Char Koay Kak
Frying skill aside, two of the main differences betweeen a good and normal Char Koay Kak are the cooking oil and soy sauce used. In the old days, Char Koay Kak stalls used only lard to bring out the most of the aroma and flavor. As time goes by, people get increasingly health conscious leading the hawkers to substitute the usage of lard with vegetable cooking oil.
Chan Kok Ming‘s Char Koay Kak at Batu Lanchang‘s market food complex is one of the hawkers who have heeded the call. He has since changed to use a mix of lard and Neptune cooking oil instead of some cheap sub-standard ones.
The Char Koay Kak here can be ordered either plain (without egg and seafood) or with seafood, with the latter priced at RM3.20 a plate. Three kinds of seafood included are prawns, fish ball and crab filament sticks (not really a real seafood but yeah…)
The Char Koay Kak stall at Macalister Lane, currently run by the Eoh sisters has been around for 40 years. Since taking over from their father’s helm 30 years ago only one thing has changed in their Char Koay Kak – oil.
During the old days pure lard was used as the base frying oil to produce perhaps the most aromatic and delicious albeit unhealthy Char Koay Kak. But as time goes by, people have become more health conscious so most of the oil used by them currently is mixed with vegetable oil. Other than oil, the other ingredients crucial enough to affect the Char Koay Kak’s taste are the quality of chai poh (salted radish), carrot cake as well as the dark soya sauce.