Friday, April 12, 2019

Ipoh, Perak - Nava K Discovery (Day 1)

Ipoh. Mum's motherland. Mum “Made In Ipoh” and at 14, yep, I said it loud and clear, at 14 years old, mum married to dad, before making Kuala Lumpur as her next hometown. 3 years later, Nava K  “Made In Sungei Besi”. In one of the government houses across the army camp which don't exist anymore. Of course, obviously, nine months later? Aha! Nava K crawling out of mum's worm in Kuala Lumpur General Hospital and Ipoh, mum’s heritage? Part and parcel of my life as well. Mostly visiting grandparents during school holidays until Ipoh becoming a permanent full-stop. Due to grandparents themselves uprooting their Ipoh roots from Kampung Paloh for joining us in Kuala Lumpur. Whatever it may have been, Ipoh in tandem to mum's and my background? Those teen years of mine specifically in Ipoh? Walking to the river side for idling my time away, staying in the traditional wooden long house and making it a point in regularly slurping into "Ice Bola” and “Bread Ice-Cream”. Those good old memories? Unforgettable and still, mind you, glued on my mind till this day.   

Friday, April 5, 2019

Pachai Sundakkai Kulambu (Fresh Turkey Berry Curry)


Fresh turkey berries, also known as wild eggplant or terung pipit among Malaysians like myself, are a delightful ingredient in many dishes. Growing up with Malay neighbors, I've developed a deep love for Malay cuisine, often calling turkey berries by their Malay name, terung pipit.

These berries are not only enjoyed in raw salads, known as ulam, dipped in a spicy sauce, but also shine in cooked dishes. My first attempt at a stir-fried turkey berry dish was a success, and I'll share that recipe after introducing you to Pachai Sundakkai Kulambu (Fresh Turkey Berry Curry).

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

Bentong, Pahang (Nava K's Discovery)


Embarking on another adventure (BETONG THAILAND) to Bentong, Pahang, with my favorite travel buddies was a delightful spur-of-the-moment decision. They're the kind who enjoy the thrill of trying new foods and are always up for a relaxed journey. With no set plans, we hit the road on a leisurely weekday, letting the road guide us.

Bentong, once a quiet town, now buzzes with life. We were caught off guard by the bustling traffic and the hunt for parking in the town center. After some maneuvering and a stroke of luck, we found a spot and set off on foot to explore the coffee shops.Between these, we agreed upon Thong Kee Kopitiam, a bustling hub even at 11:00am. We ordered Wanton Mee, Pan Mee, Chicken Rice, and hot beverages. The food was satisfying, though not mind-blowing - comfort fare found throughout Malaysia.

Saturday, November 24, 2018

Betong, Thailand: A Discovery


Before heading for lunch, (BETONG: ADVENTURES) we decided it made sense to explore the sights on the way. I requested a stop at Namtok Inthason Waterfall. The atmosphere was serene, almost eerily quiet with no one else around, which put us on edge. We spent less than 10 minutes there, but the surrounding nature and cascading water provided a truly soothing moment of relaxation.

Heading to the Winter Flower Garden didn’t really win us over, even though it's a popular spot with busloads of tourists. Despite the diverse array of blooms with unique shapes, sizes, colors, and fragrances, it didn’t make much of an impact on us. After a brief 15-minute stroll, we were ready to move on to lunch.

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Betong, Thailand: Adventures Off the Beaten Path


What a night at Betong Merlin Hotel, Yala (BETONG PART 1). It was noisy until early morning, even past 6 am. Women’s laughter echoed from rooms and corridors, accompanied by banging and slamming doors, making it feel like they were banging on my room door as well. It must have been the aftereffects of Betong nightlife. Before heading to bed, I could see the lively nightlife of Betong from my window, with music blasting away.

By 7:00 am, after showering, I headed down to the lobby. Joined by a couple, we ventured out looking for breakfast. There was no shortage of coffee shops, much like those in Malaysia. Between the roadside stalls, hawker carts, and coffee shops, we settled on a particular one with a signboard in Thai. We tucked into Char Kway (Chinese Crullers) and other fried dough with coffee - a satisfying start to the day, warming our tummies.

Saturday, October 6, 2018

Betong, Thailand (Nava K's Weekend Tripping)


Betong? I wondered, where is Betong? What’s there to see in Betong? These were my questions when a couple, a husband and wife, invited me to join them on a trip to Betong. It didn’t really matter where Betong was or what it offered, as I'm always ready to explore new places, especially on a road trip. Having just quit my job as a Senior Lecturer to pursue other interests, I had the time. I soon found out that Betong is a town in Southern Thailand, near the Malaysian border.

With bags packed for a weekend trip, we set off on Friday morning for a three-day adventure. By 9:00 AM, we hit the road, and the drive through Pengkalan Hulu, Perak, on narrow, winding roads was breathtaking. Towering trees and untouched virgin jungle lined both sides of the road, offering us a scenic, mind-soothing view until we reached the border.

Monday, September 10, 2018

Surakarta (Solo) - Jogyakarta

The last day. In fact, the finale. The finale to our sightseeing before we permanently bid bye-bye to Yogyakarta. That's right everyone. Our last day to sightseeing which will put a permanent full-stop before we pack our bags and return home next morning. Will I return to "Jogja" again? I don't think so (Jogyakarta Part 3 & Jogyakarta Part 2) because I am one person who seldom travel venture to the same destination again and I think we have to a certain extent already achieved much in terms of Jogja sightseeing. Or maybe, just saying, there are other sightseeing spots we have missed out? Then again, what else can you do in Jogja? (Mount Merapi Tour & Borobudur Yogyakarta)? You tell me. For those of you who have already travel conquered Jogyakarta at the back of your hands, maybe you will be the best person who can tell?    

Karaikudi Kozhi Kuzhumbu/Chicken Curry

Karaikudi chicken curry, a delightful South Indian dish from Tamil Nadu's Chettinad region, is famed for its bold, spicy, and aroma...