Ambuyat – The Edible Gooey Bornean Delicacies

Ambuyat – The Edible Gooey Bornean Delicacies

Ambuyat – The Edible Gooey Bornean delicacies

29

August, 2017

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If you are looking for that unique taste of Bornean delicacies, I will recommend you to go and try the Ambuyat!

It is one of the unique food that can be found in Borneo as it is very gooey and it looks like glue when it is served. It has various names such as the Pinantung, Ambuyat, Sagu and many more and they can be found in almost all parts of Borneo as it is eaten by a majority of natives in Borneo.

Ambuyat

The Ambuyat before it is cooked looks like flour; white powdery form and you can buy them in local markets or Tamu around Borneo. They are usually sold in packs and some people say it looks like a pack of starch.

The Pinantung is a very famous dish amongst the native community (Kadazan, Dusun, Rungus, and etc etc) here in Sabah but it is also famous in the Bruneian community up to the Sarawakian community. To my surprise, this dish can also be found in eastern parts of Indonesia and it is very similar to the one we get here and the name is Papeda or Bubur Sagu. The Papeda is a famous dish for the local native people in Maluku and also Papua New Guinea.

Ambuyat
Dinner at D'Place Kinabalu
Another similar version as Ambuyat
Dinner at D'Place Kinabalu

In Indonesia, the name of this local delicacy is called the Papeda. It is the same exact thing if you look closely. Well, it’s good to know that people from other parts of the world are eating the same food as yours. Both the Ambuyat and also Papeda is from the trunk of the sago palm. For those who don’t know, the Ambuyat is a national dish in Brunei. Let’s get to the best part about this dish which is the preparation of this dish. The preparation of this dish is unique as it doesn’t need any fire or pan to cook it. All you need is a hot water and a reliable wooden spoon to prepare this dish and it is a very easy dish to prepare. Once you’ve mastered it, preparing the Ambuyat is like ringing a bell.

Ambuyat

Just pour the Sago Starch into the bowl and next pour in some hot water and gently give a light stir and keep pouring the hot water in until it thickens up. Once it coagulates, give it a light scoop and if it’s in a sticky form, then it is ready to be served. Eating the ambuyat is a little tricky with a spoon so the best way to eat them is by using a traditional chopstick called the Candas, which looks like the Chinese chopsticks but is thinner and made from sago leaf stalk or bamboo stick, to scoop the gooey Ambuyat.

Ambuyat
The Candas is one of the essential that you will need to eat the Ambuyat

Ambuyat

With the candas, it is easier to scoop the Ambuyat. Just put the front tip of the Candas into the Ambuyat, give it a little twist, pull and you’re good to go! For those who are having a hard time with the Candas can always use the good ol’ fork.

Believe or not, the Ambuyat is actually tasteless! Yes, they are tasteless I repeat. That is why when you’re eating the Ambuyat it is important to have your own customized dipping. The dipping can be either be a local fish soup called the Pinasakan, a canned sardine with tomato sauce, curry or anything that you like. Add some hot spicy chillies, some lime juice, or maybe a pinch of salt for that extra taste or just throw in some small slices of Bambangan (Local Mango) for that good sweet and sour taste. The Ambuyat will taste better if the dipping soup is based on your taste. The best dipping for the Ambuyat is the Pinasakan as it will give every scoop a superb spicy taste with a little extra flavours from the fish.

Ambuyat

It’ll add taste to your Ambuyat with the Pinasakan. Add some Bambangan and some extra hot chillies too for that Red Hot Chili Peppery taste. A little chilli won’t hurt the tongue.

Ambuyat
Ambuyat
Ambuyat

Another famous dipping for the Ambuyat is the classic canned sardine with tomato sauce and some cut chilies and a squeeze of lemon for that sweet, sour, and hot taste to your Ambuyat. All these dippings will make the Ambuyat taste better but for me, the good ol canned sardine is the unbeatable champion for all and also one of my personal favourites for the dipping. The Ambuyat may be tasteless but with the right dipping, I’m sure it’ll make your appetite go wild.

Next time if you happen to visit Borneo, make sure to put the Ambuyat in your bucket list as this is one of the unique food that you shouldn’t miss trying when you’re visiting Borneo. So if you are in Borneo, look for the Ambuyat and get right into the Gooey Action!

Do you wanna taste out other food in Sabah Borneo? Read out “Must eat food in Sabah Borneo”If you are looking for a place to taste Ambuyat, contact us now and we can bring you to D’Place Kinabalu for a taste of traditional food. 

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Traditional Dinner at D’Place Kinabalu

Traditional Dinner at D’Place Kinabalu

A night out to D’Place Kinabalu

in Borneo Holidays

27

August, 2017

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Looking for some local traditional cuisine in Kota Kinabalu city?

Head out to D’ Place Kinabalu for the authentic local dishes that is not easy to find. D’Place Kinabalu only opens for lunch and dinner. It is located at Plaza Shell at the center of the Kota Kinabalu city. Previously, D’Place Kinabalu was located at Kepayan Perdana, but it is inconvenient to tourists or guests. There are three types of set meal you can choose such as Lunch Ala-Carte, Lunch Buffet, and Dinner Buffet.

Dinner at D'Place Kinabalu
Dinner at D'Place Kinabalu
Dinner at D'Place Kinabalu

Upon arrival, we were welcomed with few staffs in Kadazan traditional costumes, as well as the local Kadazan songs as the background music. I was told that the new outlet in Plaza Shell are considered in a bigger space compared to their previous outlet at Kepayan Perdana. There are also two private rooms that are available for function purposes. Apart from that, you can choose to sit outside on the balcony, but I recommend you guys to sit outside only during lunch and not at night because you might miss out to watch the Cultural Dance Performance during dinner.

Dinner at D'Place Kinabalu
Dinner at D'Place Kinabalu
Dinner at D'Place Kinabalu
Dinner at D'Place Kinabalu
Dinner at D'Place Kinabalu
Dinner at D'Place Kinabalu

Just a note.

If you want to take the Buffet Lunch/Dinner set meal, make sure you come with an empty tummy because there are loads of traditional delicacies for you to try! Firstly, we were served with a ginger drink and we’re so ready to grab some delicious traditional food to fill our hungry tummy! Only during the buffet, we should not worry about dieting, because we should eat more. Hahaha… Anyway, D’Place Kinabalu serves live butod to eat. You can taste it out when you are there, but would need to buy, one piece is MYR 3.

Dinner at D'Place Kinabalu
Dinner at D'Place Kinabalu
Dinner at D'Place Kinabalu

Around 7.30pm, it’s time for the cultural dance performance! There were about three performances presented that night, the first one was Kadazan tribe traditional dance. Next, the Malay traditional dance, and lastly, the Murut tribe traditional dance. We were all fascinated with the excellent performances by the dancers, especially the bamboo dance part.

Dinner at D'Place Kinabalu

Around 9 pm, it’s time to call it a night. We took some pictures with the traditional dancers and bid goodbye to everybody. Thank you D’Place Kinabalu for the delicious food, good service, and hospitality! We will be back there again soon.

If you are looking for Sabah’s traditional delicacies, this is the place that you should go to. Although, it is not all Sabah’s traditional food was served, these food were enough for local and tourists to have an easy access to taste the traditional food in the city, rather than have to go through the rural villages to find these tasty delicacies. Read our other blog entry on “Traditional foods that make you drool

Contact us if you want to go for a dinner at D’Place Kinabalu. 

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Top 5 Kid-friendly trips in Borneo Family Holiday

Top 5 Kid-friendly trips in Borneo Family Holiday

Top 5 Kid-friendly trips in Borneo Family Holiday

23

August, 2017

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Thinking to bring your kids to travel Sabah Borneo? Worry about the safety and the challenges that you will face in Sabah Borneo trip? Fret not, there are a few tours that are kid-friendly and it is an easy family adventure to go to. Thus, Sabah Borneo is considered as a wonderful destination for kids and parents.

Here’s our list of Top 5 kid-friendly trips that you can bring your kids to go to.

1. Taste of Borneo Cooking Class

2. Kota Kinabalu City and Nature Tour

A trip to Atkinson Clock tower with family in Kota Kinabalu City Tour. (Photo by flyborneo)

Bring your kids to experience the beauty of Kota Kinabalu city in Sabah Borneo, without worrying about the hassle of transportation to reach few landmarks in the city area. This is an easy and relaxing tour for your family to join in Borneo holiday. Get the chance to visit the Kota Kinabalu City Floating Mosque, the Atkinson Clock Tower, and to the outskirts of Kota Kinabalu – Penampang town. This is the fun part, where you can bring your kids to go to experience local’s daily lives in a tamu ( local market), having delicious lunch in a local cafe, as well as the journey up to the Crocker Range National Park to see the amazing view of Kota Kinabalu city and surrounding areas. Take a look at our Kota Kinabalu City and Nature tour package available for booking now!

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3. Mari Mari Cultural Village

Looking for a place to bring your kids to get the insight history, culture, and traditions of Sabah Borneo tribe? Mari Mari Cultural Village is the best place to go for your Family holiday in Sabah Borneo. A light and easy sightseeing tour that is perfect for a family outing. There are also fun activities that your kids can participate there, such as the blowpipe, dance on the “Lansaran” at the Murut house, and many more. This is one activity not to be missed when being in Sabah, Borneo. For more info, 

4. Weston River Cruise

Wildlife is one of the must-see activities when you’re on a holiday at Sabah, Borneo. The number of endemic wildlife in Sabah, Borneo, are loads! Which makes it one of the main reasons not to miss out on learning about them more. Kids would love to see the animals, especially when they get a chance to see it wild and outside from the zoo. If you are planning to bring your kids to see the Borneo wildlife with safety in mind on your family holiday to Borneo, then Weston River Cruise is the safest activity that you and your kids can spend together. Your kids will be able to enjoy the river cruising while keeping their eyes to search for Borneo wildlife, such as the endemic Proboscis Monkeys, Silvered Langurs, Birds, Snakes, and many more. Not only that, kids would love to see the fireflies at night when you hop on the boat for the second time after dinner!

5. Kinabalu Day Tour

Bring your kids to the Kinabalu Park for a day trip, exploring around the park, short trekking, canopy walk, bird watching, and visit the Botanical garden. Not only that, you can drop by to Poring Hot Spring with your kids and enjoy a relaxing dip in the natural hot spring deem to have healing properties. Apart from that, you can bring your kids to the Desa Dairy Cattle Farm for an experience to feed the calves and see the milking process while enjoying a cup of Gelato made entirely in Desa Dairy Cattle Farm.

After reading these top 5 kid-friendly trips, we hope you will bring your kids to go for a trip to Sabah Borneo. Why would we say like that? Because traveling with your kids can be a lot of fun! Read our “ Why you should travel with your family?”. Apart from that, you can read our other blog post on “Interesting places to go in Sabah with Kids”, to know what other places in Sabah that are kid-friendly. 

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Kampung Babagon Tagal River

Kampung Babagon Tagal River

KAMPUNG BABAGON TAGAL RIVER

05

July, 2017

Kampung Babagon Tagal

Look out for this very Fishy Road Sign that will lead you straight to Kampung Babagon River Tagal.

Want to enjoy some relaxing cold crystal clear water without going to the Tunku Abdul Rahman Park Islands or spend a day away from the stressful city life? Here’s what you can do if you’re planning to go somewhere nearby, there’s a place called the Babagon Tagal River In Penampang which will only take about 30-40 Minutes drive from the Kota Kinabalu city centre.

Make sure to bring some extra clothes and towels because there are gonna be a lot of swimming when you are there. Let’s see if the crystal clear water doesn’t make you want to jump in to have a short dip. Trust me you won’t regret a single bit as the cold crystal clear water will take away your stress and put you in the most relaxing state ever. Have a dip and just relax at the riverside and enjoy the calming sights and sounds of nature at its finest. Throw away all your problems and leave all your troubles in the city and just enjoy.

Kampung Babagon Tagal River

Well! What are you waiting for? Christmas!? Jump In! In Ya Go!

Super tempting crystal clear water that is super hard to resist not to go in. If you ask me, I think you wouldn’t have the chance to ask because I’ll be the first one to jump in before you get the chance to ask.

Other than swimming in the amazing crystal clear water, Babagon river is also one the best place to bring the family along as it has a lot of family activities to do there and one of it is to have your riverside family picnic. Enjoy the scenic views and also the relaxing surroundings together with your family and friends. Enjoy some barbecue wings along the river, and top it up with some cold drinks to complete your weekend escape from the city life.

Kampung Babagon Tagal River

Enjoy your riverside barbeque lunch with your family and friends and just relax

Kampung Babagon Tagal River

You can always use the public picnic area to have your small gatherings and barbeque party with your family and friends

When you’re in Kampung Babagon, you will have the chance to see the daily life of the local villagers there as there are many farms and fruits orchards in the area. So chances of you seeing the locals carrying fruits around the area is quite normal there. Don’t be shy with the locals as they are very friendly and welcoming to almost anyone who visits, just ask them politely and they might sell you some of their freshly grown fruits or maybe get a sample of it.

Kampung Babagon Tagal River

The famous Babagon River Underwater Bridge. Photo by: Desmond Chung

Kampung Babagon Tagal River
Kampung Babagon Tagal River

The normal everyday life of the locals in Kampung Babagon. This is a common sight

Kampung Babagon Tagal River

Wanna wash your car? You can do it here. Just find a good parking spot near the Babagon River underwater bridge and let the washing begin! Photo by: Nelson Michael

One of my favourite thing to do in Kampung Babagon River is of course FISHING! With the proper permits and agreements from the head of the village, you will be allowed to fish the river with one rule that is always Catch and Release all the fishes you caught. Here’s a brief introduction about the tagal system. Tagal is a system that is applied to most of the rivers here in Sabah and it is aimed to conserve and protect the rivers and also the Pelian or Mahseer fish from being over harvested. Each tagal river is a no go for fishing and it is only opened once a year for the local villagers to harvest the fishes in the river.

Kampung Babagon Tagal River
Kampung Babagon Tagal River

One of the fine examples of the healthy Mahseer Fish caught in the Babagon River. Catch, Photo, and Release! Thanks for the thrill!

In my opinion, Babagon River is one of the best places to visit and the best part is that it is not very far from Kota Kinabalu City Centre. Don’t know where to go for the weekends, plan your trip up to Kampung Babagon Tagal River and enjoy!

Do you want to know the top 5 day trips that you can do in Sabah Borneo? click here to read our blog on “Top 5 Day Trips To Do in Sabah Borneo“.

 

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Unique Taste of Borneo Cooking Class Tour

Unique Taste of Borneo Cooking Class Tour

Unique Taste of Borneo Cooking

Class Tour

16

June, 2017

“Don’t just eat like a local. Learn to cook like one, too!” – John Lee, The Globe and Mail

Sabah is filled with various types of delicious foods like Western food, Chinese food, Indian food, and so on. But the most interesting type of food to checkout when you are visiting Sabah is the Local Kadazandusun food as you can only try this when you are in Sabah and it is a must-not-to-be-missed-thing to do. The experience is unbelievable! I had the chance to be a “tourist” in my hometown one day, to join the Taste of Borneo Cooking Class Tour with our guests. We were brought to the Local Market also known as “TAMU” in the local dialect, to see a big variety of vegetables, fishes, and also some of our Endemic Fruits such as the “TARAP” fruit, “BAMBANGAN” fruit and much more. Also get the chance to mingle around with the locals at the market and see how do they do their business there.

 

We were guided by two elderly couples throughout the market up to their house not far from Donggongon Town. When we reach to their house, they served us a few traditional Borneo Dessert with local black coffee before starting the cooking lesson. It started with a soup called Pinasakan. 

It is a popular dish among the Kadazandusun people in Sabah, this is the recipe that is used by the local people back in the olden days to keep it from going bad because, in the olden days, they usually traveled very far from home to get to the seaside to trade and get supplies. There was no refrigerator back then, so what they did is, they extract the moisture out from the fish so that it would withstand the long journey back home. The taste is sour, sweet and of course, delicious. Read our blog on “Pinasakan” being the popular dish for Kadazandusun.

 

Preparation of the soup. Also introductions to some of the ingredients used in the soup.   

The second dish is the Labu Putih Soup or Winter Melon soup with some chicken. This is a soup that is well known by both the Kadazandusun people and also the Chinese people in Sabah. It’s a simple dish to prepare but the taste is extraordinary. You’ll get that soft and tender chicken meat that is cooked together with the winter melon and also the aromatic soup that is super appetizing.

 

Winter Melon Soup With Chicken.   

Pinasakan

Guest prepare the vegetables for the next dish.   

Tasting the soup 

Explaination on the food preparing

When the soup is boiling, we were introduced to some local vegetables such as the Wild Fern, Water Spinach, and also Tuhau. The couples taught us how to prepare them before cooking it. The most interesting vegetable for me is the Tuhau. It has a very strange smell to it and some people even describe the smell is like a beetle bug that the locals call the Posisang (a small beetle bug with a deadly smell).

Amazingly, they don’t taste as bad as how they would smell and it is super delicious. Once everything is cooked, rice is served together, and we all sat with the couple to chit chat and enjoy the foods. Honestly, the food was amazing! Get ready to skip your diet because the dishes was super appetizing and it is hard to resist from getting a second round.

After having our amazing lunch, we sat down to have some rest and the couple took us for a short tour around their garden to is filled with lots of beautiful colorful flowers. We took a few pictures with the couple for our good experience with them and to our surprise, they gave us a small token for our memories. It is a small recipe book for us bring back and remember the recipe.

After saying our goodbyes the driver then took us back to the hotel. It was an amazing experience that anyone should try as the couple will not only fill your mind with some super delicious recipe but also fill your stomach with their superb dishes.  

Momma’s sharing story to the guest

Momma is explaining some local herbs fresh from home.

Bon Apetite!

Photo Session with the guest

Interested in joining our Taste of Borneo Cooking Class? Bring your family or your friends to get the first experience of hands-on cooking the local Kadazandusun dishes, and don’t worry there will be a local family will help and teach you! 🙂 Feel free to check our tour here. 

Borneo-travel-with-family

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Interesting Places To Go In Sabah With Kids

Interesting Places To Go In Sabah With Kids

Interesting Places To Go In Sabah With Kids

20

May, 2017

Don’t listen to those who say traveling with kids are hard. It is one of the greatest moment in your life when you travel with your kids. Not only does it strengthen your bond with your kids, but also to create memories together. Planning to travel to Sabah but don’t have any ideas where to bring your kids?

Here are some interesting places that you can bring your kids to visit while in Sabah.

1. KOTA KINABALU

a) Gaya Street Market

Interesting Places to go in Sabah with kids

b) Mari- Mari Cultural Village

c) Kota Kinabalu Wetlands

Interesting Places to go in Sabah with kids

d) “Rumah Terbalik” / Upside Down House

e) Sabandar Leisure Rides

Interesting Places to go in Sabah with kids

f) Tunku Abdul Rahman Park (TARP)

Are you looking for travel’s guide to Kota Kinabalu city? Read our blog on Traveler’s guide to Kota Kinabalu and Things to do in Kota Kinabalu with Kids.

2. PENAMPANG

a) Tinopikon Park

b) Sinilou Kibambangan Water Park

c) Lok Kawi Wildlife Park

3. RANAU

a) Arnab Village Farm

b) Desa Cattle Dairy Farm

c) Poring Hot Spring

Are you planning to bring your family to Ranau? Come and read our blog on “Don’t miss this when you’re in RANAU!” and you might can know some amazing places in Ranau that you never heard before!

4. SANDAKAN

a) Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre

b) Borneon Sun Bear Conservation Center

c) Labuk Bay Proboscis Monkey Sanctuary

d) Turtle Island Park

Want to know more Sandakan? Check out the travel guide to Sandakan blog post to know where to go when you and your family in Sandakan.

Borneo-travel-with-family

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