Saturday, 30 May 2015

Nasi Lemak Depan Kelab Sosial Harmoni @ Hulu Bernam, Selangor

It's the weekend and when most people would be resting at home, I am out heading to a Nasi Lemak place that came highly recommended by a friend of mine. Of late, there have been many new little stand alone kind of stalls like this that have been mushrooming in Tanjung Malim and so much so, I have lost count on the number of these new stalls. The good thing is that it means more new food places to try and that is something that I have always welcomed.

Stall Run By An Elderly Couple

Already Having So Many Orders

Just A Simple Set Up

Located Opposite Kelab Sosial Harmoni
This stall is located on the Ulu Bernam side of town. Assuming that you're coming from Tanjung Malim, once you cross the bridge, keep going straight for about 100 meters and then slow down. Look right till you see the Kelab Sosial Harmoni which should be sighted within a matter of seconds. Once you see that club, immediately pull over and this stall is directly opposite that club. There are no proper landmarks but for the locals, I would say that this Nasi Lemak stall is located close to Malim Hardware store, where the old dilapidated mill lies. It is just a simple table and umbrella set up and is run by an elderly couple. Initially, the Mak Cik got worried when I started taking pictures and then I explained to her that she came highly recommended by a friend and that I also blog about good food places. It was only then that she appeared a little calm and started being chatty with me. She is there daily and resumes business at 6.30 am. By 10 am, she is usually done for the day. I was here at 9 am and even at that time, some of her ingredients had already been sold out. Despite that, there were lot's of standing orders from staffs of Proton who were just content on having her rice and Sambal. One of the guys standing there with me told me that her Sambal is very good. That's a positive testimony coming from another happy customer. She also informed me that usually on weekdays, she would cook around 7 Kg's of rice but on weekends, she would have to prepare at least 20Kg's of rice as the demand is quite high. She had run out of eggs and asked me if I still wanted a packet. I said yes and then she went on to pack a packet of Nasi Lemak for me. She does not sell anything else like other vendors who would usually have some Fried Noodles as well. Her business is solely Nasi Lemak. Once done, she charged me RM 1.20 for a packet and that came with a 30 cent discount since there was no eggs. There are no places for one to sit and have a meal here and it is purely takeaways. 

A Packet of Nasi Lemak @ RM 1.20

Looks So Delicious!
Her Nasi Lemak was definitely a huge packet, perhaps 1 1/2 times of what we get elsewhere. She also provides those disposable spoons and the spoon provided was one of the good quality ones, not those that would snap even at the very first attempt. For RM 1.20, the portion was huge and everything was lavish including the Sambal and Fried Anchovies.

Fragrant Rice

Mildly Spicy Sambal
The rice itself was so delicious. Definitely one of the good ones that are available in town. It was so creamy and addictive. I just loved it and would rate their Nasi Lemak Rice at 9.3/10 . In Perak, most of the Sambal's available are on the sweet side of taste but this was an exception. It was mildly spicy and slightly on the salty side. A perfect punch for the rice and together, they were just awesome. The volume of Sambal too was quite lavish. I would rate her Sambal at 9.3/10 . Now I know why that guy gave a positive testimony and also the reason why those Proton staffs were content on just having her rice and Sambal. Just delicious!

Fried Anchovies and Peanuts

Fresh Cut Cucumber
The Fried Anchovies and Peanuts provided too were very fresh. Definitely one that was fried that very morning and not left overs. The volume was also lavish. The cucumber cuts provided too were fresh and they were thick cuts. Not those stale ones. In fact, when she was cutting one cucumber, it appeared a little stale and she just threw the entire cucumber and started cutting a new one. That's very generous of her in ensuring that her customers get the best of quality. 

Overall, I am very happy with the Nasi Lemak here and glad that I have found another good Nasi Lemak in town besides Nasi Lemak beside Kedai Salman and Nasi Lemak Haji Din. Although it lacked an omelette, I did not feel it as the rest of the items were just good. The volume of rice was also huge. Usually, I would be having two packets at least but from this stall, one was just enough. Definitely I shall be returning for more soon!

Address: Along Jalan Besar Ulu Bernam, 35900 Hulu Bernam, Selangor , Malaysia.

Opening Hours: 0630 - 1000 Daily

Friday, 29 May 2015

Restoran Kim Kee Bak Kut Teh @ Tanjung Malim, Perak

A few day's back, I visited Restaurant Chun Mei Bak Kut Teh which I have blogged about here. That for me is the best Bak Kut Teh place in Tanjung Malim that serves excellent old school Bak Kut Teh. Second to that would be this Kim Kee Bak Kut Teh that is located right beside the entrance to Kampung Berop in Tanjung Malim. Both restaurants have been around for more than 30 years now, perhaps almost 40 years. The reason that I feel this would rank second is simply because of their broth. I always prefer the deep bodied tea and this place serves only the medium bodied tea. Nevertheless, this place is still anytime better than what we get in Kuala Lumpur. Earlier this evening, I visited this restaurant just to be able to give you a comparison between both places.

The Restaurant Visible From The Main Road

The Restaurant

Cooking Is Done On The Left Side

Home And The Toilets On The Side
Unlike Chun Mei, this place does not have a dedicated parking space and hence, customers would have to park by the side of the road. This leaves limited space for customers to park. The majority of customers here would be lorry drivers. The reason for this is simply because this place provides free bathroom and toilet facilities for these drivers. So many of them would drop by, have their bath, freshen up and once done, have their dinner. This is advantageous to them as there are not many places like this that still exist. Food isn't as cheap as the other location but it is still acceptable. Prices would vary from 30 cents up to RM 1 per item. As far as the locals are concerned, a handful are loyal to this place but the majority of them would still prefer Chun Mei. 


Garlic & Chili

Garlic Wasn't So Fresh


Light Soy Sauce
Just like the other place, ordering is quite simple. I would always head to the counter to check what's available for the day. Once I have seen the items, I would then order what I would like to have. Similarly, the same was done for today. I ordered some meat cuts along with some fat and one Lor Tan. The Tofu didn't look too good and so I skipped that. The Garlic and Chili provided too were not fresh. Also, they only provided light Soy Sauce and the Sweet Soy Sauce was not provided. Service was quite average as they have no additional help here. It was very much the husband and wife who were running the show. Well, for the kind of crowd they usually have, this duo is more than enough. Does not make any economical sense for them to hire additional help.

My Bak Kut Teh Set
It took them approximately 15 minutes to prepare my dishes and send over to my table. I shall comment on each one of these items below.

White Rice @ RM 1.00

White Rice @ RM 1.00
Unlike Chun Mei, White Rice is a chargeable item here. There, the first bowl would be provided with the Bak Kut Teh set but here, they charge for this individually. The big bowl like the above is priced at RM 1.00 and a small bowl is priced at RM 0.70 . Both places only serve plain White Rice and you do not get those Onion Rice or Oil & Shallot Rice. Since the broth is a medium bodied one, this plain White Rice compliments it well. If it had been those light ones like those that we commonly get in Kuala Lumpur, then it would have been a major letdown. 

Bak Kut Teh @ RM 8.00

Bak Kut Teh @ RM 8.00
I asked for a mix of lean meat and some fat and that is exactly what I got. If you prefer those big bones, they do have those too. But please do note that claypot style is not available here. The meat is well cooked in a medium bodied tea and it does taste good (though the darker one is my personal preference). Taste wise it was nice and I would rate this at 8/10 .

Lor Tan @ RM 0.80 each

Lor Tan @ RM 0.80 each

Lor Tan @ RM 0.80 each
At Chun Mei, they serve these eggs in the Bak Kut Tea broth itself but here, this is served in light Soy Sauce. Taste wise, it is nice but not as good as the one's prepared by Chun Mei. I wonder why the eggs have an odd shape today. I would rate these at 8/10 .

Plain Broth

Plain Broth
As you can see, it is almost clear and the base of the spoon is clearly visible. If you do check my blogs on Chun Mei just a few days back, I have taken a similar photograph and in that, you would not be able to see through. As I said, for those who prefer a slightly lighter broth, this would be the place to head to. They are not stingy with the tea and you can always ask for more and they would happily top it up for you. For me, this would fetch a rating of 8/10 .  Just for your information, a big bowl of Tofu is priced at RM 2.50 and a small bowl of Tofu is priced at RM 1.50 . They only use Tofu Pok here.

For those who are bored with the common preparation found in Kuala Lumpur, this is definitely a good alternative. I do remember many of my Singaporean friends always asking me where to get the Bak Kut Teh that comes in the dark/medium broth and this is one of such places. Tanjung Malim is also located not very far from Kuala Lumpur and today with the North South Highway, it is just a 40 minutes drive. 

Address: Kampung Berop, Jalan Slim Baru, 35900 Tanjung Malim, Perak.

Opening Hours: 1700 - 2330 Daily

Thursday, 28 May 2015

Restoran Jalal @ Tanjung Malim, Perak

I am sure that everyone from Tanjung Malim would be familiar with Restoran Jalal. Once known as Restoran Ghani (which is still around and is being run on a yearly rotation among the brother's) which had been serving customers for more than 80 years in Tanjung Malim until the brothers' ended up splitting to start up their own restaurants, now scattered at various locations in Tanjung Malim. Today Restaurant Jalal is located at No. 40A, Jalan Besar where once Kassim Restaurant had been for more than 50 years since the 1940's. If Kassim Restaurant had still been around, that would then be the oldest restaurant in town.

Restoran Jalal located along the main road in town

All The Restaurants Have The Very Same Design

Simple Design
One thing that is common among the restaurants owned by the brothers is the design. Each restaurant looks exactly same as Ghani Restaurant, probably something that belongs to the family and they have preferred to keep it that way. The place is simple and reasonably clean. Business is usually peak during breakfast, lunch and tea. Dinner would be a little slow as there would be more takeaways than dine ins. We were here for dinner and that is why the restaurant may seem a little quiet. My brother and I drop by at least once a week to get our Mee Goreng fix here and so, we are well known to the owner and staffs. Moreover, the owner's son was my brother's classmate in school. Prices are relatively cheap when comparing with Kuala Lumpur but after the recent GST introduction, they have hiked it up a little. Not too much and still within acceptable limits.

Teh O @ RM 1.20

Teh Tarik @ RM 1.30
Usually, the Teh Tarik here is very good but recently, they had gotten a new staff to handle the drinks preparation as the previous one had returned to India. This new guy is still on the learning curve as the drinks today was seriously bad. The Teh O was still acceptable but the Teh Tarik was horrible. This is something that we almost would never experience here and I am surprised that the owner had not identified this problem. For today's drinks, I would rate their Teh O at 7/10 and the Teh Tarik at 4/10 .

Roti Canai and Fish Curry

Roti Canai @ RM 1.00

Roti Canai @ RM 1.00
Their Roti Canai is one of the best one's in town and the taste has been consistent over the years. Reasonable priced at RM 1.00 (and this is after the recent hike), the bread is soft and tasty. I would rate their Roti Canai at 9/10 .

Fish Curry

Fish Curry
Their Fish Curry is excellent. This is one of the best Indian Muslim style Fish Curries in town and is one of my favourties at this restaurant. Of course, when you buy any bread or rice dishes, curries are complimentary. I find this curry to just be amazing, one that is rich with spices and tamarind. Perfect taste! Of course, the Tamil style of preparation would clearly differ. As for this, I would rate it at 9.7/10 .

Nasi Lemak @ RM 1.20

Nasi Lemak @ RM 1.20

Creamy Rice

Mildly Spicy Sambal
Not many are aware that Restaurant Jalal does have Nasi Lemak. This is not their own preparation as I believe, they have a local Malay supplier who sends this over to them on a daily basis, Mondays to Fridays only. This is available from tea time onwards. Previously, it used to be priced at RM 1.00 and now, RM 1.20 .The preparation is excellent. Just a small packet but it is mega tasty. Creamy rice served with some medium spicy anchovy sambal along with quarter of an egg. This with a good cup of tea would be just perfect to keep you going. If I am here in the afternoons post lunch hour, this Nasi Lemak would be my very first choice. I would rate this at 9/10 .

Maggi Curry @ RM 3.00

Prepared With Some Vegetables

You Get An Egg Too

Nicely Prepared
This is the first time that I am trying the Maggi Curry at this restaurant. I found that their preparation was nothing great. It lacked vegetables, though there were some that were added. The curry too ended up being slightly diluted and would have been better if it was a little more concentrated. In short, nothing great and I would rate this at 6.5/10 .

Roti Arab @ RM 2.90

Roti Arab @ RM 2.90
This and the food items below were takeaways. The cutlery you see used in the pictures were our own and not from the restaurant. Best to keep that clear as to avoid any confusion. Roti Arab is a kind of flat bread that has been becoming more and more famous in the recent years. It is a typical soft flat bread (not hard like Pita) that's lightly toasted with butter and served with curries. We had this with the very same Fish Curry. This would not be suitable to be eaten on it's own as it is very much tasteless. Their preparation was just okay as it should have been toasted a little more to give it a slightly hard crust on one side. I would rate this at 6/10 only. Just an average preparation.

Capati @ RM 1.30

Capati @ RM 1.30
The Capati here is good. Some may not agree with me as it may seem a little hard but bearing in mind that this is made solely out of Atta Flour (without adding any Wheat Floor), I think that they have perfected it to a certain extent. It is not easy to achieve this level of softness using solely Atta Flour which is the authentic way of preparation. A lovely bread it was and I would rate this at 8.5/10 .

Vegetable Kurma

Vegetable Kurma
Vegetable Kurma was provided as one of the complimentary curries. To me, this was a flop. It had too much cinnamon and that killed the dish. Generally a very bland tasting dish and I would rate this at 4/10 .

Mee Hoon Goreng Ayam @ RM 6.90
Mee Goreng and Mee Hoon Goreng are my all time favourites here. They are priced at RM 4.00 for Mee Goreng and RM 4.20 for Mee Hoon Goreng. This is the revised pricing as prior to that, they were RM 3.50 and RM 3.80 respectively. For a change, today I decided to add some Fried Chicken to this and hence the price of RM 6.90 . Still cheap and very much cheaper than similar restaurants in Kuala Lumpur. The fried noodles were fantastic as always. Definitely one of the Top 5 Mee Goreng's in town and I would rate this at 9.5/10 . Do note that unlike other Indian Muslim restaurants, the Mee Goreng and Mee Hoon Goreng here do not taste alike although it is prepared almost quite similarly. Both have distinct tastes and are equally good. The Mee Hoon somehow has a more eggy taste to it, despite both being made using the same number of eggs.

If you happen to be in town and would love to try some old school Indian Muslim noodles which is almost impossible to get anymore in Kuala Lumpur, then this place would be highly recommended. Definitely a place that would satisfy your taste buds as far as the above two dishes are concerned and the prices too are wallet friendly. Besides these, the Nasi Lemak, Roti Canai, Capati and Fish Curry are also highly recommended!

Address: 40A, Jalan Besar, 35900 Tanjung Malim, Perak.

Opening Hours: 0600 - 2000 Daily