Right now if someone were to say Jalan Imbi, the first landmark that comes immediately to mind is Berjaya Times Square.
However, unbeknownst to many, especially out-of-towners who’ve moved to Kuala Lumpur for economic reasons, Jalan Imbi is also well-known for its authentic Chinese cuisine, trapped in time but never waning in celebrity.
Here are seven “must-makan” hawker dishes when you drive by Jalan Imbi.
1. Imbi Pork Ball Noodles
Available in both the dry and soup versions, this pork ball noodle stall is so famous that it’s the only entry that comes up when you google “Imbi pork noodles”.
It’s easy to see why – apart from the flavourful meat balls, there is also Chinese pork sausages for that extra oomph.
2. Mini Egg Tarts
These famous egg tarts never cease to attract strings of hungry customers — from the moment the “uncle” opens shop, there is always a customer or two waiting for their tarts to be boxed. The small size of the egg tarts keeps their flavour well-balanced, besides making it super easy to pop in the mouth at one go.
3. Char Kway Teow @ Mei Sin Kopitiam
Run by a pair of elderly siblings, this char kway teow stall is hidden at the back of Mei Sin Kopitiam but fret not as you will be drawn to it by the unique aroma cooking noodles wafting through the air. The “uncle” here is generous with the seafood, so be prepared to enjoy an abundant serving of noodles with juicy prawns and cockles.
4. Dry Chicken Kway Teow @ Mei Sin Kopitiam
Also located in Mei Sin Kopitiam, the Dry Chicken Kway Teow here is different from the other famous “Sar Hor Fun” in Pau Kee Restaurant, leaving out the question of competition in Imbi.
This version is quite simple – comprising noodles, soy sauce and strips of chicken as its main ingredients, but complex in taste.
5. Loong Kee Dried Meat
Although a variety of dried meat shops line this street, Loong Kee emerges the clear winner by consensus. The dried meat is cooked right outside the store, both to show customers how it’s made and to lure them over.
6. Soo Kee’s Son’s Beef Noodles
Situated right next to Soo Kee senior, the son’s version of Beef Noodles prove to be the better-received of the two. It also serves as a more economic option, should the more famous lobster noodle be out of your reach financially.
7. Ipoh Sar Hor Fun @ Pau Kee Restaurant
Said to originate all the way from Ipoh, the Chicken Kway Teow here comes in two versions (dry and soup) that are quite different from the variety in Mei Sin. Best enjoyed with more prawn wantans and iced coffee.
This article first appeared in uppre.com