Soo Kee @ Sea Park – Ipoh Chicken Kuey Teow & Fresh Prawn WantanMay 6, 2012 | 10,486 views
Ipoh’s signature “Kai See Hor Fun” (Chicken Kuey Teow) @ Soo Kee served both ways; in a savoury broth boiled with various parts of the chicken and a light dash of prawn oil, and the dry version tossed in a greasy mix of sauces; garnished with lots of fried shallots and chopped chives
Since the previous post was on Annie 1; a kopitiam in Damansara Uptown serving pretty delicious Ipoh hawker food like wantan mee, chee cheong fun and even a caramel egg custard that vaguely reminded me of Thean Chun‘s, let’s continue the theme here with Soo Kee; an old classic in its own right here in Seapark.
For decades now, Soo Kee capitalizes on the lack of honourable hawker fares in KL/PJ that bring forth the sense of rendezvous to one who misses Ipoh food; “Kai See Hor Fun” (Ipoh’s style of chicken noodle soup; served with Hor Fun/flat rice noodles ONLY) to be exact.
Soo Kee : A presumably mother-and-son affair; the whole business is run by this duo with help from an Indonesian lady only.
In case you’re wondering if the Ipoh famous kuey teow is imported (aka the real deal from various manufacturers in Ipoh), the answer is NO. The noodles are indeed, made by a local manufacturer with half a century of experience in churning out the velvety smooth creation; uniformly processed into strips of 1cm-wide strands.
The immediate difference one will notice here is that the noodles do not have the translucent quality of Ipoh’s version; nor the extremely smooth texture even when unaided by the addition of oil into the serving. Soo Kee‘s version of the kuey teow surpasses what most hawker stalls around KL/PJ have been serving (read : horribly, over-processed stuff sometimes pungent with the aroma of a certain chemical compound used to soften and preserve the noodles), yet was still a notch below what one would expect from the best quality Ipoh hor fun.
Ordering a meal here is simple. You walk over to the counter and state what you favour; dry or soup noodles, and whether to serve the chicken separately (they serve quite a mean steamed chicken with oyster sauce), or shredded and placed on top of the noodles.
Then if you’re hankering for a taste of succulent prawn wanton (dumplings), by all means, go for it. Order a bowl to yourself or sharing one portion with fellow diner(s). The prawn wanton here deserves compliments for the fresh prawn enveloped within a casing of dumpling skin (that might be a tad too thick to one’s liking) was not only fresh, but sweet, plump and juicy too. Another notable point is that the soup used to serve the wanton tasted different from the noodle’s; a far more savoury taste laden with an ‘umami’ kick from the generous addition of prawn oil (boiled from prawn carapace, shells and all). Essentially, this robust oil appearing as an orange layer on the surface of the broth won the brownie points for Thean Chun against the likes of many other contenders in Ipoh.
The VERY-lightly blanched bean sprouts was served simply tossed in a light dressing of soy sauce and shallot oil, garnished with chopped spring onion and fried shallots. A far cry from what you can expect from most of Ipoh’s famous ‘nga choy gai’ outlets, as even the lean, wriggly bean sprouts had that unpleasant ‘green/raw’ taste to them.
A meal for two here can easily come to RM20/USD7 and above; whereas all of the above plus two drinks came to RM23/USD8 for us. Despite appearing as just another hawker stall in the midst of an older residential neighbourhood of Petaling Jaya’s, Soo Kee conveniently marked up prices to justify for the legacy, the effort in bringing Ipoh style kuey teow to your table, and fresh, succulent prawns instead of conventional minced pork and chopped shrimps filling.
The recent years have seen the surge in Ipoh-branded names claiming to dish out authentic Ipoh fares; like the famous chicken rice chain (New Restaurant Ipoh) originating from Jalan Gasing, the Old Town White Coffee outlets, and even Lou Wong pushed their luck by spreading their influence here a few years ago but to no avail.
Guess that the best dining experience HAS to be right at where the action is …..
Soo Kee is opposite of Seapark Wet Market
33, Jalan 21/17,
46300 Petaling Jaya, Selangor
Tel No : +603-7876 7736
Business hours : 8.30am – 2.30pm
Closed on certain Wednesdays.
Opposite of Seapark Wet Market. Turn in from Maybank Seapark and you will see the market behind the bank, and Soo Kee directly opposite of the market on your LEFT.