Sunday, October 14, 2007

Festival: Sarikei Hari Raya 2007. Part 2

Sarikei Buka Puasa Festival, Oct 2007.
Inside the tents.

Selamat Hari Raya Adil Fitri! We continue our gastronomic journey through the tents. Here we go again...

Sarikei Buka Puasa Festival, Oct 2007.
Air Tebu (Sugar cane juice)

This sugar cane juice stall was strategically located at the last stall and had a rolling (pun not intended) good time selling its juice. Firstly, the guy peeled off its bark and the lady would push the cane through a roller machine that got tighter to squash every drop out of the cane.

Sugar cane machine roller was first brought into Sarikei in the early 1970s by a Cantonese lady who did brisk business at the back lane between Repok Road block 1 & 2 Left (viewing and counting from Rejang River). You may know her son called "Ka Dak" from St. Anthony's class of 1978.

Sarikei Buka Puasa Festival, Oct 2007.
Otah (seafood paste in banana leave)

What does "Pais" mean in Malay? Ikan buntal means puffer fish. There's also a famed Buntal fishing village in Santubong, Kuching, where you can dine on seafood on planks over mangrove swamp. Migratory birds can be seen in Buntal (seasonal). Worth a drive when you are in Kuching.

Sarikei Buka Puasa Festival, Oct 2007.

Kebab is not really a Malaysian cuisine but of Middle East origins. Well, we live in a global village now.

Sarikei Buka Puasa Festival, Oct 2007.
Goreng Pisang (Banana fritters)

Goreng Pisang is one of the all time favourites with its crisp deep fried batter and soft, melting interior. I saw a group of HK tourists at Kuching waterfront snapping photos of those huge bananas. Sometimes, we don't know how lucky we are to have so many varieties of bananas. In Canada, a banana (not a bunch) costs RM$2.50 each.

Sarikei Buka Puasa Festival, Oct 2007.
Kueh (steamed cakes)

Find your favourite kueh here. The chocolate one with biscuits in it is absolutely delicious.

Sarikei Buka Puasa Festival, Oct 2007.

Umai is a traditional Melanau salad prepared from different types of raw fish. There are 2 types of preparation: a) plain sliced fish slivers mixed with spicy chilli sauce and b) small pieces of raw fish mixed with lime juice or assam, sliced onions, chillies, salt and sugar. This dish is usually taken with toasted sago pearls

Sarikei Buka Puasa Festival, Oct 2007.
Bamboo chicken.

Bamboo chicken is an Iban dish called manok pansoh (pansuh ayam in Malay). Chicken is mixed with lemongrass, tapioca leaves and mushrooms and is stuffed into a bamboo log over an open fire. This cooking method seals in the flavour. The end result is tender chicken with lemongrass gravy and a hint of bamboo.

Sarikei Buka Puasa Festival, Oct 2007.
Dessert drinks.

In the old days, the only Malay drink you can buy from street vendors was the pink bandung, a milk flavoured with rose water and sugar. Now you can find rainbow coloured drinks.

Sarikei Buka Puasa Festival, Oct 2007.
Cookies and custards.

Malay cookies and custards are very rich in flavours. Must try.

Sarikei Buka Puasa Festival, Oct 2007.
Curry Puffs, donuts and kueh.

You can understand having curry puffs in this festival but how did an American invention, the donut, sneak into our local culture?


Daniel Yiek said...

Looks like I will have enough content to last till next CNY. Took 300+ pics on this Sarikei trip.

For regular readers, you will also notice that the posts have more pics each. Enjoy the journey!

Ikan Sembilang said...

What is Ka Dak’s surname? Is it Lee? I thought he was in the Class of 1985 or 1986.
Umai is the Malanau’s equivalent of Japanese sashimi or Hong Kong people’s 鱼生. It is a great dish if you are sure that the fish come from clean and unpolluted waters.

fred said...

Umai is the melanau traditional food. consist of raw fish cut into small pieces and a sambal sauce with lime. The mixture of sambal and lime will cook the raw fish. For authentic umai, a visit to Mukah is a must ;)

nelson said...

Here in KT's pasar ramadan, we have tonnes of nasi kerabu(blue coloured rice), nasi dagang(terengganu's signature dish), nasi minyak, nasi briyani, pulut, ayam panggang, murtabak(roti canai/prata with meat) & of course keropok lekor!

Daniel Yiek said...


"Ka Dak" is from the Form 5 class of 1978. His surname is Lee and his parents used to own the Lee Brothers mechanic at Block 3 (last block) of Central Rd after Cathay cinema. His class was famous for their smart kids, sporting ability and jokers. I recall they formed teen groups like "Chicago". :)

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