Later in the afternoon we had a meeting with the RO - Resident Officer of Kuching, we were designated to a section of Kpg. Kudei to rebuild a few small "pedestrian" bridges devastated by the recent floods. Poor souls these, we would build the new bridges by "gotong-royong" with the kampong folks. Young & old came, innocent faces melted my heart. Kpg. Kudei, 300 families. They live by the Sarawak river, poor as they are but rich with smiles.
Coffee table book cover.
CM of Sarawak & CIMB Bank Executive Director, Tunku Dato' Ahmad Burhanuddin looking at my posters. For the press release from Eastern Times click here.
Food next. The Sarawak Laksa tastes like our very own Mee Kari/Mee Udang with an added sambal belacan for the kicks. This Sarawak’s signature dish is a soup blend of rice vermicelli (Meehoon), coconut milk and spices. The bowl is then topped with chunks of seafood, chicken and sliced omelette. Mee Jawa on the other hand is almost similar to Mee Rebus in semenanjung. Whatever said & done, I gobbled up both!
Next in the menu would be "Midin" or Nail's Soots/Pucuk Paku fried with belacan. To be eaten with white rice & seafood is typical Sarawak staple. For two straight nights, Midin was THE vege.
Of course, Kuching wouldn't be complete without the short tour of Pasar Satok, bought T-shirts for the family & half a dozen of Kek Lapis. One for momma, one for aunty, one for my cousin & 3 for the family. Got some beads for my daughter too, she'll scream with delight.
Not to forget the crunchy Tabaloi biscuit, is a mixture of desiccated coconut, sago and sugar. Today, it is produced in several flavour including cocoa and vanilla. Tabaloi is best taken with hot coffee on a lazy Sunday afternoon!
Do you know that sago palms can be found growing copiously in the Sarawak? The sago palm is unique in terms of its versatility – its leaves can be made into house building and roofing materials, and its trunk can be processed into sago flour and made into a smorgasbord of delicacies. The "Ambuyat", which has a starch-like appearance is popular among the locals - it is normally eaten together with salted fish/eggs and vegetables. Apart from that, the sago trunk also acts as a host for the edible sago larvae which is locally known as the Ulat Mulong.
A fatty worm or sago worm or grub, a famous delicacy in Sarawak. Ulat Mulong if leave matured will turn into the beetle, a family of Rhinchophoridae or large weevils. Ulat Mulong is believe to contain 3-7 % of protein, 10-30% fat and the rest is water. I like it deep fried in chillies!
It tickles & wiggles down your throat...Yummy!
Ingredients (Enuff to serve 1 fella)
A bulb of onion & some garlic
3 Red chilies/bird chilies/fire chilies
A pinch of salt/pepper
A dash of black soy sauce or Lea & Perrins
How to go about doing it
Saute half the onions & garlic until it turns light brownish & chrispy (Put it aside)
Pour the ingredients slowly into the wok / pan
Saute them vigorously
The fresh lively sago worm will jump with delight!
Fry it for about 3 minutes, don’t overcook!
Line the plate with a few salad leaves, top them with Coriander/parsley, fried onions & garlic
Presto you’re served!
Saute (Technique involves gripping the handle of the pan & flipping the food in the wok making it look like it's jumping)
I also had Umai - Sarawak style sushi salad. slices of red snapper (uncooked fish), pineapple, red onions, chillies, daun selasih/basil leaves, asam jawa/tamarind, santan/coconut milk, sugar, salt & lime juice. It's so refreshingly light & tangy it seemed the perfect complement to the sunshine & sea winds. It's usually accompanied by a bowl of toasted sago pearls/bertih sagu instead of rice.
Weird budak Malaya...