Friday, August 08, 2008

Pork Stew for Kompia (Foochow Bagel)

08.08.08 With Beijing Olympics going to begin soon today I would like to put down my favourite memory of Sibu - it has to be kompia with the pork filling.

This would also be the perfect dish to introduce to people who watch the Olympic Games.....simple and yet delicious. It would not distract the eater from watching the games . And there is no wastage at all. Nothing to throw away.

Someone should invent the edible napkin.

This is the Chieng family which operates a delightful down to earth and simple Christian based kompia outlet in Sg. Merah, where the first Foochows stepped on the soil of Sarawak , led by Wong Nai Siong. Perhaps biting into a kompia one can feel that we are biting into a slice of our history.

The young Chieng is a school teacher by way of introduction and he is a good son who helps his mother whenever he can.

The oven for the kompia is actually an over turned urn made locally. Cemented into a wood or charcoal stove we can have a wonderful oven for the making of kompia. And it is indeed the only way to get that natural aroma out of the plain dough. Convection oven,microwave or ordinary oven or any other invention cannot give you our traditional kompia.

The simple fat free dough is neatly divided into balls and they are lined up for easy and systematic handling. Just watch a kompia man making his kompia and you will realise how effective and efficient he is over the worktop. I believe .

So queue up for your kompia in Sg.Merah for the Chieng's humble product.

Recipe for pork stew:

1/2 kg. belly pork (sliced very thin)possibly 40 slices
2 tbsp thick soy sauce
sugar to taste
some water
oil (peanut oil)
a bit of sesame oil
3 tbsp minced garlic
a dash of pepper if you like
some water

1. Marinade the thin slivers of belly pork for an hour or so with some thick soy
2. heat up a kuali or wok and add a tablespoon of oil (more if you like)
3. add the garlic and cook until fragrant or aromatic
4. Add the sugar and caramelise it.
5. Add the soy sauce and wait for the sauce to boil over but not burnt
6, Add the pork slices and coat them well with the sauce, lower the fire and let the sauce and pork simmer for about ten minutes without letting the sauce dry up before adding about a Chinese soup bowl of water (or an amount you need for your kompia)

Half a kg should be enough for about 20 pieces of kompia,and this depends on whether you want to have more filling for your Foochow sandwich!!

Kompia itself is saltish even with a thick coating of sesame seeds. So a sweet sauce is complementary.

Some folks like some salted soy beans in this sauce. But I prefer the simple ingredients which will bring out the taste of the kompia best.

I am not sure if artificial sugar works or not. I will look into this recipe for my diabetic friends.

I hope Sibu will always produce kompia for us. Cheers.

Philip Hii has a few photos of the old man who sold kompia from a tray that he carried on his head. Remember the old man? I believe he lived in Tiong Hua Road, Sibu. We used to chase after him just to get him to stop ,put his tray down and buy two pieces with our coins.

Sometimes we bargained with him and asked him only for the sauce without the meat with the kompia ...How "kosong" can that be!! And we would run along with the kompia dripping with the black and tasty sauce.

14 memories:

Tia said...

blog hopping and found u..
been looking for the pork stew recipe.. will try it.
selamat bekalala dalam alam maya!!
no problem with me linking u...yeah?

cupid113 said...

Sarawakiana ..... thank you for the write up on kompia .... here I am in London having my breakfast of toast and coffee and reading about kompia just makes me feel so HUNGRY for them. I didn't know they still do the belly pork stew version in Sibu as I always ended up eating the minced pork type ..ugh!! This time when I come to sibu, I make sure I make a D-tour to sungei merah from the airport for the kompia instead of eating the foochow fried wet noodles which is also my FAVORITE. All these talk of local foods makes my mouth watered.

Are you Chang Yi by any chance? I'm Sarina.

cupid113 said...

Sarawakianan..... can you find out what happened to all those local candy sweets that we used to have in Sibu when we were growing up? Early this year when I was in Sibu, I went searching for them all along the shops in market street where the bakeries are and couldn't find any. I don't know whether you still remember them. My favourite one is a slim, longish honey combed type with a minty flavour and always comes in different coloured wrapping papper. The candy is creamy in colour.Nobody seems to know what candy I'm talking about and hoping that you do. How about those cuttle fish that are soaked in chilli sauce (chewy ones) and the ones that are cooked over charcoal fire, pounded to soften them up and serve with chillie sauce too.

I Am Sarawakiana said...

Hi Sarina,
Wonderful to link up with you again. Yes I am CY.

Nice of you to remember. The sweet is called manga tong or maltose in the solid form. I will try to find them in Miri, where I am residing now.

The coconut candies are found in Kuching Padungan Road.

I hope you don't mind that one of the articles I am going to write is about your father .

Hope the recipe works for you as most of the cooking I do is home cooking and not from recipe books...a bit of this a spoon of that, you know....and hey presto we have what mother used to cook!! But not as nice.

Cheers. I miss London on the other hand.

I Am Sarawakiana said...

Dear Mama belian n cengal,

Thank you for visiting. no problem with you linking me ...thanks.

cupid113 said...

Hi CY .... thank you so much on the information about that local candies ... will look for them when I'm home in Dec. If you can find manga tong in miri, do take a pic of it and post it here so that I can see whether that's the one.

Oh sure .... you can write about my late father. Our family was most surprised when we were informed that a road in kapit was named after him. It is called Jalan Mamora - very kind of the kapit people to do that.

I Am Sarawakiana said...

That's wonderful news.

My third daughter Tiorina was named by your father who became rather fond of my husband. That explained how Tiorina got her name. I suppose you can recognise that it is very Indonesian. She is 25 and working in KL.

It is nice to be chatting with you in this manner!!

cupid113 said...

CY ... that's interesting as to how your daughter got her name. One of my nieces too is working in KL. A pity you didn't meet Daulat when he and his wife was in Miri last summer - a short visit only.

I Am Sarawakiana said...

Hi Sarina,
It is nice to be in touch with old friends. Yes it was a pity that I did not get to meet them both. She must have gone to Cafe Rosita (part of Hotel Dynasty) and we did not get to meet .

Hope to meet up with any one of you in the future. I see Ida quite often whenever I visit Sibu. My mum and sisters have moved to Kuching for sometime now.

cupid113 said...

Hello CY

I have been visiting sibu lately whenever I come back to Kuching and staying at Ida's house. Yes, I did hear from Ida that your sis and mum have moved to Kuching and who knows I might just 'bump' into you one of these days when I am back in kuching - I stay at Toman's house when I'm home. Rita and myself tends to go shopping and eating out hehe .....

fufu said...

wow kompia kompia, would like to try =p

I Am Sarawakiana said...

the nearest place for you to get kompia ( two types) is Sitiawan if you are residing in West Malaysia.

Or you have to fly to Sibu where the best kompia is at its best fresh from the oven.

Thank you for visiting.

Mumble jumble said...

We can find kompia in sitiawan?

Time for a trip to sitiawan during the weekend!

I Am Sarawakiana said...

take a few pictures there.

There are two types of Kompia there. And don't forget to eat asll the nice food availalbe especially the Fried Mee Sua.

A few good shops there. Go where there are lots of people queuing up.

Always drive carefully.


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