There was a period of time when I had a persistent craving for Chilli Pan Mee. After work, I would be looking around town for a fix. One of my quests brought me to Shan Cheng.
Shan Cheng was set up by a pair of sisters from Ipoh. As such, this restaurant promises to serve authentic Ipoh cuisines that will whet everyone’s appetite. Whet my appetite indeed. After having their Chilli Pan Mee, I was hooked.
Chilli Pan Mee
At one glance, the bowl of noodles looked plain. The bed of moist, springy noodles were topped with a gleaming sunny side up with oogly yolk. Accompanying the egg were braised minced pork, fried ikan bilis (anchovies) and the spirit of the dish – chilli.
Each of the savoury accompaniments added a different layer of taste to the dish. The braised sauce of the minced pork gave it a heavy sweet undertone, while the ikan bilis whipped up a splash of umami from the sea. The chilli – be very careful of the serving, for it could be very choking – jolts one into consciousness after a hard day of work.
To be frank, I always took out the chilli and added them bit by bit as I mixed everything together. I like the spiciness, but I also wanted to savour the other flavours of the noodles. Sometimes, the egg would be undercooked enough so that when I broke the egg, the yolk would coat the noodles with a creamy texture.
Whenever I get overwhelmed by the chilli, there’s always the bowl of clear soup with springy fish balls.
Ipoh Golden Platter 怡保香脆炸料
As I got accustomed to Shan Cheng, I gradually explored other items on their menu. Since I’m a fried food addict, my first adventurous option was the Ipoh Golden Platter 怡保香脆炸料, a.k.a Ngor Hiang 五香.
The platter came with an assortment of fried tofu skin, fried fish balls, fish cake and Ipoh Fried Turnip 怡保炸沙葛.
The highlight had to be the Ipoh Fried Turnip 怡保炸沙葛, since the item was also sold on its own. While it looked heavy, it was actually light to the taste bud. I could easily have 4 or 5 of it, because the spices were simply too addictive!
My only complaint about this dish was that it was supposed to be for sharing. However, the items weren’t in numbers for sharing. For example, the Ipoh Fried Turnip 怡保炸沙葛 and fish cake came in one piece, while the fish balls came in 3. So I always ended up ordering one set for myself only.
Yup, myself only lol
Curry Chicken Noodle
My next addiction in Shan Cheng was its Curry Chicken Noodle. It was basically the Ipoh Golden Platter added with yellow noodles and curry!
I had a love hate relationship with the curry. On one hand, it was so umami good. On the other hand, it was too spicy. I always ended up slurping the noodles with sweat dripping into my bowl. Yup… Another form of umami 😛
Shan Cheng is one of your casual dining for good old Chinese style Malaysian food. You had to take your noodles to the table yourself, though you also get to spam-take the chilli. I once had to queue behind a guy, with my tray in hands, waiting for him to fill up a tray of chilli!
It was also very difficult to get a seat during peak hours, which goes to show its popularity in the neighbourhood. Therefore, it was very difficult for me to eat at Shan Cheng alone.
However, whenever I got the chance, I would still swing by to get a quick fix of Ipoh delicacies.
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Till then, eat happy!
All the photos and videos in this blog post were taken on my Google Pixel XL; I edit my photos, where necessary, to provide a better viewing experience for my readers.
Shan Cheng 山城
1 Sengkang Square
+65 6386 4564
Search for their outlets islandwide on their Facebook page!