Siham alert: Our cockle-craving, CKT-crazed fantasies are coming true at Damansara Uptown’s new Yu Tao Xuan, where Penang-inspired char kway teow is flooded with freshly shelled cockles that practically spill out of the plate.
Many thanks to Phong Hong Bakes for the tip-off on this irresistible temptation – the cockles are the shining star, juicy-smooth and fair-sized, not overcooked, robust in the penetratingly deep, darkly briny taste that’s unmistakably kerang.
The rest of the CKT is reasonable – sufficiently smoky for most wok hei chasers, permeated with bits of pork lard for extra decadence, with two large prawns that are sweetly fleshy and tender. This is almost our ideal CKT; thankfully for us, it shuns lap cheong (which we loathe in CKT), but two things hold it back from pure perfection: the flat noodles are a bit too wet for our liking, bordering on soggy in parts, and it would be nice to have a duck-egg option for a creamier, richer CKT.
The CKT is offered in two serving portions on the menu: Luxurious is RM18 (pictured in the three first photos above), while Premium is RM12 (in the three following photos below this text). Both portions are identical except for the cockles – Luxurious has double the cockles of Premium, so kerang hunters should certainly choose Luxurious.
Yu Tao Xuan takes over the ground floor of Damansara Uptown’s Yok Tho Hing Restaurant (a few doors up from Village Park); note that the signboard outside still reads Yok Tho Hing. The brand is rapidly expanding – it began serving CKT in Damansara Uptown in May, opened a stall this month in Taman Berkeley, Klang, and is set to launch another stall soon on Old Klang Road. Yu Tao Xuan offers its own delivery in the Klang Valley (WhatsApp 017-7296250 for delivery orders).
This CKT is a balm after months of trying versions with cockles that were too shrivelled up, stale to the point of rottenness, or completely missing even though the menu promised their presence (Champs Bistro BSC, the RM31 Penang Fried Kuey Teow with See-Hamm that you delivered on May 15th had no cockles at all).
Yu Tao Xuan
13, Jalan SS 21/37, Damansara Utama, Petaling Jaya, Selangor. Daily, 10am-8pm.