It’s Deepavali weekend, so we went on a road trip to Kuala Selangor to stock up on fresh fishes. Our last visit was 2+ years back when El was a baby. This time round, he could join in the fun too.
We love going on road trips in Malaysia, where the children (and us) can learn from nature and a variety of experiences.
At Sungai Yu Fishery, we saw local fishes such as ikan kurau (threadfin), mackerel (one type for making fish cake and the other for regular cooking), white pomfret, silver pomfret and giant grouper (long dan). There were also baby squids and prawns.
Look at the huge loong dan fish above!
It was slightly past noon and drizzling, the tIme when fishermen were returning. Every 10 minutes or so, a boat would return, with the fisherman bringing back his haul of fresh seafood to sell to the wholesaler. Oh yes, we even saw a stingray in a bucket.
We walked to a boat and saw many crayfish and a gorgeous blue snow crab in boxes.
The kids watched the workers clean the fishes and asked many questions:
“Why are they cutting the fish’s head?”
“What are those dirty stuff from the fish?”
As a big mackerel’s head was being chopped, a small fish fell out. Immediately, I pointed it out to them. Big fish eats small fish. Man catches big fish to eat. This is the food chain.
While I was busy answering the kids’ questions, the daddy was busy comparing the wholesale and retail fish prices to make sure we’ve gotten an excellent deal.
When the fishes were being descaled, we talked about scales (of course). Something small and wet hit our faces and Vee was absolutely put off.
The worker ran out of crushed ice to keep the fishes cold, and set about preparing more. The ice crusher machine was huge and loud. Naturally, the children wondered why so much ice was needed.
I highlighted how hard many people have to work before we get to eat a single bite of fish:
- The fishermen: who were working hard on a public holiday
- The workers: who were also working while we had a holiday, and spent a lot of effort cleaning, cutting and packing the fishes. They were doing work which Vee thought looked dirty.
- Elders in the family: who worked hard to earn money to buy the fishes
- The person who would be cooking the fish for our meal
So we have to appreciate the food on our plates and not waste any. I hope they got the message.
While I covered science, the daddy brought the boys to watch the river. He enthusiastically explained which way led to Penang, Indonesia and Singapore.
The area surrounding the houses and jetty were badly polluted and unsightly, so the topic moved to littering.
We brought two pomfrets to a recommended restaurant nearby for lunch. Just top up RM12 for cooking the fish in your preferred style. Oh my, these must be the freshest fish we’ve ever tasted!
It was a memorable learning and family bonding experience. We’d definitely be back again after gobbling down our stock of fishes.
For your reference:
- Wholesaler: Sungai Yu Fishery
- Restaurant: Restoran Tian Wai Tian (天外天海鲜餐室)
P.S. Check out my workshops here