Street Food : Bak-Kut-Teh (Part 1) - Y3K Recipes issue no.65 (3/4-2012)

Bak-Kut-Teh Trail in Klang

by Contributor - Irene Chua

Mr Richard Er and wife Catherine Chia visited me in Klang and our conversation centered on the most popular Bak-Kut-Teh eateries in Klang. It can be quite a task to unravel of who’s the best as each individual has his or her own discretion.

Of course we gave the challenge to our Feng Shui Master B. E. Loh who is a foodie at heart. He may not be a Klang resident but over the past 20 to 30 years, he has had been savouring this brew very, very often.

Gastronomically speaking, Klang is hugely famous for seafood and Bak-Kut-Teh. Klangites are generally Hokkiens so the soup is darker in colour and often served with an oily rice. But in Kuala Lumpur, Johor or Singapore, white rice goes well with a light soup and has a more Teochew flavour.

Many people embroiled in the issue of how Bak-Kut-Teh originated. The pioneer could be the old Lee Boon who served a traditional home-town pork soup with fried lard rice. Some coolies (labourers) brought in some herbs and in it went into the porky soup. The new recipe was born and underwent many changes later on to become the herbal soup of today. It has become very much a sought after food for many tourists.

Originally the different huge cuts of meat were served in big bowls individually with the herbal soup and rice separately. But slowly over the years, the claypot combination was introduced with vegetables, beancurd, offals and mushrooms being packed into a lighter version herbal stock. And recently the Dry Bak-Kut-Teh version was created thus a new specialty has been added on.

There may be well over 400 plus stalls selling this herbal soup all over Klang area. Isn’t that rather difficult to track down who serves a better herbal soup.

Well, Bak-Kut-Teh range can be divided into different sections of the town:

1. Taman Rashna and Taman Berkeley.

2. Jalan Besar ( under the bridge or next to the police station). There are two shops here wanting to be known as the Bak-Kut-Teh pioneer.

3. Jalan Teluk Pulai.

4. Pandamaran New Village.

If you want something good, follow Master Loh on his gastronomy Bak-Kut-Teh trail from the next Y3k issue onwards.

No comments: