SUBANG JAYA, Feb 9 — I often scratch my head about what to eat during Chinese New Year since most places are closed. The default choice is usually fast food.
Now I have Kwong Shing Noodle Shop, the newly-opened Hong Kong eatery in Subang Jaya.
They will be open from February 10 to 18 and will take a break from February 19 to 26. Today they will close from 3pm.
The eatery is owned by a Hong Kong native who relocated here since his son is studying at an international school here.
It traces its roots back to the founder, Sum Wong, who was born in Chaozhou, China. He snuck into Hong Kong to seek a better life, working first at a wantan shop.
Later he returned to Chaozhou, where he picked up his skills from a willing master. In the early 1970s, he opened his own stall on Mongkok's Robinson Street selling Chaozhou street food. Since those days, he insisted on making fish balls fresh every day.
The stall located in Mongkok's wet market had to shutter in 1982, due to a government policy. In 1984, it reopened in Kwong Fuk Estate in Taipo, with the name, "Kwong Shing Noodle House".
Sum Wong's legacy was passed on to his son Tsan Keung Wong who continued to uphold the traditions, like their handcrafted fish balls and cuttlefish balls.
With the opening of this outlet, the Taipo eatery remains open and is operated by Tsan Keung Wong's brother.
At Kwong Shing, the vibe is casual just like any cha chaan teng you walk into in Hong Kong.
The big difference is the space. Unlike those cramped spots, where you eat and go, or you bump elbows with others, here it's nice and comfortable.
The menu is a mishmash of typical Hong Kong eats. Headlining it are their noodles with various toppings, served in two different broths depending on your selection. Expect toppings like beef brisket, offal and braised pork trotters. Handcrafted fish balls, cuttlefish balls and beef tendon balls also feature here.
You can even find Western eats here. It's simple fare like ham and egg sandwich, hot dog and French toast.
From the noodles section, order the Mixed Beef Noodles (RM19). Technically it's now listed on the menu but just ask them and they can make that combination bowl which offers a taste of everything.
It's a bowl of bovine goodness. There's also offal you don't really see in local shops.
I am the happiest with tendons. These ones were good with a soft jelly-like texture. In contrast, the beef brisket slices are leaner as they trim off the fat. It's still tender but a tad less luscious. I reckon this version is probably better for our cholesterol levels.
The other good part is the unusual offal. You get chunky pieces of cow's lungs with a soft, chewy texture. Then there's honeycomb tripe. Rarely seen here, the tripe has a springier bite, which I prefer to the soft pieces of cow's stomach.
Here the broth is much lighter in taste, letting the toppings shine instead. Pair it with springy egg noodles, just like what you get in Hong Kong.
Adventurous eaters will be happy to see Satay Beef Noodles on the menu. It's an iconic Hong Kong dish.
Just don't expect it to taste exactly like the satay where marinated meat skewers are grilled on a hot charcoal fire and served with peanut sauce.
At Kwong Shing, you can enjoy either satay beef or chicken, stuffed in buns or served with noodles and a pork bone broth.
With your bowl of vermicelli, it's topped with a generous portion of tender sliced beef mixed with the satay sauce. Mix it all up and the clear broth will become a creamy peanut soup with a hint of spiciness.
The whole combination works really well. That slight sweetness combined with just a tinge of spicy, makes it a bowl I would happily order again. The Satay Beef Noodles are priced at RM15.
I also managed to sneak in some more items, since the menu allows add-ons.
It's not often you spot handmade Cuttlefish Balls (RM7 for two). This one has a very soft bite. Like a Kinder Toy, there's a surprise piece of fresh cuttlefish inside.
My favourite was the Beef Tendon Balls (RM7 for two). These have a nice bite and a distinct beefy flavour.
Shrimp Wantans (RM5 for two) were well stuffed with pork and prawns but I preferred the Dumplings (RM6 for two) with its wood ear fungus for an extra crunch.
There's also a fried version too. What I liked was how every bowl of soup with these add-ons will come with vegetables rather than just plain soup.
There's also Braised Pork Knuckles (RM6 for one extra piece). You can also order this with noodles. These were luscious bites with gelatinous fat and meat. It uses fermented red beancurd as a marinade, which is quite light in taste.
When I walked inside, I spied one woman relishing a piece of chicken. Curious, I asked about it and it seems, their Fried Chicken (RM10) is a signature item. Apparently they use an old recipe to prepare this item.
It feels like a version of Swiss chicken that uses soy sauce as a marinade. Here it's much lighter on the soy but its attraction is the juicy meat and the chicken skin with a slight sweet taste.
You're given a fork and knife so slowly enjoy every part of it. Apparently, it's become a fast favourite with their diners especially the older folks.
Don't miss out on the drinks too. These are iconic Hong Kong beverages.
In the Klang Valley, it's hard to get good HK Style Tea with Milk (RM5). Most places serve an insipid cup. Without the right tea leaves, the milk overpowers the drink, leaving you feeling it's not the same like Hong Kong.
Here, the taste of the tea comes through with each sip. There's also HK Style Lemon Tea (RM7 for iced) and the rarely seen Red Bean Ice (RM8) which one can slowly enjoy the cooked red beans drink.
They also serve the unique Lemon Coffee, said to be a combination of lemon juice and coffee. That's next on the list of drinks to try out.
廣成面家Kwong Shing Noodle Shop, 18, Jalan SS14/2, Subang Jaya. Open: 10am to 8pm. Closed on Monday. Facebook: @KwongShing
*This is an independent review where the writer paid for the meal.
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