No updates because I was in KL over the weekend for a shopping and eating trip. Very fruitful in terms of eating, and fairly successful in terms of shopping, given that I am not a girl and cannot be expected to shop like one.
We arrived at about 4pm and proceeded to have our first meal, being somewhat peckish from the journey. On Pineapple Malibu's recommendation, I decided to check out Madam Kwan's, apparently an eatery famous for its Nasi Lemak and Nasi Bojari.
Although Pineapple Malibu recommended the one in KLCC, there was another outlet in Mid Valley Mall, conveniently next to my hotel, so that's the one we went to.
I had the Nasi Bojari, which I believe is unique to Malaysia. Aromatic rice served with a big fried chicken wing, some beef rendang and additional spicy belachan and shrimp. I wasn't that impressed with this dish, as the rice wasn't particularly aromatic (you'd do better with nasi lemak), and the beef in the rendang was so torn you could barely recognise or taste it as beef.
Chermain had the beef rendang as a whole meal, with some nice coconut rice.
Wai Kit had something a bit more Occidental: chicken chop. Why would you go to KL and order chicken chop? I hope it was good, at least.
Wan Jun ordered a bowl of laksa, which looked and smelled really fabulous, even though I never really developed a liking for it.
Dessert was a shared bowl of cendol, and seriously there is no cendol in Singapore that can match Malaysia's. The gula melaka and the coconut milk are added in loving amounts, sinfully sweet but just short of cloying and sticky, and the texture of the red beans and green worms; rough and smooth, contrasting the shaved ice...delicious.
My cousin and her husband were nice enough to bring us out to dinner at a roadside stall run by his ex-colleague. The best thing about KL is that you can literally be located in the middle of nowhere, outside a decrepit old building, but people will still come and eat your food.
Our first dish was pretty normal - tofu with soya sauce and chopped chives. The only interesting thing was that the tofu was chilled, apparently not all that common, even in Malaysia.
Next, some sort of river fish, steamed with lots and lots of garlic. Didn't really have a lot of this, since I'm not much of a fish person, and it was quite a bony fish. Still good though.
A steaming claypot bowl of braised pork wafted very nice smells around the table. Fatty and oleaginous, the pork has been simmered away in black sauce, breaking down the high gelatin content and rendering the pork soft and flavourful.
Bak Kut Teh needs almost no introduction. Pork ribs simmered in an herbal broth comprising various spices, peppercorns and garlic. Malaysian bak kut teh tends to be less peppery and more herbal than the Singaporean variety. The one I had used rather lean meat, which was a shame, and included less appetising bits of kidney and other offal.
We began and ended our first day in KL with some good food, and we all felt rather stuffed by the time we returned to our hotel room, happy that our food journey was off to such a good start.