Hong Feng Restaurant
Pictures by Gisele Soo
SeeFoon Steps Out Very Carefully
Nothing warms my heart more than to see restaurants still innovating and flourishing after a year of being battered by the pandemic coping with lockdowns and subsequent limited services.
Now that the light appears to be shimmering on the horizon and with the vaccination programme in full swing, I am stepping out very carefully and revisiting some of my favourite haunts, being careful of course to abide by the SOPs.
Hong Feng Restaurant is one of these. Located on a slip road off Jalan Tun Abdul Razak at the junction of Jalan Labrooy, this restaurant has sustained itself with a devoted following of the neighbourhood residents as well as those in the know. They serve consistently good food, both high end and simple fare.
It is a restaurant where you can pop in for a bowl of congee, a plate of noodles or as in our case, elaborate seafood delicacies. This I did recently on two occasions.
And to my delight, the food quality was as good as I remembered it from almost 5 years ago.
We started with this humongous whole Alaskan King Crab, smothered and steamed with garlic on a bed of glass noodles. I am not fond of garlic (unless braised), so I told Manager, Mr. Wong and he promises he will use much less next time, but that is very much to your taste, dear reader, so please advise him accordingly. Otherwise, the Alaskan King Crab was umami and, because they are all flash frozen, meaty and easy to de-shell as the shells are relatively soft. RM220 per kilogram.
They also carry fresh meat crab at RM138 per kg and I love these crabs baked with soy sauce….yummilicious. Same for the fresh flower crab at market price but do call and book in advance.
Their Ice Plant Salad was very fresh, crisp and refreshing. RM20 for a small serving.
Next we had a mixed vegetable dish with water chestnuts, carrots, wood ear, celery, lotus root and crispy fried cuttlefish. This was an excellent medley of crunch and freshness bursting in the mouth with enough “wok hei” to satisfy the most discriminating palate. RM20 for a small serving.
The piece de resistance at Hong Feng is their Fried Pig’s Trotter, a generous serving of a whole trotter, marinated and steamed and subsequently deep fried. This is a lusty, bodacious in-your-face trotter, the meat falling off the bones, the gelatine in the muscle velvety smooth, the burnished skin crispy in places redolent with five-spice powder—a dish to order if you’re having nothing else. RM68.
Their homemade Tofu Fingers are made from sotong, fish, egg and soybean. Coated with cornstarch, lightly fried and served with a homemade chilli sauce, they were a crisp and umami delight. RM16.
Their Codfish steamed in soy sauce was buttery and unbelievably smooth on the tongue, literally melting in the mouth. RM250 per kg. Their Butter Prawns at RM148 per kg (usually 23-24 prawns in a kg) flavoured with curry leaves were also yummilicious.
Another specialty of the house is their Century Egg and Minced Meat Porridge, a very fine soft porridge ala Hong Kong style congee, fragrant and umami. RM8 for a single serving. Also available are the Fish Slice Porridge (using grouper fish meat) at RM12 for a single serving and Mixed Seafood Porridge at RM15. Eat any of these with a Steamed “Sam Wong Dan” (steamed fresh egg with century and salted eggs, RM12) and you’d think you’ve died and gone to heaven. Or at least that was what I felt on the second occasion I was there.
Of course, other simple dishes are readily available here, as in their Sambal or Plain Fried Rice. You can also try their Salted Fish Fried Taugeh or bean sprouts starting at RM7.50.
Or how about “Choi Bo Dan” or preserved radish omelette for which I have a frequent yearning. RM6.
Do finish your meal with some guava which are organic and homegrown by Mr. Wong who proudly introduces them to all clients of the restaurant for eating in or takeaway. RM8 per kg.
10-Q Jalan Tun Abdul Razak (Maxwell Rd), Taman Idris, 30100 Ipoh, Perak
11am-2.30pm (Lunch), 5.30pm-11pm (Dinner)
Closed on an ad hoc basis
05 506 3299
Manager Wong Yeng Hing: 011 1116 1148