FOOD PORN : PENANG

It’s an understatement to state that Penang offers a variety of food choices because food options in this part of Malaysia is limitless! It’s as diverse as its people (Malay, Indian and Chinese). However, since taste is subjective, one may be easily satisfied with affordable and delicious dim sum from food stalls in the streets, popularly known as hawkers, while others would not be pleased to eat some dishes if tolerance to spice can’t be stretched. Nonetheless, there’s a plate in Penang for every palate.

When Rob, one of our good friends of almost 2 decades decided to go to 3 key cities of Malaysia (Kota Kinabalu, Penang and Kuala Lumpur) for his 1-whole-week of lone backpacking trip, I thought of playing the best tour guide to him but I guess my 7-month-stay here in Penang isn’t enough to meet the part (The story deserves another post). 😦  Part of the plan (if there was any, haha!) was to showcase to him the flavors of this island (read : food trip!) I reminded him just before he went here that it’s a must for first-time-tourist to taste the place’s staple food; and one of Penang’s favorites is Nasi Lemak

That was my plate. I didn’t know that Rob developed allergy toward chicken. Chicken is a part of that dish served with roasted peanuts, cucumber slices, cup of rice traditionally cooked in coconut cream, hard boiled egg, dried anchovies, and sambal, yes its hot and spicy sauce. Nasi Lemak simply means fatty rice; it needs no further explation with its ingredients. A colleague once said that this Malaysian dish can last you throughout the day.

All happiness depends on a leisurely breakfast.  ~John Gunther

Some people categorize food into meal times. We don’t. My family and closest friends can eat almost anything regardless if it’s breakfast, lunch or dinner. I call it pure talent. haha! 😀 We are one with those people who like breakfast-all-day menus. Here are some breakfast foods for some which we had for our early light dinner…

Who doesn’t like buttered toasts?

We brought our best friend to one of my favorite simple food places along Jalan Burma (Burma Road) in Georgetown. It’s called Santorini…

Santorini’s Chinese-owned restaurant without intimidating ambiance. I cannot recall a visit without me ordering this dish previously known as Seafood Rice Combo but now labeled on their menu as Butterine Prawns and Mantis Rice…It’s sufficient to ease out all worries and fatigue from a day’s work. In other words, it’s one of my comfort foods. Sarap!

My wife, Tina opted to have Sambal Rice… tolerable spiciness served with prawns and herbs.

Our 6-year-old kiddie, Gabby went British in ordering Fish and Chips…

While Rob’s first meal in Penang wasn’t a local dish but nonetheless looks so pescetarian to me (he is, actually). He finished this veggie-pasta plate; it’s either it was that good or his trip from Kota Kinabalu to Penang was tiring for him.

We washed everything down with refreshingly good iced teas of berries and lemon flavors.

Then the next morning, we left the hotel in the island at 6AM and took our breakfast at a roofed-hawker-place somewhere 30-min from Georgetown.

Warm broth from this prawn noodle dish in hot claypot can be soothing for an empty tummy.

Rob and Gabby had bowls of Fish Congee and a bun of kaya…

I wanted to eat Char Koay Teow that morning but the vendor said that ingredients were still yet to be sourced from a nearby public market, so I ended up having another noodle dish with taste similar to CKT…

If food choices are as wide as the Penang blue sky, so do drinks…Tina and I shared in Iced Coffee, Gabby had Iced Milo and Rob tried Wheat grass which tasted like sago’t gulaman to me; sarap pamatid-uhaw!

Lunch last Thursday was superb; in fact I lost superlatives to describe its goodness. Rob treated us to this buffet place in Plaza Gurney called Seoul Garden. It’s like Tong Yang and Yakimix in Manila or close to the authentic yakiniku in Don K! in Tokyo

You get to grill your prawns, beef, fish and chicken strips while boiling your preferred soup; we chose Abalone broth as our soup base.

The spread in Seoul Garden is more than what your appetite can handle…

We also feasted at salads, dim sums, fried chicken, potatoes, fried spring rolls and more…

And the world is always a happier place to live in because of ice cream, is it not?

It’s one of the best vanilla ice cream I’ve tasted; it’s creamy vanilla enriched with chocolate sprinkles; sinfully delicious! They’ve other flavors like raspberry, mango, corn even durian! 

Great tasting food + company of loved ones = what more can you ask for?

It was a day and half of food tripping with my family and our best friend who paid us a visit here in Penang. We might not have brought him to the most authentic food places like hawkers at Gurney Drive and food stalls in Lebuh Chulia and other parts of Georgetown but I am betting my last ringgit that he definitely enjoyed his hours with us. 🙂

Until my family’s next gastronomic adventure! 🙂

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31 thoughts on “FOOD PORN : PENANG

    1. sa sarap nakalimutan ko ang pangalan ng noodle dish na yun! haha..
      totoo nyan, masyado maaga noon para matandaan ko ang name ng dish; sleepy head pa ako siguro, haha!

      nasa KL pa si Rob until Monday. balita ko magbrunch kayo sa Circles sa Makati Shangri la. *inggit ako!* it’s one of our favorites in Manila, kasama ang dusit sunday brunch syempre para sa amin ni tina at gabby!

  1. ohmygulay, definitely porn!:p
    these stimulate my imagination kahit katatapos ko lang mag lunch.:p the Seoul Garden spread is mouth-watering. i could almost taste the abalone soup. *slurp*

  2. grabe i thought you ate all that in just one day hehehe ang sarap naman especially the buffet food. I just had my lunch right now and after seeing i want to eat more hahaha.

    1. hi marian! hindi naman 1 day lang namin kinain yan, one and half day! hahaha!

      lam mo naman walang bisyo ang pamilya namin kundi kumain… lagi sa buffet! haha, :p

  3. You photograph food so well…it’s making my mouth water! I visited Penang last year for a holiday and enjoyed it so much, it is a beautiful part of the world. Loved your post, it’s so positive!

        1. wow, thank you! you’re welcome to view my previous posts (madaming features sa right side bar)… and you may drop the ‘sir’; you may call me docgelo or gelo would be fine. i’ll visit your blog soon. terima kasih from penang!

  4. .. of course i enjoyed the food tour with you gelo! specially i was w/ tina & gabbby.

    .. i’m now a fan of wheatgrass drink! i also had a dinner buffet last night at restoran seri melayu in kl, all were malaysian dishes!

    1. kulang ang 2D-2N sa penang; there’s more of this island that you have to see, smell, feel, hear (parang sensory replays ah!) now that’s primary reason for you to visit us back. thanks for everything, rob! see you again and hopefully soon!

    1. hi gael, when are you coming over to malaysia? will you drop by penang? sana weekend ano, so i can meet you. (nag insist!)… hehe… mura lang food dito, mas mura ang cost of living kumpara sa manila (except for few things like education and others).

  5. ang sarap naman. kaya ko yung anghang kaya lang di ko masyadong type ung super spicy (maraming spices).

    bat solo lang si rob. sure madaming volunteer pag nag aya sha.

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