You know how in many residential neighbourhoods there are always hidden food gems that are known and patronised mainly by the residents only? These are those “tai chow” eateries and restaurants that have been the go-to choices for family meals and the local residents keep them close to their hearts.
Bei Hai Restaurant is one of those. Located in Taman Bidara, somewhere in Selayang, this restaurant caters mainly to the people living around there and I felt we were really the odd ones out when we visited Bei Hai recently. However, we were quickly seated and attended to – we were there for an early dinner before the crowd came in.
Sweet Sour Pork is such a regular dish in any Chinese restaurant. Bei Hai’s version was a little unique. The chunks of deep-fried pork were buried under a trench of chopped ice to preserve the crunchiness. A novelty, for sure but then it actually worked out nicely – tender flavourful meat beneath a super-crunchy layer.
Icy Sweet Sour Pork (RM38)
The next dish was a direct translation from Cantonese “Prawn Soldier Crab General”. The chef has gone to great lengths to plate the dish. It’s essentially a 2-item platter of prawn paste balls and spicy stuffed crabs. Both this dish and the next one, Double Dragon Prawns would make excellent dishes to be served in a celebratory multi-course meal here. The presentation was lovely; the matching of colours and flavours spoke well of the chef and team’s efforts. White and red dragonfruit served with lightly saute’ed prawns and some crunchy vegetables stacked with baby lettuce certainly made a pretty picture. It’s also light and refreshing!
Prawn Soldier Crab General (RM80)
Double Dragon Prawns (RM160)
Slices of crispy-skinned roast duck sandwiched in flat fluffy “paus” together with crunchy fried beancurd skin made up “Foh Foong Ngap”, the next dish. We enjoyed this dish as the contrasting textures (soft pillowy pau and crispy duck & fuchuk) were really good.
Foh Foong Ngap (RM98)
Another light and nutritious dish was the braised house-made charcoal tofu with beancurd puffs, mushrooms, gingko nuts and lotus seeds. What’s more, those silky smooth tofu had fillings of chopped mushrooms and prawns in them!
Charcoal Tofu with Gingko & Lotus Seeds (RM80)
To round off our dinner, we tried Bei Hai’s signature Boiled Rice with Fresh River Prawns. Fried puffed rice cooked in a premium broth with freshwater prawns with lots of roe which resulted in a bowl of heartwarming goodness. It’s something to be savoured slowly and lingeringly.
Boiled Rice with River Prawns – minimum order of 2 prawns (RM46/prawn)
Bei Hai Restaurant is also well known for their simpler comforting food like curry fish head, steamed fish and dishes that go well with rice. What we’ve tried here were more like banquet dishes and they are good if you are thinking of holding a celebration meal here. For the special plating and food presentation seen here in these dishes, do call them in advance to order as they need notice to prepare.
Bei Hai Restaurant 北海饭店
No. 10, Jalan Bidara 2/4
11:00am to 2:30pm
5:30pm to 10:30pm