Ho Boh Hakka, Ping Wah Hainanese & Hoi Kee Henghua

January 31, 2015

Delving into the diversity of Chinese cooking at three eateries, starting with Ho Boh, a trove of Hakka recipes in Puchong.

I'm half-Hakka & completely love 'lei cha,' the mix of pounded tea, nuts, grains & herbs that's often considered an acquired taste. Ho Boh does a satisfactory version, costing a reasonable RM8 for a fibre-rich serving with brown rice & anchovies.

Green is good - Ho Boh also does 'lei cha'-style pan mee & fried rice; both taste more wholesome & nutritious than the norm.

Ho Boh isn't a vegetarian outlet though - there's fowl play afoot, from brown ginger duck to equally aromatic yellow wine egg

Abacus beads, another cornerstone of the Hakka culinary heritage, alongside lotus roots, a perennial family favourite.

Next up: I'm also half-Hainanese, which makes Ping Wah in PJ's Taman Paramount an extremely easy recommendation.

There's a feast of comforting soul food here - savoury braised potato with pork (RM8) to tangy fish maw with pineapples (RM12) & the piece de resistance, which you might spot on every table: Hainanese-style fluffy 'choy poh' egg (RM8).

Ping Wah's crispy village duck (RM24) seems a bit dry, but it does come in a hearty portion; meanwhile, the village chicken with crispy 'choy poh' (preserved turnip) is tasty but pricey at RM18 for a less substantial serving. The deep-fried senangin fish with ginger & soy sauce (RM4.50 per 100 grams) & fried bitter gourd are both serviceable.

Final stop: Hoi Kee, a Henghua neighbourhood restaurant in Taman Desa that gets exceptionally crowded in the evenings.

Oysters run riot on Hoi Kee's menu; have 'em with mee sua in broth (RM30) or fried in an omelette (RM26), both nutty & nice.

Claypot fish maw with stewed mushrooms (RM48) supplies steaming-hot, soupy nourishment for a stormy evening; boneless chicken wings stuffed with ham & mushrooms (RM15 for six pieces) are also delicious. Ginger fish head (RM38) Heng Hwa fried veggies (RM22) both taste encouragingly wholesome enough to endorse.

Ho Boh, 21A Jalan TK 1/11a, Taman Kinrara Seksyen 1, Puchong. Tel: 03-8076-8329
Ping Wah, Jalan 20/12a, Taman Paramount, Petaling Jaya. Tel: 03-7875-8987
Hoi Kee, 16, Jalan 1/109e, Taman Desa Business Park, Kuala Lumpur.

Check out the latest edition of Eat Drink KL: 100 Favourites, featuring 100 recommended restaurants for January-March 2015. This eBook is available to read or download at this link: http://eatdrinkkl.cld.bz/2015 
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