Breakfast @ Pasir Penampang

After our somewhat expensive lunch, the parents suggested we go to Tanjung Karang to do something fun the next day. They refused to tell me what exactly would we be doing, so my fibbing alert was on.

You can’t blame me, the last time they said we were doing something fun, I ended up joining them for a session of ionic detox therapy which did nothing for me at all. Still, it was what they wanted, so… 🙄

So the following day, we woke up early and left the house before 8 AM. Me, me parents, and me sister. The brother declined to join, I think he already knew what was in store. Tsk!

Anyway, it was until we all got into the car when dad announced that we should have breakfast first along the way, because after doing that fun thing, we would have to wait 2 hours before we can eat again. Darn! WTF is that thing??

So he told me to search for Penampang first on my Waze app. Took me awhile because all the Penampang I could get was Penampang, Sabah. Surely we’re not gonna drive across the South China Sea and the whole stretch of Sarawak to get there?

Turns out, Penampang was actually Pasir Penampang. Kuala Selangor. 79 kilometers away and just over 10 kilometers away from Tanjung Karang. Phew…

So off we went, and three (or was it four) tolls later, finally arrived.

Pasir Penampang is like a typical tiny township in Malaysia. When we say township here, it is basically two rows of shops along one of those cross-country main roads stretching anywhere between 500 meters to 1 kilometer. That’s it.

There’s a row of kopitiams (Chinese style coffee shops) on one side, with a bunch of food stalls in front of these kopitiams. This was where we were headed.

I was shocked to learn that although these kopitiams operate independently, you can cross order food from one coffee shop and have it at another coffee shop. The only things you cannot cross order are the drinks. Hmm… interesting…

Based on dad’s recommendation, we picked this shop to sit in…

Why? Because dad has a friend who knows this area well and strongly recommended it due to them being Hainanese and thus having better drinks quality.

Fun fact: when the British imported Chinese labor into Malaysia, apparently we were segregated by our main professions. The Cantonese and Hokkien people are the majority and we dominated the tin mining sector. The Hainanese were mostly into the food industry, serving as cooks for the tin mining workers and yes… to establish kopitiams for these same people.

So, Hainanese = pioneers in kopitiams, therefore Hainanese drinks = better.

We took advantage of the cross ordering convenience and ordered a lot of this and that to try.

Clockwise from bottom: pork noodles (for me, obviously), wantan noodles, loh mee (braised noodles), economic bihun (already finished when I took this picture), and some titbits for sharing in the middle. And the coffee
Titbit #1: Roasted pork 烧肉, because why not?
Titbit #2: Hainanese toast 古早味海南面包

Till this day, I have no idea what 古早味 really means. If we translate it literally, it means… ancient early flavors. So I guess, nostalgic flavor? Just like it used to be in the past? Anyway I was impressed with the knife skills on this one, it was made using 1 slice of bread, further sliced in the middle. I don’t know I should applaud the uncle‘s skills or be frustrated with his stinginess.

Titbit #3: Half boiled village eggs 正宗菜园鸡蛋

Village egg means egg produced organically in village chicken farms as opposed to commercial chicken factories. Healthier I suppose.

Well, the food was… alright, I suppose. Good? Yes. But it isn’t something you should travel 79 kilometers from KL to feast yourself with. I’m sure you could find something equally good closer to the city.

I wouldn’t deny it would be a nice experience for people who has never visited a rural township before. This is a place where the shop operators speak next to no English. And they would be loud and abrasive (some would call this rude). And there would be no air conditioning. And the environment might not be so comfortable. But it’s rustic… and that’s kind of cool, no?

Oh, yes, the coffee. How could I forget about the coffee here. The coffee here was… really gao (thick), and it would do  perfect job of jolting you awake from slumber. But it is also very sweet. They used too much sugar/sweetener to our city tongue’s liking. So it would be wise when you come to rural places like this to request for less sweet when placing your drinks order.


  1. Hainanese toast, that would be kaya toast I’m guessing. The breakfast really looks good. Those half boiled eggs look really good, good to pour all over the toast 🙄 Usually if I eat this big a breakfast I will forgo lunch and wait for dinner 😛

    I thought slicing bread was easy. I never had a problem with that, and the bread edges turn out sharp 🙄

    • Next time you come visit me, I buy you Gardenia bread, you show me how you slice them… OMG so many people have mad knife skills around me!

      • Or maybe you will visit me first 😉 Then you can try to bring the Gardenia bread into Oz. You better. Because I really miss eating Gardenia bread 😀 I really cannot remember it being that hard to cut bread in a straight line 🙄

        • Why the fuck would I bring Gardenia into Oz?? The airport security might give me shit for bringing insult to the country, as if Oz has no bread. XD

            • This lazy girl, if she wants to eat Gardenia, then I suggest she get on the plane and come back instead. 🙄 😛

  2. 古早 is hokkien word for “long, long time ago” (gu zhar). Taiwanese direct translate the sound into Mandarin and it became 古早. So 古早味 means something that still remains the same like long, long time ago esp for food.

    • Oooo… so it is Hokkien… oh yeah I know the word “gu zhar”, heard it in the office a lot. So… nostalgic flavor is kind of right too… 🙄

  3. What a lovely parents you have who still play mystery games! LOL
    I am waiting to hear the Part 2 sequel ok.
    I often traveled to many small towns across East & West Malaysia some 10 years ago to attend prayer sessions in various temples. Their quaint and laid back lifestyle often made me wonder how they survived at night. No wonder they had broods of children.

    My wife who grew up serving coffee since 4 years old at her parent’s road side stall, is an expert in slicing these toasted breads with kaya stuffed inside. She does it even with normal sliced Gardenia bread!! I like the taste and crisps!

      • Oops, on second look, the shape looks like those pre-cut Gardenia bread coz the traditional loaves have a rounded top….I jumped the gun when you said Hainanese toast, my bad. Then the uncle has got some mad knife skills…like TM’s wife! 😀 But then I wouldn’t applaud the uncle’s skills…hey, this is supposed to be Hainanese toast (some more it’s in a small town), it should be made with traditional bread! >_<

  4. Aiyo, the uncle’s knife skills nothing special-lah. All kopitiams that use the true original traditional bread loaves (not the pre-cut Gardenia shit) can be easily sliced in the middle especially after toasting (coz this one piece of bread is thicker than norm and they even do it to the steamed version). I’m wondering what your parents’ definition of a fun thing to do is! 😉

    • I must be too jakun to know that this so-called mad knife skills is actually nothing special. I haven’t had breakfast in rural places since I was a kid, and I didn’t really pay attention to these things back then.

      Heh… wait for it… although when I reveal the fun thing, it might disappoint you… 🙄

  5. I would prefer this kind of places to makan than air-con food courts as this kind of places, the foods is nicer…

  6. I know what your parents did. They find you a suitor 😛

    Coming back to coffee, I doubt they’ll do it kurang manis for you even if you asked them too. They’ll be afraid it wont be nice. They can never understand that sometimes, some people out there likes it less sweet. I take my coffee without sugar. Lagi keng! 😀

    • You are the second person who noted that they’ll not do less sweet even if we ask. I think you and Mun grow up with these stuff so you know best huh. 😛

    • Good lah, travel here more please. Although JB doesn’t count as rural place. You need to venture further in. 😛

  7. I like roasted pork! but never hav it for breakfast 🙁
    so, this should be ur brunch? 2 hours without food later….I wonder what kind of activity is that? ur family seems kinda fun, sporting and ‘suspense’…they really can keep secret for long…LOL!

    • You should try it sometimes you know. But you need to wake early enough to go to pasar. Buy economic bihun and roasted pork, yumssss…

  8. I don’t think they will put less sweet even if you specially ask for it lah, them being them. I can’t wait to see what your parents have in store for you and your sister – can’t eat for two hours after that fun activity – hhmmmm. Your brother is smart!

  9. This is a great write up with concise explanations of items that may not be familiar with some of your readers.

    I like the idea of cross-ordering. I don’t think I have ever come across it before.

    The chap chai and the kuih caught my eyes.

    It’s a long way to travel. Sometimes, it’s nice to have a change of scenery or do something a bit different/interesting but it does call for someone with a curious nature and it does not suit everyone.

    • For me, I would love a change of scenery on and off, but I am too lazy for it, so if left alone, I will usually just stick to somewhere familiar and within my comfort zone. Adventures are best left for when you are with friends/family. 😛

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