Travel Blitz #5 – A Day’s Worth of Street Food in SerembanJune 2, 2012 | 6,428 views
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Famous Beef Noodles @ Stall 748, Seremban Wet Market
Since today’s a public holiday and coincidentally, the school holidays ain’t over yet, it does make sense for a short detour if you’re heading south towards Melaka or Johor, or even across the border to Singapore. A mere one hour (or less, depending on the traffic) away from Kuala Lumpur, Seremban town is quite the strategic stop-over for a hearty breakfast of beef noodles, a sip of refreshing cendol to douse the heat, or even buying dozens of Seremban’s signature baked buns with BBQ pork fillings (known as “siew pau”) as gifts to whomever you’re meeting up at the end of your journey.
A bowl of Beef Radish Soup (RM11/USD3.70) and the Dry Beef Noodles (RM6/USD2) kickstarted the gastronomic excursion down south with a (beefy)bang
First of all, make the effort to arrive early; for a sumptuous breakfast of beef noodles and “mee hoon sotong” (rice vermicelli noodles in a savoury broth with slices of pork and cuttlefish) at Seremban Wet Market’s food court. You can have these for brunch, as the stalls open until slightly after lunch hour. But then again, why limit your food options in Seremban?! (ie: Maximize the day trip by squeezing in more food joints than necessary …. typical Motormouth style)
Mee Hoon Sotong from Hioong Kee, stall no. 753
Stall number 748 is THE beef noodles specialist to beat in Seremban; with legacy dating back to 1953! The dry version consists of their own-produced flour noodles with a close resemblance to yellow noodles yet with a springy bite akin to pan mee. But the difference between their version and the conventional ones in Klang Valley are the condiments that went into their creation.
Think sesame seeds, crunchy roasted peanuts and salted vegetables, and a heavily-scented from the generous addition of chopped coriander and garnished with liberal amount of chopped scallions. The thick gravy clings to the noodles; resulting in a deliciously moist and savoury experience; partially helped by the main stars of the bowl; the BEEF.
Imagine tender cuts of lean beef, tripe and beef balls injecting a superior beefy flavour to the noodles. You don’t even need the accompanying chili sauce for taste.
The bowl of radish soup with your choice of beef cuts (usually mixed beef with offal included) was packed with ‘umami’ flavour from the hours of boiling; and do NOT miss this even if you have had yourself a bowl of the noodles.
What a stark reminder of Super Kinta Food Court in Ipoh; which has seen better days and almost collapsing together with the closing of the departmental store years ago.
The Mee Hoon Sotong came in a manner that belies its true value. At RM3.50/USD1.20 per serving; you get a handful of rice vermicelli noodles swimming in a light brown broth with a 2-3 pieces of fresh cuttlefish, stalks of ‘sawi’ (mustard greens) and slices of braised pork layered with intermittent fats.
But a sip of the broth revealed a complex multitude of flavours; ranging from a savoury-sweetish tinge from the unorthodox combination of meat and seafood, topped with an unmistakable smoky flavour. I don’t hide the fact that I hate ‘mee hoon’, yet this was more than palatable; even enticing me into a fan.
Another stall worth noting is the Tow Kee Hakka Mee stall (number 810); yet we decided to give that a miss after being reasonably stuffed the first round.
Pasar Besar Seremban (Seremban Wet Market) – Walk up a floor from ground level and look for stall number 748 for the beef noodles and 753 for the Mee Hoon Sotong, and 810 for Tow Kee Hakka Mee.
Seremban Siew Pow; baked buns with a crunchy exterior filled generously with juicy BBQ pork within.
A short drive away (about 10 minutes) will lead you to Kedai Siew Pau Asia (Asia Confectionery) where you can buy the famous Seremban snacks from the retail store-cum-manufacturer premise by the junction of Jalan Seng Meng Lee.
Although proudly stated on the signboard; “Siew Pow Master”, they started garnering accolades from their ‘chan bao’ read about Simee Market’s version that’s almost perfect in my books) before their Siew Pow got famous.
How fresh can the “Siew Pow” and other items be? Everything produced ON THE SPOT.
Kee Mei Siew Pow, Empayar and Warong @ Jalan Rasah are the other famous brands in Seremban, yet Asia stands out by offering MORE than just conventional “Siew Pow” and a lacklustre selection of other confectioneries.
Instead, we had a whale of a time choosing between egg tarts, butter cake, mexico bun, coconut tarts, and the list goes on.
Although the egg tarts left much to be desired, the “Siew Pow” from Asia were pretty good. Definitely better than Empayar’s, though I had doubts when comparing them to Warong’s as the latter’s not too shabby either.
*Siew Pow @ RM1.30 each, Chan Bao @ RM1.50 and butter cake at RM5.50.
Yi Poh Restaurant has been around for more than half a century; and conveniently situated across from Asia Confectionery. Hence … we could not have given their Yi Poh Lou Shu Fun a miss, right?
Right across the street, you will find Yi Poh Restaurant spanning two lots with one being the typical coffee shop while another had air-conditioning. Talk about commercialization.
That being said, a bowl of their famous Yi Poh Lou Shu Fun (essentially a dry lou shu fun or ‘rat’s tail noodles!’) costs no more than RM3.80 for a small portion; with a few slices of caramelized roasted pork and a generous ladle of the secret ingredient …. the minced meat sauce.
At Yi Poh, the minced meat sauce can be a little overwhelming in terms of saltiness, but in terms of flavours, there can be no match around town. Generously greased with lard oil, the ‘lou shu fun’ resembled ‘lai fun’ more than the generic stubby and short version. And don’t miss their own concoction of sambal chili sauce.
The Hakka Mee did not fare too well though; overshadowed by their renowned creation. You can also opt to have a bowl of pig’s stomach soup; a peppery broth laden with slices of chewy stomach and chopped coriander.
Basking in the hot sun will lead to heatstroke. Unless …. the saving grace comes in the form of CENDOL!
Last but not least, the day trip was capped off by a refreshing bowl of Cendol campur (Mixed cendol) at Haji Shariff Cendol in town. A third generation-run shop serving the mentioned dessert and a stall selling mee rebus, mee rojak and the likes, Haji Shariff Cendol was evidently THE place to drop by in the late afternoons when the mall’s too boring and you’re hankering for a chilled beverage.
The only drawback is …. you have to line up, order your cendol AND carry the desserts on a metal tray to your own table.
Mee Rojak is a clever combination of Indian Rojak (also termed Pasembur) and Mee Rebus with addition of bean sprouts, one hard boiled egg, fritters and beancurd.
They serve quite a few types of cendol. From the simplest form without any extra ingredients to one with pulut (salted glutinous rice), jagung (corn) or red beans. For a taste of everything, order one Cendol Campur where you get the best of all worlds. We sampled the Cendol Bandung too, with rose syrup and evaporated milk, and found that the amalgam of tastes blended well. Or maybe it was the crazily hot weather.
Haji Shariff’s Cendol @ Lorong Jawa (2)
Phew. All those within half a day, and we could still made it back for an early dinner and a movie.
There can never be a town that’s deemed lifeless, boring or lacklustre in Malaysia. Even the most obscure location (you would have known if you have been following my Perak posts from back then) can bring forth an enticing experience that may make you go …
“Why are we so obsessed with travelling overseas, when here in our backyard we have such beautiful gems waiting to be explored?”
Seremban Beef Noodles
Stall No. 748, Pasar Besar Seremban,
70000 Seremban, Negri Sembilan.
Business hours : 7.30am – 3.00pm.
Closed on Tuesdays.
Hioong Kee Mee Hoon Sotong
Stall No. 753, Pasar Besar Seremban
Kedai Siew Pow Asia (Asia Confectionery)
No. 368, Jalan Seng Meng Lee,
70200 Seremban, NS
Tel No : +606-7632 409
Business hours : 7am – 6.30pm
Yi Poh Restaurant
26, Jalan Seng Meng Lee,
70200 Seremban, NS
Business hours : 7.30am – 6pm
Tel No : +6016-6122 711
Haji Shariff Cendol
No. 44, Lorong Jawa (2),
70100 Seremban, N.S.
Business hours : 10.30am – 6.00pm.
Tel No : +606-7632 741