Food & Drink: Ramadhan Treats8 Jun 2015
Malay cuisine has always been a style of cooking that has been passed down from generation to generation. So even if you got a taste of it while in the city, rest assured it came from some 'mak cik' back in the villages. So in the spirit of the fasting month of Ramadhan, we take a look at how some fancy food establishments give their take on traditional Malay dishes.
Traditional Rice Porridge
The traditional rice porridge is a popular dish during the fasting month of Ramadhan, usually given as a parting gift at the mosque. The rice porridge we had is a step up though, as the chefs at Westin added some superfoods to create a healthier bowl of it. The surprise came in the colour because we all know rice porridge is universally white. But the bowl that was served to us had a greenish tint to it due to the additional vegetables like spinach. The chunks of pumpkin and ham elevated the dish and made us thoroughly enjoy the fancy porridge upgrade.
199, Jalan Bukit Bintang, Bukit Bintang, 55100
Tel: +603-2731 8333
Ayam Percik with Rice & Greens
Ayam percik is basically a Malay version of barbecued chicken. The chicken we had at JP Teres was extra crispy and the chilli and coconut milk sauce made our palettes dance with joy. For a palette cleanser the raw greens are reminiscent of how the village folks eat their vegetables. It's no wonder this plate of tradition is one of JP Teres' best selling items.
JP Teres, Grand Hyatt Hotel
12, Jalan Pinang, 50450 Kuala Lumpur
Tel: +603-2182 1234
Sambal Prawn with Bitter Beans
Bitter beans are a type of vegetable that is rooted in tradition and the most famous way to cook these delicious green vegetables is with sambal (a thick sauce made from chilli peppers) and succulent prawns. The dish we had was slightly different from the typical traditional style, because the prawns were lightly fried before adding it into the sambal with bitter beans. The prawns were cooked perfectly and the sambal had a delectable sweetness alongside the spiciness.
Nook Restaurant, Aloft Hotel
No 5, Jalan Stesen Sentral, 50470 Kuala Lumpur
Tel: +603-2723 1188
Though it may sound odd, Dendeng is actually crispy fried beef and most probably the long cousin of the beef jerky. The Malays usually use beef but the chefs at Bijan successfully experimented with lamb. The lamb does not come in thin slices like the traditional style but comes in medallion form. The luscious chilli sambal on top had the beautiful smell and taste of lemongrass that lifted the tender lamb medallions. It's a fancy take on Dendeng, and well executed with the same traditional flavours that reminded us of our grandma's cooking.
Bijan Bar & Restaurant
No 3, Jalan Ceylon, Bukit Ceylon, 50200 Kuala Lumpur
Tel: +603-2031 3575
Look at more Ramadhan treats and where to find them in a copy of our magazine.