Tag Archives: ipoh echo issue 125

TAJ College Adopts Secondary Schools


TAJ College is adopting 23 secondary schools in the Kinta District as one of its Community Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives.

During a high tea held at its campus in Jalan Tun Abdul Razak recently, Education Department’s head of special education and private education, Tuan Haji Zawi bin Yahya handed over the Certificate of Appointment to the representatives of the schools.

Puan Tina bt Dato’ Haji Tajuddin, chief executive officer of TAJ College, spoke of the courses conducted in TAJ and facilities available.

The objective of adopting schools is to establish close relationship between the college and secondary schools in the district for mutual interest as well as development of the community.

Programmes would be organised between the schools and the college which would benefit both. Students in SPM and STPM classes would be briefed on the opportunities available to continue their studies in tertiary institutions.


Masquerade Night


The Convent Girls Alumni or COGA, started in 1957, recently held their 54th annual dinner at the Royal Perak Golf Club with an attendance of 150 former students and teachers.

The theme for this year’s dinner was ‘Masquerade” and a majority of the members turned up with a mask at the very least.

It was a fun night with entertainment of belly dancers provided by Susan Dance Academy and of course the most creative masquerade costume which was won by former student Anne Marie Tham.

Twins, Anna and Agnes Wong, both former students, added gaiety to the evening with their emceeing.

During the dinner a sum of RM500 was collected for the Alumni’s annual social project called “Next Step Project”. According to Alumni President Terezinha Gonsalves the project is an annual programme which provides its students with information on the vocational opportunities available after leaving school saying that “not everybody will score 10 As but there is an opportunity out there for everyone to earn a living and possibly contribute back to the community.”


Effective Sales Force Recruitment


By See Foon Chan-Koppen

According to Dato’ Daniel Tay, who wrote an endorsement on the cover of this book, this is “a must have for both an intending employer and employee”. He also implores people to “read this book before either conducting or going for an interview”.

Joshua Tan who is currently a Sales Manager in one of the growing organisations in Ipoh, has written a ‘how-to’ book for those looking to recruit a powerful sales force. Although the emphasis is on recruiting sales people, the book is a veritable treasure trove of tips and tactics for the whole recruitment process in any department.

The book has many practical and useful examples and is laid out in chapters on all the topics pertaining to the recruitment process from pre-interview to selection, to the post-interview and the final words which details the various Malaysian laws around employment.

The appendices are useful with a sample application form, an interview rating form, part 3 of schedule 3 of the Employment Provident fund and SOCSO rates.

Joshua Tan has been in consumer sales for 20 years and has written several short training materials for the company he works for. He holds an MBA from Nottingham Trent University and is involved in several NGOs like the YMCA, the Haggai Institute and FGBMF.

This 90-page paperback is available for sale at MPH and Popular bookstores for RM24.90. Also from Joshua Tan at 016-5127635.

Father’s Wish Fulfilled


A father’s wish was fulfilled with the timely intervention of the Menteri Besar through the good office of Yayasan Bina Upaya Darul Ridzuan (YBU). Newspaper vendor, Ragaven Murugiah, 50, of Ladang Kg Ayer Tawar, Manjung, was at wit’s end trying to figure out how to buy his college-going daughter a lap top for her use. The father of three earns barely enough to make ends meet and spare cash is hard to come by unless a miracle happens. And a miracle did happen.

“In my utter despair I wrote a personal letter to the Menteri Besar making my humble request known the way I see fit,” he recounted. “I was pleasantly surprised to receive a call a month later from a YBU officer saying that my request has been granted by the MB.”

A teary but happy Ragaven was overjoyed with the gift and thanked the MB profusely. “I am truly indebted to the state government for having fulfilled my wish,” he said when met after receiving the lap top from YBU’s Chief of Corporate Services, Hairul Anwar Mohd Noor at the foundation’s headquarters recently. “It couldn’t have come at a more opportune moment,” he told Ipoh Echo. “It’s the best gift I’ve ever received. Hopefully, it’ll motivate my daughter to do well in her studies,” he quipped.

Hairul reaffirmed YBU’s commitment to help the poor and the marginalised in the state regardless of their ethnicity and beliefs. “Aid in the form of money or in kind will be given to all deserving cases,” he said.

The foundation is founded on the principles of charity, fairness and equality. Since formation last year it has disbursed aid worth millions to the unfortunate many ranging from hard-pressed single mothers to first-time entrepreneurs to enterprising Orang Asli.


Ramadan at Clearwater


Clearwater Sanctuary Golf Resort, Batu Gajah is serving up a Minangkabau and Perakean Cuisine buffet for the month of Ramadan starting August 1, at the Lakeside Terrace. Dishes like, Ikan Patin Masak Tempoyak, Rendang Tok and Ayam, Sambal Udang Petai, Satay, to name a few, are enough to wet one’s appetite. There will be several kerabu dishes, a variety of ulam accompanied by different sambal. For something sweet, dessert consists of Malay kuih (cakes) and Pengat Pisang. The buffet is RM35++ for adults and RM18++ for children ages 6-12.

Their F&B and Culinary Operations Director, award-winning Chef Ricky Parlanti has introduced à la carte menus with ‘Wine of the Month’ for the coming months. For more on promotions, visit: www.cwsgolf.com.my.


Insurance Partners Get Together 2011


Ms Vino Nallaya, CEO Pantai Hospital Ipoh

Pantai Hospital Ipoh’s third insurance get-together saw 380 guests, comprising of insurance agents, representatives of insurance companies and Third Party Administrators as well as consultants from the hospital, attending the event. The evening was held to appreciate the support and cooperation insurance partners had given to the hospital. In her address, Ms Vino Nallaya, Chief Executive Officer said, “We have come a long way as partners in health, bringing quality care to those in need. Together we see ourselves as a team who have become of paramount importance for the general public to be able to access private healthcare, which years ago was presumed to be only for the affluent.” Ms Vino said, “As strategic partners, we believe that it is our responsibility to be transparent in delivering what we promise, taking into account the economics and needs of patients and clients.” She added that communication and information was the way to becoming true partners in providing a valuable and vital service and together preventing costs from spiralling at both ends.

Guests were later treated to pulsating belly dance performances by the Susan Dance Academy and the evening exploded into a fiery finale with exhilarating performances by Helmi Gimik who played multiple lovable and affable Chinese and Indian characters.

Ground-Breaking Ceremony


The long-awaited and much maligned Tanjung Rambutan wet market will finally become a reality. Once the RM5.8 million structure is completed, the mess, smell and congestion that greet shoppers will be a thing of the past. The present wet market is well past its shelf life and is on the brink of extinction, so to speak. The location in itself is inappropriate as it is sited on the bank of the Kinta River. Effluents from the market have contaminated the river and the surroundings. Moreover, the site does not facilitate a smooth traffic flow due to its size and disposition.

Dato’ Seri Ahmad Husni Hanadzlah, MP for Tambun and Second Deputy Finance Minister, is the driving force behind the construction of the new marketplace. On July 23 Husni was given the honour to officiate at the ground-breaking ceremony of the project. Mayor Dato’ Roshidi Hashim was present along with scores of excited residents and shoppers who did not want to miss the historic occasion.

There will be ample parking space so shoppers need not park their vehicles haphazardly as they do now. A food court will be built adjacent to the market to cater to those in need of a bite while shopping. This is indeed a welcome change not only for shoppers but for the residents and students of the nearby nursing college.

Construction is scheduled to be completed by end of 2012. The new market will help transform Tanjung Rambutan into a vibrant suburb with an image of its own.


KL Team is Futsal Champion


Court Soccer from Kuala Lumpur emerged champion at the inaugural MBI-Kronos Futsal Fiesta held at the Indera Mulia Stadium, Ipoh recently. The KL-ites beat Perak’s Marlin A in a penalty shoot-out after tying 1-1 at the end of the final match. The winning team was awarded the Datuk Bandar Challenge Trophy, a trophy replica, medals and RM5,000 in cash. Runner-up Marlin A took home the runner-up trophy, a replica, medals and cash worth RM3,000. The best-player award went to Mohd Ridzuan of Court Soccer while Zaidi Zainal of Marlin A was adjudged the top scorer of the championship. Mayor Dato’ Roshidi Hashim gave away the prizes. In his closing remarks, Roshidi emphasised the importance of sports in shaping a healthy nation. “Youths need to indulge in healthy pursuits so as to keep them away from unhealthy activities.”


SeeFoon gets all steamy again, this time in Bercham


By See Foon Chan-Koppen

Perhaps I have been having a surfeit of rich food. Lately I find myself hankering for lighter food, something wholesome as in steamed food. None of  the potentially carcinogenic trans fats generated by heating vegetable oils prior to stir frying or deep frying. None of the ship sinking heaviness or gastric reflux producing bloating that can occur for some of us after an oil laden meal. Steamed food is so healthy and satisfying. Full Stop. No ifs and buts about it.

Steam House in Bercham is just the ticket when one craves for dishes with none of the sacrifices to taste that one conjures up when the subject of steaming comes to mind. Here I can still indulge in the mouth feel and flavour that my taste buds are partial to.

Proprietor Lester Foo is usually on hand to explain and recommend the various live fish which he keeps in his tanks. Here you will find swimming Tualang prawns in small, medium and large sizes priced at RM6, 7 and 8 per 100g. The night I was there, we had 8 of the large prawns which came to just under 1kg – RM90. They arrived on a bed of egg white topped with scallions and slivers of ginger, each one succulent and fragrantly fresh.

Live Fish

Live fish include Soon Hock or marbled goby, highly prized locally as ‘the’ fish to order and is priced at RM120 per kg. Most of the fish that I saw swimming in their tanks were mostly about 1.2kg. Wild caught Catfish go for RM70 per kg although most of the fish are smaller than that size. Lester recommends that the catfish be simply steamed with ginger. The best value fish is obviously the Tilapia at RM15 each for a fish of about 700-800g. The night we ordered this it came with a chilli black-bean sauce which was absolutely delectable – spicy, pungent with a hint of garlic. They also have a wonderfully melt-in-mouth fish belly already sliced that they call the Miri Wang Pu Liao (Mandarin meaning unforgettable). Perhaps this is a poor cousin of the astronomically prized Empurau which can cost up to RM500 per kg but this eminently tasty dish only cost RM20.

Soups of the Day

Steam House offers twelve styles of steamed presentation. One can choose from Bean Paste, to chopped chilli, garlic, ginger, Nonya, Asam, Hakka, Preserved Vegetable, Essence of Chicken, Fu Yu (preserved soya cheese) and others. There are two soups on the menu which vary daily. The day I was there, we had both the soups. The first a herbal soup made with Snake Head (Sang Yu or Ikan Haruan) which the Chinese believe is excellent for recuperation after surgery. This was excellent with not a hint of fishiness, and in fact, it tasted so clear I mistook it for chicken soup.

The second was peppery melange of carrots, potato, chicken feet, red dates, goji berries and pork ribs. All soups RM10 (large) and RM6 (small).

Egg Specialties

Next came the steamed egg with something which they called Fong Wong Miu or Phoenix King young shoot. It was unusual to find vegetables in steamed egg but this appears to be one of their specialties, the other being spinach steamed egg. Steamed egg which appears so deceptively simple in its presentation is actually quite difficult to cook to perfection. Ours arrived in just the right state – still wobbly but silky smooth on the tongue with the vegetables adding textural nuances to the experience – RM8.

With one memorable dinner under my belt, I was not content and had to return for another meal to sample some of the other taste treats I spied on the menu. This time I had the following dishes which were all equally memorable. Beginning with the Wine Salted Kampong Chicken, fragrant, with Dong Quai RM23 (half) and RM46 whole, we moved on with the Ham Har Fah Lam or Shrimp Paste with Pork Belly which was so delectable that I couldn’t stop picking at it and almost cleaned the plate – RM12 (small) and RM25 (large). The Brinjals with Fu Yu (preserved bean cheese) was scrumptious with hints of ginger and chillies – RM10 (small) and RM15 (large). Next on the table was the Mui Tsoi Kao Yoke, preserved vegetables with belly pork, sweet, salty, fragrance of the preserved vegetables infusing into the slow braised pork – RM12 (small) and RM25 (large).

Steam House, all in all worth getting steamed up about.

Steam House Restaurant
No. 40 Persiaran Bercham Selatan 1,
Taman Desa Kenchana, Bercham.
Tel.: 05-5486034
Lester Foo: 016-917 6034

Directions: At the first traffic light after Tesco Extra, make a right turn with Glamour Square on the corner. Then turn immediately left into Persiaran Bercham Selatan 1. Steam House is two blocks down on a corner on the left.

Food Trail Revisited


Since the launch of Tourism Malaysia’s “Ipoh Food Trail” in December last year, interest in Ipoh’s food seems to have increased exponentially. Encouraging feedback from those in the food business prompted Tourism Malaysia (Perak) to get media representatives from all over the country to come to Ipoh and savour the city’s culinary delights.

The two-day event took place over a weekend on June 18 and 19. Thirty four media personnel representing various publications, including some very prominent social magazines, went on a conducted tour of Ipoh led by Norshamshida Abdul Rahman, Director of Tourism Malaysia (Perak). The guests were accommodated at a 3-star hotel in the centre of the city with easy access to many of the eateries featured in the palm-size pamphlet.

“It’s our intention to publicise and promote Ipoh’s food as a touristic product along with the city’s architectural heritage,” said Norshamshida to the invitees. The guests were taken to the museum on the first day of the tour. The objective was to acquaint them with the state’s historical past, particularly that of Ipoh. A treasure hunt was the next item on the agenda. The game was to reaffirm information the visitors had gathered on Ipoh at the museum and from Norshamshida’s briefing earlier.

The first food stop was lunch at the famous Restoran Tasek Raban next to Stadium Perak. The visitors soon realised why the open-air restaurant is so popular with Ipohites, especially the Malays. The wide selection of Malay dishes, prepared in true Perak fashion, is the drawing factor. Grilled fish was the guests’ favourite, as most were having more than their share.

After a hearty meal they were taken to Gua Tempurong to witness Ipoh’s most visible limestone cave at close range. Manan Idris, the tour guide, took time to explain the various attractions found in the cave. It was one exhilarating field outing which worked on the visitors’ appetite.

From Gua Tempurong they were taken to Mee Rebus Ramli, a restaurant synonymous with good food in Ipoh. Mee Rebus Ramli has been around in Ipoh since the 1980s. From a humble beginning, the late Ramli had expanded his noodle business from hawking on wheels to operating in plush restaurants. He now owns three, all operated by his children. The guests were feted at Ramli’s restaurant in Jalan Yang Kalsom. They were then taken to Ipoh’s only theme park, the Lost World of Tambun, to rest their tired bodies and limbs amidst the delectable man-made ambiance of the park.

The first day tour ended with a sumptuous dinner at Restoran Nasi Lemak Ayam Kampong in Jalan Ali Pitchay. Tucking into the delicious nasi lemak with a generous helping of fried kampong chicken seemed problematic since most of the visitors’ bellies were filled to the brim. But ate they did, as the aromatic coconut-milk-laced rice and succulent chicken were simply too good to resist.

Breakfast, the following morning, was at Ipoh Hainan Restaurant in Jalan Musa Aziz. The Ipoh Heritage walk was the first item on the second day’s programme. The guests were driven to Ipoh’s iconic railway station and were greeted upon arrival by Dato’ Hamidah Osman, the Executive Councillor for Tourism. They were taken around Old Town for a first-hand look at buildings left behind by the British and the Chinese tycoons of yore.

Kellie’s Castle in Batu Gajah was the visitors’ next destination. On the way back the bus stopped at the Jalan Kampar pomelo stalls to allow them an opportunity to taste Ipoh’s famous citrus fruit. The final day’s programme ended with a satay treat at Satay Endut located at the public food court (Taman Kanak-Kanak) in downtown Ipoh.

It had been a fun-filled weekend for the visitors. Obviously, the two-day gastronomical holiday was not enough to relish all the food that Ipoh has to offer. “I’ll be back for more,” said one very pleased journalist who was full of praise for Tourism Malaysia (Perak) for having organised such an eventful tour.