enough, when I was looking for this, I FOUND IT! Whoa. That was totally unexpected.

Japanese Natto/Nattou - Fermented Soy Beans

It was in the frozen section in the 1Utama market. There were a lot of nattō! I was very happy but my happiness did not last long when I picked one box up and read the ingredients.

Note to Muslims – If you’re interested in trying nattō, BE CAREFUL OF THE INGREDIENTS. That is because those packs that you see in the photo above contains ALCOHOL in all of them. How disappointing! Can’t the darn Japanese make their food WITHOUT alcohol?! With Japanese food, pork and alcohol are almost ALWAYS part of the ingredients. So for muslims who can’t read Japanese, and the box has no translated ingredients, you’re screwed so better stay away from them.

Anyway. There’s actually hope. Rummaging in the freezer, scanning every boxes, I found this –

Japanese Natto/Nattou - Fermented Soy Beans

It’s the same pack as the one above but without the funky fat man face on it but instead there’s a little girl. The box read ‘furusato nattou’. When I picked it up, I had to smile. It’s a pack of nattō WITHOUT the alcohol! Awesome! It’s just a plain box of nattō and from the picture of the little girl, I assume that it’s made for kids. I get it now. So for the boxes above with a funky face of a fat man, that’s the ‘adult’ version of nattō which contains some added ingredients and alcohol but the kids one is just plain ol’ nattō.

I had to buy it. Unfortunately, it was THE ONLY box of nattō with an image of little girl on it. It was the last one.  I forgot how much it cost but it was like than RM5 at that time. So later that night, I decided to eat it. I had some leftover chicken rice from my mom, and I heard it’s best to eat nattō with rice so yeah, I decided to try and put two and two together.

Japanese Natto/Nattou - Fermented Soy Beans

The pack contains 3 mini boxes of nattō. When you first open the box, phew. The stench of nattō will fill up your room. It smelled like feet, ammonia, pungent cheese and strong bad coffee all mixed together. It was a weird smell, and very strong. From reviews on youtube, almost all of them described the nattō to have a smell of feet but for mine, it had strong bad coffee smell. It comes with a pack of soy sauce and mustard.

Japanese Natto/Nattou - Fermented Soy Beans

The texture of the nattō is like snot when you have a flu. Yes, like your own yucky green mucus that you blow from your nose or hack out of your throat when you’re sick. It’s very sticky, gooey but it’s actually a cool thing. I had fun mixing it around then stretching it up. If you want to see what I mean, I’ll post a video from Ciaela at the end of this post.

Japanese Natto/Nattou - Fermented Soy Beans

Alright, the taste. It’s actually not that bad, surprisingly. I was sort of terrified to eat it, because many described the yucky taste and would throw up after a spoonful of nattō but I didn’t find it that disgusting. Maybe because mine is meant for kids, so it’s like a mild version? I bet it’s different with the adult version. I didn’t throw up or anything. It had like a strong bitter taste, slightly salty but with a hint of nutty-ness and of course beans. Unfortunately, with my Malaysian palate, my tolerance for the pungent-cheese smell and taste didn’t last long. I had to surrender after about 5 bites or so. Eating it with my chicken rice did not do any good. The bitter taste was getting stronger with each bite and chew and it overpowered the strong yummy taste of my spiced chicken  (I ought to do a review on that). It did leave a bad aftertaste in my mouth.

Since I was staying at a hotel at that time, boy, did it fill up the whole room with a bad nattō smell for the rest of the night.

But yes, I survived nattō. However I feel the urge to give it another try again, if only I could find the mild kids version. Surprisingly, I found nattō in Ipoh a few weeks ago at the new Aeon Station 18 but it was the fat man adult version that contains alcohol. Oh well.

Before I end this entry, here’s the video from Ciaela that I watched that introduced me to natto.

Feb 102012
 

YOU CAN BUY POPIN’ COOKIN’ ONLINE IN MALAYSIA.
You can check out: http://www.facebook.com/DecoNeko 

If you’ve never heard of Kracie’s Popin’Cookin’ DIY set from Japan and you’re a candy lover, you’ve been missing out! These are the funnest and most creative do-it-yourself candy set that who else could create but the Japanese.

KRACIE POPIN’ COOKIN’ たのしいおすしやさん / TANOSHII OSUSHIYASAN / SUSHI SET

Ever since I watched youtube video by the popular user RRcherrypie, I’ve been hooked! These candy sets are AMAZING… I repeat, AMAZING. What you can do with it, and how it turns out at the end is just mindblowing. Who knew you could do these realistic looking miniature food set with just packets of powder?

Here’s the video of this sushi set from RRCherryPie. You can see how awesome the candy is.

This set does not contain any animal product so therefore it’s quite ‘halal‘ but if you know another set called the ‘ramen’ set, that one isn’t halal. That one has gelatin.

UPDATE: Sushi set contains GELATIN, and confirmed by Kracie in my email to them, it derived from animal origin (pig). So unfortunately Sushi set is confirmed NOT HALAL. Bummer.

This post is heavy on pictures so I have to put the rest of this entry under a cut. Below the cut I’ve written extensive review on the set. Sorry that the pictures aren’t quite clear because I took them with my phone and there was insufficient lighting. Click below to continue reading about this awesome candy!

Continue reading »

Jul 232009
 

My friend is so addicted to chilly pan me, a name I never heard before. She would constantly mention it and how delicious it is. So one day I decided to check it out too, and I was a bit worried at first if it’s halal or not but we asked the boss, and he said the chilly pan mee is halal.

panmee1

The restaurant is located at Sunway damansara, and the place is quite cozy. However, do not go during lunch hour.. it’ll be so PACKED.

panmee2

Chilly Pan Mee: RM 5.50

This is what chilly pan mee looks like when it arrived. Plain huh? Even I was thinking, ‘what could be so special about this?’ This is the supposedly halal bowl.. it consist of the noodle, half boiled egg, fried garlic (I think) and mushrooms.. the other bowl contains minced meat I presume, but I’m not sure what kind of meat.. it’s probably not halal and also without the mushroom. I don’t mind eating at a non halal place as long as I get a halal bowl (no pork).

panmee3

Extra Mushrooms: RM 1

We ordered extra mushroom since the other bowl with meat has no mushroom.. turns out it cost RM 1 extra.

panmee4

Your pan mee comes with a bowl of soup too.. and I’m assuming it’s fishball soup? I love the taste though. Just plain soup and eggs and fishball and some leaves.

panmee5

This is the main attraction. The chilli! It has the taste of fried chilli.. quite dry. Now becareful, this chilli is HOT.. and I have thick tongue because I love to eat ridiculously large amount of chilli but this I tell you, is different. What you do is that you put a small amount of chilli into your pan me and mix it with the noodle.

panmee6

This is how it looks after you mix in the chilli. It taste DAMN GOOD. Seriously. It’s sinfully delicious after you mix in the chilli, the egg, the mushroom, anchovies… but every single time I’d suffer a stomach burn after and it’ll last until the next day. That’s how hot it is. But, can someone enlighten me on the ‘halal’ ness of the food? I’d love to know if other food has pork or not but obviously the pan mee I had does not contain any pork in it, but you have to request the halal one or they’ll give you the one with meat.

Looking at the pictures is making my mouth waters already.

Restoran Super Kitchen Chilly Pan Mee

Jalan PJU5/4, Dataran Sunway, Kota Damansara,
47800 Petaling Jaya, Selangor.
T: 03-6141 7398 , 03-2697 0998

May 202009
 
m4s0n501

IKEA is on of my favorite restaurants. One of the signature dish is the delicious swedish meatballs. That has always been my favorite ‘must get’ food each time I eat there until I tasted the chicken whole leg with swedish herb and lemon sauce.. I still love the meatballs but I wanted a change and taste other food. So yesterday my friend and I went to the restaurant to eat and I get to satisfy my craving for that chicken.

Chicken Whole Leg w/ Swedish Herb & Lemon Sauce: RM 9.90
Chicken Whole Leg w/ Swedish Herb & Lemon Sauce: RM 10.40

The first I tasted this, the chicken leg was so big and it had so much meat on it that it took me longer than usual to indulge myself into its greatness. However, this time, my 2nd time of tasting it, it was a huge disappointment. The chicken leg was so small that it had barely any meat on it. They were quite generous with the carrots, and the potatoes were soft this time, unlike the first time. I don’t like that kind of potatoes and was hoping I could change to fries but they won’t let us. I did ask for a bit extra sauce cuz the I love the sauce. My friend said it tasted milky-ish.

5 Pieces Sweedish Meatballs: RM 5
5 Pieces Swedish Meatballs: RM 5

The meatballs is undoubtedly the best thing ever. Usually we’d request for mashed potatoes but we were told that they don’t have it anymore except on Sundays :( I prefer the presentation of it on a normal big plate (with Sweden flag they used to put couple of years ago) rather than the kiddy plastic plate for the 5 pieces even though the plate would be too big for just 5 pieces. The presentation is not that appealing anymore. Good thing the gravy tastes really nice.

Mixed Drink
Mixed Drink: RM 1.58

One of the good thing about IKEA is that you can have unlimited refill for your drink. We always have a mixture of all soda drink, which was my idea at first (and everyone thought I was crazy!) to create some sort of tangy, sweet and sour-ish kinda of taste if you mix the drink right!

If it wasn’t for the disappointing chicken, it would’ve been a great meal. If you’re there, try their Daim cake or their other sweet dessert, and also their cinnamon bun.. they’re great to me. I’ve tasted their sandwich before but I thought it tasted bland. They also have like a chef special meal daily which sometime could be good and tasty. If you want something very light and on the go, check out IKEA’s cafe … they have really good curry puff for RM1, drink with unlimited refill, and hotdog with self service topping… so you can put as much sauce, mustard, onions and relish as you want!

IKEA Malaysia
No.2, Jalan PJU 7/2, Mutiara Damansara,
47800 Petaling Jaya, Selangor Darul Ehsan,
Malaysia
www.ikea.com.my

Mon – Thurs 9.00am – 9.30pm
Fri, Sat, Sun, eve of Public Holiday 9.00am – 10.30pm
(Breakfast 9.00am – 11.00am)

May 172009
 

I’m a HUGE fan of bubble tea or some of you might call it boba tea. I just love the chewy tapioca pearls in the drinks. Now lately I’ve been getting myself re-addicted to it. While I was working at Subang, one of my colleagues told me a nearby bubble tea supplier that also sells the drink instead of just supplying. So one day I went there and got instantly hooked.

Mango Ice Blended Bubble Tea: RM 3.50
Mango Ice Blended Bubble Tea: RM 3.50

This is my favorite type of bubble tea drink – mango flavored. That day when I bought that, for the first time ever, I saw multi-colored pearls. Usually they’re all in black. I love the drink there. I haven’t tried other flavors yet but this mango one is the best out of all that I’ve tasted so far. They’re very generous with the pearls, and the pearls are quite sweet, soft and chewy, which is how I love it. They’re cheap too – RM 3.50 per cup. In 1Utama I usually buy it at RM4.50 per cup.

The store is located just nearby Sunway Pyramid, at Dataran Mentari. If you drive past the shoplots using the LDP highway, you’ll see it. It’s on the same row with Dominos Pizza.

CZC BUBBLE TEA SUPPLIER
50-01, Ground Floor, Jalan PJS 8/2,
Dataran Mentari, Bandar Sunway,
46150 Petaling Jaya,
Selangor Darul Ehsan, Malaysia.
www.czcbubbletea.com.my