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A brief Chinatown afternoon (and a claypot rice sighting!)


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A brief Chinatown afternoon (and a claypot rice sighting!)

Limster | Nov 9, 2002 08:01 PM

Surprised to find char kway teow at Pearl Villa; on the outside it looks like any other Cantonese place. But belacan seems to be scattered liberally across the menu as well and that made me bold. When I asked, they said that there was lup cheong (waxed sausage) in the char kway teow, so that sealed the deal. Wonder if these guys are Malaysian Chinese.

The cha kway teow is more satisfying than Penang's version. There's lup cheong (waxed sausage), plump crunchy prawns, some pork strips (unnecessary) and a nice generous scatter of bean sprouts with their quick ivory crunch. The rice noodles are the broad flat variety; finally someone out there is using the right kind! And they're pleasantly chewy.

It's good stir-frying, but the rendition has cantonese written all over it (not a bad thing, just different, like expecting an cappucino and getting a mocha), down to the dry fried oily gloss on the rice noodles/kway teow (versions back home are slightly moist), the use of fried chilli flakes in oil (I was given a small plate of that on the side when I asked for spicy; back home its a ground chilli sauce that's added to the stir fry) and the seasoning of light soy sauce (cha kway teow calls for a dark slightly sticky variety that's also slightly sweet). Still very worthwhile.

Also noticed that these guys offer several varieties of claypot rice on their menu! Haven't seen that around here much (anyone know of a good place?), so they could come in handy when a craving sets in. Will definitely try the claypot rice soon.

Also scored some good char siew (Cantonese roasted pork) at the takeout only roast meat place on Beach Street. Nice glaze, good rich flavor, tight and moist meat. I prefer the crispy charred ones and they were happy to accomodate me. $7.50 a pound and comes with good sauce (similar to that used to glaze and roast the pork).

They sell a limited take out menu of roast meats (ducks, cha siu, roast pork with crispy skin/sau yok etc....). I didn't check the name, but it's next to the Korean place (Korea House or something) on the block between the streets that house Jumbo and Peach Farm and across from Imperial Seafood.

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