There are days when I get completely stumped as to what to write. Today is one of those days. Plus this morning I went to the golf course for the first time in about 4 months, so it was an extremely early morning and coupled with a very late night last night after coming back from my wife's nephew open house in Muara. Plus too yesterday was a mentally tiring day trying to find savings from practically every single agency's next financial year budget. It's funny when you asked all the head honchos where you can find savings and everyone replies that they can't find anything to deduct. ALL the projects are important and NO, NO, you can't cut anything. But the fact is no matter how much money is allocated, at the end of the year we get a few hundreds of millions unspent. So what happened to all those 'important' projects?
Anyway, that's digressing a bit. I am not supposed to be talking about that even though that's a topic on its own right. And since I can't talk about that I will have to talk about something else. Normally I try to put up a controversial topic on Sundays as the number of readers are the worst today and by tomorrow it would have been covered up by another topic and lose its sting or at least its controversy. But today I am not ready to write anything controversial, so you all have to read my ramblings at nothing for the last two paragraphs and we will see where the next paragraph takes us.
But I always promised to leave one fact everyday. Okay... So how many Brunei Malay kuehs do you know? My gym manager friend would know the answer to this one as he has been studying for the citizenship exam. I wanted to visit the museum as I was told that there was a Brunei Malay kueh replica on display but my better half who accompanied a group of senior officials' wives went there in March told me that the Brunei kueh display at the museum does not resemble anything edible and looks a little bit tattered too. Perhaps the dust mite found the kuehs replica edible. Anyway, how many Brunei kuehs do you know?
One of the kuehs that we all eat is called Puteri Mandi. It is nothing more than a ball of dough in green colour being fried and then being rolled in sweet dessicated coconut. At the tamu, you can find about three or four of these balls being sold on a skewer. If you were to travel back in time to the time when the padians are still selling their wares along the riverbanks and in between the houses at Kampung Ayer, they would be saying, banyak kueh ni, calak lambai, biraksa, penyaram, chuchuk dayangku, wajid.... Puteri Mandi used to be known as Chuchuk Dayangku. I don't have the history of the kueh as to when it changed to become the more socially acceptable name of Puteri Mandi.
Kuehs and food changed names over the years. Some appear out of fashion, nowadays, there are a number related to the AF3 singer Mawi, even though he is not a Bruneian but a number of biscuits and cakes are sold with his name. I saw a Laksa Johor Mawi on the menu this morning at the Amanah Harath in Jerudong, a famous eating place in Brunei. Some names are in a transition. Another Brunei kueh, up to now, I am not sure what to call it - I heard it being called Jelurut but at times I also hear Selurut. This is the green stuff they sell in a cone shaped banana leaf. One kueh definitely has changed name. When I was a small boy, I used to accompany my dad to the tamu and his favourite was the Apam Balik which I was told is a Malaysian kueh but I am not sure about that. What I do know is that it is sold by a Malaysian lady at the Tamu. Nowadays I can't find anyone calling it Apam Balik. Everywhere I look, it is now called Kueh Malaya. So someone out there better start compiling these original Brunei kuehs and their names before they too become something else in the future.