Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Ruby, Maribrynong

Ruby is a large pub located at Highpoint Shopping Centre, Maribrynong. It attracts a lot of uni students and families because of its "Parma Promotion" on Monday and Tuesday nights. Parma Promotion (Chicken Parmagiana) starts at 6 pm and the price corresponds with the time.

i.e. 6 pm - A$6.00
7 pm - A$7.00
8 pm - A$8.00 *and so on*

Interesting, isn't it? I wonder if there are such promotions in Malaysia...

I believe the normal price for a Chicken Parmagiana is $15.90, therefore it is a definite good value. Its very normal for pubs around Australia to have cheap food to attract customers because they then made it up with beers and drinks.

And so, J and I went there one Monday night at 5.55pm to take advantage of the A$6 meals. Heh. Already, there were a number of uni students around the lounge chatting and playing pools. I guessed that they have already placed their orders since I noticed drinks on their tables.

We placed 2 orders of Chicken Parma and a beer for J with a total bill of $15.50 at the bar. The barman then gave us a small metal stand with our number on top to bring it to our table. As we were chatting at our table, the waitresses soon bring out the parmas from the kitchen.

They were carrying 2 plates on each arm - serving 3-4 plates at a time to keep up with many hungry diners (mostly big, young uni guys).

Chicken Parmagiana for a mere $6

These meat were gigantic. J and I happy that they did not skimped out on ingredients but deep down inside, I was a little nervous because I do not think that I could finish it all.

Chicken Parmagiana on a bed of Chips with Salad

Oh, these were delicious!! These schnitzel were first pan-fried and then topped with napoli sauce and cheese and baked in the oven till the cheese melted. I took my my first bite and could taste the meaty juicy chicken - slightly tangy with tomato sauce and the rich taste of cheese. Topped up with hot cripsy chips with soft centre, eaten with dollops of ketchup, they are absolute scrumptious. The salad is dressed with simple balsamic vinegar and olive oil giving it a fresh taste. There were rockets, lettuce, onions and tomatoes. Simply refreshing!

My unfinished schnitzel

But, alas! Halfway through my meal, my tummy had expanded to to the size of a basketball and I decided to call it quits. Half a shitzel was left uneaten on my plate. J, on the other hand, finished his meal but had to waddle slowly back to the car due to being too full. It was a great dinner and is one of my favourites now. But next time, I will remember to fast the whole day first.

Level 1 Highpoint Shopping Centre, Maribyrnong, 3032.

Monday, July 30, 2007

Feast Malaysia? Or Rather, Feast Australia?

Hello everybody.

I'm sure that you have noticed that the posts contradict with the name of this blog. Forgive me because I have spent a good number of years in Melbourne studying, cooking at home and eating out alternately. Thus, I've collected food photos based on Australia, not Malaysia.

In fact, I am going back to Melbourne very soon for personal reasons, just for a couple of months though.

So, for those who come here in the hope of viewing mouth-watering Malaysian dishes (which indeed they are - yummy!), I am sincerely sorry that it wouldnt be the case as I will keep posting more on Australian food as I have a vast number of photos and review that I would like to share with you!! I might throw in a couple of home-cooked food every now and then - part of being a student overseas is to learn how to cook because of being in a tight budget.

Hope you still enjoy reading my blog!

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Sydney Trip - Part 3 (Seafood Galore)

Fisherman's Market is a must place to go in Sydney, whether for makan session purpose or sight-seeing (mostly for the former). It is crowded on most days, mostly with tourists but often locals would also go there to purchase fresh seafood. On weekends, you would need to wait at least 15 minutes to get a seat.

Fresh oysters still in their whole shells. Not for long though.

The main attractions are the oysters, I reckon. Dozens are snatched up by tourists and locals alike.

There's a man at a stall whose sole job is to pry open the fresh oysters shells. He did it very quickly and efficiently, just like when you watch those Aunties packing nasi lemak into little triangles in lighting speed. Only this time it does not involves santan rice and sambal but oysters.

Freshly Shucked Sydney Rock Oysters

Sydney is famous for its oysters, namely Sydney Rock Oysters. They are firm favourites among maaany Aussies because of its sweet flesh. My bf loooooves them.

One dozen of Sydney Rock Oysters
"Now you see them"

I don't really care for oysters, mostly because I'm not keen on eating raw food. On the other hand, with a squeeze of fresh lemon, J (bf) slurped them down in seconds. He claimed heartily that they were absolutely sweet and has a very definite taste of the sea.

"Now you don't"

An obviously skilled fishmonger filleting a massive tuna. For a fish that size, the fishmonger only took a few minutes to behead it, debone and separate it into fillets. It is amazing to watch him do it.

Artistically arranged lobsters

Ahh... if you think I've missed out on the oysters, I made it up for the lobsters. Heh. Pre-boiled lobsters are vivid orangey-red in colour casting hunger spells among many customers. The business owners were having a brisk sales. These lobsters are selling like hot cakes.

They are everywhere!!

Sweet and fleshy, these lobsters are reasonably priced - $19.80 for half/kg and 39.90 per kg. We had half each and had no problem finishing them, leaving only the vibrant shells behind.

Seafood set with half a lobster, prawns, mussels and salad.

Seafood set with half a lobster, half a dozen of oysters and salad for A$19.00. We got one of these. Very reasonably priced indeed.

Salmon caviar

Oh my, look at those roe. Look at the wonderful wonderful orangey colour it vibrates to the surrounding. The most vivid orange that you would ever see would be on these fresh caviar.

The day ended after tucking into lobsters, oysters, calamaris, prawns and scallops. It was a truly wonderful seafood-y day. If you ever happen to go to Sydney, do hop by Fisherman's Market and be prepared to have a great feast.

Sydney Trip - Part 2 (Takoyaki & Starbucks)

Can't wait to see those transformed into cute balls of yum

While we are still tucking into the warm hontous, our attentions were diverted to the takoyaki stall right next door to the hontou stall. This time, it was manned by a young Japanese lady.

It was very interesting to watch. First she will pour the rather thin liquid mixture (I would thought it would be quite thick, like cake mixture.. it was like corn flour mixture that you use to thicken gravy) containing chopped carrots and shallots into each slot.

While the mixture is cooking in the hot grill, she will add small bites of octopus tentacles or whole prawns into each slot. For a good 10 minutes, she will turn them several times to ensure that they are evenly browned.

The left and middle side as shown on the photo contains octopus. The far right which she was handling contains prawns (if you look carefully, you would see the tails poking out). Great way to attract customers, those tails.

We had 3 of each (prawns and octopus). She squirts some mayo, sweet dark sauce and sprinkled bonito flakes (my fav!). The insides are surprisingly gooey, which results in hot liquid pouring out once you bite into them. Hmmmm, I would have thought that it would be chewy since the cooking time do take quite some time. Do they need extra cooking time or is this the authentic way that these balls should be done? They're tasty nonetheless. *shrugs*

Double Chocolate Chip Ice Blended & Green Tea Ice Blended

Eating all those made us thirsty. I've got a coupon for Starbucks Coffee (buy 1 free 1) from the brochure of the hotel we were staying at. We don't have to search long. There were literally like 20 Starbucks cafes all over the city.

OMG. The chocolate one is sooooo delish.. It is wickedly thick, chockful of bits of chocolates, each slurp has to be chewed in order to swallow the big chunks of chocs. They were very generous with the choc chip and the drink does live up to its name. The green tea was just as delish, sweet with a slight bitter after taste. The cream made the drink even richer, sinful but ohh... so nicee. I couldn't find these drinks in Malaysia - not with the same generous and thick concoctions.

We had a very wonderful day, snacking along the way and did some sight-seeing. It was a great holiday (I'll never get tired of Sydney). More to come soon - seafood next (freshly shucked oysters, lobsters, etc..)

Sydney Trip - Part 1 (Hontou/Dorayaki Street Stall)

Recently I've graduated and am back in Malaysia after spending many years in wonderful Land of Down Under. While I was studying in Melbourne (5 years), I took the opportunity to travel around Australia during uni breaks - taking advantages of cheaper flights and student rates. Sydney's one of my favourites, and thats why I've been there 3 times. Lol.

Sydney Opera House and Sydney Bridge

So, therefore I thought that it would be appropriate that the first couple of posts of my blog shall be on the centre of the biggest city of Australia - a cosmopolitan city which offers a rich diversity of food.

As we (bf and I) were staying near Darling Harbour, it is only inevitable that we will be walking along the streets of Chinatown looking for cheap and delicious food (We find that Sydney offers a much more variety of food for bigger servings and at lower prices than the ones in Melbourne).

Our atttention were immediately drawn upon a young chap who was making Hontous, behind a large window display. which we delightfully associated it with the famous Dorayaki in Doraemon.

Left to right: Cheese, Red Bean and Green Tea

We tried both cheese and red bean hontous as we don't really like the slight bitter taste that is usually associated with green tea. They were an absolute delight, slightly crispy on the outside with chewy soft centre. In the middle would be the savoury melting cheese or the sweet red bean.

It is goooood.

Now I know why Doraemon seems to be addicted to them.