Chef Choi and the Truffle-phile

I suppose I have a few food-inclined friends who are still obsessed with fresh truffles. They tend to know a great deal, on the subject matter, and go through great lengths to transport/ship/hand-carry fresh truffles back home to KL, for the sake of a meal. They also go through great pains to keep the truffles dry and moisture free before it makes it to the kitchen. Later, the Chef needs to revive/resuscitate the transported truffles, for the benefit of their fellow diners before it arrives in its glorious form, on the dinner plate. Such is the dedication of the *truffle-phile. For the rest of us, though, the truffle experience is just one to be savoured and revered. We do not need to know, how the truffle got there, so much as the fact that the truffle is there, in the food.

“I have one rule about truffles,” I say, “I never say no to them”.

Yes, so over dinner, we heard the story about how our friend, the truffle-phile, upon returning from France, had to store the fresh truffles before it could be presented for cooking. Contrary to popular believe , one should not stick it into rice to keep it dry, because this will promptly make the truffle lose all it’s aroma. As we all know, when exposed to air, the aroma of fresh truffles fills the room with heavenly fragrance. Because the fragrance will be lost with extended exposure to open air, truffles should be wrapped carefully in a paper towel and kept in an air-tight container or jar. It is very important to keep truffles dry, therefore it is a good idea to change the paper towel daily. All truffles hate dampness, and will develop mold if moisture is present. If mold develops, apparently one should shave off the affected area. This poor truffle-phile changed so many papers that when the time came to eat the truffle, it had to be revived with moisture. It had to be revived heavily with moisture. Wow.. and that is why I say.. the privileged few did not need to experience what pains it took to cook the meal, just that the meal in itself was exquisite.

Definition of -phile or -phil suff.
1. One that loves or has a strong affinity or preference for – e.g. audiophile – a person who has a great interest in high-fidelity sound reproduction;
Definition of *truffle-phile – person who has a great affinity for truffles



fettuccine with crab, parsley, garlic and black truffle


Steamed fish with egg white sauce and black truffles


Yee Sang with Ocean Trout

With Chinese New Year (CNY) round the corner, don’t forget to check out Chef Choi’s CNY menu, that includes the traditional Yee Sang – loads of yam, crunchy bits and fresh ocean trout sashimi in plum sauce.

grilled sardin fish

I was told that the sardin, is rather hard to prepare. If it is not 100% fresh, it falls apart when cooked. These particular sardins kept their form and were superbly fresh. First time I ever tasted such taut and fresh sardins!


How can one not have champagne at such a festive dinner?


Saucisson and Shaved Parmesan

Ah.. what a coincidence.. was just reading David Labovitz the other day and learnt the difference between, Saucisson and Saucisse.

Saucisson is a large variety of sausage preparations of minced or chopped meats and organ meats, which are seasoned, cooked, or dried (often called saucisson sec. Saucisson is eaten sliced , and usually cold, as it is bought). Saucisse on the other hand, is the generic term for sausage (cooked, uncooked, or cured) which is served hot or re-heated, as opposed to saucisson which is generally eaten cold in slices.


This cross section of the Saucisson looks like Mickey Mouse.. too cute!


Braised Pork Shoulder with Mushroom, Black Moss (Fatt Choy) and Scallop


Braised Wa Wa Choy with Dry Scallop

The Wa Wa vegetable tastes like bok-choy, but is super tender and is from the cabbage family. It is also known as the Napa Cabbage, Brassica pekinensis. It has some really great anti-cancer properties, so eat up!


Special Fried Glutinous Rice with Hong Kong Liver Sausage

Chef Choi

Steamed Rice with Sausage and Waxed Meat in Claypot (Lap Mei Farn)

Chef Choi1

Crispy Chinese New Year Cake with Yam and Tiramisu

I’m pretty sure that truffles added to the pleasure of this terrific meal. But then simple pleasure isn’t the point of this curious restaurant. Good food and good friends, are the point. Oh.. and a whole load of truffles, whether they make sense or not;)

Chef Choi,
159, Jalan Ampang,
50450 K.L
Tel : 03-2163 5866
Fax : 03-2164 6463
E-Mail : [email protected]


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