Archive for November, 2010

We had a visitor at the office (read : free food) who required halal food, I have checked with PW a few days before on  where can we find halal restaurant around Butterworth area and she recommended Pen Mutiara

Pen Mutiara was not that difficult to find  and the main hurdle was actually finding a parking space. After circling the area twice we managed to spot a Proton with the gostan light on and we patiently waited for the car to back out of the precious parking space and made it our own.

Pen Mutiara was crowded ! We tried to  intimidate / coaxed  the waiter to allow us to have our meals upstairs ( air –conditioned ) but as we failed to meet the criteria ( min 10 pax ) we had to take our place at the ground floor and make do with the kipas

For drinks all four of us decide to try the recommended Limau with asam boi (lime with preserved lime), RM1.50 /glass , but doing some quick math , it was more worthwhile to order by the jug (RM8/jug) and this was a good decision as we get our refills too. (I think we got about 7 glass out of the jug). And the drink was good, refreshing with a bit of a tanginess from the lime, excellent for a hot day.

We have to have rice (RM1.50/pax )

Telur dadar (RM6) –fluffy and nice.

Claypot curry ikan bawal ( pompret) ( RM5/pc of ikan) – this came in a big claypot swimming with lady fingers , tomatoes and slices of ikan bawal, the curry looked kinda hot but wasn’t too spicy. The fish was very fresh. Nice.

 Kailan with salted fish (RM14) , couldn’t really spot the salted fish ( although when I saw the picture taken of this dish (below) the big piece of fish bone seemed to be evidence) but the characteristic fragrant of salted fish was prominent. The kailan were fresh and crunchy. This was good

Chicken paprika (RM16) – . Initially we thought the waiter had delivered the wrong dish –  this dish was a bit confusing, we don’t see chicken we only saw the vegetables ! The chicken pieces ( few and far between) were dwarfed by the long beans, baby corn, cauliflower and carrots. Taste wise, this was a mixture of sweet and spiciness. Average lah

Overall, a fulfiling and enjoyable meal and I think we will be back for more !

 Website :


Location :

No 17 & 19, Jalan Selat

12000 Taman Selat.


04 3101759

For location map, please click here  :

Pen Mutiara has another outlet over at Penang Island

 Batu Maung restaurant
Pen Mutiara Restaurant
Wisma Nelayan
Pelabuhan LKIM Batu Maung
11960 Bayan Lepas, Penang.
Tel: 04 626 4615 or 626 1084

Maneuvered my working schedule in Penang so that it spread to the weekend, in order to  meet up with the gang ( as well as meet up with Penang food)

Successfully  detaching ourselves from AhChern energetic kids, we got into the car and the familiar question ‘where to go to ?’ remained unanswered , I sat back and let the two Penangites decide , i am not local mahh. We headed off to Jalan Bayu Mutiara and decided to try out Q Wok Nyoya Food

 The place looked spic and span with kopitiam inspired marble table tops coupled with similarly themed chairs.

We were presented with the menu where on the front page was a portrayal of the owner We spent a few serious minutes in silence to contemplate the menu . You can view the menu online by clicking here

We decided to go for – Nam Joo ribs,  Daun Kadok Omelet,  claypot curry fishhead and vege ( bayam) with wolfberries.

Nam Joo ribs ( RM4.50) – this was an appetizer therefore the serving was rather small. The ribs were deep fried then sliced – the outer surface was crunchy and the inner section was smooth and tender with subtle aroma of namyue . Not bad..

Daun Kadok Omelet (RM6.00) , the omelet was packed with daun kadok , the daun kadok taste was strong and distinctive , this would probably not be a safe dish to order if you have familiar with  daun kadok, the taste might be a put off for some. This was rather ok. Other choices of omelet include Cincalok ( I think this should be rather interesting ) or onions

Claypot Curry Fishhead ( RM25.00) – we ooh and ahh over the dish when it arrived, the steam, the colour , the expectations , the uncontrolled  flow of  saliva … There was half a fishhead in the pot, a rather meaty fish too and no complaints in terms of the freshness of the fish. This dish  was rather spicy and before long, there were sniffs all around the table, big gulps of drinks and plenty of rice were quickly consumed to reduce the fieriness in our mouth. The tender ladies fingers went well with curry. This was enjoyable.

Vegetable ( bayam) with wolfberries (RM6.00) – the bayam was tender and there were wolfberries and prawns in the dish too. For me , this was a weird dish as it was sweet . I am not sure if this was due to the wolfberries or the prawns but it didn’t work for me.

The dishes above plus drinks ( 2  water chestnut with sugar cane plus QLime juice ) and rice came to RM50, which was probably reasonable

Overall – service , ambiance and cleanliness was good, as for the food, based on what we ordered- this was average – probable a safe place to go where you won’t get miserable food , but it also probably won’t have that ‘wow, I have to  go again tomorrow ’ kinda feeling

Hours :- ( probably one of the more complicated hours I have seen for eataries)

Mon – Closed

Tue- Thurs – 11 am to 3:30 pm ( closed for dinner)

Fri – Sat – 11:00 am to  3:30 pm  6:00p.m – 10:00 pm

Sun  10:00 am – 10:00pm

 Q Wok Nyonya Curry House
36&38 Jalan Bayu Mutiara 1,
Bayu Mutiara,
14000 Bukit Mertajam.
Tel: 04-5071181


Sepetang by day ….

Sepetang kopitiam is my favourite place for breakfast

Pan Mien – yummylicious pan mien  at RM4 / bowl. Smooth noodles and tasty soup. Apart from the usual variety of pan mien ( pinched, cut, fine or not-so-fine noodles ) , yee-mien, mee sua are also available;  for vegetables : you can opt for the sayur manis or the usual choy sum. Also you can choose to have the pork or fish paste base, the fish paste version  is rather fishy ( a bit too fishy for me). The sambal is yumyummy

 Jawa mee (RM4/plate) – I like jawa mee and it is not so common to find Jawa mee in the usual hawker centre around KL ( that is what I think) ,   before Sepetang, I had to get my Jawe mee fix during my trips to Penang. The ones served at Sepetang is reasonably ok, the gravy is creamy and tasty, the deep fried fritters , the soft mushy potatoes…Hor aahh , I like jawa mee

Kolo mee , Hakka mee ( RM4/plate) , the meatballs can be a bit floury , but the noodles, the (colourless) gravy and the tasty minced meat make up for it .

Other things to try :

Nasi lemak and kuihs- I hadn’t tried the nasi lemak but judging from the queue ( which can be very long)  this must be ok guarr..i have tried the kuihs though  – they are pretty ok..

Vegetarian noodles – this is  behind the nasi lemak stall. Good variety of dishes ( try out the sambal petai if you see it, it is  good ) to go with bee-hoon, kuih teow or fat noodles.

NB: apart from the sitting area at the kaki lima ( 5 feet way), in the kopitiam proper, walk to the back of the shop and there are many more tables ( and it’s not as stuffy too) set up at the back of the shop

Sepetang by night


I think the name Sepetang by night is not very accurate as the stall I am referring to is set up outside ( in front) of the kopitiam. This is a one-stall-do-all type of stall, where you can order dishes to go with rice , or stand alone meals like fried noodles, wat tharn hor, sweet and sour pork rice, black pepper beef rice etc etc etc. The menu :


The stall is operated by this chinese guy who does wonders with the wok . The downside is- be prepared to wait for up to 20 – 30 minutes-which is common, My record was  having to wait 45 minutes for a plate of hokkien mee during peak hours. But waiting is interesting as you get to see this guy in action, the frying, the chopping, the washing , the serving, I always watch closely and try to remember what I saw  –hoping to recreate these wonderful dishes back in my kitchen ( oh ya..dream on)

My favourite order from the stall is hokkien mee, fat noodles coated in oily black sauce and with plenty of chue-yau-char ( lard).Oh gawd..i have cravings for this all the time …and the guilt after consuming a plate of this sinfully wonderful noodles,  laden with trans-fat ( this the good or the bad fat ? I forgot) and all things not healthy. they keep on telling us on tv ..i am worth it

Char koay teowLocation :

Locate the main road of Taman Desa – Jalan Desa Utama,  travel until you see TM Point (u shouldn’t miss this – this is a tall building with blue tinted glass panels by the road side),then make a turn into Jalan Desa Bakti. drive around the block and you should see  Restoran Sepetang