Family dinners in Kuching

Coming from a large extended family (7 siblings on mum’s side and 8 10 siblings on dad’s side, then add on the dozens of cousins and multiply by 2 to get the number of kids, and you’ll start to get the gist of it), a trip back to Kuching is always a family reunion of sorts.

In the 20+ years I’ve been in NZ, I’ve missed a lot of weddings and birthdays. There are always new faces to meet, and old faces to reacquaint myself with. Plus the invariable confusion of how we are related, – is she dad’s third sister’s second son’s wife or dad’s eldest brother’s second daughter….?

Family get-togethers always revolve around food, – be it at a local restaurant, food centre or someone’s house. There is always a lot of reminiscing, gossiping and laughter.

In Kuching, a clear favourite is the Petanak Food Centre.

Noodles with seafood

The most delicious fish and taro soup

Sauteed mixed veggies with fresh baby corn

Fresh crabs sauteed with eggs

A local Food Centre in Hui Sing Garden.

Barley drinks

Midin with garlic

Deep-fried pomfret with sweet and sour sauce

Cangkuk manis with egg

Duck with sea cucumber

At Si Ka’s (4th Uncle on dad’s side) house, old albums were brought out, – and seriously I do not recall dad being as skinny as what he looked in 1971, or mum with her bouffant hairstyle!

Sweet and sour fish

Butter prawns

Four vegies – snake beans, okra, brinjal (aubergine) and snap beans

Deep-fried squid

Sauteed egg tofu

The huge spread

I really miss my relatives. Can’t wait to see all of you again.

5 thoughts on “Family dinners in Kuching

  1. bunnyeatsdesign says:

    Fresh baby corn are fantastic! I loved them when we visited SE Asia. If only we could get them in NZ too. The Midin are interesting. They look like pikopiko. Are they the same thing?

  2. cilipadi says:

    Li – I'm hoping every second year, as I do want to travel elsewhere as well.

    Genie – Kings seeds actually sells baby corn seeds in NZ, so we can grow them, but I'm not that desperate…yet… I think someone did mention that you can get them in some asian stores in summer, but I don't think I've seen them.
    Midin is different from piko piko, – they have different growth habits. Midin grows like a weed in Malaysia and is smaller in size. Have you tried piko piko, – would be interesting to compare.

  3. cilipadi says:

    Midin tastes really green and fresh as well, and the stems has a bit of a gummy texture. I've never tried it raw though, – it's often cooked with belacan (fermented shrimp) paste and chilli or with garlic. It's such a unique fantastic taste, and I can easily eat midin with rice as a meal quite happily.

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