Ang Seng Heong is the oldest peanut candy maker in Penang.
Peanut candy used to be exquisite delicacy only for royal families in ancient China. The recipe was brought to Penang by the first generation of Ang Seng Heong and started to lay its root in Penang since the end of 1950s.
The Peanut Candy business started off from a small stall by the road side. Slowly but surely the business expanded and the Ang family managed to operate the business into a retail shop. Ang Seng Heong has been serving Penang with the most traditional taste of peanut candy for 3 generations and many more generations to come.
Watch the video here:
The Story Of The Heritage Peanut Candy in Penang
The story started in between the end of Qing Dynasty and beginning of the modern China. During these period, civil war broke out in China. Many Chinese struggled with their daily lives and the Chinese made a daring escape to South East Asia for better life and fortune.
Like many Chinese during that era, the grandfather of Mr.Ang came to Penang from Fu Jian, China. Grandpa Ang brought along the recipe of peanut making candy that he learnt from his ancestors where recipe was used to made luxury peanut desert for China Emperors and the rich in ancient China.
When Grandpa Ang reach Penang, he started to work at Ghee Hiang(which was the oldest biscuit shop in Penang). After years of making pastry, he learnt a lot of small little details such as choosing the right ingredients, taking every cumbersome steps of the process seriously, etc. All these that matters a lot in making the finest texture and aroma of the peanut biscuit.
Grandpa Ang used to sell his handmade peanut candy casually beside the well outside of Kong Hock Keong during events such as Chinese Deities birthday. After the dad took over from the father in law, it became a full time peanut candy seller. He runs around many temples throughout Penang when there are events(a part of Penang Chinese culture, where there are a lot of events for each temple within a year)
On normal days, the dad will also sell peanut candy at Pulau Tikus market. After many years, the business was passed to the third generation, and in 2010, the third generation decided to have a fixed shop. The shop started with only selling their handmade “Kong Teng” and peanut biscuit, later they also added many other delicacy from the olden days of Penang Chinese.
The third generation followed exactly what the first generation exhorted that every part and every details must be carefully done. The baker must pay attention to the heat, the proportion and process of stirring in sugar, and so on. Every stroke of the stirring process must also be controlled to make sure that consistency is achieved and there is no lumpy residual left over in cooking process.
One of the reason for the third generation to continue the tradition, sourcing for the best ingredient, of going through the cumbersome and energy consuming processes of making these delicacies is because he himself likes to eat and he couldn’t find the ‘traditional taste’ in Penang. So he decided to go through all the tough processes daily in order to produce the most traditional peanut candy for his own consumption and also to make a living.