Tracing the origins of bak kut teh

Claypot bak kut teh with its more herbal, lighter and cleaner taste is gaining popularity among the younger crowd. Teluk Pulai Bak Kut Teh is where it started. Photo: Julie Wong

In Quanzhou, a port city in Fujian province in south-east China, a dish that closely resembles Klang’s famous bak kut teh can be found at the HaoChengCaiNiuPai restaurant.

The restaurant was founded in 1910, and named one of China’s “Time Honoured Brands” by the Ministry of Commerce in 1999. Niu pai is also recognised as a famous snack by the Fujian Restaurant Cuisine Association. That is to say, niu pai is an icon dish of the city, pretty much like bak kut teh is to the Klang Valley.

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