Johor Bahru is sometimes known as the "Little Swatow" as most Chinese here are Teochews. Stalls and shops selling the Teochew style of kway teow thng 粿條汤 are therefore found in nearly every corner of JB.
Ah Hua Kway Teow Thng 亚华粿條汤 is one of the oldest and most famous of JB's Teochew kway teow thng. The founder's shop used to be in Plentong, Masai in the northeastern part of JB. This contemporary, spic and spank shop in Taman Century (near to KSL Resort) is run by one of the founder's sons with his wife and young son.
I had wanted to try Ah Hua's kway teow thng here for a long time but somehow every time, I had earlier eaten somewhere else and my stomach was already filled.
Today, my stomach was filled as usual but out of curiosity, I walked into Ah Hua to watch the boss Steven at work. I have always been fascinated watching hawkers and chefs at work.
I was struck by the energy and focus that Steven put into every bowl of kway teow thng.
Impressed by Steven's skill and dedication, I decided to try a bowl of Ah Hua kway teow thng despite not being hungry.
Steven asked me if I wanted vinegar and chili paste in my kway teow, and I said yes.
When I thought about it, I realised why it is so important to make kway teow thng one bowl at a time. Actually, this is the only way to ensure the quality of the kway teow thng.
Needless to say, the kway teow noodles must be blanched just right. Too long it will be too soft.
The meat in particular required a special touch that can come only with years of experience. The lean pork sliced nice and thin, had to be cooked right. Cooked too long, it will be hard and tasteless. The litmus test is probably the liver slices. Cooked too long, it will be stiff and rubbery - reminds me of those coarse "ink erasers" of my school days. Not long enough, it will be like a ozzing wet sponge and taste like blood.
Steven got everything cooked perfectly.
When I stirred it all up - kway teow noodles, lard, shallot oil, lard and shallot crackles, soy sauce, vinegar and chili paste - the kway teow became a ball of tangy, spicy and savoury flavours.
When I chewed the smooth richly flavoured kway teow together with the perfectly cooked pork slices and liver, the complex blend of flavours and texture was just, well...., heavenly.
Steven still hand makes these tasty, bouncy fish balls.
The tasty clear soup made with large stock bones. A tad salty for my taste and I also asked Steven to skip the minced pork. Of course, most other customers will not want to miss the minced pork :P
Orders by other customers - loaded with goodies.
I love this part of JB where the streets ringing KSL Resort are filled with well known eateries. I am coming back for these and also for Ah Hua Kuey Teow.
Address: 21, Jalan Serigala, Taman Century, Johor Bahru
Hours: 7:30am to 4:30pm
Date visited: 5 Nov 2012