By SeeFoon Chan-Koppen
A big welcome to the “pork-free” Dim Sum family, hitherto monopolised by Greentown Dim Sum and Yuk Sou Hin @ WEIL. This is Canning Dim Sum situated in a prime spot right opposite New Hollywood kopitiam in Canning Garden.
Converted from a corner bungalow, this Dim Sum nook is helmed by Ceylyn Tay and her husband YC Nang whose father supplied ‘pau’ all over Ipoh for decades. Tapping on this expertise, the couple decided that a pork free dim sum cafe has great potential in our bustling foodie town and has now gathered a sharp team of chefs and service staff offering a wide selection of Dim Sum.
The standard menu has around 50 items so even if you went there every day for a week and ordered six to seven items, you will not run out of choice. With a capacity of 130, the cafe itself has a vaulted ceiling giving a spaciousness to the dining experience, not experienced elsewhere. Add to this, the beautifully landscaped exterior and it’s no wonder that shortly one month after their opening the place was packed the day I was there.
Prices range between RM4/5/6 with certain dishes like their Abalone Dumpling costing RM10. I loved their Chow Kueh which is homemade radish cake fried with bean sprouts and in this case, added ‘tsoi poh’ or preserved radish which lent it the extra crunch.
An unusual dish is the Lala Mai (a deviation from usual Siew Mai which they also have) which is meat farce on top of large clams. Creativity is at work here when the usual pork dishes are out of bounds….like the perennial favourite of steamed spare ribs. They have created a steamed ginger chicken which is smooth, and umami, helping the pork lover to immerse in the non-pork Dim Sum experience. As do the two types of fish ball, one made from Tofu fish and the other one from mackerel.
Also the smoked duck wrap, is a great substitute for suckling pig, capturing the same taste and textures, RM8.
Their signature and “wow’ dish is the 5 flavours of Lau Sa Pau oozing with black sesame, salted egg, lotus, chocolate and yam. And finally their pièce de résistance has to be their mochi like dessert made with coconut cream, milk and mango which is one mouthful of heaven. They also do one with durian and even though I did not get to sample it, I can imagine what bliss that must be.
Canning Dim Sum (Pork Free)No. 1, Lebuh Cecil Rae, Taman Canning, 31400 Ipoh. 05 541 5556Business hours: 6.30am-2pm; Wednesday day off