During this time of the year Penang will be crowded with people craving for a fix of their favorite hawker food. And by ‘this time’ of course I mean Chinese New Year. Today is the fourth day of CNY and the majority of the hawkers are already back to business. Not only tourists from other states want to take this opportunity to visit Penang and eat all day, even a Penangite like me too ah! No choice lah, I work outstation so I am rarely in Penang nowadays.
Anyway, I went around George Town today to start my food hunt and found most of the famous places all crowded to the max. Some really famous ones like the Char Koay Teow at Lorong Selamat and Ah Leng had a minimum waiting time of 1 hour. Wahhhhhh.
For Ais Kacang I know most of the people will choose to eat at New World Park for convenience sake. But finding a seat would be almost impossible, even harder if you’re alone eg. ME! Even if I found a seat, it would be taken by someone else while I queue for my food lol.
I remembered I had a complain about the ABC at New World Park. Although it looked the same, the taste was just not the same anymore. This prompted me to eat at the coffee shop where this famous ABC was originally from – Sin Se Kai just opposite New World Park.
Whenever people ask me for places to eat in Penang, Kek Seng will always be one of my recommendations. Old and nostalgic aside (they still preserve the square wooden tables and chairs), home made durian ice cream is a rarity nowadays and fortunately for us it is still available at Kek Seng. Also, their one of a kind ice kacang topped with ice cream balls and colorful jellies is such an eye candy and a nice treat during hot weathers.
At RM3.50, the default ice cream ice kacang comes with two scoops of random ice cream, which could be strawberry, corn or chocolate flavored. So if you want your ice cream to be durian flavored, remember to specify it. Kek Seng does not skimp on the ingredients, as you can see the ice kacang was flooded with sweet corn and red beans.
Then there’s the jellies or agar-agar, one being a little sour and zesty tasting like lemon and the other being a little sweet. My first time having Kek Seng’s ice kacang was three years ago and I am glad to say the quality is still there. However, it still remains second best to me because of the absence of sarsi flavor. Somehow it did not feel so refreshing compared to the other ice kacang due to this.
Was back in Penang a few days ago during the Hari Raya break. It has been a loooooooooong time since I last posted anything on Penang food so here goes. Despite Bukit Mertajam being a lot nearer to Butterworth than Penang Island, the only food I posted before in Butterworth is Sweet Paradise (Chao Quan) Dim Sum lol.
So I did a research on Butterworth’s food and found that it is actually quite a food paradise itself. If you stay in Butterworth basically there’s no need to travel anywhere else for food. At Jalan Raja Uda alone you have hawker stalls and restaurants lined up on both sides of the road, which will take you a really long time to try all of them.
While browsing Wikimapia on Jalan Raja Uda, a small box attracted my attention. It was labeled as “Butterworth Red Bean Ice” in Chinese, which is actually Ice Kacang. The description says it is the best Ice Kacang @ RM2.70 with lots of fresh ingredients, and waiting time is long too because of the number of customers.
Roughly remembering the stall as somewhere before a photo shop along Jalan Raja Uda (it’s just a straight road), I managed to locate the stall easily thanks to the crowd that made it even more obvious. Little did I know that this Ais Kacang stall is actually a branch of the Penang Road Famous Cendol and Ais Kacang, I was totally clueless about this, lol fail. No wonder it is so popular.
After waiting 10 minutes for a seat, I had to wait another 20 minutes for my Ais Kacang to arrive. Firstly, it looked nothing like the one I had at Penang Road because it had a lot of peanuts and didn’t have those small green jelly balls. Continue reading