Thursday, 22 September 2011

Han Woo Ri Korean Barbecue Restaurant

Last Sunday afternoon, mum had one of her 'better' days. Her drugs were able to mask her pain, and after getting lunch for her, I could escape for a couple of hours. No doubt, 1pm is a little late to leave for lunch at USJ, but the outlet is opened till 3pm and we knew we would arrive by 2pm. And we did, despite the traffic jam.

Why all the way to USJ? We had bought two Groupon vouchers, at RM25 each, for a meal valued at RM45 each. And we hadn't had a chance to use it since we bought it in mid-August.

The meal came with marinated pork ribs, a savoury Korean pancake, 12 refillable side dishes, tea and watermelon slices. 

Like all Korean barbecue restaurants, the pork ribs were cooked in front of us. We were drooling as the aroma wafted out and into the steel 'ventilation exhaust' suspended over the grill plate.

I found the pork to be a tad salty. I had to go easy on the dipping sauce which was made of tau cheong (preserved soy beans paste) and used more of the honey. But hubby was fine with it and didn't find it salty at all. Maybe it's just me, after all, hubby keeps telling me that I have a low tolerance for sodium.

Rice was not included in the set, and was priced at RM5 each. A little pricey for plain white rice, I think. We ordered two bowls, but each of us finished only less than half of our rice. It was a very filling meal. Look at the spread! 

1D & 2D Jalan USJ 10/1J
Taipan Business Centre
Subang Jaya
Tel: (03) 8023 3357

Monday, 19 September 2011

Kenchara Tibetan Vegetarian Food

Two Sundays ago, mother-in-law wanted to try a new Tibetan restaurant at Viva (formerly known as UE3) and asked us to take her there. She had never tried Tibetan food before and wanted to try it. 

However, upon arriving there and having studied the menu, we were disappointed to find that Kenchara was not a genuine Tibetan restaurant. It was a vegetarian restaurant with a wide selection of Malaysian, Thai, Vietnamese and Taiwanese food. There were only three Tibetan dishes on the menu. We ordered all three plus one Taiwanese dish.

The first dish to arrive was the Asa Bhima. It was baked Tibetan bun with carrot, cheese and potato fillings served with Masala sauce. 
It didn't look like a bun to me, but it had an interesting flavour. There were eight wedges, and four of us, but I only got to eat one piece. Hey, who took my other piece?? I have a feeling it was hubby that took my share....

Next to arrive was the Dong Po Yak Beef. According to their menu, it's steamed black bean with soy bean and mushroom. Hmm....I must be really naive, but where's the black bean, soy bean and mushroom?? 
Although it's supposed to be mock beef, it didn't resemble beef. It looked more like pork belly. It's quite good, though I prefer the tai wong mooi vegetable. But then, I've always preferred the green vegetables and tofu over mock meat.

The Amdo Yak Beef with Tingmo looked more like mock beef. The mock meat was stir fried with soy protein, chickpeas, dried chilli and plenty of black pepper served with steamed plain buns. Again, where were the chickpeas??
I must say the steamed plain buns went very well with the dish. I'd say the taste is quite close to our local kong poh style.

Those three were the only Tibetan dishes the so-called Tibetan restaurant has. Our fourth item was a Taiwanese dish, Xiang Chun Steamed Tofu.  
I'm not sure how to describe the has been two weeks, and I don't really remember what it tasted like other than unusual.

Friday, 9 September 2011

T.G.I.Friday's @ Hartamas Shopping Centre

Ever since hubby had to go on a special diet, meat has not featured in our menu for a while. We used to go for steak or burgers every now and then, and I miss burgers so much. I know, it's junk food, but I do so love burgers. 

Not able to stand the craving for some real burgers, I managed to persuade hubby to go to T.G.I.Friday's for some burgers for lunch during the long Raya break. I only like those thick patties served at Friday's, American Chillies or Tony Roma's. Those patties at Carl's Junior, Burger King and McDonald's (especially McDonald's) are so thin, so pathetic, they ought not to be called burgers.

However, when we got there, I changed my mind and opted for tacos instead. Tacos is another thing I missed having. 

The sliced barbecued beef tacos were stuffed into two tortillas with melted cheese, deep-fried onions and a tangy creamy sauce. It was a huge serving, and I left the chips untouched. I couldn't eat another mouthful, I was that full. RM26.90 (price included for the benefit of friends who asked).

We ordered the Eggplant Rollatini to share. They were grilled eggplant rolls stuffed with ricotta, Parmesan cheese and basil, and topped with bruschetta marinara and melted Parmesan cheese. It's one of the new "Small Plates for RM10.90 each" on the menu. Super yummy.

We found something hubby could eat, cedar seared salmon pasta. The salmon fillets were pan-seared and coated with cedar smoke seasoning and served over zucchinis and fettuccine. The sauce is a blend of creamy Alfredo, bruschetta marinara and lemon. Really nice. If I hadn't been craving for beef, I would have ordered this, too. RM27.90

One thing I have to say about American portions - I didn't need any tea time break, and up to 8pm, I was still not hungry for dinner.

Shogun @ Fahrenheit 88

When Shogun, a Japanese buffet restaurant, first opened its doors at 1-Utama, we were one of those crowd that tripped in to try its buffet spread. We were disappointed in its sub-par sashimi spread. I remember the salmon, tuna and butter fish wasn't that fresh. And so we declared war on it. For outlets that are sub-par in either food quality, service, or value, hubby and I would turn to each other and say "war" simultaneously. It means we are never going back to that outlet.

So, when we chanced upon Shogun at Fahrenheit 88 (formerly known as KL Plaza), we were skeptical. We were given to understand that this outlet was opened not too long ago, and are holding some promotions. One of the promotion was, on the date of your birthday, you get to eat for free, provided that you are accompanied by at least another paying guest. Besides this promotion, there was an ongoing 15% discount off the menu price.

As it was hubby's birthday, we would only be paying for one person (RM62.90 after less 15% discount), so it was a question of whether we want to give Shogun another try. Perhaps this new outlet would be an improved one. And we made the right decision. It was a  better outlet than the one in 1-Utama, both in terms of the buffet spread and quality.

The deep-fried lotus root and kangkong (water convolvulus) wasn't great, though. They were soft and not crispy as they should be. I guess that's probably due to their lying at the tempura section for too long.

The prawns tempura were better, since they had just been removed from the wok. However, I did not quite like the batter. I prefer the lighter tempura batter.

Imagine our surprise to find steamed cod fish. I mean, cod is sold at RM109.90 a kg here. What gives? 

The teppanyaki was made to order. When the cook at the teppanyaki saw that I only had a few slices of beef and salmon for him to fry, he gestured to the array of chicken, vegetables and mushrooms and invited me to add more as the amount I had would not fill a plate. He was surprised when I told him that I like my plate to contain only a small amount of food at a time.

Cawanmushi and miso soup are staples that are must-have....for me, anyway.

After filling myself to nearly choking level, here comes my favourite....dessert. I just love dessert. Another must-have whether I'm about to puke or not.

The sago Melaka was not that great. Totally not fragrant at all, and I think they cheated with evaporate milk. I mean, it didn't taste like coconut least, not the coconut milk I'm accustomed to. The green tea cake was hardly worth a mention, but the chocolate orange cake was super yummy. Not too sweet, it had loads of chocolatey flavour plus a hint of orange. Just a hint, mind you. The peanut mochi was so-so, I prefer the local ones found at kueh stalls.

The pumpkin custard was also another so-so, and neither is the coffee cake anything to shout about. See another chocolate orange cake there? :)  I swear, this plate was not mine, it's diabetic hubby's, LOL!

 I was almost about to puke when I took two more chocolate orange cakes and honeydew sago and chocolate ice cream. Even hubby was shocked for once. His jaw dropped and he asked "Again?? Are you sure?". Yup, I love ice-cream and chocolate cakes. 

The promotion is valid till end of the year and is available at any of Shogun's four outlets. There's also a promotion for senior citizens. If you are aged 55 and above, you get a 50% discount. The regular price is RM63.80++.