Food, life, and fun in my "kampung,"(village), KL (Kuala Lumpur). Did I mention "food?"

Dae Sa Kwan - a Korean Restaurant in Desa Sri Hartamas

By Allan Yap & Nigel A. Skelchy

At 12 my parents decided to send me off to boarding school in the UK. Gorgeous place, Prior Park College (see pics below;when I look at it through the eyes of adulthood. But at 12, it was Frankenstein's castle to a young, inexperienced Malaysian boy whose idea of cold was Cameron Highlands at night.

A photochrome of the Palladian Bridge looking up at Mansion HouseA real picture of the Palladian Bridge and Mansion House, the administrative centre of Prior Park College

It was then that I met the Guards. Both of them were educationists and they presently run a very successful educational consultancy for students going to the UK or Europe.

At that point in time, I had to take an examination known as the common entrance to determine whether or not I was up to a certain level for school in the UK.

David (whom I addressed as Mr Guard for umpteen years) was my invigilator. In effect, the Guards' saw me grow up. Over the years, the friendship has strengthened and they have become lifelong family friends.

Fast forward to the present day.

David and Carmen were both in KL keeping an eye on business and called Dad and Mum as they usually do when they're in town, and fixed a time for dinner.

Having racked our brains for a couple of days wondering where to take them for food, I eventually suggested Dae Sa Kwan to Mum. Hearing that it was a Korean sort of steamboat, she readily agreed. Mum's teochew but her cantonese eating habits, which she's passed on to me, means that anything with soup must be good.

Since this was the first time the Guards' had Korean food I decide to throw them in at the deep end with Kim Chee. They're adventurous sorts in any case, and they dug in with relish.

An assortment of tidbits from the menu - the interesting one was a waterchestnut savoury jelly
Kimchee "steamboat"Mixed yummies in the kimchee hotpot - small franks, luncheon meat, PORK, Wong Nga Bak, Fun see, vegKorean Beer - very light. Our lagers tend to have more body and hops flavour
A selection of the tidbits that came with the Kimchee hotpotA Korean Egg Pancake - really yummy seafood omeletteSomething the Koreans are famous for - grilled meats

Go try it. Dae Sa Kwan.


12 yrs old seems quite young to go to boarding school. I know my brother who went when he was 15 swears he will never send his kids at such an early stage ever!

The korean spread looks good. There's so many korean places nowadays I get so confused abt where to eat!

When I was 12, I had a Korean classmate. She threw a party at her house, and being the innocent kampung girl in Klang, I threw up after eating the "exotic" food. I'm glad that I've since become more sophisticated as far as food is concerned! Will check out this place...

wah, arent you part of the privileged kids...fancy smancy english boarding school at 12...the place looks like something out of a story book. so beautiful leh. so, you snooty or not one ah?

boo,i went to a residential school as well at 14. traumatic. not so much coz of the age, but more coz of the school.... that hell on earth tucked away in sungai besi.

Boo; It was rather young but it was the fashion in the early 80s and it wasn't unusual. Options for quality schooling were also far more limited then than now. In any case, I don't think I turned out too badly! ;-) haha!

This is one of the better Korean places. Many of the others just serve kal-bi and bulgogi. Very skewed to the typical grilling thing.

LL; Aiyo, so pavem! ;-) Go check it out you won't regret it. The food is good value for money too. That huge pot with all the little side dishes came up to about RM80. You don't really need anything else. We got piggy and ordered the grilled beef and the Korean pancake as well. To say I was stuffed would be an understatement! hehe

FBB; It sounds a lot more glam than it actually was. It was cold during winter. The Brothers, to conserve energy used to turn off the hot water after 2 minutes in the shower. We had WWII army surplus blankets with the regiments logos still on them. The mattresses had all seen better days. But it was good fun. When a bunch of boys get together they can play havoc! ;-) Food was plentiful (thank God) but of the English Boiled-to-death cabbage/brussels sprouts kind. Snooty ah...hmm You just going to have to meet me and make your own decision lor! ;-) How to say for myself? ;-)

Nigel: You mean you didn't have the kind of food that Enid Blyton used to describe ah? Tongue sandwiches, pop biscuits and buns that were filled with sherbet...

From our brief encounter on Sunday, I don't think you're snooty. ;-) Please sir, may I have some more cake?

LL; Thanks much dear. ;-) Would love to hang and go for food crawl. ;-)

You forgot that the Famous Five also had "lovely fresh tomatoes and lashings of Ginger Beer." ;-) hahaha

Tongue sandwiches ah...Mr Ho's has Salt Tongue. Yummy!

Thank you for saying I'm not snooty. I hope I'm not! ;-)

As for some more, caaaannnn! Me? Or cake? ;-)

Nigel...food crawl sounds lurvly dahlink. If you're as good as the cake u served, I'll take both, thank you. :-P
I suddenly feel like reading Famous Five, The Enchanted Forest and Malory Towers.

LL; What about St Claire's, The Secret Seven, and for watching, Jennifer Saunder's and Dawn French's spoof on the Famous Five? ;-)

Aiyah Nigel, I'm not so advanced like u lar...I where got time to watch TV one? For more conversations on Enid Blyton, check out Pink Elle's blog: http://funkycookies.blogspot.com/2007/03/mr-pink-whistle.html

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