Category Archives: tidbits

Sweet & Sour Memories

A recent shopping trip in  Johor Bahru brought me into eye contact with a childhood delicacy that I have not savoured for the last 30 years or so.

Yes, it was the Sweet-and-Sour Pickled Leek.  In my native colloquial Penang Hokkien, we call it “Lor Gio” (蕎頭 – in Mandarin).

Without hesitation, I bought a kilogram, and finished half of that within 10 minutes. Ooh, the sweetness accompanied by a tinge of sourness, in 80:20 ratio – my taste buds came alive again, and saliva glands went into overdrive !

Alas, that awesome childhood memory re-run was so overwhelming that I did not realize the seller had ripped 50 ringgit off my wallet in 2 seconds. 

Upon reaching home, reality set in – and the 80:20 ratio became 20:80, and I felt like wanting to pickle that seller 00:100

Munch Ado About Nut Thing

Oh yes, Kacang Putih – that venerable nutty thing that has become a national iconic snack, that is best delivered in a historical paper cone.

Those were the days, when kacang putih sellers planted themselves where there was human traffic – at roadside stalls, outside and inside cinemas, school canteens, train stations, etc.,-  where the color and fragrance of the many varieties tempted the taste buds and olfactory nerves of near-helpless souls dying to gnash their teeth (nuts in between, that is).

Today, I notice that are far fewer street vendors, but the trade has grown by leaps and bounds, testifying to the perseverance and diligence of our Indian brethren, with over 60 varieties, exported worldwide.    No peanut feat by any measure.