Tag Archives: ipoh hawker food

Cantonese Roast Duck Rice


by Wern Sze Gill

Ipoh hawker foodThe roast duck with its shining reddish-brown skin, seen hanging in the windows of Chinese restaurants or hawker food stalls, is synonymous with any good Cantonese food joint. The roast duck, which requires delicate preparation, is first blanched, then salted, marinated, stuffed with herbs and spices, and then air dried for hours prior to being roasted. The meat has to turn out tender, flavourful and moist; a feat which only the best Cantonese chefs can achieve.

A good roast duck should have a tinge of its herbal or spice essence, providing a pleasant fragrance complimenting the sweet and slightly tangy dipping sauce which comes with the dish. The skin of the roast duck should also be slightly crispy, due to the combination of honey and vinegar marinade.

In the places recommended below, you can either order a whole or half a duck or your preferred cuts, or simply opt for a single serving of roast duck (prices reflected below), which comes with rice, some cucumbers and gravy or dipping sauce.

Cheong Kee @Kafe Wah Nam
30, Jalan Raja Ekram, Ipoh
Nice herbal flavour and tender.  Served with yellow, ‘oily’ rice.
RM3.50, opens daily 11am – 3pm.

Itik Panggang @ Anika Selera
Ipoh Garden (opposite Wooley Food Centre)
Tender pieces of duck served with white rice. Nice ginger chilli sauce.
RM4.50, closed on Thursdays.

Itik Panggang Tai Sai Hee
No.585 Jalan Jelapang, Ipoh
Tender, juicy and meaty pieces. Glistening and slightly crispy skin. Also offers a few other flavoured roast duck variations and ‘economy rice’ dishes. RM4, 11am – 7pm.

Hong Kong Oil Chicken and Roast Duck
No. 638, Jalan Kuala Kangsar, Taman Tasek Damai, Ipoh
Generous portion of meaty, tender duck served with cucumber and rice
RM5, opens daily 11am – 8pm

Restoran Sweet Home Town
No.646, Jalan Kuala Kangsar, Taman Tasek Damai, Ipoh
A few shops down from ‘Hong Kong’. Nice tasting tender duck, and offers a variety of other ‘economy rice’ dishes as well. RM5, opens daily 11am – 8pm.

Restoran Sun Yeong Wai
Main: No. 17, Jalan Sri Ampang, Taman Ipoh Jaya
Branch: No.13, Jalan Medan Ipoh 6, Bandar Baru Medan Ipoh
This outlet is renowned for their roast duck. Nice tender and very juicy pieces on a bed of fragrant rice.
RM5, open for lunch and dinner, closed on Wednesdays.

W. Hup Kee Roaster
Restoran First Garden
53 Lorong Taman Sebelas, Taman Pertama (First Garden)
The duck is flavourful and tender and they have both white and oily rice. Roast chicken and pork are also available. RM3.50, opens for lunch from 11.30am. Tel.: 016-5339532 or 012-573 0798.

Fish Head Noodles


Ipoh hawker foodThis soupy dish of rice vermicelli (meehoon) with deep-fried fish head is becoming more popular as people begin to appreciate fish head, which is usually made into a curry. It’s a one-dish meal which is a little sour (just like laksa) but has excellent tasty bits of fried fish head, eaten with meehoon (vermicelli). Because of the bony nature of the fish head, it is customary to suck on the bones making sure every bit of flesh is consumed. Some bones, if fried crisped, can easily be chewed. The flavourful soup has pickled mustard greens (harm choy), tomatoes and pickled plums. Sometimes evaporated milk (or creamer) is added but it’s just as good without.

A few to try:

Restoran Fai Kee (Lee Wah Wah 012-4546111)
28 Jalan Seenivasagam (New Town)
Fish head is fried crisp which makes part of the bone edible, local harm choy – RM6 regular, RM6.50 with evaporated milk.
Opens 6am – 4pm daily, 3 rest days a month.

Restoran First Kong Chow
Lorong Taman 11, First Garden
Spicy fresh chilli, fresh harm choy – RM6
Opens every Monday 7.30-11am

Kopitiam Tai Ji
At the corner of Jalan Hoover and Jalan Prince, Pasir Putih
Chilli oil, pre-packed harm choy – RM5.80
Opens for breakfast and lunch from 7am.

Kedai Kopi Xiang Er Nong
20 Jalan Peh Pee Koh (between Jalan Kampar & Jalan Tokong)
Has packaged harm choy and comes with sambal – RM6
Opens for breakfast and lunch.

Hoong Wan Restaurant
No.2, Jalan Silang 3, Chemor
Choice of either fried or non-fried fish head.  Vege is sang choi (lettuce) and not harm choy – RM5.
Opens 6am to 3pm daily.  Closes two Tuesdays in a month.

F & B Station
24 Psrn Greentown 10, Greentown Business Centre
Fish meat tender, soup not sour, comes with sambal and also has tofu – RM5.50.
Opens for breakfast and lunch.


Claypot Yee Mee or Poh Chai Noodles


By Wern Sze Gill

ipoh hawker foodClaypot noodles, also known as Yee Mee or Poh Chai Noodles, are a type of crispy noodles made from wheat flour and palm oil. It somewhat resembles spaghetti in shape and texture, and has a unique tasty flavour. The Yee Mee noodles are commonly used in claypot cooking and warms you up on a chilly or rainy day.

Like most noodles, they can be cooked in soup or stir-fried. Their inherent flavour also creates a fragrant broth from boiling the noodles alone. As Yee Mee tends to soak up quite a bit of the gravy when cooked, it should be eaten immediately after it is cooked and is definitely not a dish you would want to takeaway. The noodles should also not be overcooked. The texture of the noodles should be soft but chewy.

Keay Teow Mee Stall @ Tong Sui Kai
Row of night stalls next to Sam Tet School
Minced pork balls, fish balls, sliced fish cakes, cabbage, egg
RM4.50 with egg; RM4.00 without egg
Opens 5pm – 3.30am. Close on Wednesdays and Thursdays.

Poh Chai Mee Stall
Restoran Jen Jen
22 Jalan Chew Sin Oon, Off Jalan Tokong
Egg, prawns, minced pork balls, enoki mushroom, choy sum, sprinkling of
fried garlic – RM4 with egg; RM3.50 without egg
Opens for breakfast till about 11am.

Restoran F&B Station
24 Persiaran Greentown 10, Greentown Business Centre
Egg, prawns, fish balls, pork balls, vegetables.
RM3.80. Opens for breakfast and lunch.

Restoran Loi Fatt
15, Laluan Kledang Utara 11
Taman Wang, 31450 Ipoh
The yee mee served is fried and slightly crunchy, providing extra flavour to the broth
RM4.00.  Opens for breakfast and lunch.

Thengai Paal Appam



Indian crepe-like pancakeThengai Paal Appam, or popularly known as just ‘Appam’, is a lovely crepe-like pancake made from fermented rice and coconut milk , and eaten dipped in delicious coconut milk. Its white puffed up centre is soft and tender whilst the lacy sides are brown and crisp. This breakfast favourite is best eaten warm when it’s just made. (Taking it away will lose its best attributes.) Penang has always been associated with having the best Appam (amongst other things), but Ipoh can also hold its own.

Try these:

Canning Garden Market
Lovely soft centre with crisp sides; santan has just the right amount of sweetness
Opens at 8am except Mondays – 70 sen.

Restoran Bukit Merah
119 Jalan Lau Pak Khuan, Ipoh Garden.
Recommended by a Penangite. The big centre is tender, while the sides are crispy; the coconut milk may be a tad too sweet for some. Available from 7am – best go by 9am to avoid disappointment – RM1.

Simpang Pulai Restaurant & Catering
808/810 Jalan Raja Dr Nazrin Shah (Jalan Gopeng), Taman Chandan Desa, Simpang Pulai
‘Homemade’ taste and texture. Open every day but closes one Sunday a month – RM1.

Restoran NS Curry House
Maxwell Road
Crispy sides with soft centre. Available from 6.30am. Closes Sundays – RM1.
Stall @ Buntong beside police station (opposite Sri Maha Kaliamman temple)
Opens every day. Must order minimum 2 for takeaway. RM1 each.

Restoran Silibin Jumbo
Jalan Silibin, Silibin
Opens every day and operates till noon – RM1.

Fried Sambal Lou Shee Fun


By Wern Sze Gill

ipoh hawker food - chinese noodles
Fried Sambal Lou Shee Fun

Lou Shee Fun, literally translated from Chinese to mean rat noodle, is a short, tapered and transluscent noodle that resembles a rat’s tail, hence its name. Fried lou shee fun is particularly fun for kids with little or no chopsticks skills, as it is easily scooped up with a broad spoon.

Any hawker stall offering fried noodles in Malaysia would serve this variant of noodle, and it is usually fried with pork or chicken meat, prawn, and choy sum (Chinese vegetable) with the regular combination of soya, oyster and dark sauce. Some places fry it the ‘char kway teow’ way, using a mix of meat, fish cakes, egg, chives and beansprouts. The sambal variant involves adding a spoonful of homemade sambal belacan to the dish and tossing the noodles to coat them evenly before serving. You can also opt to have the sambal on the side to control the spiciness.

Places to try in Ipoh:

Kafe Sentosa Ria
Lebuh Taman Ipoh, Ipoh Garden South
Sufficient ‘wok hei’ and very flavourful.
Generous serving of sambal belacan on the side as well.
RM3.70; opens daily 7am – 2.30pm.

Fatt Kee Restaurant
Tingkat Taman Ipoh 6, Ipoh Garden South (behind Scotch Pub)
Tasty and generous serving of meat and ingredients with sufficient ‘wok hei’.
RM4.30; opens daily 9am – 8pm.

Restoran Yee Lock
40 Jln Raja Musa Aziz (New Town)
Generous serving and tasty with enough ‘wok hei’.
RM6.00; opens daily 4pm till late.

Restoran Impressive
Jalan Ali Pichay (New Town)
Very tasty. Fried with meat, egg, bean sprouts and chives.
RM4.30; opens daily 7am – 3.30pm

Restoran Sin Hoong Fatt
1 Lrg Cecil Rae, Canning Garden
Pork-free. Fried with chicken meat, egg, bean sprouts and chives.
RM4.60; 4-10pm daily, Monday closed.

Rojak Pasembor


By Wern Sze Gill

ipoh hawker food reviewThe Rojak Pasembor, or also widely known as the ‘Indian Rojak’, is a popular lunch-time side dish or tea-time treat among Malaysians. It is a local salad dish made up of a mixture of fried dough and prawn fritters, bean curd, boiled potatoes and half a hard boiled egg served with long thin strips of cucumber, sengkuang (yam bean), and in some, bean sprouts.  Some stalls offer cuttlefish as an addition to the dish as well.

The best thing about the Pasembor though, is the thick and tasty reddish-brown, sweet dressing which literally drenches the salad, making it a uniquely South Asian dish. Made from sweet potatoes, crushed peanuts and chillies, the combination is cooked together to perfection, and is what makes the dish stand out from other competitors. If taking out, the sauce is usually packed separately so that the ingredients do not become soggy when you eat it.

Places to try in Ipoh:

Rojak Ipoh Padang @ Kedai Kopi Fatt Kee
No 7, Jln Tun Sambanthan
Opens Mon to Sat, 11am – 6pm

Rojak Greentown
Medan Selera Greentown (opp Greentown mall)
Opens daily, 9am – 7pm, Friday 1-2pm close
Branch: Restoran Rojak Greentown
No 81, Jalan Sultan Abdul Jalil, Greentown
Opens daily, 9am – 7pm, Friday 1-2pm close

Rojak Maxwell
Roadside stall @ junction into Cherry Park (Opp. Mahkamah Syariah)
Opens 11.30am – 6pm, daily

Cathay Mee Stall @ Restoran Dan Rumah Tumpangan Beauty Baru
(Opp. Hotel Ritz Garden)
97 Jalan Yang Kalsom
Opens Mon to Sat, Noon – 7.30pm
RM3.80, one whole egg



Hawker Food

Ipoh hawker food - Luk-Luk - steamboatIf you’re a Malaysian, chances are you’ll love luk-lukLuk-luk comes from the Cantonese word ‘luk’ which is to boil.  So the concept for luk-luk is like steamboat, except that the ingredients are presented on skewers.  The process is simple, just choose what you fancy, then dip your selected skewers into the hot boiling water until cooked.

These luk-luk stalls are usually set up on a vehicle such as a motorcycle or a van with up to 30 varieties of food ranging from meat to vegetables on skewers. The price is usually 70 cents per stick although there are some modern stalls located at pub areas offering not just the steamboat version, but also the barbeque version. These are usually priced above RM1.

The best thing about luk-luk is that you get to dip your cooked food in a variety of sauces. They are usually chilli, sweet sauce or satay sauce.  Some stalls offer tom yam sauce and sesame chilli sauce in addition to the standard sauces in order to attract more patrons.

Places to try in Ipoh:

Night markets

A variety of luk-luk stalls ply the night market scene, each offering anywhere between 25 to 30 varieties of luk-luk priced at 70 cents each.  Opens usually by 7pm till about 11pm.

Monday – Ipoh Jaya

Tuesday – Medan Ipoh (behind Tesco)

Wednesday – Stadium, Ipoh Garden, Rapat Setia

Thursday – Taman SPPK (Pasir Putih)

Friday – First Garden, Ampang

Saturday – Menglembu (near the flats)

Sunday – Taman Cempaka

Menglembu market

Stationed outside the market. Opens daily, beginning at around 3pm till evening. 70 cents per stick.


Stationed under a shady tree near the market.  Opens daily, beginning at 3pm till evening. 70 cents per stick.

Ipoh Garden South

Located opposite Kafe Sentosa, down the road from Pizza Hut. Opens daily, beginning at about 3.30pm till early morning. 70 cents per stick.

Pub areas

These vans offer both steamboat version, as well as the option to grill the ingredients. Prices above RM1 per stick. Located around Medan Ipoh, Persiaran Greenhill (outside St Patrick), Station 18 (behind Tesco Extra). Opens after 9pm till early morning.

Laksa Lemak


laksa lemakLaksa Lemak is not as ubiquitous as its cousin, the laksa asam. One would be hard pressed to find a stall around the corner. It is more popular down south in Johor, or even further down south, in Singapore. In Ipoh, it is also known as Siamese Laksa. Although varying in preparation, the soup or gravy is always made with coconut milk (santan), hence the ‘lemak’ connotation. All ingredients for the fish-based soup are ground and this makes a rich and thick gravy with flavours which may include lemongrass and galangal. Bean curd puffs, fish sticks, shrimp or cockles may be added with garnishes of mint or Vietnamese mint (daun kesum), cucumber, beansprouts, or even pineapple. The Laksa is sometimes served with a spoonful of sambal chilli paste or a calamansi lime (limau kasturi).



Restoran Ko Pi Tim
2 Jalan Medan Ipoh 1D, Medan Ipoh
Gravy is lemak and very tasty with bits of fish.
RM3.30; opens from 6.00 a.m. to 6.00 p.m. Closes 2 days a month.

Turf Club Laksa @ Pusat Makanan Ye Sing (Denny 012-5184223)
25 Jalan Dato Megat Khas, Taman Bandaraya
Gravy is thick and flavourful with the right amount of spiciness.
RM4; add-ons are 60 sen each. Open 12.00-4.30 p.m. Thursdays closed.

Beacon Point (05-5469916)
41 Lintasan Perajurit 6, Taman Perak
RM9.30; Teatime set: with coffee/tea – RM11.30 or with fresh juice – RM12.90
Opening hours: Monday-Saturday 9.00 a.m.-3.00 p.m. and 6.30-9.30 p.m.

Weekend places:

Family Cafe (Christine 016-5241848)
19, Laluan Ipoh Permai Satu, Taman Ipoh Permai
RM8.80 – only available on Friday and Saturday evenings.
Open: 7.30 a.m. to 12.30 p.m. and 6.00-10.30 p.m. Tuesdays closed.

Yum Yum (05-2537686)
5 Persiaran Greenhill – New Town
RM6 per bowl. Friday lunch only.

Chilli Pan Mee

Ipoh Hawker Food - Chilli Pan Mee
Chilli Pan Mee

Most of us are familiar with Pan Mee but how many of us have tried Chilli Pan Mee? This spicy variance of the dry Pan Mee, which first started in Kuala Lumpur, has now made its way to Ipoh with stalls offering their own individual version of the dish. The accompanying ingredients for the original chilli version are fried anchovies (ikan bilis), minced pork, crispy fried shallots and egg poached to perfection. To eat the poached egg version, break the runny yolk and mix the noodles and ingredients together while it is still hot. The dish is also served with a small bowl of soup and sayur manis to curb the spiciness.

Places to try in Ipoh:

The Mia Noodle House

13-1 & 15, Jalan Dato Tahwil Azar, 30350 Ipoh
Serves the original version with poached egg. RM4.50 per bowl.
Opens daily, 8.00 a.m. – 4.00 p.m.

Pusat Makanan Chha Yong

No.2 Tingkat Taman Ipoh 11, Ipoh Garden South (behind Dance Centre)
Includes pork mince patties, no egg. Ask for less spicy unless you enjoy very spicy food. RM5.80 per bowl.
Opens daily, 7.00 a.m. – 3.00 p.m.

Peking Pan Mee

Off Jalan Sultan Azlan Shah Utara (behind Dominos pizza)
Served with mild chicken curry, no egg. RM4.50
Opens daily, 7.30 a.m. – 4.30 p.m.

 Greentown Corner

Corner of Persiaran Greentown 11 & 7, Greentown business Centre
(behind Maxis office)
Served with minced meat, no egg. RM4.50
Opens 5 days a week, 8.00 a.m. – 2.00 p.m.

Chicken Feet (Kai Keok)

Ipoh Hawker Food - Chicken Feet (kai keok)
Chicken Feet (kai keok)

If you think that only the Chinese eat chicken feet, think again. It is also eaten in Jamaica, Mexico, Peru, the Philippines, Middle East, South Africa and Trinidad. The only edible meat on the feet consists of skin and tendons, mostly cartilage. Because of its gelatinous content, claims have been made about its cosmetic value in the extraction of collagen. Chicken feet are usually braised with garlic, star anise, oyster sauce, soy sauce, etc. with Chinese mushrooms. The tender feet are served whole. Another way of preparation is to fry the feet first until it’s plump and tender and then simmer; this is usually served as a side-dish of wonton mee. Those who eat chicken feet can’t help but love its unique flavour and texture; those who are squeamish about trying it don’t know what they are missing.


Restoran Sun Up (day)
5 Lorong Cecil Rae, Canning Garden. Has Chinese celery and mushroom – RM4

Restoran Tauge Ayam Lou Leong (night) – 05-2412337|
8-30 Jalan Theatre. Garlicky – RM6

Nasi Ayam Clay Pot K Ten (night)
55-57 Jalan Medan Ipoh 2, Bandar Baru Medan Ipoh. A tad salty – RM4

Stall opposite the Sungai Pari flats (after 8.30 p.m.)

Along Jalan Yau Tet Shin, New Town:

Restoran Tauge Ayam Lou Wong (No. 49)
Pale in colour but has a nice herbal flavour – RM5

Onn Kee Restaurant (Tauge Ayam Kue Tiau) (Nos. 48, 51 & 53) – 05-2531562
Sweetish and has a mild after-taste – RM5

Restoran Tuck Kee (No. 61) – RM5

Restaurant Sun Tuck Kee (No. 65) – 012-5142228
The feet are intact and yet tender – RM4

All prices are for takeaway; may be cheaper as a side-dish.