“Meat Bone Tea” to You & Me


One of the drawbacks of being married to a Chinese Doris is that from time to time you can end up in some decidedly suspect eating establishments.

One such establishment was Yu Kee Bah Kut Teh in Kota Kinabalu. From the outside it looks like a low grade canteen, which is due a visit from the food hygiene people, but it was the busiest place around with queues down Gaya Street.


Their speciality (and only dish on the menu) is “Bah Kut Teh”, or meat bone tea to you and me. Apparently it’s a famous Hokkien recipe introduced to Malaysia by Chinese labourers who needed something to boost their vitality (and were too skint to buy ginseng).

It consists of pig organs simmered for hours in a soup of herbs and spices (such as star anise, cinnamon, cloves, dang gui and garlic). Now when I say organs, we’re talking liver, kidney, belly, intestines, stomach, ribs, trotters and tail.


I don’t mind a pork scratching but this is on another level. My first thought was – drown it in rocking horse and stick it down the hatch, but after a while I couldn’t get enough of it.

So as it turns out, my first impressions were deceptive and the missus has introduced me to another culinary delight. Just hope my April thinks the same thing in the morning.


2 thoughts on ““Meat Bone Tea” to You & Me”

  1. Thanks for the like on my Brunei post :) Bak Kut Teh might seem strange or even gross to those outside Malaysia and Singapore but to us Malaysian Chinese, it’s a culinary necessity. Good to know that you enjoyed it!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s