Opposite the road from Melaka Sentral, there's Taman Cempaka's Food Market. I love to try markets in different states as sometimes I find that the same kuih can taste very differently way way way out of town. And sometimes, they crave for different things as well. For example, one of the top selling hawker there is a grilled chicken Stall called Ayam Bakar Bangsar (Bangsar Grilled Chicken). Wow, whilst people in KL crave for nyonya food, chicken rice balls, cendol and other stuff, Melaka people likes KL's Bangsar Grilled Chicken. People even had to reserve for the next day if they are to be guaranteed a piece.
Next, in the wierd world of food... we get Murtabak Maggi... also a best seller. Maggi Kari used as a filling instead of the typical meats. This one also is a fast selling dish. Come late and all you have is just the sign below an empty tray. As you can see, there's only one left. No points guessing who that belongs to
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Next in my quest to find good local delicious homemade food brings me to Taman Dato Harun. This wondeful food market is not to be mistaken with the one near the mosque but rather about a minutes drive heading towards Taman Medan along PJS2/2. You can't miss this place. At 5pm, it has probably one of the longest rows of food stalls in Klang Valley stretching almost half of PJS2/2 and a quarter of PJS 2/3. Now that's long. What I love about this place is that you can get the typical malay kuih's and also laksa's, malay nasi biriyani, putu piring, ikan bakar, ayam golek and other stuff.
The market has a nice aroma due to the different types of food grilling on skewers, pans and others. Also, due to the sheer variety of foods sold, you can find almost anything you want here. One of my favourites is the Alladin's Grilled Chicken which is grilled specially in an aluminium casing with a glass front.
There is also a long queue for Popiah Kak Raja. Nice malay spring rolls. Kak Raja's spring roll skin is homemade and has a nice sweet chilli base. This is topped with sweet sauce, taugeh, sliced cucumbers and ground nuts. Modus Operandi? Pick a card and wait your turn. Mine's number 38.
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"A great array of sambal belacan"
Here, they specialise in good Malay fare. We heard that their chefs go around the nation trying out and learning recipes from other states, to see what they can bring back to PJ. So it's no surprise that they have a selection of rendangs as part of their buffet spread. Walking into the place, one of the first dishes to greet you will be the Malay Rendang Tok with lemang (glutinous rice wrapped in banana leaf). Surprisingly, their rendang version is good. As the Malay saying goes, the ingredients are 'cukup'(complete) which signifies that the chef knows how to make this dish.
Beside the rendang, is the Malay beef soup. The difference here is that the Malay version is lighter than Indian soups, as the ingredients are not herbs and spices heavy. Therefore, it has a heavier beef flavour and taste. We like the fact that they serve the soup with several kinds of chopped meats as toppings. Not for the unadventurous, some of the sliced meats are actually tripe, liver and lungs. But don't worry as these toppings have been expertly cooked. No trace of 'gamey-ness'. A bit of spring onions and crispy fried onions on top completes the dish. A splash of lime juice gives it a bit of kick. One sip and I know they got this right too.
Right at the back, someone is busy barbequing satay. Beef and Chicken. Quite nice comparatively to other hotels. But satay is not street fare here at Paya Serai so flavours are a bit subdued to cater to a wider audience. They do serve a wide selection of Malay fare and lauks. There's gulai ikan masin on one side, an array of sambal including one which I suspect is tempoyak, different kinds of malay ulams (organic Malay vegetables) and a variety of rice from biriyani to white rice.
Sri Serdang is a one of the hidden gems when it comes to great Malay fare to buka puasa. So far it has never disappointed me. After my dismal visit to Kampung Baru recently, my heart was beating faster and faster as I reached the food market grounds. My hope is that the stalls do not succumb to the 'commerciallization of food' that everyone almost sells the same cookie cutter kuih. I was not dissappointed.
The selections were great. Everything from real ayam percik (you know this... the one which is wet with the coconut gravy, not red and dry), delicious nasi ulams, kuih seri muka that is really 'berseri', homecooked rows of lauks from assam masak pedas to the typical malay gulai... make & fry there curry puffs, popiah basah that is nice, moist and soft...
...and most importantly my annual beef soup supplier that supplies not only beef soup but beef parts. You name it.. he probably has it or can get it from his stock of 'parts' at the back of the stall in a jiffy. You can instantaneosly recognize his stall. It looks like someone overhauling a car in a workshop… Continue reading »
Yes, Jalan Bankung is definitely the better side of Bangsar -it’s quiet, houses some really good restaurants and parking is no problem at all. Here, you’ll find Cava, a Spanish themed restaurant that is small and private, yet has a family appeal too. We’re here on a Tuesday night, and it’s full- with couples, groups of friends, even families with young kids. But it still feels very romantic and cozy- the people at Cava definitely know a thing or two about ambience.
Cava was named after the Spanish geographic origin of wine, Cava- where sparkling wine is produced using a method similar to champagne- meaning everything certainly is sweet and bubbly at Cava. Cava also means, “cellar” in Catalan, and to live up to its name, Cava boasts an extensive list of fine wines and champagnes. The menu here is also influenced by Catalonian style cuisine, and Cava is well known for its Tapas and Paella, not to mention its fresh and invigorating Sangria and wine cocktails.
And so tonight we are here to feast, and we start with a few glasses of Sangria to keep us festive. Unlike your conventional Sangria, the way they do it at Cava makes you forget there is even alcohol in it at all. Very dangerous but also very, very good! Next we go for some Tapas, first is the Prawn Ala Marinera -juicy, succulent prawns slow cooked in white wine, butter, garlic and parsley. This is so delicious you might not want to share, so be prepared to order seconds!
Next was the Spanish Lamb Boulette, lamb meatballs infused with herbs, served with a minty pepper sauce. This sauce was a little stroke of genius, as it gave the lamb a nice peppery flavour but with hints of mint. Personally I am not a big fan of lamb but this dish was so good it got me hooked.
It's been a week and I guess that the ramadhan buffets in the hotels are in full swing. I am happy to tell you that prices are much more reasonable this year. So if you are looking for a list of hotel places to break fast or just have a great time with your family and friends, give our list a try...
Poolbar and grill@ one world hotel
Address: one world hotel
first avenue, bandarutama city centre
47800 petaling jaya
Tel no: 60376811111
Poolbar & Grill is offering barbecued delights with a choice of Ramadan dishes all you can eat ...available on Saturday nights only. Beverages and sweets for breaking of fast will be served along with a free flow of soft drinks.
Prices start at RM 76 per adult and a 50% discount for children between 4 - 12 years.
Carousel cafe @ Palace of the… Continue reading »
When it comes to food, Malaysian's have always been 1Malaysia (forgive the pun). Come Ramadhan, it's no different. People from all walks of life, from different races, colour, religion, political beliefs will flock to their favourite ramadhan food market to find their favourite kuihs and Malay fare. Some only appear during these times. Polite jostling and patient queing are essential skills needed when visiting these markets. If you've read my tweets, you'd realised that I was really dissappointed with Kampung Baru this year. It seems that the selections are more 'commercialised' rather than homemade. That's not to say that it's not good anymore ... well it does actually. There are still some good finds in Kampung Baru although this year. But my next few blogs will cover somewhere else out of KL if I can. So, here's some food encounters from Kampung Baru. Next blogs will be on to Sri Serdang, Taman Dato Harun/Taman Medan and then a little place in Melaka called Taman Cempaka. Great food... Kampung Baru
This is a famous food market come every ramadhan. 500meters worth of stalls packed with sellers selling supposedly a wide selection of Malay fare. But not this year.
Of course, people come here for the famous ramadhan bubur lambuk given free to the public after Asar Prayers. It's just a simple porridge made… Continue reading »