Archive for June, 2011

Tibicos 雪莲

Posted: June 30, 2011 in Things To Do
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I first heard about tibicos from a colleague who,  after a blood test found that her blood sugar levels were way beyond normal, she frantically search for a cure through the grapevine and someone recommended her tibicos and after taking 2 weeks of tibicos drinks, her diabetis was cured. I must say I am a skeptic, so fast mehh..if the effect is so fast, it’s extra worrying ! There must be sone inaccuracies with the initial blood test.

Sorry, you might be wondering what this tibicos thingy is , extracted from Wikipedia : it is a  culture of bacteria and  yeast held in a polysaccharide matrix created by the bacteria. As with kefir grains, the microbes present in tibicos act in symbiosis to maintain a stable culture. Tibicos can do this in many different sugary liquids, feeding off the sugar to produce lactic acid, alcohol (ethanol) , and carbon dioxide  gas which carbonates the drink.

Anyway, this prompted some further web searches and wowww, tibicos seemed to be a miracle cure, from :  blood circulation, arthrithis ,  skin allergy, anti-aging, migraines, cancer, diabetes, heart disease, digestive system, weight reduction…too good to be true ? I then tried searching  for side effects / the bad press  , but couldn’t find much information. With that in mind, a few of us at the office, decide to start cultivating tibicos.

 To start with  you must have some tibicos, tibicos multiply easily, you will have double or triple with what you start with within weeks, so ask around, there might be people in your neighbourhood who will be more than willing to pass some to you. If you are from around KL and is interested to get your hands on some tibicos, you can leave me a note.

Below are steps on how to cultivate tibicos:

Tibicos should not come into contact with steel /metal , so all the utensils should be non-metal. Plastic , glass, ceramic are ok.

The hardwares 

A clean glass jar with lid , the size of the jar depend on how much of tibicos you are planning to cultivate, e.g :  Nescafe and Horlicks jars are suitable size , I am using a tau-chu (fermented bean) jar too ;

Plastic sieve,  spoon, bowls, bottles to keep the drink. 

 The softwares :

Drinking water (  some websites suggested to only use mineral water) , I am using boiled filtered water which seemed to be working ok.

Brown sugar – from experience- the brown sugar used for baking /making tea doesn’t seemed to work well, The type of sugar I am using is shown below. (RM2.30 for 500g) available at Chinese medicine shop and supermarkets.  My colleagues uses the brown /black  sugar from the Chinese medicine shop , cost about RM1.70/packet. The type of sugar brought at the Indian grocery shop also seemed to be ok. Molasses doesn’t work

 Method

  1. Scoop tibicos into the glass jar, fill up to 1/3 or 1/2 of the jar.
  2. Prepare the sugar solution. There are a few different school of thoughts , some websites suggest for every 3 scoop of tibicos, use 1 scoop of sugar. Some suggest a 1:1 ratio. For me, I am diluting 2 soupspoon of sugar into 1 cup of water. Dissolve the sugar and sieve if necessary (depend on the type of sugar you use,  some sugar have residue)
  3. Pour the sugar liquid into the jar containing tibicos.
  1.  Place lid over the jar and leave for 5 days , avoid direct sunlight . Again, several school of thoughts, some say leave 24 hours, some 48hrs. the best benchmark is the drink should not be sweet, if it’s sweet, that means that the process is not yet completed ( if left less than 5 days) or the tibicos are rather inactive/sickly. I leave mine for 5 days in a dark corner in the kitchen. To avoid getting ants to the jar, place the jar on a plate filled with water
  1. if everthing is in order, you will notice that there will be lots activities in the jar –  bubbles and the tibicos floating  and falling . Much more interesting than watching paint dry. Picture below is taken after 24 hours of fermentation, i can notice that the thickness of  tibicos layer had increased /tibicos had multiplied 
  1. After 5 days we are ready to harvest! Huraahhhhhh
  1. Pour the contents of the jar though a sieve and collect the solution. This solution can be kept in the fridge and you can drink it whenever you want to. The drink is mildly alcoholic ( not sure what is the alcohol content) and taste like wine. On when is the best time to take it, some said first thing in the morning, some say only after food. due to the alcoholic nature of the drink, I drink about 1/3 cup  after food, just in case I get drunk. You get a warm fuzzy feeling and if you normally get red in the face drinking alcohol, you might get the same after drinking the tibicos drink. .

 

  1. Rinse the collected tibicos with filtered water. some websites said in order to minimize contamination and oil, do  not to come into contact with the tibicos, so I just use a spoon instead of using my hand.

 

  1. Repeat 1.
  1. if you intend to take a break or the tibicos stock had multiplied and you don’t need all of them –  drain and  rinse the tibicos, pack them in a plastic bag/ non steel container and keep them in the fridge (not ice box)  until you are ready to start again

 

The effects : friends commented that their bowel movement had improved ( my bowels have been behaving, so I can’t see improvement) , a colleague commented that her father reduced his nightly shee-shee from thrice a night to one, another commented that she felt less bloated after a meal. Frankly, after about 1 month of consumption, I do not feel any significant difference, maybe it’s too soon to tell. I am waiting for my yearly blood tests in Sept to see if there are any improvement on the microscopic level. I just hope that i don’t turn into an alcoholic !

I read about Nambawan on the blog scene and most if not all has been good, to ignorant old me, the name  had a sanskrit  ring to it or somehow related to the infamous Namewee until I realise it was ‘No.1’ in disguise.

Apart from the good food, one other comments from the blogs was that it could be a long wait until one get to be fed. With that in mind, we ‘cushioned’ our belly before we head towards Taman Seri Manja that Saturday evening. Parking was a bit of a problem but after a while we managed to find a vacant lot.

We took a table near the back  of the Cafe and studied the menu, although we already had some ideas on what we were going to have even before starting the journey. The menu include but not limited to the following :

Pasta ( RM 8.90)  : Bolognese, Amatriciana, tomatoes and meatballs, squid and prawns, cheese and mushroom, cabonara and meatball Grovalax

Fish (RM 8.90) : Pan fried white fish, fish in tomato and cheese, fish and chips tartar sauce, Charboil white fish and pesto

Chicken ( RM9.90) : the menu include Pan fried chest chicken, pan fried chicken and beacon roll, crumb chicken chop, chicken in tomato sauce and cheese.

Beef and lamb : black pepper charboil tenderloin / striploin, winesauce charboil tenderloin, Grovalax charboil tenderloin/ striploin and mushroom charboil tenderloin/striploin, grilled lamb couscous onion sauce ( RM14.90) , grilled lamb butter mint sauce ( RM14.90) , mixed grill platter ( RM24.90) .

Pork and sausage : Stone charboil pork belly / pork fillet, crumb pork chop, roast pork belly. Oxford English pork sausage

Sandwich and burger ( RM 6:90 – 9.90)  : club sandwich, Beacon lettuce and tomato fill roll, grilled steak sandwich, Ciabatta, Pesto Grilled chicken, 100% home made beef /pork burger.

Fresh fruit smoothies ( RM5.90) :honey dew, papaya, banana, orange, mango, pineapple

Fresh fruit juice ( RM3.90) : Sour plum, orange, lemon, watermelon , apple or pineapple

Coffee, tea, hot chocolate, iced tea, iced lemon tea, iced coffee, coke and lemon , beer, Guinness,

Midway through studying the menu, the waitress handed us an A4 paper with  a handwritten list for  ‘specials for the day’  which included soup and Roast pork ribs.

I decided to go for watermelon juice and roast pork belly (RM14.90) , Chunny ordered pineapple juice and roast pork ribs ( RM25.90). and we get ourselves ready for a long wait. But hey, there was no long wait, the food arrived in reasonable time , we didn’t time it , but I guess it was between 15 – 20 minutes.

Our drinks : big mugs of fresh juice and they were nice and thick, Yummy..well worth the RM3.90

Roast pork belly : when this dish arrived, I was stunned by the many laters of fat….aiyoo..so much fat one lerr..but that was what pork belly is supposed to be. I can’t get myself to eat the layers of fat ( I sincerely apologize to Nambawan for this wastage ) so, I  had to cheat and ‘dissected’ the lean from the fat. Mama mia…this was exquisite, the meat was so tender and  lightly flavoured with a tinge of herbs. The charred crunchy skin was to die for….love it , love it…

Roast Pork ribs : the ribs were served on a pile of chips sans sauce, which caused a bit of a concern that it might be a bit dry, but all doubts evaporated like dew drops on the daun keladi after we bit into the ribs…the meat was soft  and succulent yet with  a bit of bite,  well marinated and with  a coat of gooey sweetish sauce . this was superb..we raved about this for ages and ages…the pig didn’t die in vain…

 An excellent meal…we will return to try out the much hyped about pork burger and the sausages..and the crows roared ‘ Nambawan, Nambawan, Nambawan… ‘

 Business hours : 12:00pm – 3:00 pm ; 6:00 p.m. – 10:00pm  . Close on Monday
No. 10 Sri Manja Square One, Taman Sri Manja
Jalan Klang Lama, 46000 Petaling Jaya
Tel:  016 2241533 ( Yap), 013 2632772 Gilbert

We had a guest at our office and as the bosses weren’t available, I was asked to take care of this particular guest. I asked Ms C to come along to keep us company and as a supplement to my not so skillful entertaining skills. Two options were offered  to the guest : steamboat or Penang food. Guest decision was to go for steamboat as she doesn’t trust the KLites to prepare a decent Penang meal. While we were on the way, Guest (henceforth identified as G) suddenly patted her crowning glory and said ‘I just washed my hair today, can we go to somewhere with air conditioned instead ?’ ok ok…and I remember having read somewhere that Lap Ming Kuan served pretty reasonable food, so we detoured and navigate towards  this new destination

It was about 6:30pm when we arrived at LMK and we were the first patron. There were two seating arrangements, non air conditioned (smokers) or air-conditioned.

I realised that it was   not easy to order food when you do not know your fellow diners well enough ;  steamed, deep fried, spicy non spicy, pork  no pork, allergies   ..aiyoyo… so it took us a bit of a time to discuss and decide,  and furthermore, the situation was not helped by the order taker who wasn’t very helpful in recommending the dishes.

We ordered a pot of tea for 2 pax (RM3) and worried about caffeine caused insomnia – I had a cup herbal tea ( RM3.50) instead

Deep Fried chicken in special sauce ( RM20) ; the chicken fillets were deep fried and had some sticky brownish sauce poured over them. This was slightly sweet but taste was ok,  the sesame seeds sprinkled over the chicken enhanced the taste. The chicken were a bit too dry which made them kinda hard and had to be chewed with some effort,  this might be more suitable to go with beer rather than with rice.

Stir fried lotus root with black fungus (RM 12), the lotus root didn’t come across as being crunchy crispy fresh but more towards starchy with a little bit of a crispiness. Apart from the root and fungus the snow peas and carrot added some variety / color to the dish. This was average.

Tofu in pumpkin ( RM25) : we ordered this because this seemed to be rather novel – tofu cooked with pumpkin. The beancurd appeared to have been stewed in some sauce and then placed on the steamed pumpkin. The beancurd was too salty ! Then we discovered the technique to eat this dish : make sure you scrap some steamed pumpkin and then eat this together with the  beancurd– this diffused the saltiness –well, eaten this way it wasn’t salty at all. I only realised the price of this dish when we were paying for the bill. RM25 for pumpkin and beancurd seemed rather expensive lerr

 Steamed garoupa ( RM30.50), from the taste, the texture  and the colour, the fish doesn’t appear to be too fresh. Taste wise it was ok. And during our meal, a couple took up the table next to ours and they too seemed to have some issues with their steamed fish which they took up with the waitress, from the bits and pieces that I heard, the waitress mentioned that the fish was fresh, these are sea fish and their meat are  harder.

 

Overall a so –so meal.

The total bill ( plus 3 order of rice) came to RM98.50. there were no service charge of government tax.

Location :

14A Faber Plaza, Jalan Desa Jaya,
Taman Desa , 58100 K.L
Tel : 79821442

Landmarks : the row of shoplot between TM Point Building and Faber Towers  , locate Taman Desa Public Bank and you will see LMK further down the road.