5 What to Eat in Malang

I just had a trip to East Java with my family after the New Year day. Actually it was a short 8-day trip to Malang and Surabaya only. We had so much fun and also ate so many delicious foods! Consider myself lucky for having a fellow foodies family. Forget pizza, steak or sushi as in this post I will reveal some of the (un)/traditional foods you have to eat when you are in Malang!

Nasi Pecel Mustika Panderman

What to eat : Nasi Campur and Nasi Pecel
Price : IDR 9000 – 15000 / $ 0.90 – 1.50
Highlight : This place has been established for long time and also very well known in Malang. The price is very affordable and the portion is just right for breakfast.
Address : Jalan Rajekwesi No.10, Malang – East Java5-What-to-eat-in-malang

Nasi Campur

Nasi Pecel

Rawon Nguling

What to eat : Rawon dengkul (knee), Rawon daging, Sayur Lodeh
Price : IDR 10000 – 57000 / $ 1.00 – 5.70
Highlight : The rawon dengkul was amazingly flavorful with rich broth, the knee parts were chewy yet tender and came in big portion fit for 2-3 persons.
Address : Jalan KH Zainul no.62, Malang – East Java / 0341 324684


Rawon is served along with raw beansprout and relish


This kind of plate will be served on every table directly even we do not order. We pay what we eat from the plate.

Nasi Bhuk Matirah Madura

What to eat : Rice with some selections of proteins such as tempeh, empal (sweet fried beed), fried innards (tripe, paru, and etc.). The rice is also served with rawon or lodeh tewel (jackfruit lodeh).
Price : IDR 9000 – 15000 / $ 0.90 – 1.50 (depends on what and how many pcs you choose)
Highlight : All of the innards are cooked nicely, tender and well-seasoned. The rawon is also really nice, a more savory type compared to the sweet-savory broth of the one in Rawon Nguling.
Address : Jalan Trunojoyo no. 10EF (nothern side of Kota Baru Train Station) / 0341   7703377


Nasi Bhuk


Nasi Rawon

Depot Gang Djangkrik

What to eat : Pangsit mie (Wonton noodle), Baikut goreng (Fried pork ribs), Kolokee (sweet and sour chicken), Tami seafood (seafood crispy noodle)
Price : IDR 10000 – 60000 / $ 1.00 – 6.00
Highlight : Malang is famous for its Cwie Mie or Pangsit Mie or Noodle, Gang Djangkrik is one of the most notorious place to eat best cwie mie in town. They cook delicious Chinese foods in proper portions fit for family diner.
Address : Jalan Kawin kios 26, Malang / 0341 566283


Seafood Crispy Noodle / Seafood Tamie


Kolokee / Sweet and Sour Chicken

Java Dancer

What to eat/drink : Single origin coffees in various brewing method, chocolate, tea, light bites like fried mozzarella cheese and pizza
Price : IDR 10000 – 80000 / $ 1.00 – 8.00
Highlight : They serve (said as the best) coffees in Malang! More to add, Java Dancer is a really nice place with Javanese traditional ambient that would make you stay for hours.
Address : Jalan Kahuripan no. 12, Malang, East Java / 0341 8199899 / www.javadancer.com





Chinese Noodle Restaurant – Sydney

My last post in 2013 would be talking about this gem at Haymarket area a.k.a Sydney Chinatown. I consider myself lucky because if it’s not my aunty’s office located around here, I probably wouldn’t find this noodle shop.


I came to the new branch of theirs which is located in different side at the Haymarket plaza. This small noodle shop is packed at most of the time especially if you come here for dinner.Chinese-Noodle-Restaurant-Sydney-1

Me and family were astonished watching the lady making the noodle and that’s why it took us quite a long wait to get our foods ready. They make every dish right after the order comes both for noodle and dumplings. It’s always interesting to watch quite a show like this!

Mixed Seafood Stir Fried Noodle – Xinjiang Hand-made style

It’s pretty awesome to realize the noodle that had just been made in front of us is now served on the table. It was pretty big and thick, reminds me of Japanese udon but in flatter way. The portion is ridiculously big enough to feed 2 persons or more!  The chewy doughy noodle tasted well-balanced between sweet and savory sauce plus we got abundant toppings too.


AU$ 11.80

Pork and Chives Dumpling (steamed-15 pieces)

As seen in the picture, the dumpling’s wrap was quite thick and fluffy. I don’t like thick dough but really love the pork and chive stuffing. They are really generous in putting the well seasoned minced pork inside  and it tasted really nice when combined with the soy sauce and sesame oil provided on each table!



AU$ 8.80

Vegetarian and Black Sesame Bun

The buns weren’t our favorite because it’s a little bit hard and rough. We also didn’t like the mixed vegetables filling for it’s under-seasoned.

Chinese-Noodle-Restaurant-Sydney-5AU$ 1.50

Black sesame bun topped by coconut crumbs, looking so luscious. Unfortunately, same like the vegetarian bun, this one also had a rough and kinda hard dough. The black sesame filling was not very special as well.


AU$ 1.20

Bun is just not their specialty, so go grab noodle and dumplings when you make a visit. The staffs don’t really speak English but they are very friendly though, so just point the menu while you are ordering the foods. Overall it’s a nice place to go when you are craving for affordable homemade dumplings or Chinese noodles around Chinatown!

Chinese Noodle Restaurant on Urbanspoon

Ramen 38 Sanpachi Bandung

Ramen madness is now everywhere as there are so many new ramen shops all around the city. Those who live in Bandung must be pleased by the opening of Ramen 38 Sanpachi. This ramen shop is highly said as one of the top list when one’s craving for a bowl of ramen in Bandung. The Ramen 38 Sanpachi restaurant joints have been established in Jakarta for quite a long time but I have never tried it before. The new branch in Bandung has just opened in the beginning of this year and I’m curious to prove all of the chirps I heard about it.

Mapo Tofu

I always consider spices as a really good appetite enhancer and mapo tofu seems gonna do it right. The dish came in a regular-sized plate that fits for 2 or maximum 3 persons. The soft silken tofu cubes were generously added with acceptable amount of minced beef. The only con of mapo tofu was the mild spiciness since I really expected it would come in much more spicier level.Ramen-38-sanpachi-3


Fried Japanese noodle-a.k.a Yakisoba was my bf’s choice for his main. I’m going to roll all of the essential aspect in Yakisoba : noodle texture, ticked! generous toppings, ticked! overflowing bonito (dried fish flakes), ticked! We both love the Yakisoba and not to mention the seasoning also so balance.Ramen-38-sanpachi-5


My typical kinda drinks in Japanese restaurant, hot or cold Ocha.

Ajitsuke Tamago

A perfectly cooked Ajitsuke Tamago is somehow really crucial for me when it comes to eating ramen. I was really pleased to see the Ajitama from Ramen 38 perfectly cooked, still runny, very inviting that I couldn’t resist to devour it fast. I love the Ajitama but it would be nicer if the egg was marinated a little bit longer so it’d be more flavorsome.Ramen-38-sanpachi-2

IDR – 10,000

Tonkatsu Ramen

The best part of this bowl was actually the noodle itself! It’s chewy and delightful, similar to the one from Ramen Ya in Melbourne that I really love. The broth was alright at first, it’s flavorful, thick and well seasoned but I found it became too filling and potentially sickening. It’s just too rich that you couldn’t eat too much. I was a little bit surprised to see the sliced Charsu being solitaire without any friends or pair. 🙂IMG_3529

Ogura and Vanilla Ice Cream

In a Japanese Restaurant, I normally hope they have a scrumptious Ogura ice cream rather than a falling apart red beans in grainy milky ice. It didn’t taste good to be honest but fortunately the Vanilla ice cream really covered our disappointment by its goodness.Ramen-38-sanpachi

IDR – 20,000

Overall impression, the foods were quite good even it’s considered a little bit pricy compared to the size. They have a quick and friendly service and comfy ambient.

Before leaving, we also got free treats as an additional dessert, two cubes fruity jelly. The jellies served cold and the fruity flavors rather freshened up the thick mouthfeel. A sweet treat is always sweet! Ramen-38-sanpachi-6


Ramen 38 / Ramen Sanpachi is located at Mayfair Building, Jl. Sukajadi 228, Bandung

Gypsy & Pig

Kurobuta time! Eh, do you find it sounds catchy like  I do? It’s such a novel word for me until yesterday. Kurobuta is a  Japanese special breed pig, even also said as the most highly prized pig in Japan!  The ones from the pure Japanese Kurobuta (or Black Berkshire) are considered as the highest quality pork in the world but there is some of them are breed here in Australia too. Yeayy!

Honestly I have never heard about this fancy pig pork before having lunch at Gypsy & Pig recently. A failed attempt to hit the restaurant on time previously, had brought me and my friends here again this week. The small cafe is located on Little Lonsdale st, a neighbor for many other eateries in that area. This place is all black, simple, clean and has modern yet warm ambient. The little space is efficiently spared as open kitchen,  bar seating areas and 2 regular tables area.


What really caught my eyes on my foremost steps was those nicely seated pig stuffs all over the room. Let’s mention there were piggy magazines, books, figures and pictures! Uber cool since I was once a fanatic pig-stuffs collector back then! Could I bring them home, please? Lol.



Left to right : The most left pot is Tonkatsu sauce and the most right is garlic salad dressing. Both of them are essential in enhancing the flavor for the pork and cole salad

One of my friend, Ansen went here before and he knew what he wanted straightaway, the Pan-Grilled kurobuta belly in Japanese BBQ sauce which is one of their special menu. Then me and Celi decided to have Mix Grill and Tonkatsu set. All of the lunch set comes with rice, miso soup and salads on a spacious wooden tray. Miso soup at Gypsy & Pig was one of the best that I’ve ever tried! It’s rich and full of flavor, darker in color than any regular miso soup with generous filling of tofu cubes and seaweeds.

Ansen’s meal was looking so darn good and such a superb attention catcher. A bowl of grilled kurobuta bellies with raw egg yolk on rice. It couldn’t be more inviting than that. Additionally, he also got fried kurobuta eye fillets with his set menu. That thinly sliced bellies were so tantalizing as it melted in your mouth! There is a good balance of sweetness and savory melting pork belly, tasted even silkier and richer with the egg yolk. It really deserves a “to die for” tag!



AU$ 25,00

Mine was the Tonkatsu set, traditionally crumbed and deep fried pork fillet. As a katsu dish, the Tonkatsu tasted good but I wouldn’t say it’s great. I found some of the pork slices were not very succulent, quite dry and kinda tough instead. Even so, it tasted good especially poured with the in house tonkatsu sauce that successfully enhanced the flavor.


AU$ – 20,00

Celi’s choice was the Mix Fry set, a various deep fried seafood and kurobuta. She got prawn, squid, pork eye fillet and pork hamburg steak. The hamburg was very tender and juicy, but it just tasted too mellow to bland for me. The prawn was so so good and all those deep fried and crunchy stuffs went very well together with the homemade Tar-Tar sauce.


AU$ 25,00

Fresh Lime Soda was Celi’s drink, came uniquely as you’ll have to squeeze the lime on your own. I love the vibrant colorful presentation but it tasted kind of dominantly bitter with a tinge of alcohol notes that I am not very fond of.


AU$ 9,00

In terms of price, I found Gypsy & Pig is quite pricy even I know, we pay the price for quality not for quantity. In terms of my lunch set, yes it’s just too mediocre for that price but, I have to say that the Pan-grilled kurobuta belly set is an exception as I would definitely pay the price for it! If you claimed yourself a pork lover, hurry go and give kurobuta belly a shot! 🙂

Gypsy & Pig on Urbanspoon

Isthmus Of Kra Melbourne

“In southern Thailand, where the land between the Gulf of Siam and the Andaman Sea is at its narrowest, lies the Isthmus of Kra.”

Last Sunday was a super well-spent day by having awesome foods with great companies. Me and 3 of my friends had dinner at Isthmus of Kra, a Thai restaurant situated on Parkstreet in South Melbourne. We were as hungry as a bear at 07 p.m. on Sunday evening and it had made us ordered 5 entrees, 4 mains, 2 companion dishes and 3 desserts. We are not kidding when we say we’re hungry right?! 🙂

As a brother of Shakahari and Shakahari Too vegetarian restaurants, Isthmus of Kra gives similar ambient with Shakahari Too as I haven’t been to Shakahari. From the dim lighting, meditational music, aromatic incense to viscous Asian’s ornaments including the iconic “kra” statue near to the entrance’s door of Isthmus of Kra. The name of the dishes are intriguing and appealing that you’ll find out really soon in my review. Let’s start the 14 courses Thai degustation!

Monsoon Oysters

The half dozen oysters came on a an artistic terracotta plate and each oyster placed inside the 6 holes on the plate. The oysters bathed in refreshing lime and lemongrass red sauce and topped with herbs. I usually prefer my oyster raw but having it slightly grilled was nice too.

isthmus-of-kra-1 AU$ 17.50

Barbeque Quail Secret

This was my favorite entree which is grilled jumbo-sized quail on top of kimchi/pickles and herbs sauce. The taste was not deceived by its beautiful presentation as it’s just stand out on its own. I love the well marinated and tender quail combined with the sauce made of garlic, chilli and corriander.

isthmus-of-kra-3 AU$ 17.50

Isaan Beef Tenderloin

From the look, I was worried that the tenderloin would be tough since it looked dry but my logic quickly told me that would not be happened in such a restaurant of Beh Kim Un’s. Of course the thick slices of the beef were succulent and really flavorful. It’s kind of heavy but the freshness of cucumber, onion, tomato and the dressing balance the flavor.

isthmus-of-kraAU$ 21.50

Roast Duck Nonya Style

This duck salad won the diners’ choice that night for entree category. Yesss, we all agreed that the duck salad was exceptional! Slices of roast duck breast combined with cucumber, green mango, carrot, mints in plum sauce.

isthmus-of-kra-4AU$ 23.50

Tom Yum

Our 5th entree didn’t get the chance to be in frame as we vivaciously finished our bowls. 🙂 The Tom Yum soup came with chicken, seafood and mushroom with a really strong combination of salty-sweet and subtle sourness soup base. It is quite strong even can be said too strong for me. AU$ 12.50

Red, Red Roast Duck Curry

Red duck curry was the star for me and it’s just effortlessly being my favorite dish of the night. Dominated by star anise, the thick red curry was very rich in flavor with generous fillings of vegetables and fruits such as pineaple, melon,broccoli, eggplant, capsicum and of course big slices of skinned-on roast duck. I need to highlight the duck skin since it escalated the whole dish for me!


isthmus-of-kra-7AU$ 29.50

Lamb Gulai

Gulai came in yellow curry of lamb and chunky potatoes sprinkled with fried shallot. The yellow color resulted from turmeric cooked in coconut stock was very filling and I expected it to have stronger kick in flavor. The lamb chunks were succulent, some falling apart and some not and I loved the whole pieces more. This one was my friend’s favorite dish of the night.

isthmus-of-kra-5AU$ 27.50

Seafood Trilogy

The three peeps including myself were craving for seafood and decided to go for this dish! There were large prawns, fish fillet and scallops in lemongrass prawn sauce. The seafood was cooked perfectly especially the prawn was superb good but I wasn’t really in love the tangy sauce. Actually the prawn stock sauce was fresh especially with the cut of herbs and veggies but I found it a little bit too bland for my liking.

isthmus-of-kra-6AU$ 32.50

Roti bread

Crispy sweet and savory roti bread served with satay sauce.


AU$ 4.00

Mango Pudding

Caramelised diced mangoes arranged on top of black rice pudding and sprinkled with toasted shredded coconut. The shredded coconut gave an inviting yummy aroma. The texture and flavor of this three components complemented one another, crisp and savory coconut, juicy and sweet mango, lastly the smooth and sweet black rice pudding.

isthmus-of-kra-11AU$ 13.50

Pandan Bavarois

A unique French style dessert of bavarois in pandan flavor that’s more Asian. The very light texture and not too sweet dessert was my favorite, a perfect outro for the dinner.


isthmus-of-kra-13AU$ 12.50

In term of service, I couldn’t ask for a better one like, really. I say this based on the caring and thoughtful service from the staffs. They changed the plates and cutleries from entree to main, cleaned up the table before dessert and our glasses were always filled.

Isthmus of Kra was an exceptional and not ordinary Thai dining experience for me. Having dishes made of fresh ingredients and beautifully crafted presentation made me happy and truly satisfied. My geek bf is dying to eat here but we didn’t have the chance to go during his 2 previous visits to Melbourne last December and May. He was a little bit upset when I sent him the pictures and probably reading this post will make him even sadder. Oh boy! That’s why you should visit me (again)  🙂
Isthmus of Kra on Urbanspoon

Izakaya Chuji

I would say it’s hard to resist the temptation for the goodness of Japanese food especially when you are in hunger. Me and my friend, L, were craving for Japanese food and we kinda starving that day. Walking down through Lonsdale street in Melbourne CBD, saw the bento lunch deal on Izakaya Chuji’s entrance and then decided to try the “make your own bento box”. Giving another shot to Izakaya Chuji this week after a not-so-good sushi dinner experience last year. I keep in mind how expensive I had to pay such small portions in mediocre quality foods. But this time I had a much better dining experience 🙂 izakaya-chuji-3I remember how crowded this restaurant was on my first visit but surprisingly not too many people dined in even though it was lunch time. The waitress quickly came bringing the menu and explained how the “make your own bento box” works. So we can choose one main dish from part A, one side dish from part B and one vegetable dish from part C and they will come with free rice and miso soup. I got myself Soft shell crab, prawn gyoza and horenso (chilled spinach) while L chose salmon teriyaki, prawn gyoza and wakame (seaweed) salad.

20130913_134630The star of my bento should have been the soft-shell crab but poor him the prawn gyoza was more tantalizing! Crunchy gyoza skin was really crisp and fresh with fluffy and tasty minced prawn. They were even better when eaten with Japanese mayonnaise (It’s Kewpie, I reckon). The Japanese mayonnaise is very creamy and thick in texture, savory with subtle sweetness in flavor.

izakaya-chujiThe soft-shell crab itself was a little bit too flat for me, texture also kind of soggy in some parts but again, Kewpie escalated my crab. Horenso was good, not to say it’s great but the rice and miso soup were tasty. In terms of the portion, this bento comes pretty small except the 3 pieces of gyoza. But hey, it’s 14,00 bucks anyway! 🙂

izakaya-chuji-1L’s salmon teriyaki was cooked nicely with the teriyaki sauce but she also loved her prawn gyoza more than the star dish.

izakaya-chuji-2The ambient and service were also good compared to what I experienced last time. I’m not sure if the hustle in the restaurant will affect other aspects down or what.

Ah well.. I love the idea of creating the bento based on our personal likings of the dishes. And I would be willing to give the bento another shot and try to make a different bento combination box next time!

*The lunch deal is over at 3 p.m. in the afternoon so make sure to drop by earlier if you want to eat without rushing since the restaurant will close for several hours before dinner time.
Izakaya Chuji on Urbanspoon


One afternoon in Melbourne Spring, wait! Is it even Spring already?!?! Fortunately yes, here we are in the best Melbourne’s weather of the year! I love Spring the most among three other seasons and I believe many of you are on the same side 🙂 I dropped a visit to Wonderbao last week to grab a quick lunch and to meet my curiosity of one of the most popular eatery on Urbanspoon.

Lunch for two resized to be a lunch for one since my friend couldn’t come to meet me up. I was subtly screwed by the heavy wind and my not-so-warm outfit. Hahaha. Wonderbao is located on A’Beckett street in Melbourne CBD. The location is inside a building and I had no idea about this before so I walked round and round looking for this hideous Bao shop.

I went for Braised Pork Belly Gua Bao, Nai Wong Bao (egg custard) and Homemade hot soya milk. I was slightly tempted to order another pork belly bao but I knew I wouldn’t finish them properly.


The order came as quick as 30 secs and tadaaa all of my orders sat nicely in front of me. The homemade hot soya milk is kind of comforter for me with the right sweetness. It reminds me of old good times at home when my mom used to make ones for the family. Really good company in such a chilly day!

Braised pork belly gua bao is to die for! The bao is heavenly fluffy and moist, big chunk of sweet sauced braised pork belly, pickled mustard (I know it as salted cabbage in my country), cilantro and crushed nuts. The dominantly sweet pork belly is well seasoned, very tender and juicy, then combined with crisp pickled mustard (sour-salty), crunchy peanuts and all of them made a great texture combination in one bite! Later on, I just realized they provide Sriracha and almost everything tastes better with Sriracha right?



The Nai Wong Bao is just ok for me. The bao is as good as the one for pork belly but the egg custard is not something special. Yes it’s fluffy, lightly sweet and smooth but I wasn’t WOW-ed by the whole package of the bao.


I spent AU$ 9.20 for my lunch and satisfied with my spending in Wonderbao. This hideous bao shop is a nice escape in busy buzzing Melbourne city where you can get fast and affordable hot foods.

Wonderbao on Urbanspoon

Matcha Crusted Tuna

It’s been a while since my last recipe blog post! Today I am so excited to share this recipe because this is a creation combining my favorite ingredients, tuna and matcha. I am so attracted with tea cooking lately and I found it really interesting and….mind blowing? Eheee, wait! I do have an explanation for the using of mind blowing term here. It’s just I never had a thought before about tea cooking besides using green tea/matcha powder for making sweets or beverage blends but then I realized tea is highly versatile!

We could find so many recipe creation using matcha and I would say that 90% of them are sweet recipes such as blends, smoothies, or desserts. I love matcha dessert, of course. Well, it started when I had an urge of having crusted tuna about several days back. Then I got the idea to add matcha into my crust mix and see what would happen. I didn’t have any idea how it’d turn out in the end, I sincerely say twas yummo!

Ingredients :

  • 250 gr Tuna steak fillet
  • ½  tsp matcha powder, I used the one I got from Kenko Tea
  • 1/4 tsp salt (adjust with your liking if you want stronger or less salty flavor)
  • Pinch of black pepper
  • 1½ tbs sesame seed (add more if you love it)
  • 1/4 tsp chili powder
  • Lemon

matcha-crusted-tunaI warn you, this dish is hawttt! But just in case you couldn’t manage the spiciness, just ignore the chili powder. Shooo.

Method :

  1. Mix Kenko Tea matcha, salt, pepper, sesame seed and chili powder so you will have matcha seasoning
  2. Marinate the tuna fillet evenly for both sides
  3. Preheat the pan until medium hot and drizzle a little amount of vegetable oil all over the pan
  4. Sear each side of the tuna for approximately 1-1,5 minute (or more if you like the tuna well done)
  5. Cut thinly and serve with lemon wedges

matcha-crusted-tuna-2I finished my tuna in a flash! This is perfect for appetizer or even main to be eaten with rice. Matcha has delicate and subtle flavor so the other seasoning will be overpowering the matcha itself. But I don’t think it is a big deal since I got the unique and nice color and not to mention the nutrition as well.

If you take a look to all recipes available on my blog, they have a strong similarity. They must be easy, simple and quick! That is how a(n) amateur cook food blogger who love eating and messing up in the kitchen deal with cooking. Happy cooking and much of love! Have a great great great Wednesday!