Friday, December 20, 2013

A Weird Chicken Breakfast in Taiping

At the junction between Jalan Kota and Jalan Chung Thye Phin in Taiping, is an old decrepit coffee shop. This was where we had a most unusual yet very enjoyable breakfast.

I was in Taiping with Alan and Eddy. The three of us took a road trip to no where. We drove up to Ipoh and then turned off into Kuala Kangsar. From KK, we took the trunk road to Taiping where we spent a night in Alan's mother-in-law's (Ah Mah) place. The next morning, Ah Mah and Jenny took to Jalan Chung Thye Phin for breakfast.

The coffee shop went by the name of Yew Lee. It was an old as it could get - one of those that linger on and refuse to fade away.

And why should it? It apparently was still a very popular makan place.

In the shop was a chicken noodle stall. They specialised in chicken and soup koay teow. It was managed by an elderly lady and a younger man - perhaps her son. They were the ones who cooked up  the most atypical and delicious breakfast I had for a long time.

Each of us had a bowl of soup koay teow. The noodles in the soup were soft and smooth. The soup was clear and sweet. Sprinkled on top were some chicken strips and spring onion. The combination was a superb bowl of delicious koay teow.

Then came the extras. First was a plate of chicken meat and chicken skin. The meat was tender and boneless. It was cooked just right, not the least over done, maintaining its succulence. The skin was even better. It was springy to the bite and tasted wonderful. It was chicken skin at its best. It was a little sinful, but who can resist something like this?

Then came this plate of chicken intestine. Sounds yucky, but I had no problem with it. By the look of it, I knew it had been thoroughly cleaned. The intestines were slitted open and cooked to a translucent state. The texture was, like the skin, springy and delightful. It was delicious.

The highlight of the breakfast, to me, was this bowl of chicken blood. It was coagulated blood boiled in a soup. Again, it seemed yucky. But it was heavenly. I do not even know how to describe the flavour. The blood was smooth and the taste was marvellous. The blood melted in the mouth. I know I sound like the Count Dracula, but believe me, it was a fantastic bowl of blood.

The breakfast reminded me of the days when I was a young boy. My late father used to slaughter the chicken we ate. In those days, we could not get dressed chicken from the market. (BTW, why are chicken without feathers known as dressed chicken?) There were no supermarkets - only wet markets and they sold only live chicken. My father would prepare a bowl of salt solution and bled the chicken into the bowl, The blood would coagulate and he would then boil the blood in a soup. Chicken was usually eaten only during festivities. No part of it was wasted - skin, liver, gizzard, heart, intestines, legs and blood. Looks like the lady and her son(?) slaughtered the chicken themselves. How else could they get the intestines and blood?

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