Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Sambal Rembau

In continuation of my last posting on Raub, durian and Dr Ban, I just want to share with you a wonderful experience I had over the weekend, experimenting with durian.

I saw on AFC a couple of days ago, Chef Wan cooking up “Tapioca Leaves with Fermented Durian”, or in Bahasa Malaysia, “Pucuk Ubi Tempoyak Rampai”. I looooovvvve this sambal! Some people call it "Sambal Rembau".

I was first introduced to this dish by a friend who hails from Negeri Sembilan. Her dear mum, who lived in Kg Juaseh, had given me a small container of Sambal Rembau during one of those fasting months in Ramadhan for berbuka. I’ve never seen or tasted this dish before. However, from that moment on, it was like love at first bite!

It was so delicious! Those who have tasted it would know what I mean...

Unfortunately, that was the only time I had it because I couldn’t find it anywhere else in KL. Every once in a while, I would teringat-ingatkan this authentic sambal… especially when I was having lauk masakan kampung, but I could only dream of eating it again.

Then I married my husband, a pure orang Nogori, whose mother cooked the most delicious masak lemak kuning. Her masak lemak ikan senangin is out of this world! It is so simple and yet, neither me nor my husband could copy her masak lemak.

But she had never made or served the Sambal Rembau when we ate at her house, and I had never asked either.

Until one day, I was pregnant with Nizzar at that time, tiba2 I had a craving for this sambal. I asked my husband’s aunty if she knew how to make this sambal. She said yes, and made some for me.

I didn’t know how to cook it, I never asked her anyway coz I figured it must be very tedious. With so many types of leaves, thinly sliced… masak lemak… tempoyak… I thought it must be very difficult.

Until I watched Chef Wan demonstrating how to cook this dish on AFC last week.. “Ahh… that doesn’t look too hard..”, I thought. I told my husband about it and he said, “Jom lah buat!”

So, we went to the market, bought the daun and such (according to Chef Wan’s recipe) and started cooking. Since it was unplanned and we didn’t have any tempoyak at home, we bought some fresh durian and use the flesh as a substitute for tempoyak. It turned out quite well but you have to add some lime juice to give the sour taste.

The result - very nice!! Sehingga menjilat jari!! Bukan nak memuji but it was seriously nice, and it was easy to make. Hence, I’ll share the link & recipe with those who want to try it.

Ahhh… Sambal Rembau! The thought of it makes me smile... :)

It's best to have it in the afternoon with steaming hot rice and ikan masin goreng. Sure dua kali tambah lah! Hee.. hee...

Try it! This sambal is indeed OUT OF THIS WORLD!!!

Chef Wan's Recipe

MrsNordin's Recipe:

Ingredients (dimayang halus):
Daun pucuk ubi (tapioca leaves)
Daun kunyit

Bahan2 tumbuk/blend:
10 biji cili hijau
6 biji cili padi
Kunyit hidup (1 inci)

Perencah: (rendam sekejap & tumbuk sedikit)
Ikan bilis
Udang kering



1) Campurkan semua bahan2 didalam periuk dan masak sehingga dedaun jadi lembut
2) Kalau terlalu pekat, boleh tambah air.
3) Masakkan selama 30-45 minit.

Selamat mencuba!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Klinik Ban

It was a fine Saturday afternoon when we received a call from my husband’s uncle in Seremban saying that he wanted to come over to look for durian. Not in KL… but in Raub, because he said the best durian can only be found in Raub .

“What? Raub????”

I wasn’t very keen because firstly, I wasn’t feeling well. I was coughing and was coming down with flu at that time. Durian would be the last thing on my mind.

Secondly, although I love to eat durian, I avoid eating them these days because I hate the after effects. The burping, the smell and the stinking breath that can last in your mouth for days put me off from touching this prickly fruit.

But this uncle is a dear uncle. He seldom visits and when he and his wife arrived at our doorstep looking very excited about their durian-hunting trip to Raub, we couldn’t let them down.

So, off we went.

Raub is about one and a half hours’ drive from KL via the Karak Highway. It’s not that far, but when one is not in the best of health, it felt very far for me. In the car, I was quiet mostly, trying to suppress my irritating cough.

Both the aunty and uncle used to live in Raub before. The aunty told me that she had once suffered from a very bad cough. It lasted for 2 months until one day, she decided to go and see Dr Ban (their regular doctor in Raub). Dr Ban gave her this cough mixture and after 2 days, her coughing stopped. She also said the medicine that the doctor prescribed for her other medical conditions was so good that she would make the Seremban-Raub trip every month without fail to get her medication.

So, throughout the journey, she was going on and on about how good this Dr Ban was and I was going “Yeah.. yeah…” because I was too tired to listen. In the end, I gave up and said, “Ok, let’s go and see this Dr Ban. I can ask him about my cough.” That was the only way to make her stop talking.

The aunty looked pleased, made a quick phone call and within 10 minutes, we were already outside Dr Ban’s door.

Before I went in, my husband told me, “Maybe you can ask him about your sinus as well.” Yeah, my sinus was getting pretty bad and I was taking Clarinase every night to avoid sneezing and runny nose in the morning. It would get worse if I drank iced water during the day. If I ran out of Clarinase, I would panic and live in fear that the next day would just be a disaster.

So, in I went into his clinic. There’s nothing special about it – just an ordinary room with lots of papers and medicine on his table. Dr Ban is quite an old man, maybe about 70 years old.

After the exchange of greetings and formalities, I sat down and explained to him my ailment. I told him about my cough and sinus. He asked me a few questions, and after a while, he told me, “I can break your sinus.”

Huh? How?

“By laser.”


“Yes, by laser.”

I wasn’t convinced. I told him I had a friend who had to go for operation to treat his sinus and you’re telling me you can just break it like that?

He said yes. He added, some of his patients had actually undergone sinus operations before and yet they still come to him for this treatment. He took out a chart, showed me the sinus areas and explained to me the procedure. The aunty, who was there with me, listened attentively as well.

“It’ll only take 10 minutes. No operation”, he said.

I asked him how much? When he said it’s less than RM100 and no operation required, I immediately agreed.

He asked me to sit on a chair facing him. Then, he took out this gun-like equipment which emit some sort of beam & ultrasound, pointed it to my face, and made a rotating movement around the sinus areas. He told me, the ultrasound was supposed to dislodge the clogged mucus from the eye and nose areas, and release me from sinusitis.

While he was doing that, I stood still, gripping the sides of my chair for fear of pain. But there was no pain. At some points, I could feel heat penetrating my face but that was it. After 10 minutes, he was done.

He gave me some medications and a nasal spray. He told me to stop taking Clarinase/Zyrtec and just take his medicines; I should be cured.

Before I took my leave, he told me to pantang 2 things, “No eggs and peanuts.” Ok, no problem. I don’t like peanuts anyway. Egg is a weakness but I suppose I could do without it.

So, I came home, started taking his medicines, and believe it or not, my sinus is cured! I don’t need Clarinase anymore! I can happily eat ice cream at night, but I won’t catch a cold the next day. You can’t imagine how good it feels to wake up in the morning and breath in fresh air without having a blocked nose. I could feel that my nose is clear and I love it!! No need for tissue anymore, ok? If not, melambak2 tissue at my work area and bedroom!

After that, I took my daughter, a friend who suffered from chronic sinusitis and his son, who also had a bad case of sinus, to see Dr Ban and they are all ok now. The friend actually was scheduled for an operation to remove his sinus the following week, but following his visit to Dr Ban, he did not need the operation anymore. Goodbye Sinus!

I told some friends about this story and they all in turn told their friends about Dr Ban. Those with sinusitis who went to see him in Raub are fully cured now and are so grateful for the discovery. The aunty, who introduced me to Dr Ban, also brought in her son the following week (she didn’t know Dr Ban can treat sinuses), and alhamdullilah… he’s ok now.

I know… It’s hard to believe.. but you just have to go and experience it for yourself.

I read from the internet that Ultrasound is not widely accepted by the medical community for treatment of sinus because it does not offer a detailed image of the anatomy like a CT Scan does and it doesn't remove the sinus completely like a surgery.

But what the heck… My sinus is cleared now and I don’t need surgery! That is what's important. Perhaps it is just a temporary measure and I may need to go in again if the sinus returns, but I’d rather do that than going under the knife.

Kudos to Dr Ban!

If you want to visit, Klinik Ban is located at:
No. 6, Jalan Kuala Lipis,
Raub, Pahang.
Tel: 09-3553467
(Mon-Sat: 9am-5pm, Sun: Half-day.)

You can Google the map to get there.