Tuesday, October 07, 2008

PULAU KETAM EXCURSION - PART 1

Two Sundays ago, Hubby and I got together with my Makan Gang (Eating Gang) for a day trip to Pulau Ketam (Crab Island). I have always wanted to visit this place as I was curious what this fishing village, named after my favourite crustacean friend, has got to offer.

Getting to the jetty was very easy. Just follow the signboard heading to Klang and drive all the way to North Port and before the T-junction, you will see the road sign below. Go straight till the end of the road and you will see Pulau Ketam jetty on your left and the KTM station on your right. There is a parking space right next to the jetty. Alternatively, you can take the KTM and get off at the last stop. The jetty is just couple of minutes walk away.

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From afar, we saw many people with big luggages, 'red-white-blue' straw bags and paper boxes waiting to board their boats. And they were Indonesians! I didn't know Pulau Ketam is that popular among Indons! I was a bit worried that we might not be able to get our boat tickets.
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It turned out that those Indons were rushing back to their home country to celebrate Hari Raya. Surprisingly, I couldn't see any Immigration or Custom checkpoint at the jetty! From a reliable source, I was told that this jetty is popular for illegal immigrants to enter and exit our country! At this point, I was on high alert so that we do not board the wrong vessel as I certainly wouldn't want to end up in Indonesia. Judging from the crowd, I thought the vessel was too small to accommodate so many passengers. I raised my concern to Hubby whether the boat is safe. And true enough, two days later the press reported on the sinking of an illegal Indonesian boat departing from Pulau Ketam jetty due to overloading. I felt really sad for the victims but then again, when something like this happen, we hope that some enforcement will be done!

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The boat ride to Pulau Ketam costs RM7 per person per way. You can either buy your tickets at the jetty or inside the boat. The boat was full and some were locals living in Pulau Ketam who came to Klang to stock up goods for sale. A lady conducter with her assistant will issue/verify your ticket by making a tear on the paper ticket. Reminded me of those old Mini Bus days. Despite being a noisy and dirty, the air-conditioned shut my complains (it was a very hot day).

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The body of the boat is pretty low and when it started to move, I can see the water level covering almost half the boat. I chose to close my eyes and pray. The sight of these bright orangy life jackets ease a little.

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After about 45 minutes ride, we finally arrived at Pulau Ketam!
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When the Queen of Crabs make a royal visit to her Crab Island, what do you expect to see? Lots of crabs to welcome her of course! Can you see those black tiny dots in the photo below? Yes, those are my worshippers! Hahahahaha!
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My worshippers closed up! Yumz! Steamed or Salt Baked?

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Pulau Ketam is not big and it took less than an hour to explore the place if you don't make any stop. All the houses and shops here are built on stilts and mostly are wooden. There are two main streets with lots of shops and restaurants. The other part of the island is mainly residential area.
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We saw lots of omelet stalls around the wet market area. I remembered reading a good review about Lau Zhi Hau and since Hubby and I did not have any breakfast, we decided to order a plate or two, which eventually ended up three, to share. Only three types of Omelet are available here Lala-Chien (Clams Omelet), Ham-Chien (Bloody Clams Omelet) and Or Chienn (Oyster Omelet) and the servings come in 4 sizes. Needless to say, the only way to find out which Omelet is the best, one have to order all three version (excuse of a glutton)!
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After the big wok plate is seasoned, the lady boss came into action. When she saw me clicking away, she immediate in very slow motion cracked an egg into the wok while looking at my camera! And yumzzz...while she was busy frying, I could already smell the wonderful eggy aroma filling the entire place.

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Lala-Chien (Clams Omelet) for 2 person costs RM7, not cheap but Lala-Chien a rare find in KL so still worth it.

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The lalas/clams were really tiny but very sweet! In fact, I find lala-chien the best among the three due to its sweetness and aroma it infused into the egg. The omelet was good, tasty on its own without dipping into the chili sauce. The amount of chewy tapioca starch and egg balanced nicely. Very good plate of lala-chien!
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Next, Ham-Chien (Bloody Clams Omelet) is priced at RM3.50 for single portion. This version not as tasty due to the lack of sweetness as compared to Lala-Chien. Still pretty good especially when the bloody clams were still juicy and not overcooked.
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The common yet famous Or-Chien (Oyster Omelet) costs RM10 for a serving for two. Definitely not cheap especially when the oysters were so tiny. In fact, I could hardly find much oysters in the omelet. Tastewise, I still prefer Lala-Chien but this is definitely better than Ham-Chien. So if you ask me, stick to Lala-Chien unless you really want to try all three.
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Right opposite the Omelet stall, we saw an elderly lady cutting up a humongous jackfruit for sale. Business was really good as many people stopped by to buy from her. Not cheap, RM3 per packet for only 5 pieces. Well, since most of the food here are '
imported' from the mainland, am not surprised at all.
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There are many shops selling local produce such as dried shrimp, dried anchovies, salted fish, dried octopus, crackers, dried scallops and etc. I wanted to buy some dried shrimp but was told by my Makan Gang that it costs the same in KL and we can even get it cheaper in Kuala Selangor!

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We only bought prawn crackers to munch. Not good at all. It was coarse and dry, nothing like those melt-in-your-mouth crackers you can get from Kuala Selangor.
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From the 'commercial' area, we walked into the 'residential' area. Every alternate house, we could hear people singing karaoke. Mode of transportations here are bicycle, motorcycle and by foot. In fact, I find it quite annoying as we always have to stand aside to make way for bicycles every few minutes or so.
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Some houses may look big and nice but sadly, I can say they are basically living on top of rubbish dump. It is filthy, muddy and wet. I do not want to imagine the stench during the dry season!
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We managed to burn lots of calories from walking under the hot scorching mid-afternoon sun. Sweat! Phew! And guess what came next? Needless to say, food of course. We had seafood for lunch but that would be in my next post! Till then...*currently hooked with pc game so trying to cut short my post as much as possible*


26 comments:

Ai-Ling said...

whoa...thnx for sharing. never knew that pulau ketam has this much to offer. will be waiting for ur next post:)

CUMI & CIKI said...

hahaha.. so farnee.. great post - all hail crab queen... (tiny bowing crabs)... you had 3 types of the CHIEN..! killer man.. how didja do it :D

Precious Pea said...

Ai Ling: Thanks for leaving me a comment. Yes, please come back to see what I have for lunch yah.

cumi & ciki: Actually I wouldn't mind another plate of lala-chien that day. Haha..when you have 3 big men and 1 big lady, nothing is impossible lor. ;)

ilene said...

I have been wanting to go for so long but never got round to doing so. Some more hor, my parents' house is just a 10 mins drive away! *shame*

Nic (KHKL) said...

wah, i never knew the existence of lala chien. the queen of crabs definitely bestowed upon me new wisdom. so, the humble berry will be anticipating the queen's feast in the next post!

Borneo Falcon said...

Nice. I always want to go to Pulau Ketam. I have a few assignment in Port Klang couple of time. Know the jetty well but never have the time for the journey to the island.

Terri @ A Daily Obsession said...

i once used the red blue white bags to hold my shopping, coming back frm hk bc i figured i can bring more stuff back if i use light bags. sure enough, i was asked to go into a room at kk airport n this guy asked me for $. unluckily for him, i had removed all my $$ frm my wallet n stuffed them on my body. he let me go.

Precious Pea said...

ilene: Your parents from Klang? I suggest you go for a short trip somewhere..hopefully you will feel much better. Take care yah. Hugz!

nic: Haha...wait till I come up with Crab Omelet one day. Will not use crab meat but crab roes instead. Wahh...think of it also can imagine how good it taste. LOL!

borneo falcon: Personally I felt that place should be properly cleaned up and make it into tourist attraction. Am sure many big city people would love to explore this kind of place.

terri: Hahaha! You already expected they will ask you for money? My Hubby also kena once when we came back from BKK, that time we went to sapu at Chatuchak. He think Hubby soft kind, then Hubby asked him show me your list of taxable item...show me which of my items here is on your list. That fella got scare and let Hubby go. So 'man' hor? Hahaha!

jason said...

It's always nice to take a short break from city life on weekends or holiday hor?

Hail Queen of Crabs!

Mochachocolata Rita said...

hi! very easy to go to saikung...take a light bus from mongkok, in front of gala shopping mall..let me know when you are in hong kong ^_^

mimid3vils said...

Those rubbish under the house are so disgusting :(

Simon Seow said...

Wah so many ppl on the jetty.First time heard of lala chien and hum chien.

Christy said...

Aiyo Queen of Crabs...no crab is safe from your food-filled mind!!
Leave those little crabs alone...poor them....don' think they will be welcoming you when you're thinking of them on the plate in different cooked styles...hahaha:p
I bet they were shuddering when they heard of your coming:p

Lala chien and ham chien is definitely something new and it's interesting to know abt Pulau Ketam (it doesn't belong to PreciousPea...you're human, not crab...hahaha)

If you were Queen of crabs and you were to eat them, hmmmm...isn't that crab-balism?:p

Precious Pea said...

jason: Agree. Their life so much different from us. So relaxing and quiet. Ahh..holiday always nice :)

Mochachocolata Rita: Thank you so much. Will definitely make a trip to Sai Kung. Should be more convenient than going to Lamma Island right?

mimid3vils: The toilet in the restaurant that i went lagi disgusting. It goes right into the sea. It was low tide the time i went...and yes, those crabs were feasting. Faint!

simon: All balik kampung for raya. Scary hor? Mountain people mountain sea.

christy: Hahaha..crab-balism. I like that word! I also dunno why, no matter how much crab i eat also am always craving for it. But they so yummy, don't you agree too?? Ahh..am so going to make crab roes chien one day.

chenboon said...

interesting post...
thinking of going to Pulau Ketam soon.
we can go for food based on your post...
please keep it as detail as you can, please!
Thanks... ha ha~

Lushia said...

Hi there...it's great to see your Pulau Ketam discovery....am surprised to see the jetty is so packed...was told earlier that lots of Indons hide in Pulau Ketam but the day I visited i didnt spotted any...am anxiously waiting for seafood post ler...mind wasn't that great. Would like to visit some other time in future but not during weekdays...heheheheh....

backstreetgluttons said...

Nice to know the happy Shah Alam X SS2 Crab Queen has gone back to discover her deep roots so far away , braving the storms and the big ripples !

Pketam is not so great for food ,since price not so cheap and cooking not so special, that was our conclusion after 3 wild hits
( tho our target was a bit different , mostly about indons n loud music)

Furkids in Hong Kong said...

That place reminds me a little of Tai O in HK. Houses on stilts - and the rubbish below unfortunately. Come high tide they look better though. :)

Still looks like a place to visit. The crabs, the omellettes, more than enough to bring me there la.

Thanks for sharing your journey there.

Seafood in Sai Kung? Lamma is a great place too, but for me the Po Toi Islands still tops them all. :)

You too give us a bell if you're ever in HK k?

Precious Pea said...

chenboon: Wait until you read my next post before you decide yah. Hehe..ermm..anti-climax lor.

lushia: Mine wasn't great either...and not cheap too. You will get what i mean next post.

BSG: Agree! I don't think i will ever go back unless of course if visiting friends request for it. Kuala Selangor so much better.

furkids in HK: I want to visit Tai O and Cheong Chau also but don't think I can cover that many places in my next trip. Been to Lamma oledi..fantastic seafood! Now am interested with Po Toi..let me google it now. Ohh..will i get to see your furkids ar?

noobcook said...

It sounds like a wonderful place to be, the only closest thing we have in Singapore is Pulau Ubin. Food just tastes better in such settings to me ^_^ And first time I have seen lala-chien, I've only tried or-chien b4 ^o^

Raynebow said...

I have never been there b4... waiting to read yr food review and see whether it's worthwhile to make a trip there :)

Precious Pea said...

noobcook: Never heard of Pulau Ubin, will google to check that place out. Lala-chien nice..much sweeter then or-chien.

raynebow: Yes, please wait till my next post to see whether it's worthwhile to make a trip there or not yah?

ling239 said...

your Lala-Chien looks and tasted much better than the one i had the other day >.<"

Wandering Chopsticks said...

Geez PP. You make me "crabby" waiting to see the crab pictures! :P

Precious Pea said...

ling239: Where did you had your lala-chien?

wandering chopsticks: Contagious isn't it? I always get cravings for crab whenever i see people blog about crabs.

Lyrical Lemongrass said...

Despite growing up in Klang, I've never felt inclined to go to Pulau Ketam. I guess one can get better food at the mainland. But thanks for enlightening us on the different "chiens". Hehe. Cool stuff. Next time must try lala chien.

 

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