Murni’s @ SS2

If you are a youngster living around the Klang Valley, you would never have missed this place. For the benefit of those who do not know, Malaysia’s best hang out spot, besides our malls, are the Mamaks. Mamak means the Indian Malay Mixed community. However in plural, Mamaks, it is a sort of only-in-Malaysia charm.

In essence, these are the places where you get cheap food, good food (though possibly unhealthy), similar food in ALL mamaks, (worry not about what to order because we have the entire menu in our heads), 24 hour service, available at every corner of the country, and the best atmosphere to just sit around and, well, talk cock. That’s how Malaysians de-stress after a long, exhausting day of work/study and getting caught in massive traffic jams.

Murni’s is deemed to some as the ‘epitome’ of all mamaks. It is located in SS2, Petaling Jaya, one of the busiest places when it comes to good food. One very interesting characteristic about this place is that the place is HUGE! It occupies two separate shops, both side by side. One furnished with air-condition and the other is your usual adopt-the-Malaysian-weather’s temperature. However, due to its massive popularity, the tables and chairs available for its customers extends through the corridors of the shops. Indeed Murni’s is two shops in the entire row, its table and chairs however, are lined up right outside other shops for the entire row! When first visited by our MFD’s agents, we were indeed shocked! Even more amazing is the fact that ALL the tables and chairs are filled up!

wpid-wp-1415210257514.jpeg

And rightly so! Here are some pictures of the food we’ve tasted while we were there! Some of their popular food includes:

wpid-wp-1415210037186.jpeg

Chicken Napoleon. In that roll there, you will discover (and in this order) a layer of beautiful crisp on the outside, a layer of chicken slices, a layer of ham and a nice, fat cheese sausage right in the middle! Say no more, let the your eyes feast on the picture!

wpid-wp-1415210042759.jpeg

Cheese Naan is a bread made in a tandoor (hot furnace). The cheese here is generous, the portion was huge, the curry were complimentary and for those who prefer less curry, condensed milk (on the right) to be dipped in. For some it’s unhealthy and hence they avoid it. For us, it just brought wholesome-ness to a whole new level!

wpid-wp-1415210078844.jpeg

Here is the chicken chop! Crisp outer layer, say hello to the tender insides!

4489213115_54cbe319ee_o

Murtabak – the Indian Pancake with a swirly twist!

4489224983_b47428cc96_o

Seafood fried rice, huge flavourful squids, large portions, happy faces!

4489212217_b1da31ed12_o

The signature Murni’s colourful range of juices in jars. You HAVE to try their ribena with lychee and nata de coco! *Slurrrrrp*

We have come to the conclusion that Murni’s is the extended Mamaks. It is by itself so unique and popular among Malaysians that google map Murni’s or Waze it, you’ll definitely find it! Here are some details to assist you:

SS2 MURNI
53, Jalan SS2/75,
Petaling Jaya, Selangor
Opens until the late hours of the night everyday.

Wait no more, stop tempting yourself with pictures! Go forth, explore it! Savour it! Experience that Malaysian taste!

wpid-wp-1415210246565.jpeg

Embrace that eating monster within!

Beef Noodles @ New Seaview Restaurant

Beef noodle soup is a Chinese noodle soup made of stewed or red braised beef, beef broth, vegetables and Chinese noodles. Some history behind this cuisine:  it was first created by the Hui people (a Chinese Muslim ethnic group) during the Tang Dynasty of China. The red braised beef noodle soup was invented by the veterans in Kaoshiung, Taiwan who fled from mainland China during the Chinese civil war.

After this article was published in the local newspaper, The Star, our MFD’s agent decided it is a MUST TRY. And so, there went the brave little reporter to New Seaview at Paramount Garden, Petaling Jaya for the tasting adventure!

Boy oh boy, it was good!

wpid-wp-1415210160794.jpeg

Beef Noodle! The broth was so flavorful! It was perfectly balanced, with just the right amount of herbs and intensity. One sip and you won’t be able to control your actions, one spoon leads to another. The meat was incredibly tender. Our MFD’s agent swore she had never tasted beef this tender, every bite feels like it could melt in your mouth. The noodles however was a little bit of a let down, it felt a little too springy. However on the overall basis, it was a fantastic dish!

wpid-wp-1415210143667.jpeg

Just another picture from another angle to make you feel the love 🙂

Though this bowl of noodle cost RM7.00, which is rather expensive considering the location. However, beef noodles tend to be a little pricier compared to your normal Kueh Teow Soup or Curry Mee, and our little MFD’s agent says it was worth every penny!

New Seaview coffeeshop (GPS N 03°06’37.3” E 101°37’38.0”) is located off Jalan 20/7 in Petaling Jaya and is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

The Home Cooking Dishes @Sungai Way SS9

It just has to be my luck that for the second review in the row, it was raining cats, dogs and the occasional elephant.  This was not an exaggeration; we experience two blackouts, water overflowing into the restaurant, and Thor-styled lightning.  Which does, at least, excuse my lack of pictures in this post.

The place we went to was The Home Cooking Dishes (Yes, that’s the actual name), a small roadside Chinese restaurant where the floor is one meter below road level and the kitchen is in full view approximately two tables away.

IMG_20141012_181320

Considering the venue you might expect this place to be cheaper than usual, but the family running THCD are no slouches in business.  People are willing to pay in this restaurant, so the end pricing is somewhere close to a regular ‘chao choy’* restaurant.  Speaking of willingness to pay, some were willing to brave the angintaufan thunderstorm just to eat at this place.  There’s your inelastic demand curve.**

My digressions aside, I’ll reveal beforehand that we had two outstanding dishes, and two rather mediocre ones.  Keeping with the tradition of ‘bad news first’, we will begin with the not-so-good ones.  Hey, if it gets you to read the whole post, why not?

IMG_20141012_182137

*ahem* Tofu (RM8.80)

Behold…four…four something (direct translation going on here) tofu.  Despite its name, this dish was special for the sole reason it left no impression on me whatsoever.  Okay I know tofu is supposed to not taste much, but even after all the toppings, I still ended up with the taste of plain tofu.  Which was very meh.

IMG_20141012_181800

Stir-fried long beans w/ roast pork (RM11.80)

Our second mediocre dish: long beans stir-fried with roast pork.  I mean, they stir fried it okay and all, and the pork has a decent taste, but its not something a housewife couldn’t whip up at home herself.  Tldr: tastes ok, not restaurant quality.

IMG_20141012_181836

Char Siew (RM18)

Enough bad news (for now), let’s take a look at their signature dish, which sure as hell better be good.  Char siew, a Chinese favourite at just about every roast and wantan mee store in the country.  I’ve tasted some really good ones before; fortunately, this one manages to pass the test.

What sets this apart from other char siew is the glazing – caramelized up to the point its slightly hard, allowing for a truly decadent munching experience.  Close your eyes, and you feel as though you’re eating candy instead.  It’s an addictive dish with their own twist.

IMG_20141012_182029

Stir-fried kangkung w/ shrimp sauce (RM12.80)

I bet you weren’t thinking of seeing veggies, but truly this to me was the standout dish of the night.  It looks absolutely normal, but a taste of the broth unleashes a heavenly shrimp aroma onto your unsuspecting palette.

It’s so good that I’m ignoring the fact that its way too salty without rice – usually a giant no-no for me.  Yet just eating it with rice makes it one of the best stir fried vegetables I’ve ever tasted.

With such split results, this one is a difficult one to call.  I’d say this place warrants a repeat visit once in a while; they do serve some truly standout dishes.  Just come armed with an umbrella next time, and be prepared to pay what you expect.

*fried vegetables is the direct translation, but generally refers to a Chinese restaurant serving dishes (usually at night)

** the author does not claim that this example is correct, and hopes that his economics lecturer refrains from any sudden urges to fail the author’s exam papers.

Kuih Nyonya?

Nyonya, or the Peranakan, are the terms used for the descendants of the 15th through 17th-century Chinese immigrants to the British Malaya. They are the mixed of the Chinese and Malays, which in turn created one of the best type of cuisine out there! In this post, we shall focus on the ‘kuih’/ traditional cakes of the Baba-Nyonya’s.

Today one of our MFD’s agent visited the market and oh what beauty was found there!

wpid-wp-1415210186555.jpeg

There it laid, rows and rows of beautiful nyonya kuihs!

wpid-wp-1415210211686.jpeg

So many varieties, all ranging within RM0.50 to RM2.50

wpid-wp-1415210118084.jpeg

Bought by many, grew up with many, loved by many.

wpid-wp-1415210224426.jpeg

Just a picture of flowers to brighten your day! All found in the market!

 

2-18 Jalan Othman,Pj Old Town, 46000 Petaling Jaya, Selangor, Malaysia

 

Bak Kut Teh 肉骨茶

This time our MFD agents visited Klang. If there is one thing that Klang is most famous for, besides its port, it is Bak Kut Teh! We are proud to mention that Bak Kut Teh is a cuisine that originates from Malaya, despite the fact that it is a Chinese cuisine (where there is a misconception that it comes from China).

“The name literally translates as “meat bone tea”, and at its simplest, consists of meaty pork ribs simmered in a complex broth of herbs and spices for hours. Despite its name, there is in fact no tea in the dish itself; the name refers to a strong oolong Chinese tea which is usually served alongside the soup in the belief that it dilutes or dissolves the copious amount of fat consumed in this pork-laden dish.” -Wikipedia

Our agents took an hour and a half long drive after a evening class all the way to Klang for this. (It is rather common in this country for the rakyat to travel about an hour or more by car to find for the best food around town, and travel the same distance back. That shows our foodie spirit!) And we were not in the least regretful of that decision, even though we were dead tired after!

Here are the pictures:

wpid-wp-1413822877189.jpeg

Teapots to brew our own tea. There is a basket of tea provided with many varieties of Chinese tea. We’ve particularly chosen “Guan Ying”

wpid-wp-1413822863586.jpeg

Around every tables, there is a gas stove with a kettle boiling hot with water for customers to brew their tea. Ingenious if you ask me!

wpid-wp-1413822853067.jpeg

We apologize for the ampere amount of pictures regarding tea. Typicially, the utensils are submerged in hot water for awhile, to ensure it is clean! 🙂

And then the food we ordered arrived!

wpid-wp-1413822830040.jpeg

A typical Bak Kut Teh meal: soup based (top right) and dry kinds (left), with vegetables cooked with soy sauce! You may choose which parts of the pork you would prefer in your dish. Some likes the innards, others prefer the lean meat. These are depending on each person’s preference. We’ve tried the lean meat, and it is at the degree of melting tenderness!

wpid-wp-1413822796412.jpeg

Here’s another to make you drool!

wpid-wp-1413822842686.jpeg

Bak Kut Teh dry: it was the first time one of our MFD agents heard about this. Instead of the usual pork served in delicious soup, this was served with thick sauce. And it tasted surprisingly good!

wpid-wp-1413822815426.jpeg

The rice was special as well: It is cooked with fried shallots! The taste blended perfectly! Seconds please!

wpid-wp-1413822775810.jpeg

Here is the ‘yao zha guai’, sort of like a breadstick, also known as Chinese crullers. Typically eaten by submerging it into the soup first before submerging it into the depths of your taste buds!

wpid-wp-1413822787194.jpeg

Our extremely satisfying meal reduced to cleanliness! This MFD agent dare say I’m going back again for more soon!

This particular restaurant that we feasted in is called Restaurant Kee Heong @ Taman Eng Ann, which has been operating for over 30 years and has become a childhood memory for many adults who live in the area. Restaurant Kee Heong is loved for the aromatic herbal fragrance in its Bak Kut Teh broth. This is one scrumptious Bak Kut Teh broth that you can’t stop slurping, the perfect companion for Chinese crullers.

Breakfast!

Breakfast is the first meal taken after rising from a night’s sleep, (in essence, to break-your-fast) most often eaten in the early morning before undertaking the day’s work. Well, that’s the definition from Wikipedia.

As for Malaysians, breakfast (sarapan pagi) is one of our happiest hours (especially if it is the breakfast of a holiday!), and we’ve got a variety of breakfast available!

If you’re finding for a nice Malay cuisine for breakfast, 99% of Malaysians would suggest our favourite food of all time, also unofficially known as our national dish, Nasi Lemak!  For the benefit of those who are new, it is a fragrant rice dish cooked in coconut milk and “pandan” leaf. Here are a few suggestions that our MFD agents has personally visited:

wpid-wp-1413823110503.jpeg

Doesn’t this just makes you drool?

This particular Nasi Lemak is from Syed Bistro PJ (No. 13 & 15 Jalan Barat, Petaling Jaya, Selangor. Tel : 603-79555753), your typical mamak restaurant with a 24 hour service! However, Syed Bistro is more known for its Nasi Briyani, which is usually not a breakfast choice, but since we’re on the topic, a little picture wouldn’t hurt! 😉

DSC02592

A super generous portion of Nasi Briyani! Comes with huge chicken/lamb, a while egg, some appetizing ‘accah’ and dhal!

Besides Syed Bistro, many other mamak restaurants out there offers Nasi Lemak but the degree of how good it is definitely varies on a large scale!

Another place we’ve visited for Nasi Lemak is at Seapark, popularly known as Nasi Lemak Bumbung. Take a look at the pictures!

1412438989290

The artistically cooked egg placed on the roof of the fragrant rice gives it the name ‘bumbung’

20141004_185431

Happy eating duo hehe

The rice was beautiful, the chicken crispy yet tender and the main ingredient of the dish, the ‘sambal’ wasn’t too spicy, neither was it too mild. To our taste, it was just right! Topping it off with the beautiful teh tarik was just the most satisfying meal. However, this place opens during the night, so it might not be appropriate for breakfast.

For other suggestions on the best Nasi Lemak we would suggest you look into this link!

On to our brethren Indian cuisine for breakfast, we’ve got a wide selection of stuffs! Firstly, and most popular amongst the rakyat is our Roti Canai:

roti canai

Your typical Roti Canai

It is a type of Indian-influenced flatbread, where you can find it almost anywhere, as long as a mamak restaurant is there, there it will be! It is typically served in these silver trays. If you’re feeling adventurous, you may choose Roti Telur, Roti Bawang, Roti Cheese depending on the capabilities of your local mamak! Of course, Roti is not the only option in these places. Thosai, or Dosa is another popular choice! It is a fermented crepe or pancake made from rice batter and black lentils.

thosai

Masala Thosai

And again, your thosai may be mixed with cheese, onions or egg, depending on the place!

Capati is another popular choice. Also a type of flatbread, but this one is unleavened, originated from India, Nepal, Bangladesh and Pakistan.

wpid-wp-1413823054440.jpeg

Capati with the chutney and a little sides. Good for all meals of the day!

If you are craving for some Chinese breakfast, here is the most traditional of all kinds:

wpid-wp-1413822943362.jpeg

Half-boiled eggs, coffee, and steamed bread with Kaya and Butter!

You may find these in any Chinese hawker shops. For some, it takes them down memory lane. This simple breakfast that costs less than RM5.00 added the flavour of nostalgia to this agent of MFD. This particular picture comes from a hawker shop opposite Public Bank at Old Town, Petaling Jaya.

Other Chinese breakfast could be consumed for lunch too, if desired. A few examples are Wanton Mee:

0001SI234C0AD9953BCD0Fj

Typically served ‘guan low’-styled, (which suggests dry), with some honey roasted pork, ‘choi sam’ vegetable, and soup with ‘wantan’, dumplings

msian11

Curry mee, thin yellow noodles or/and string thin mee-hoon (rice vermicelli) with spicy curry soup, chilli/sambal, coconut milk, and a choice of dried tofu, prawns, cuttlefish, chicken, egg, mint leaves and Cockle.

Curiously, curry mee is only found in Malaysia and Singapore. Curry laksa is another favourite (added with laksa soup base). Perhaps it is our special heritage of baba nyonya that gave birth to this special dish!

We are fine with eating light for breakfast, as suggested by our selection of Roti(s) in Mamaks. We are also fine with a nice, big portion of chicken for breakfast, maybe a good fried chicken to top with our Nasi Lemak, or a moderate ones such as a bowl of noodles. Klang’s residences even have Bak Kut Teh for breakfast (a dish which will be highlighted in a separate post), which is rather heavy for the morning. Anything is fine! Everything is loved!

For our multi-racial, multi-cultural society, unity is an ideal that is difficult to achieve, however, if we’re on the topic of breakfast, this website, MFD, sincerely believes that the true integration of society is manifested most clearly here. When it comes to breakfast, we’re simple folks who enjoy every single type of it without any racial prejudices! 😉

Capital Nasi Dagang Kelantan @Damansara Uptown

I always find it interesting that most KL-ites share a degree of unawareness about the other states of Malaysia, despite our inherent kinsmenship (Selangor’s the obvious exception, Melaka and Penang too).  Ask them what are the signature dishes that represent Kelantanese cuisine, and you’d most likely get a blank stare (maybe if you’re lucky, your reciprocant might say something along the lines of ‘rice….?’).  Entirely understandable really, considering I am one of those people too =P.

Still, this perhaps-unforgivable ignorance is the reason my curiousity was piqued when I passed by a store claiming to sell some authentic Kelantanese nasi dagang.  The store in question was rather aptly named as Capital Nasi Dagang Kelantan.  Which lead to a brief internal struggle: Hmm… nasi dagang for lunch?  Sure, why not?

IMG_20141022_120732655_HDR

This place has been around for about a year now; the store owner is a Kelantanese Chinese, who brought over her expertise in making nasi dagang to us folks here in Damansara.  Whether intentionally or not, the floor is worn with wear, and the tables built with classic marble lends to that old coffeeshop feel.  The menu, it seems, was not spared from a similar treatment.

IMG_20141022_113204392

It soon becomes rather obvious that this place is solely focused on their nasi dagang (I suppose the signboard was a dead giveaway).  The main choice here lies in the meats that you choose to accompany the nasi, of which they have 5 options:  gulai ikan tongkol, beef rendang, curry chicken, prawn or sotong.  We went for two of the more traditional choices, the ikan tongkol and rendang; add some ayam percik as a side dish (one of us was feeling peckish), and we awaited our meal in trepidated eagerness.

IMG_20141022_114012932

This, in essence, is nasi dagang.  Brown-coloured glutinous rice topped under a dollop of fish curry, with red hot sambal, pickled cucumbers and ikan masin as sides.  The sambal in particular is fantastic, very spicy and grounded in an unmistakable shrimp base.  As for the mains, the beef rendang was tender and slightly sweet, while the ikan tongkol, well…. it tastes remarkably like sardines.  I’ve got no qualms with it though, nor with the entire dish; it turned out to be a decent meal with a good deal of interesting things to munch on.

IMG_20141022_114707432_HDR

Lets not forget the ayam percik, which was equally as interesting, yet significantly more underwhelming (on second thoughts, let’s forget the ayam percik…).  I say this because while I find the sauce highly unusual – a peanutty taste reminding me of satay dip, it ultimately didin’t live up to my (perhaps lofty) expectations.

IMG_20141022_113703241_HDR

Cheers 😉

I guess the word ‘interesting’ best sums up our visit here.  There was not a single element of our lunch which I could say I wasn’t surprised, intrigued and occasionally wtf-ed by.  Yet let’s not forget that these dishes are not alien by any means – journey east to Kelantan and you’d probably find them sold on every street available.  At the end of the day, it’s turns out to be a heartening fact that despite how often we think we know about Malaysian food (roti canai, nasi lemak and all that jazz), there’s really another thirteen other states filled with entirely new cuisines for us to discover.

Diversity? Hell yeah.