Tuesday, October 23, 2007

BBB - Banting’s famous coffee haunt

From The Star

MANY find it nearly impossible to start their day without their favorite cup of coffee.

One good, mean mug of coffee that can jolt you is the famous Banting's Butter Brew (BBB). BBB is drunk with a slice of butter dropped into the hot mug of coffee.

“BBB is an old family recipe that my late father Wong Lock Dow concocted. From the Hainan province in China he migrated to then Malaya and worked for the British.

“Some time in 1938, he gave up the government job and opened a coffee shop in Banting in Kuala Langat,” said Wong Chwee Ban who mastered the art of roasting the coffee beans with margarine and sugar to achieve the right aroma.

Refined taste: Coffee is brewed and sieved using a cloth strainer for a smooth kick.

He considers brewing the grounded coffee beans and choosing the right butter for coffee connoisseurs to enjoy the brew an art.

“Our coffee is a sure drink for chain smokers as it soothes their throats,” he said.

Wong, 54, said the shop his father initially opened served soft-boiled eggs, bread toast, steamed buns and coffee.

“Two-years after the coffee shop was opened, my father created BBB and it became the right caffeine fix for coffee drinkers,” he added.

Wong whose outlet is at the Medan Selera off Jalan Chempaka said: “His father taught him the art of choosing hard and dense green coffee beans after the flesh of the red berries were removed.”

“Our coffee beans are from coffee growers in Banting. Roasting is done at home. To ensure the coffee is good, we control the oils that come out as we roast the beans and add premium margarine to lend an exquisite taste to the brew,” he said.

Good start: The slices of butter (below) are dropped into the coffee and enjoyed with soft-boiled eggs (bottom left) and steamed bun with kaya (top left).

Wong added: “Coffee beans chosen must be fresh and somewhat oily and have an aroma to them. You can't keep beans in the freezer as you are going to get condensation on the beans and the aroma will be lost.

“Our coffee beans are stored in airtight jars in a dark store,” said the father of three.

“Coffee lovers find the coffee and toast bread a heavenly treat. Some come in to sip coffee and kind of get word about what's going on in town, gather gossip or meet friends,” he said.

Wong said regular patrons loved the soft-boiled eggs that were generally smaller, fresher and tastier with slightly bigger egg yolks.

“We warm-up the bowl with hot water and give the customers the pleasure of cracking the eggs open to ensure the eggs were at their warmest when served,” he said.

He added: “The bread toast or steamed bun goes with a combination of home-made kaya and butter.

“Kaya is a coconut jam freshly produced daily and the butter is of premium quality. Everyone enjoys a bite of our bread toast as the butter will slowly ooze out because of the heat from the bread,” he said.

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