Back in Penang to vote? Don't forget these eateries


The starch part of Penang orh chien is soft and gooey. Check out this delicacy at the stall in New Lane, off Macalister Road.

VOTING or not, people still have to eat, and Penang is not lacking in choice for that.

While renowned sensations like Siam Road char koay teow, Penang Road cendol and Air Itam assam laksa are likely to record brisk sales, other hawkers can expect to see better sales during the polling season.

Here are a few spots that Penangites who come back to vote might patronise before and after getting their fingers smeared purple-blue from casting their vote.

A hawker with his helpers busy preparing ingredients at the Penang Air Itam Laksa stall at the Air Itam market.

A hawker with his helpers busy preparing ingredients at the Penang Air Itam Laksa stall at the Air Itam market. 

Kampung Melayu Nasi Kandar

Penangites love to wolf down plates of nasi kandar, drizzled to near-flooding with powerful curries, at dawn!

This nasi kandar outfit in Air Itam starts serving from 6.30am and by noon, all the pots of mouth-watering meats will be nearly empty.

But never fear, the seller restocks for lunch so if the voting queue stretches, your nasi kandar fix from here is still available until around 2pm.

Teh with his freshly grilled stingray at Cafe Goodall in Gottlieb Road.

Teh with his freshly grilled stingray at Cafe Goodall in Gottlieb Road.

Sungai Batu prawn noodles

The southern coast of Penang island is actually a breeding ground for prawns.

Inshore fishermen bring in jumbo-sized prawns, and prawn noodle sellers of Sungai Batu will be waiting on land for them daily.

That is what makes the prawn noodles in this village nestled between Bayan Lepas and Teluk Kumbar so famous. The sweetly succulent, utterly fresh prawns make all the difference.

Customers enjoying seafood dishes at a restaurant near the Bukit Tambun jetty.

Customers enjoying seafood dishes at a restaurant near the Bukit Tambun jetty.

New Lane fried oysters

There are tens of hawkers in New Lane, a side street off Macalister Road about 150m from Komtar, but locals know that the fried oysters — locally called ‘orh chien’ — are to-die-for.

The Eng Kee hawker stall’s fried oysters is soft and gooey. When you pick at the orh chien with your chopsticks, the fried starch will be sticky, looking a bit like the cheese that pulls long when you take up a piece of pizza.

And so the texture in your mouth will be soft. It might even be a bit hard to differentiate between biting on the oyster and the starch.

Spicy curries are a popular choice at the Kampung Melayu nasi kandar stall in Air Itam.

Spicy curries are a popular choice at the Kampung Melayu nasi kandar stall in Air Itam.

Gottlieb Road grilled stingray

The savoury aroma billowing out of the East Coast Grilled Seafood stall in Cafe Goodall, Gottlieb Road, can start bellies rumbling after one whiff.

Stall owner Teh Yoon Peng said grilled stingrays are the hands-down choice of diners.

“We prepare lots of other fishes for variety but people just love grilled stingray,” he said.

He said he never serves stingray from Thailand and relies only on stingray caught by local fishermen.

Each block of this fish, which is related to sharks and therefore have cartilage instead of bone, is grilled after being smeared with a thick curry paste added with 10 spices, he said.

The icy cool sweet cendol is a perfect thirst-quencher at the Penang Road Famous Teochew Chendul stall in Lebuh Keng Kwee, George Town.

The icy cool sweet cendol is a perfect thirst-quencher at the Penang Road Famous Teochew Chendul stall in Lebuh Keng Kwee, George Town.

Bukit Tambun seafood restaurants

Parking always seems hard to find around Bukit Tambun’s cluster of seafood restaurants by the sea at the southern end of mainland Penang.

For decades, this is the go-to spot when Penangites want a hearty seafood dinner.

On top of dedicated cooks who conjure up amazing creations with a mind-boggling variety of seafood, there is also the view because many of these restaurants are built on jetty platforms along Sungai Jawi.

The icy cool sweet cendol is a perfect thirst-quencher at the Penang Road Famous Teochew Chendul stall in Lebuh Keng Kwee, George Town.

The icy cool sweet cendol is a perfect thirst-quencher at the Penang Road Famous Teochew Chendul stall in Lebuh Keng Kwee, George Town.


   

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