Category Archives: Eats

Red, yellow, white & blue (cupcakes)

The bake-off fever continues to rage at Flex Malaysia with a special cupcake wars event to celebrate Malaysia’s 60th birthday.

What better way than to party with the nation and each other, than by baking dainty cupcakes, decorating them meticulously in colours found on the ‘Jalur Gemilang’ and then feeding your colleagues and bosses with these creations?

This is precisely what 36 Flex Johor employees did yesterday at the Senai (medical) facility. The lobby and a portion of the first floor had temporarily morphed into a mini bakery where cupcakes ruled the day! Thank you Alex and Ken for working your magic!

The Flex Merdeka Cupcake Wars was all about colour, creativity, cooperation and consumption (of the cakes!)

Judges Stella, Joe, Rebecca & Ed had the enviable task of eating their way through 18 cupcakes (and fears of going into a sugar coma!) which were lovingly baked and decorated by Flex employees from the Johor sites in Senai, Port of Tanjung Pelepas and Skudai.

Theirs was not an easy task as they had to make a second round among all the baking stations set up to be absolutely certain of their deciding votes for the cupcakes.

Val’s decision to acknowledge a surprise category of bakers with an additional mystery prize, is a reflection of Flex’s care and recognition of employees who go the extra mile.

Following very closely to the chosen theme of ‘Colours of Malaysia”, the teams gave their all in attending to the smallest of details, while staying calm and baking on.

The goodwill and new links forged were so apparent when a team had to turn to the other competitors for some extra eggs when theirs became runny and threatened to affect their cupcakes.

Equally heart-warming was seeing a judge help in assisting a team which was having difficulty using an attachment on their baking appliance, while another judge stepped in to assist with the photography set-up.

And the Pensonic products continue to spark joy among all the participating Flex bakers who now have some new baking goodies to call their own.

Happy Birthday, Malaysia!

GT80

This posting speaks for itself via the beautifully-crafted illustrations of a very talented young lady, Vanessa Ho.

The watercolour illustrator was commissioned by George Town Festival (GTF) director Joe Sidek to produce this darling little travel journal called GT80.

It lists the top 80 favourites of GTF, in terms of places to go, things to do, people to see and dishes to eat in George Town.

If there is one souvenir you should buy (RM30 each), during this edition of the GTF, it's this lil brown book which makes an invaluable guide for anyone pounding the streets of George Town or those overseas who pine for their beloved Penang.

Here's why ….

You get to rediscover childhood favourites, be they people, food or places or discover new ones and grow to love them.


Copies of the GT80 illustrated travel journal are available at the GTF office (86, Lebuh Armenian, George Town) during office hours.

(All images – but one – are courtesy of George Town Festival)

Eight years and growing from strength to strength #gtf2017

The 8th edition of the George Town Festival (GTF ) opened last night at Dewan Sri Pinang with an upbeat convergence of artistes from near and far around the region of Southeast Asia at SVARA ASEAN. This musical showcase was a celebration of the artistic pride in the region, and a tribute to the sounds of Southeast Asia,  featuring six of the region's acclaimed singers and musicians, filled with mesmerising melodies and a wide repertoire of music genres. Local artistes – including Adibah Noor and Sean Ghazi  who were proud flag bearers of the Jalur Gemilang – presented classic hits and collaborated on some medleys with award- winning Phillipine Madrigal Singers, Penang Philharmonic Orchestra (PPO) and PPO’s Jazz Band.

Also featured were Indonesian flautist Gus Teja and soulful Anchee from Thailand who paid tribute to her late king in song.


The opening weekend of GTF continues today, with generous ASEAN flavours, arts, designs, tastes and sounds. ASEAN Design Forum to be held on July 29, brings together Southeast Asia’s leading luminaries in design – Eric Bunnag Booth, Rachaporn Choochuey, Kenneth Cobonpue, Priscilla Shunmugam and Sali Sasaki.

This informative and illuminating nexus of ideas is said to delve into the status quo and future of design, space making, and the creative industries in Southeast Asia.

A market of ASEAN assortments at the Penang State Museum awaits everyone today and tomorrow in the grounds of the Penang State Museum.

'Macam- macam ASEAN' , is a craft and creative market, a tattoo studio, barber shop, live musical performances, wayang kulit and more. This free two-day fun event is an all-ages showcase in line with thisyear’s festival’s Southeast Asian focus.

At this craft market, go spoil yourself with ethically-made tea towels, shoes, tote bags, scarves, jewellery, pouches, tattoos, pillows, bowls, notebooks, and postcards featuring colourful, authentic motifs by collectives from Laos, Indonesia, Thailand, Philippines, Vietnam and our very own charming Kuching (from where Jit and friends have flown over some exquisite kebaya pieces and also fine beadwork).

A standout event at Macam-macam ASEAN is being touted to be Laksa of the Region (LOTR), which is a convergence of culinary delights and will see 24 laksa makers gather under one roof to cook up distinctive aromatic flavours representing countries such as Indonesia, Vietnam, Myanmar, Laos, Thailand and Malaysia’s very own Penang assam laksa, Johor and Sarawak laksa, Nyonya laksa and laksam. 

For the ongoing weeks, other highlights of GTF 2017 include The Manganiyar Classroom by Roysten Abel, CELL, the gravity-defying acrobatic act of A Simple Space, Jérôme Bel’s GALA, The Human Voice, Hakanai –an animated choregraphy by Adrien Mondot and Claire Bardainne of France and lots more. Month-long exhibitions include Noted, Jimmy Nelson’s Before They Pass Away, Yangon Echoes, Portraits of George Town and the mysterious Secret Gardens “Revisited”.

GTF this year is partnering M-ND Media Distribution SEA and FaveKad Sdn Bhd. M-ND is a technology company that revolutionises the way brands and consumers connect with each other through multi-sensory experiences, FaveKad (a start-up technology company owned by George Lee), which aims to give everyone a reason to connect by sending electronic greeting cards with an Asian flair.

The complete festival guide is available at http://www.georgetownfestival.com or simply follow-the-fest on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. 

(Some images courtesy of George Town Festival)

Tok Tok Mee and the isle of foodies

An 18-month gastronomic discovery of Penang’s great eats served with a spot of nostalgia and love for romantic island living, has morphed into a coffee-table book ‘Tok Tok Mee: A Portrait of Penang Street Food’  which will be unveiled this weekend.


Penang-born TV producer and food writer Gerald Tan unveils childhood stories and historical anecdotes about dishes which have made their mark around the world. Tan, together with Sydney-based award-winning cinematographer and photographer Benjamin Emery, have dished up charcoal-kissed char koay teow and sar hor fun to the briny broths of Hokkien mee and asam laksa in 192 pages of the hard cover book.

Watch this space for more details from Trishaw Press, the book’s publisher. The Penang-based boutique publishing house promotes local content via collaborations with authors and artists working on heritage matters on the island

https://www.facebook.com/trishawpress/ 
Update:

Tok Tok Mee is now available for purchase online!

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B073W38132/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1499866306&sr=8-1&keywords=Tok+tok+mee

(Images courtesy of Trishaw Press)

Helloooooo Kuching!

The man who placed George Town on the world festival map is now taking his crazy brand of style and fun to Borneo.

Joe Sidek, the director of the George Town Festival wants Kuching to rock on the fringes of the internationally-acclaimed Rainforest World Music Festival (RWMF) in July.

He is curating and presenting the Rainforest Fringe Festival (RFF) and promises it to be a 10-day (7-16 July) spectacle of the best which Sarawak has to offer by way of art, food, fashion and music. 

“The festival happens right in the bustling capital town of Kuching in Sarawak and will provide the ultimate lead up to the annual Rainforest World Music Festival. 

“The inaugural Rainforest Fringe Festival will also give prominence to Sarawak’s rich indigenous arts and culture, giving festival goers a true sense of the beauty and energy of the state, its people and rainforest,” says Joe.

Festival-goers will rediscover Sarawak through film screenings, fashion showcases, photography exhibitions, art and craft bazaars and other displays of Sarawak’s highly underrated trove of local talents.

The Old Court House in Kuching will serve as the venue for most events – such as a craft and vintage market, talks, exhibitions and various movie screenings – tied to the fringe festival.
The “Sarawak: Theatre of Clothes” fashion gala will showcase exceptional and multi-talented fashion and accessories’ designers originating from Sarawak.

In upholding their Sarawakian roots, these designers such as Datuk Tom Abang Saudi, Eric Ong, Ramsay Ong, Tanoti and Neng Kho Razali have made their mark on local and international high fashion runaways and will bring to the festival, their show-stopping works.

A special fashion treat awaiting those coming to the fringe festival would be Singapore-based contemporary womenswear label Ong Shunmugam. The label owner is Malaysian-born Priscilla Shunmugam, whose work is designed and made across Asia and offers ready-to-wear ranges and bespoke designs. She is working with `Pua Kumbu’ the traditional patterned multi-coloured ceremonial cloth used by the Ibans and in Sarawak for the fringe festival.

“Music is the way nature speaks to us. It is found in the splash of a waterfall, the rumble of the wind and the flutter of a bird’s wings …These are our music; it means Sada Kamek in the Iban language.”

The Rainforest Fringe Festival will open with an official concert `Sada Kamek’ at the Kuching Amphitheatre, with a line-up of Sarawak-born performers like Dayang Nurfaizah, Noh Salleh, Tony Eusoff, Nading Rhapsody, At Adau, Pete Kallang, Alena Murang and Matthew Ngau.

(Images courtesy of Joe Sidek and the Rainforest Fringe Festival)

Cookie Bake-Off with Flex

They came, they baked and impressed the judges, their colleagues and all cookie monsters present! Forty Flex Penang employees comprising 20 teams rose to the challenge yesterday in displaying their baking prowess at making Hari Raya cookies. 

Left to concoct their own recipes or fall back on traditional festive ones, the teams did Flex proud by displaying so much love, joy and pride in what they were doing while having fun.


Stella, Faten and Joe had a field day sampling the bakers’ delights and Val conceded that every single team and their cheering supporters present were winners. The attention to detail, creativity and taste were amazing while Flex’s generosity in allowing the bakers to take home the Pensonic ovens and cake mixers and a host of other goodies are enough reason for it to remain employer of choice and have more employees asking for more corporate cooking events.


Pensonic’s abilities in organizing cooking events were put to the test and they emerged with flying colours and have proven that their corporate headquarters are more than just a place to view their products and impressive test kitchens, but also a spot to cook and have fun in.

Iftar Ramadan @ E&O

As the ninth month of the Islamic calendar looms on us, Muslims around the world are getting ready to fast daily from sunrise to sundown.


Ahead of this auspicious month, which is just around the corner, the aromas of Ramadan-inspired food have begun wafting from the kitchen of the Eastern & Oriental (E&O) Hotel.


The sweet smells and tastes of fresh lemongrass, garlic, cloves, tumeric and candlenuts cooking slowly in rich coconut oil have been finding their way to some of the hotel’s buffet offerings and yesterday’s sneak preview was not a letdown.

Eileen, JJ and Yvonne continue to be the ever-gracious hosts, this time for an extensive sampling of the month-long ‘Jamuan Berbuka Puasa’ promotion which kicks off on May 27.

Many of my childhood favorites popped up during the feast which was prepared and served at E&O’s Sarkies Annexe Restaurant with great care and love in a display of generous colours, flavours and not lacking in herbs and spices.

Chicken Briyani Rice, Yellow Glutinous Rice or Nasi Kunyit (shaped as discs and sprinkled with “serunding” or chicken floss) and the novel Nasi Lemak “cake” (which seems to be current rage) are great starters along with the aromatic Soto Ayam (chicken spiced soup).

The tender Rendang Daging (beef) and Masak Lemak Ikan Masin (salted fish in a creamy coconut curry) were reminiscent of good Malay fare found in the kitchens of chefs who know what Malay cooking is all about.

These, along with Malay “kuih” or desserts are among an extensive spread of eats laid out in a buffet which will be rotated during the month of Ramadan (RM143.30 nett for adults/RM70.95 nett for a child from 7pm – 10.30pm will be available till 24 June, 2017).


And for those who are not in Penang during the upcoming holy month, a Balik Kampung (homecoming) Buffet Lunch (RM98.30 nett) on June 25 & 26 is available if family members simply want to chill, enjoy (almost close to) home cooking and give their home cooks a break. Children (aged between 6 and 12) are charged RM49.15 nett for this promotion. (The hotel requires that full payment is made one week prior to the dining date for this festive promotion)


Details and reservations, call +604-2222000 ext 3139/3151.