Tag Archives: malay

#1848: MyKuali Penang Red Tom Yum Goong Noodle (New Version)

So the number one on my annual Top Ten Instant Noodles Of All Time list got some new clothes! Why do I like this one so much? Well, when I got to visit the island of Langkawi, Malaysia (which is a stone’s throw south of Thailand), I got to try all sorts of tasty foods. One was tom yum. I got to try it a couple of ways – check it out!

Notice how the broth is such a deep color? Check the one out on the right – it was served inside a coconut! What they both had in common was the very rich flavor and deep color. It also was much thicker than Thai tom yum that I had in Thailand. I asked about that in May while I was visiting a factory there and they told me that Thais like thin broths while <alaysians like theirs much thicker. At first it seemed pretty amazing that something as traditional as tom yum could be so different with the two countries being so close. But then I thought about the United States and Mexico – definitely completely different flavors of cuisine. Anyways, let’s see if it’s just a new change of clothes on this favorite or something more.

Here’s the back of the package (click to enlarge). Contains shrimp. Hadn’t noticed they’d put my logo on their packs! Looks like it’s on the White Curry and Hokkien Prawn, too! To prepare, noodles to 380ml boiling water and cook for 3 minutes. Add in sachet contents. Stir and enjoy!

The noodle block.

The soup base sachet.

A tan powder.

A paste sachet.

Thick stuff with a wonderful scent!

Finished (click to enlarge). Added shrimp, Salad Cosmo mung bean sprouts, coriander and lime. The noodles came out perfect as always – good thickness and chew. The broth is a deep celebration of tom yum – it’s almost identical to what I tried in Langkawi. A bite of heat, and a cascade of lemongrass, shrimp and other flavors enthrall the tastebuds like no other. Just fantastic stuff! 5.0 out of 5.0 stars. EAN bar code 9555655005234.

MyKuali Penang Tom Yum Noodle (4 Pack)

My Top Ten Malaysian Instant Noodles Of All Time 2015 Edition – the first video with Miles in it!

Top Ten 2015 Re-Review: MyKuali Penang Red Tom Yum Goong Noodle

This one is pretty special. When I traveled to Malaysia last year, we got to visit an island off the coast called Langkawi. We went to a couple of really nice Thai restaurants while there and I tried the tom yum soup. It was nothing like anything I’d tried previously; extremely strong broth, with a deep richness to it. It was one of the best things I got to try during my trip! I knew that MyKuali had a new Tom Yum variety and I was very keen on trying it. The day I left, I got a couple packs to bring home and try. That being said, let’s have another look at MyKuali Penang Red Tom Yum Goong and see what makes it so special.

Here’s the back of the package (click image to enlarge). Contains crustaceans. To prepare, add noodles to 350ml boiling water for 3 minutes. Add sachet contents and stir. Enjoy!

The noodle block.

The seasoning powder sachet.

Has a seafoody kind of scent to it.

The paste sachet.

Has a very tasty scent – sweet and rich.

Finished (click image to enlarge). Added shrimp, mung bean sprouts, lime and coriander. The noodles are the standard fare you get with MyKuali instants – nice gauge and chew with a good quantity and more backbone than many. The broth is, in a word, strong. It’s deep in color and has a spicy bite, strong lemongrass notes and a sweetness to it as well. When I tried the tom yum in Langkawi, I tasted the same kind of flavor and richness in the broth – it was just perfect. This has that same strong flavor and texture – it is identical. What’s even better – it has noodles with it! This is absolutely perfect – it brings my tastebuds to an exotic place so far away. 5.0 out of 5.0 stars.

MyKuali Penang Tom Yum Noodle (4 Pack)

A great video of a group of backpackers  who travels to Langkawi and their activities there. Later in the video, they interview other visitors to the island and then reflect on their journey.

Re-Review: Mamee Chef Gold Recipe Mi Kari Seribu Rasa

I woke up this morning in the mood for something curry. I was looking in my stores of instant noodles today and found this Mamee Chef Gold Recipe. I’ve reviewed it before, but I thought it would make a good breakfast and would be neat to re-review. I really liked the name of this one – seribu rasa means a thousand flavors, which immediately makes me think of thousand island dressing. Of course, this isn’t anything like thousand island dressing. Let’s have a look inside and see what makes this instant noodle tick.

 Here’s the back of the package (click image to enlarge). Contains fish and crustaceans. To prepare, cook noodles for 3 minutes in 400ml boiling water. Add in contents of dry sachets and stir. Add in contents of paste sachet and stir. Enjoy!

The noodle block.

The seasoning powder sachet.

Has a kind of seafood scent.

A sachet of non-dairy creamer.

Lots of ultra fine powder.

The paste sachet.

Has a really great scent – very rich.


Finished (click image to enlarge). Added sliced squid, fish ball, shrimp, coriander and mung bean sprouts. The noodles are made with Mamee’s ‘Mi Tarik’ technology, which is supposed to emulate hand-pulling. The texture and chewiness of these are very good – I would say that the gauge is thinner than hand-pulled noodles I’ve had in the past though. Nevertheless, they are exemplary. The broth has a really great flavor that reminds me of cumin – I really like cumin as a component of curries and this works very well. It has a warm stick-to-your-ribsy kind of flavor and scent and really feels like comfort food. There is spiciness, but not so overwhelming that it kills the mood. This is really great stuff and again as I said in the original review, definitely worthy of the name Gold Recipe. My regards to Chef Ismail! 5.0 out of 5.0 stars. EAN bar code 9555022303482.

Mamee makes a lot of different varieties including this spicy hot curry: Mamee Instant Noodles Burning Hot Kari Flavor (Perencah Kari Berapi) – 2.64oz – Pack of 40

A Mamee Chef Kari Laksa TV commercial featuring Nora Danish and Qi Razali. If you look close you can see The Ramen Rater logo on the cup and the pack! This variety was on the 2014 Top Ten Instant Noodles Of All Time list for packs and cups.

#1620: Premiere Gold Penang Asam Laksa Bihun

Another new Malaysian variety! It seems like the Malaysian instant scene has really caught fire these days – and no complaints from me! This is asam laksa – asam means tamarind, so it has a sour taste to it. Couples with seafood flavors, Bihun is also known as rice vermicelli! Let’s have a look at this Premiere Gold Penang Asam Laksa!

Here’s the back of the package (click image to enlarge). Contains fish. To prepare, add noodles to 380ml boiling water and cook 3-5 minutes. Add in contents of sachet and stir. Enjoy!

The block of bihun.

A single sachet, although a large one.

Scent includes fish and spices.


Finished (click image to enlarge). Added broccoli, mung bean sprouts and coriander. The noodles came out very nicely – very thin bihun but not the ultra thin. The vermicelli was very well cooked with a good texture. The flavor from the paste was quite nice – a spicy, sour and fish flavor was ever present. I was expecting more broth though. 3.25 out of 5.0 stars.EAN bar code 9555064200978.

Penang Heritage Food: Yesterday’s Recipes for Today’s Cook

A short video showing an asam laksa hawker stall in Penang, Malaysia.

Meet The Manufacturer: #1591: Mi E-Zee Perisa Sayuran

Today we bid a fond farewell to the CarJEN Food Sdn Bhd Meet The Manufacturer. It’s really amazing how many different instant noodle companies there are in Malaysia. What got me was after so many years of exploring instant noodles, here’s yet another one I’d not heard of until they contacted me. Today’s final review is their ‘sayuran’ variety (sayuran translates to vegetarian). Let’s have a look!

Here’s the back of the package (click image to enlarge). Looks to be meat free but check for yourself. To prepare, boil 450ml water. Add in noodle block and cook 2 minutes. Add in contents of soup base sachet and stir. Enjoy!

The noodle block.

The soup base sachet.

Has a kind of butter and vegetable scent.


Finished (click image to enlarge). Added mung bean sprouts and coriander. Ther noodles as usual have a nice gauge and chew – your typical instant. The broth has a kind of salty and buttery flavor and some vegetable hints in there. It’s pretty good. 3.5 out of 5.0 stars. EAN bar code 9557226082316.

The Asian Vegan Kitchen (from Amazon) – The Asian Vegan Kitchen is a collection of recipes from across Asia, featuring the spices and the many tasty ingredients that have made these cuisines popular world-wide. It caters to the growing segment of people of all ages who have chosen to eschew animal products, yet still want to add some global spice and excitement to their diet.

Here’s a recipe for tofu and mushrooms in coconut for the Vegans out there!

Meet The Manufacturer: Interview With CarJEN Food Sdn Bhd

Interview With CarJEN Food Sdn Bhd * Product Samples From CarJEN Food Sdn Bhd * Product Samples From CarJEN Food Sdn Bhd (2) * Mi E-Zee Perisa KariJ.J. Snek Mi Perisa BBQ * E-mi Mi Perencah Asam Pedas * CarJEN Nyonya Curry Laksa * J.J. Snek Mi Perisa AyamFriday Video: CarJEN Food Sdn Bhd SpotlightMi E-Zee Plain Noodles Mee GorengMi E-Zee Perisa BayamE-mi Mi Perencah Ayam JagungMi E-Zee Perisa Kari SayuranMi E-Zee Perisa Sayuran

Today, we start a new Meet The Manufacturer. This time, it’s with a Malaysian company called CarJEN Food Sdn Bhd. I conducted an interview with Mr. Sukumaran Nair, CEO of CarJEN Food Sdn Bhd. Hope you enjoy it!

THE RAMEN RATER> Thank you very much for agreeing to do this interview! Could we start off with some information about CarJEN; when was CarJEN founded, where and by who?

CARJEN> Carjen Food Sdn Bhd was founded in 1997 and has now grown into a well-established and dynamic organization that specializes in the manufacture of top quality flavoured snack crackers, flavoured instant noodles, plain instant noodles and noodles snacks. Our principal office is located in Cheng Industrial Estate, Melaka. The directors include Mr. Sukumaran, Mr. Gilbert Tam, Mr. Fred Essey and Mr. Johnny Essey (70% Australian owned and 30% Malaysian owned.

TRR> For those of my readers who are not familiar with your line of products, could you tell us a little about them?

CARJEN> Carjen Food manufactures snack crackers with flavours of prawn, chicken, green peas, cheese and pizza. As for instant noodles the flavours are curry, chicken, asam pedas, vegetarian, beef, spinach and vegetarian curry.

TRR> Can you tell us – what does the name CarJEN mean?

CARJEN> Carjen was coined from the names of the wives of the founders, Carrol and Jenny.

TRR> Can you tell us about the differences and features of your Nyonya variety?

CARJEN> This product is named Nyonya Curry Laksa, simply because it has been popularised and made by the Peranakan Nyonyas over the years. The knowledge of Nyonya cooking has been passed down from generation to generation in Malaysia. Though the name Nyonya is
specifically attributed to a unique culture here in Malaysia, the taste is well received and
accepted by all Malaysians especially the Malays because the freshly prepared spices and
herbs in the dipping sauce; such as Seroi (lemongrass), Belocan, asam (tamarind), dried
chillies and coconut cream, to name a few of the ingredients; are already traditionally used
in Malay cooking. This is due to the close ties shared by the Peranakan Nyonya and the
Malays from centuries ago, in which the Nyonyas have infused the noodles with dipping
sauce containing sauce, herbs and spices used in traditional Malay cooking.

TRR> Can you tell my readers what Nyonya cuisine is?

CARJEN> Peranakan Chinese and Baba-Nyonya are terms used for the descendants of the 15th through 17th-century Chinese immigrants to the Indonesian Archipelago and British Malaya. Most have lived for generations along the straits of Malacca and most have a lineage where
intermarriage with the local Indonesians and Malays. In Malacca, they are known as Baba-Nyonya, it has been assimilated to the Malay culture and customs, including their typical rich Malay spices in their food preparation.

TRR> You not only make regular instant noodles that are cooked, but a line of snack noodles –can you tell my readers about them?

CARJEN>: Our J.J. Noodle Snack is excellent in quality, crunchy and crispy and also trans-fat free. They may be enjoyed by everyone at any time of their convenience. It can be eaten on its own without any cooking.

TRR> Is CarJEN involved in the local community around you?

CARJEN> Yes, we participate in roadshows across the nation
in Malaysia(see attachment).

TRR> Why do you think noodles are such a popular food?

CARJEN> Noodles can be cooked in several forms such as fried, soup, with sauces, etc. It goes well with all kinds of meat, vegetables.

TRR> You are located in Melaka, Malaysia. Can you tell us a little about where you factory is and life there?

CARJEN> Carjen Food is located in Cheng Industrial Estate, Melaka, Malaysia. It is a mix of residential area and factories.

TRR> Are there any new products that will be coming out soon that you could tell us about?

CARJEN> Yes, they are in the process of being finalized and will keep you informed when ready for the market.

TRR> A lot of people wonder about the health factors (sodium, etc) when it comes to instant noodles. How do you recommend people made instant noodles a healthy part of their diet?

CARJEN> Our CarJEN Nyonya Curry Laksa has no added MSG and the UPS is high in fibre, zero trans fatty acid, cholesterol free and has vitamin E of 4.5mg.

TRR> Do you make/sell products other than noodles?

CARJEN> Yes, we manufacture and sell snack cracker, noodle snacks.

TRR> What was your first product?

CARJEN> Crackers.

TRR> How does the process in which you make your noodles differ from other brands?

CARJEN> The process is standard and normal practice by all noodle manufactures but Carjen Food uses premium flour ingredients and the first to use micro ingredients that adds value in terms of texture and keeping quality.

TRR> Where are your products available?

CARJEN> Carjen Food products are available in Malaysia, Middle East and recently in China, Taiwan, Macau, Singapore, Brunei and Saudi Arabia.

TRR> When you make noodles for yourself, do you add anything or have any recommendations?

CARJEN> We have serving suggestions where we encourage consumers to add additional garnishing.

TRR> How many cups/bowls/packs do you produce in a year?

CARJEN> 343,511 cartons.

TRR> Are there popular recipes locals have come up with for your noodles?

CARJEN> Carjen Food has developed and have been marketing a new product called “Nyonya Curry Laksa” which is traditional, authentic and local product which is popular in the state of Melaka, Malaysia.

TRR> Are certain products enjoyed on particular holidays?

CARJEN> Nyonya Curry Laksa is popular during the holidays period mainly among tourists.

TRR> Have there been any flavors you’ve thought of producing
that never made it to market?


THE RAMEN RATER> Thank you for this opportunity for myself and my readers to learn more about your company!

Well, there we have it! Thanks to Mr. Sukumaran Nair, CEO of CarJEN Food Sdn Bhd, and everyone else at CarJEN Food Sdn BHD for making this Meet The Manufacturer happen. 

Interview With CarJEN Food Sdn Bhd * Product Samples From CarJEN Food Sdn Bhd * Product Samples From CarJEN Food Sdn Bhd (2) * Mi E-Zee Perisa KariJ.J. Snek Mi Perisa BBQ * E-mi Mi Perencah Asam Pedas * CarJEN Nyonya Curry Laksa * J.J. Snek Mi Perisa AyamFriday Video: CarJEN Food Sdn Bhd SpotlightMi E-Zee Plain Noodles Mee GorengMi E-Zee Perisa BayamE-mi Mi Perencah Ayam JagungMi E-Zee Perisa Kari SayuranMi E-Zee Perisa Sayuran

#1569: Maggi Mi Goreng Perencah Kari Ori

The last of the batch of different Malaysian noodles sent to me by Annie T. over at MyKuali a while back – thank you again! This sounds good – curry mi goreng. I know that’s it’s curry from the word ‘kari,’ but I can’t figure out the ‘ori’ word. If anyone knows, please impart your fine wisdom! Let’s give these a try!

Here’s the back of the package (click image to enlarge). Looks to be meat free but check for yourself. To prepare, add noodle block to 400ml boiling water and cook for 3 minutes. In a separate bowl, combine liquid ingredients and powder seasoning. Drain noodles and combine with seasonings. Sprinkle fried onion on top and enjoy!

The noodle block.

Powder seasoning.

Smells like curry!

A triple sachet of seasoned oil, spicy sauce and sweet soy sauce.

A co-mingling of the three.

The garnish sachet.

Fried onions.

Finished (click image to enlarge). Added fried egg and coriander. The noodles had a thicker gauge to them than your standard instant mi goreng which was nice. The flavor was more curry than anything else – spicy too. I would have liked the curry to have played nicer with the other ingredients and allow their flavors to come through more, but it was still quite good. 4.0 out of 5.0 stars. EAN bar code 9556001184337.

 Lucky Peach Issue 10: The Street Food Issue – (from Amazon) – Lucky Peach is a quarterly journal of food and writing. Each issue focuses on a single theme, and explores that theme through essays, art, photography, and recipes. Less summary than survey, the street food issue takes to the world’s streets like a starved flâneur, flitting from birria in Mexico City to chicharron-studded tortillas in Buenos Aires, from chaat in Mumbai to gizzard noodle soup in Chiang Mai’s Lumpinee Boxing Stadium. This issue watches as children made stick bread in Copenhagen and shares a report on who’s eating all your cigarette butts (spoiler: microbes). For Jonathan Gold, the experience of eating street food is inseparable from time and place. Issue 10 also delves into the history of “Turkey in the Straw,” an ice-cream truck ditty that rings out across Los Angeles; spends a day with the Doughnut Luchador of East LA (doughnut slinger by day, luchador by night); and learns what happens, exactly, when you cook with charcoal, and what nixtamalizing does to corn. Plus, a look into the wondrous array of street sausages around the globe, the best of the wurst.

A Maggi Mi Goreng Kari Ori TV advertisement.

#1553: Mamee Mi Segera Perisa Itik

Still got some duck left from our special anniversary lunch the other day! It’s pretty rare that I have any duck at all! Let’s check out this Perisa Itik (duck flavor) instant noodle from Mamee!

Here’s the back of the package (click image to enlarge). Looks to be meat free but check for yourself. To prepare, add noodle block to 400ml boiling water and cook for 2 minutes. Add in contents of sachets and stir gently. Enjoy!

The noodle block.

The dry soup base sachet.

Has a nice braised duck scent.

A seasoned oil sachet.

Has an onion scent.


Finished (click image to enlarge). Added braised duck leg, coriander and bean sprout. The noodles have a very nice chew and gauge – typical of Mamee’s line. The broth has a very nice braised duck flavor and even a little spicy hit to it. The oil adds the right touch. 3.75 out of 5.0 stars.  EAN bar code 9555022302003.

Mamee Premium Instant Noodles (3 Flavors Combo Pack)

Here’s a Mamee instant noodles TV advertisement!

#1534: Vit’s Seafood Instant Noodles

Here’s another one that Thomas from MyKuali got for me while we were on our trip to Malaysia! Thanks again! Vit’s is a brand that’s well known over there, but one I’ve never reviewed before. This looks like a spicy seafood variety – let’s give it a go!

Here’s the back of the package (click image to enlarge). Looks to be meat free but check for yourself. To prepare, cook noodle block in 400ml boiling water for 3 minutes. Add in contents of sachet and stir. Enjoy!

The largest unbroken piece of the noodle block.

The soup base sachet.

Has a strong seafood scent.


Finished (click image to enlarge). Added fish balls, sliced squid, crab claw shaped fish cake, sweet onion, coriander and BonCabe Level 3 chilli seasoning. The noodles have a slightly wider gauge than the typical instant and are soft. The broth has a good seafood taste and a very nice smack of spiciness which was very good. 3.75 out of 5.0 stars. EAN bar code 9556354000452.

I must say that travelling to Malaysia was one of the highlights in my life. Here’s a Lone Planet guide to KL, Melaka and PG!

A Vit’s TV commercial featuring the term ‘toing toing’ why is like ‘boing boing’ – referring to the springiness of their noodles.

#1508: Mamee Chef Gold Recipe Mi Kari Seribu Rasa

Today we have a new one from Mamee Chef. Mamee Chef’s products made not only the Top Ten Instant Noodles Of All Time 2014 list, but also topped the Top Ten Instant Noodle Cups Of All Time 2014 list. Really exceptional stuff! They have come out with two varieties in this flavor: one with their ‘mi tarik’ noodles (noodles made in a way to emulate hand-pulled noodles) and a version that comes with bihun (pronounced bee-hoon, it’s a very thin rice noodle). Today I’m reviewing the wheat noodle variety.

This one is a bit different; I’ve not seen seribu rasa in my instant noodle packs before. It means ‘thousand flavors.’ The fully translated name of this one would be Mamee Chef Thousand Flavors Curry Instant Noodles.

When abroad in Malaysia, I saw not only a wheat noodle in many noodle dishes, but a small amount of the bihun as well. Since Mamee Chef sent me a multitude of packs of both these varieties, I thought today I’d toss in a small amount of the bihun with these. Granted I’m only reviewing the base product shown here, but hopefully in the finished image you’ll see what I’m talking about. When I review the bihun variety soon, I’ll just be using the rice noodle in that one. Let’s get to it!

Here’s the back of the package (click image to enlarge). Contains fish and crustaceans. To prepare, cook noodles for 3 minutes in 400ml boiling water. Add in contents of dry sachets and stir. Add in contents of paste sachet and stir. Enjoy!

The noodle block.

Soup base sachet.

Has a seafood scent to it and slight sweetness.

A sachet of non-dairy creamer.

A decent amount of powder.

The paste sachet.

Smells quite nice – curry!


Finished (click image to enlarge). Added green chilli paddi, about a sixteenth of a block of bihun,  hard boiled egg, shrimp, sliced squid, tau pok (tofu puff) and Chinese long beans. The noodles are excellent – they have a round shape and just a hair wider gauge than your standard instant. They are lightly chewy with a subtle crumble that works. The broth is just wonderful! A very strong curry flavor and spiciness – very rich. The broth ands up with a serious thickness as well. This was just excellent – worthy of being called Gold Recipe I’d say! 5.0 out of 5.0 stars easy. EAN bar code 9555022303482.

Here’s a few of the other varieties Mamee makes – Tom Yum, Curry and Vegetarian.

A short video about the Mamee Chef line of products.

#1500: MyKuali Penang Red Tom Yum Goong Noodle

Wow – 1,500 reviews! 1,500 different varieties of instant noodles! What’s even more crazy is that I don’t even feel like I’ve scratched the surface of the world of instant noodles; there are always new varieties coming out, and I think there’s never going to be a day when I’ve tried every variety. Which is a good thing because I really enjoy reviewing these things! Today’s review is a special one. I usually try to pick one that’s a little more interesting than others – and this one is very unique. Usually, companies either send me samples, readers donate varieties I’ve not tried, or I just go to a store and buy them. This is one of the first ones I’ve received directly from a company – literally handed to me. Not only that, I brought it all the way back here from Penang, Malaysia! That’s a long way! I think it was more than 16,000 miles round trip! I’d like to thank everyone who has supported and enjoyed The Ramen Rater throughout the years – without your support and readership, well, it’d be pretty quiet around here! Anyways, let’s check out this new Tom Yum variety from MyKuali! On with number 1,500!!!

Here’s the back of the package (click image to enlarge). Contains crustaceans. To prepare, add noodles to 350ml boiling water for 3 minutes. Add sachet contents and stir. Enjoy!

The noodle block.

The powder seasoning sachet.

Has a seafood scent.

The heart of MyKuali’s varieties: the paste sachet.

Smells like tom yum to me!


Finished (click image to enlarge). Added red chilli paddi, fried fishball, prawns, lime and coriander. The noodles are just as always – nice gauge that has a great chewiness and quantity – just right. The broth – wow. It definitely has that full on flavor I experienced in Langkawi. The broth is not only strong but it’s got a thickness to it, and has that kind of aroma and consistency of a broth that’s been stewing all day long. Strong spicy heat, lemongrass and shrimp notes play throughout. This is spectacular; hands down best tom yum instant noodle I’ve ever had – and I’ve had quite a few.  5.0 out of 5.0 stars. EAN bar code 9555655005227.

MyKuali Penang Tom Yum Noodle (4 Pack)

Check it out! This is the famed MyKuali Penang White Curry Noodle! You can find it on amazon now!

Here’s a radio interview I did way back in 2011 – I know it’s only 3 years, but when I did this interview I’d only reviewed a little over 300 varieties. It’s kind of weird to listen to!

The Ramen Rater’s Trip to Malaysia: Day 6 – Farewell, Penang

Day 1 * Day 2Day 3 * Day 4 * Day 5 * Day 6

Well folks, this is it. The last day we were in Malaysia. With a heavy heart and fond memories, here it is. By the way – during the times traveling around in the van – a great portion of our stay – they always has this radio station on. Check it out!

A look out the window of our hotel room on our last day in Penang.

The little free mini bar always had neat little treats inside. This is one of those international Kit Kat bars. To be honest, it does taste different – chocolate here seems a lot tastier.

A Coke can commemorating the World Cup.

We got all ready and waited a couple minutes in the lobby for Annie and her parents who took us out to breakfast!

Maxim Dim Sum Restaurant in Georgetown. I had always thought of dim sum as a lunchtime thing, but people here in Penang take their dim sum at breakfast time.

A really big place, very open and airy.

A great idea; dim sum creates a LOT of little dishes to clean!

Big – and packed to the gills for breakfast.

Little pork buns.

Think this was a rice noodle dish.

These were like little dark skinned potstickers – very moist.

Ladyfinger with pork.

Egg yolk buns.

I remember these were sweet and good as well.

Crispy outside, nice chewy innards.

Buns with chocolate pudding like filling.

Little custard tarts.

We took this tea with our big meal.

A dry crispy outside with a prawn filling.

A chewy fried flat with a filling.

I think these were tofu – had a kind of smoky taste.

Little pieces with a slivered almond coating and sweet paste filling.

The buns at top had a red bean paste filling and the below was filled with custard.

Just completely demolished! One thing I found great – I asked if they had one of our favorites here – honey walnut prawns. They had never heard of it, which makes me think it’s an invention just for dim sum in the United States. It’s fried prawns with a honey and mayonnaise sauce and glazed walnuts.

After that big meal they wanted me to try one last Hokkien Prawn Mee! We checked out Granny’s Hokkien Mee. Far be it for me to say no to a last taste of one of Penang’s famous flavors.

When you order at a lot of restaurants, you pick up an order chit and fill it out and give it to the server (click image to enlarge).

A combination of duck and pork.

The final bowl of Hokkien Mee.

Going to miss Penang so much! Our next stop was Penang International Airport, where we said our goodbyes to Annie and their parents. everyone was so kind here! She even sent us off with some of the new MyKuali tom Yum noodle and a couple bags of fresh chilli paddi! Thank you for everything!

We checked in and got through security. We had a little time to kill, so looked around a bit.

Excuse me; what?

Saw this first on our way to Langkawi and had asked Thomas about it. He explained it’s a cup of corn with butter and salt. I told him how in the US we have corn on the cob. I got the feeling that he thought that was really odd!

Here’s the plane for our first hop to Kuala Lumpur.

When we applied for our passports a few months ago, the lady at the passport place asked where we were going. She said she’d be scared to fly on Malaysian Airlines. That sentiment was echoed by lots of people I told to about the trip – they’d say ‘oh wow that exciting – wait, what airline are you flying?’ I’m going to say quite clearly here – I wasn’t worried at all. It was a short hop to Kuala Lumpur (like 55 minutes) and just like any other airline, they don’t want anything bad to happen. We hopped on and had a great flight – probably the softest landing of any of the 8 flights we had during the entire trip. I’d fly them again any day! Especially since that would mean we were on our way to or from Malaysia!

We got to Kuala Lumpur and much like Singapore, it was a lot of walking all over the place. We had to transfer our luggage from Malaysia Airlines to EVA, go through security and stuff and figure out where what was. This shot is of us when we were up in the air on our EVA flight from KL to Taipei’s Taoyuan Airport.

The flight took about 4 hours or so, and the next part of our trip would be the only rough spot really.

Time for a bite to eat at Taoyuan. We had a three hour layover until our next flight, which would be a 10 hour bender to Seattle. It had been a long day already and departure was at 11pm. Since we had the time, we walked around and looked for instant noodles. Turns out if we were in the domestic terminal, there was a 7-11 that would’ve had some, but here there weren’t any to be found. I asked the guy at the Burger King.

Got some little pork buns to chow down.

Some milk tea sounded good too.

She looks like us – waiting for a flight.

Poor Kit – we were absolutely exhausted.

I’m guessing the characters are phonetic? First and third must be like a ko sound?

Much like Mello Yello.

Out one of the windows we could see the Hello Kitty plane!

Checking boarding passes before we got to wait in another area to board.

Kit noticed this guy staring at us, then I noticed it too. He just kept staring… And staring… And staring! If this is you, you could’ve taken a picture and it would’ve lasted longer – I did!

This is after the hell. This was the worst flight I’ve ever experienced. It was really hot and there was no air conditioning. The worst part was that there was the most violent turbulence I’ve ever dealt with. If I hadn’t had my belt on, I definitely would’ve flown out of my seat. After we returned, we found out there had been a typhoon over Japan at around the same time. We were at around 40,000ft, but it was right around the time we were crossing over Japan. I thought I was gonna puke. I’m really glad though that it all happened at the tail end of the trip – way better than at the beginning! Anyways, this pic of after all of that and we were about to have the second meal, about an hour or two before landing.

Not a lot to do on an airplane but look at the little navigation screen slowly update your journey and watch movies. I thought I’d review the in-flight meal: Pork Porridge!

Here’s some marinated carrot with some chicken.

Not just any butter – butter from New Zealand!

The little biscuit thing actually wasn’t too bad.

Pork porridge!

Fish floss! It’s like powdered fish that’s been sugared.

Pork porridge with fish floss. Pretty good.

Apple, pineapple and honeydew. In flight meals from EVA were pretty dang good. We got two meals during the flight. The food on all the flights were actually decent – and included.

Our flight from Taipei left at 11pm on October 4th. Our flight arrived in Seattle – and arrived at 7pm on October 4th. The flight took 10 hours. Really a strange thing for our brains to deal with. United States Customs was pretty slow but went well. Since we’d brought back food (instant noodles, chocolate and fresh chilli paddi), we got shunted to a different lane for xray. The Department of Agriculture agent had a look through everything. She was pretty nice and we chatted about instant noodles a bit. She said they were probably one of the most common things to be coming through for inspection! Another agent came up and has a look and she mentioned to him how I have a website where I review instant noodles. ‘Oh yeah? What’s it called?’ he asked. I showed him my t-shirt and said ‘it’s The Ramen Rater!’ ‘I was on the just yesterday! We get a TON of instant noodles through here!’ Wow – so people from Customs are looking at the blog. Pretty cool! They pulled three instants that had chicken in them and let the rest go. Now we were home which was weird. What a trip!

Some things I noticed on my trip: here, our roads are huge – really wide and lots of them. In Malaysia, they streets are more narrow. We only saw maybe two cars that had been in accidents during the whole trip and here we see cars on the side of the road due to accidents at least once a day. There’s so much more room and not a million motorbikes weaving in and out of traffic; why do we hit each other so much?

I think the most stark difference between the US and Malaysia was how people come together. Here in the USA, we call ourselves the great melting pot. Well, everyone seems segregated – these people live here, these people live here etc. In Malaysia, it truly felt like everyone lived, worked and played together quite harmoniously. I think we could learn a lot from how things worked in this aspect from Malaysia.

(Click image to enlarge) In closing, I would like to say this trip really changed my perceptions of the world. Before this, the farthest I’d been from home was the east coast and Canada. At the beginning, I mentioned I felt like Frodo (or was it Samwise) in Lord Of The Rings when he said ‘this is the farthest I’ve ever been from the Shire.’ On returning, I feel kind of like Frodo looked when having a drink at the bar with his mates; glad to be home but forever changed by the experience. It was just amazing; all preconception of how it would be there was different than what it was. I definitely have caught the bug – the travel bug. I want to explore and see it all; especially in Asia. I also dearly wish to return to Penang someday and experience the tastes we were able to experience there again. I want to thank everyone at Sky Resources/Sky Thomas Food Industries Sdn Bhd for the warm welcome and for this experience. I also want to especially thank Annie and Thomas Tang and their parents – you made us feel so welcome and your kindness and smiles warmed our hearts – thank you and we hope to see you again!

It’s been just over a week now since we’ve been home. The whole jet lag thing is some real stuff – I think we’re just on the tail end of readjusting to everything.