Tham Jiak means in some way "love to eat" in Hokkien. I am a Malaysian Hokkien and truly love to eat.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

We Came, We Saw, We Conquered, We Cook!

One way to start writing is to stop reading, I believe I mentioned this once before eons (exaggerating) in this blog, and it still holds really true. Two of my life’s greatest passions are writing and reading, therefore they often both compete fiercely for my time. I usually end up going through my ever-increasing list of google readers list and then my free time is up, and my dear blog abandoned. to be honest too, I do not have much to write about recently, with the usual excuse you would not want to hear about but now added with one more! J and I currently are pretty out of cash thanks to our recent indulgence in a 4X4 pickup, which so happen to be both our dreams now fulfilled, therefore not much spare for food indulgence.

Anyway, in a recent comment, a dear reader TummyThoz asked where is the report on my camping trip? I have not thought anyone would be interested to know what we did there, but it seems there is! It was great fun, we did crazy things, bathed in the waterfall, cooked with the same water (ha-ha), conquered Mount Stong, slept in the rain and then wake up in the wee hours to catch the sunrise at the well known lovers rock. What else can we ask for? On top of it all, it was the companies that made it all so worthwhile; definitely there will be more trips together!

Before we reached the foot of the mountain, we had a stop nearby for lunch to fuel our 2 hours climb to our camp site. There I saw a really special looking bottled Sarsi drink. We all stared at it, took picture but none of us want to try it. There was no information of the ingredients or expiry date. Later on, when I was hiking up Gunung Stong, the guide told me that Pokok Sarsi (tree), abundant in Gunung Ayam (the next higher mountain beside Stong), can be boiled to make Sarsi drink! How interesting, so that explains the queer bottled Sarsi with the logo of ayam (chicken). Then and there I regretted not trying the drink, after all it was locally made and not to be found anywhere else!

Fortunately for me though, before we leave the camp site the next day, our guide present us with pieces of pokok Sarsi, asking us to try boiling it for a drink! I was so delighted! Now I can make my own Sarsi drink all the way fresh from Gunung Ayam! (we were suppose to split among ourselves of these but I have yet to do so, I hope my hiking gang would not mind, ha-ha)

Since this is a food blog, I must also talk about the food we had there. Cooking in the camp is definitely no easy feat, luckily Q, our head chef did a thorough planning beforehand, so none of us went hungry. She even had a menu printed out!

Therefore while we worked hard to set up the camp and play hard as well, we had in mind what we would soon have to feast on. Such bliss! The most memorable meal was so happen to be the first meal. We had ‘steamboat’ as well as many dishes to accompany along. We were sort of fighting for the food and gorging it like we haven’t eaten in days. I remembered the Sambal Chicken (pictured below at bottom left) was really good, and was impressed that Q can pull this off in our condition. I am in the midst of getting the recipe from her, so stay tuned for a deceptively simple Sambal Chicken that one can even cooked with minimal utilities! Pardon our gluttony below.

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