Sabah Eat: Keng Wan Hing (琼万兴) Pineapple Polo Bun @ Kota Kinabalu
Keng Wan Hing (琼万兴) is a coffee shop along Gaya Street, Kota Kinabalu, that looks more modern than other traditional coffee shops in the area. It has a single long bar counter, not individual stalls, and sells quite a number of local dishes, including rice, noodles, buns, pastries, beverages and Chinese traditional desserts.
Keng Wan Hing has been in business since 1984 as depicted by couple of colourful drawings on the wall.
Keng Wan Hing’s steamed buns and polo buns are highly recommended by netizens. The name “polo bun” was coined from the pronunciation of its Chinese name “bo luo bao” (菠萝包), meaning “pineapple bun”, but the Hong Kong creation contains no pineapple at all — it is the pattern on the top crust that looks like pineapple.
I ordered their polo bun and curry puff with kopi-O. First thing I noticed on the curry puff is the sesame seeds, which is unusual. The puff has crispy pastry crust and the curry flavour of the potato filling is prominent and not spicy — a nice snack to munch on anytime.
Unlike other polo buns that I had tried before, Keng Wan Hing’s polo bun is unique too — it contains pineapple puree as its filling, making it a truly pineapple bun. The pineapple puree in the freshly-baked bun is molten and flows out of the bun when pulled apart. Its mild-sweet taste and crumbly crust gives the bun a nice taste experience.
I thought I would be back to Keng Wan Hing for their steamed buns or beef noodle before leaving Kota Kinabalu but the coffee shop was closed on Saturday and crowded during the Gaya Street Sunday Market, so, I missed them. Well, there is always a next time since Sabah is so close to Singapore.
Keng Wan Hing (琼万兴)
80, Jalan Gaya, Pusat Bandar Kota Kinabalu, 88000 Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia
? | Half-day on Sunday | Closed on alternate Saturdays