Kuching: Food Heaven
During the whole trip in Kuching, there were only two places that we went for food, with the most visited area in Padungan Street and some in Carpenter Street. Since Sarawak's food can be found mainly in these 2 areas, and the restaurants are closely located with one another, going to any Chinese restaurants or foodcourt allows you to have these Sarawak's delicacies. Some of the food I tried might not be the best but it may taste good in the other restaurants.
1. Kolo Mee
The taste is quite similar to Wantan Mee without the wantans and the black sauce. Since I love Wantan Mee, I have no complains with this noodle. The dipped sauce in Sarawak is a little special. In West Malaysia, the dipped sauce is usually cut chili with soy sauce, but in Sarawak, it is vinegar with cut chili.
With a look almost similar to Kolo Mee above, its taste is close to Cintan's instant noodle.
3. Kueh Chap
If you eat this, you eat the entire pig. Why do I say this? Because, this delicacy consists of the pig's intestine, pig's skin, pig's belly,... basically any part that can be eaten would be in this bowl. However, you can choose what to put in and what not to put in. Looking at the internet picture, I thought it would be like bak kut teh. But, as I approached the store, the strong smell put me off. It was so strong that I could hardly send any into my mouth.
4. Sarawak's Popiah
This popiah served in Min Hong Kee is generous with its ingredients. The peanuts inserted into the popiah give it its crunchiness, but from what I remembered there was not much sauce in it.
5. Belacan Noodle
The belacan gives this dish a fishy smell. I don't know how this dish is supposed to be, but if it is pan-fried, it may be better?
6. Tomato Kueh Teow
The one I ate in Song Seng Hai Hawker Store wasn't that good. In my opinion, there's not much of tomato taste in it, resulting in a slightly bland taste.
7. Sibu Kompia
Kompia stuffed with pork meat is especially delicious. The filling is similar to Char Siew Pau but in a different bun.
Midin is from a fern family and it gives of the stickiness similar to an okra. No matter how you cook it, it is delicious, but definitely try the one cooked with belacan.
9. Fried Oyster
I am not sure if this is Sarawak's fried oyster but since it is made to a big, flat, cracker, it attracts a lot of customers' attraction. Nearly everyone that saw it will order one for themselves. The taste? It is similar to Papadum, an Indian cracker, and is especially oily. The oyster wasn't up to my par as they probably use the dried oyster. The sauce in the middle is a salty sauce and I think it goes well with the cracker.
10. Gula Apong Ice Cream
This is definitely a Must Eat dessert. The gula apong ice cream I ate was in a hawker centre near the open air market in Carpenter Street - RG Ais Krim Bergula Apong. The ice cream has flavour of the day. And for that day we had pandan. Unlike other milky, creamy ice cream, the texture of this ice cream feels like a shaved-ice type of ice cream. However, different from the usual shaved-ice, this is a very fine and compact version. There wasn't much pandan taste to it but eating together with the gula apong tasted especially good and fragrant. For the topping, I chose cornflakes and the crunchiness of it went well with the ice cream.
11. Traditional Snacks
The Bahulu cake in the picture is only one of the snacks. I totally recommend you to try the local snacks in the Sarawak Cultural Village as they are made in the most traditional way possible.
Besides Sarawak Cultural Village, you could also buy local snacks in the places I mentioned above. Definitely do buy Bee Pang, a rice puff. Also, you must not miss the kek lapis in Sarawak. The variety in Sarawak is amazing.
Now, here are some of the restaurants I recommend.
1. Min Hong Kee
- 134-150, Jalan Padungan, 93100 Kuching
- Opening hours: Should be only the morning session (maybe 6.30am - 2pm?)
- All the food here is quite delicious and it is clean.
- Must try: porridge, laksa, popiah, kompia
2. Song Seng Hai Hawker Store
- Lorong 15, Jalan Song Kheng Hai off Jalan Padungan, 93100 Kuching.
- Opening hours: 11am - 5pm
- You should able to find all the Sarawak food here
- Must try: Sugar cane coconut juice, kompia
3. TopSpot Food Court
- Padungan Street, can I say rooftop of UTC building
- Opening hours: 5pm - 2.30am
- A seafood hawker centre
- Must try: Midin
4. Aladdin Chicken Rice Shop
- Carpenter Street
- Opening hours: 6pm - 10.30pm
- Must try: Chicken rice
5. Black Bean Cafe
- 87, Ewe Hai Street (Carpenter Street), 93000 Kuching
- Opening hours: 9am - 6pm
- Must try: Coffee
6. RG Ais Krim Bergula Apong
- No. 11, Tower Market Hawker Centre (open air market), 93000 Kuching.
- Opening hours: 2pm - 3am
- Must try: Gula Apong Ice Cream
Do take note of the opening hours of the restaurant as they are either morning or night. The food we tried this time weren't that much as my father and I weren't feeling well during the trip, but we did try our best to eat as much as we could.