Food Adventures in Malaysia: Day 4, Kuala Lumpur

Jun 6, 2011 by     2 Comments    Posted under: Malaysia, Travel

Day four. One of the most wonderful things about traveling to different parts of the world is trying different fruits and vegetables.  While I was at the completely thrilling Chow Kit Market the other day, I picked up some exotic (to me) fruits for today’s breakfast.  Clockwise from bottom left:  Champagne Mango (you can find these in the states and are well worth the money), Dragon Fruit, Jambu Madu (otherwise known as Water Guava; it’s like a watery unsweet pear/apple), some lizard skin fruit that I have no idea what is (tasted like bitter pineapple; not good), and Daku Langsat (related to lychees….grape like insides with a large hard seed all stuffed inside a very hard skin.  They’re good, but lychees are better).

Malaysian Fruits

Malaysian Fruits

Tropical Fruit Breakfast

Tropical Fruit Breakfast

Dragon Fruit is typically white fleshed inside with little black seeds, slightly sweet, and not very exciting.  This variety however was brilliant pinkish purple and was very sweet.  It was amazing!  Why don’t they import these in the U.S.?

I served it up with a bagel and some Aloe Vera Yogurt (that’s right, Aloe Vera.  Sounds crazy, but it tastes exactly like grape soda!).  It was wonderful, and I ate this breakfast most of my first week in Malaysia.

Aloe Vera Yogurt - Tasted Like Grape Soda!

Aloe Vera Yogurt – Tasted Like Grape Soda!

 

PETRONAS Towers, Kuala Lumpur

I spent the morning at the PETRONAS Towers, the tallest twin towers in the world.  They are absolutely beautiful all clad in stainless steel and glass.  I felt like I was on the mother ship about to take off for planet gulgamac when I was on the sky bridge between the two towers.

Patronas Towers at Night

Patronas Towers at Night

 

Lunch at Ozeki Tokyo Cuisine, Kuala Lumpur

This 4 hour adventure worked up an appetite, so I met my buddy for lunch at a Japanese place nearby, Ozeki Tokyo Cuisine.  He’s quite the foodie like me and loves this place, so I knew it was going to be good before I even stepped inside.

He ordered us a sashimi appetizer called Moriawase (New Style Sashimi).  Holy hell!  It was sashimi (tuna, tuna belly, smoked salmon, and mackerel) on a standard bed of soy sauce.  But then they drizzled fresh basil oil (blended fresh basil and olive oil) on it and sprinkled it with fried garlic chips, fried scallion threads, fresh scallions, and pink peppercorns.  Italian and Japanese flavors combined?  What genius!  It was unbelievable.

The salmon was my favorite….it was slightly smoked and was just amazing with the other flavors going on, especially the basil!!!  The crunch from the garlic chips and the zesty pop of the peppercorns were truly exciting.  Sashimi will never be the same for me again.  Please bring this dish somewhere closer to me than Malaysia!!!

God's Own Sashimi

God's Own Sashimi

Sashimi with Garlic Chips, Scallions, Olive Oil, and Pink Peppercorns

Sashimi with Garlic Chips, Scallions, Olive Oil, and Pink Peppercorns

The entrée I had the pleasure of sinking my teeth in was a combination meal of:

  • Buckwheat noodle soup (a dashi/kombu stock, sliced pork, spinach, and scallions. It was good, but I prefer Chinese and Vietnamese soups more)
  • Carrots and a root (possibly turnip) that seemed to have been lightly boiled in soy sauce and then tossed with sesame oil and seeds (they were fantastic. I look forward to trying to repeat the process at home)
  • Fruit
  • some pickles that were very salty
  • Japanese Curry (I didn’t even know Japan offered a curry. It was great! Very mild and much more subtle than its cousins)

It was all very good, but the sashimi was clearly the mind blowing highlight.

Japanese Lunch - Beef Curry and Soba Noodle Soup

Japanese Lunch – Beef Curry and Soba Noodle Soup

 

Dinner at Jln Alor Food Hawker Paradise

Dinner that night was the experience I came to Malaysia for:  a food hawker paradise that took up both sides of the street across an entire city block.  Jln Alor (juh-lan al-lore) it was called.  If it wouldn’t have been for the pain of my stomach stretched to the maximum capacity I would have thought I had died and gone to heaven.

Jln Alor

Jln Alor

I was like a kid in a candy store.  An entire block of nothing but hawker stalls. Are you kidding me? Sold!  We started at the first place we saw with chicken wings.  It was called Cu Cha Restaurant and I wanted to eat everything on the menu.  But alas, we just ordered the chicken wings and a pork omelet which was filled with Chinese style BBQ pork, onions, cabbage, and red chilies; odd mix but very scrumptious.  The chicken wings had the same flavorings as the hawker stall the other night, except these ones came with an outrageous sweet chili and ginger dipping sauce that made one’s worries slip away into the land of fatness and glory.  What a way to start out the evening of gluttony!

Jln Alor - Cu Cha Restaurant

Jln Alor – Cu Cha Restaurant

Jln Alor - Omelet and Chicken Wings

Jln Alor – Omelet and Chicken Wings

We then started searching for the stall recommended in the Lonely Planet book.  We think we found it, and now know why they recommend it.  Oh my gosh!  Come see what we ate…..

Jln Alor - WAW Restaurant

Jln Alor – WAW Restaurant

W.A.W Restaurant, dish #1. Chili Clams. One bite and I was spent. Who am I? Where was I 5 minutes ago? Who knows or cares when you have something this delicious in your mouth. The brown chili sauce was more like a thick gravy than a sauce. It tasted remarkably like American Chinese General Tsao’s chicken sauce, except with addictive crack added in! You had to suck the clams out of the shell, the entire time this sauce just bursting in your mouth. Again….again….more…..MORE!!!! Wow. (the clams alone were good, very fresh, and very clean. No sand grit here)

Jln Alor - Chili Clams

Jln Alor – Chili Clams

W.A.W Restaurant, dish #2. This is Crispy Garlic Pork. We believe the pork is first slow roasted in the oven, then cubed and quickly seared in very hot oil in a wok. This makes it extremely moist from the roasting, and crazy crunchy from the quick fry. The sauce was very dark and heavy, but not overly salty surprisingly, and tasted much like a hoisin sauce with tons of garlic. Ian had the first bite and instantly hung his head, melting from delight.

Jln Alor - Crispy Garlic Pork

Jln Alor – Crispy Garlic Pork

W.A.W Restaurant, dish #3. Ginger Scallion Frog. Yes, frog. This was my favorite dish of the night. So simple, yet so complete. The frog was lightly dusted with corn starch, then wok fried. Fresh scallions, huge ginger slices, loads of garlic, and a brown sauce (we think it was soy sauce and sugar, caramelized into a thick sauce). Swearing again….

Jln Alor - Ginger Scallion Frog

Jln Alor – Ginger Scallion Frog

Here’s a better look at the frog legs. Frog is good, and we should eat it more. It has a flavor like chicken, but a texture between white fish and chicken. Very light and delicate, very clean, and very satisfying to eat.

Jln Alor - Ginger Scallion Frog Leg

Jln Alor – Ginger Scallion Frog Leg

All done at W.A.W Restaurant. Ahhh…..

Jln Alor - WAW Restaurant All Done

Jln Alor – WAW Restaurant All Done

We both wanted some form of Bao (steamed bun) to finish our meal. We found this little stand…

Jln Alor - Hong Kong Dim Sum

Jln Alor – Hong Kong Dim Sum

They served us GIANT Pork Bao. This was massive, easily 3 times bigger than most Bao. I expected sweet, but was happily surprised to find it wasn’t sweet or spicy; just a super savory delight filled with pot roast like pork, onions, mushrooms, gravy, and even a hard-boiled egg.

Jln Alor - Hong Kong Dim Sum Giant Pork Bao

Jln Alor – Hong Kong Dim Sum Giant Pork Bao

On the way out, I couldn’t help myself. I should have bought 5 of these they were so good, but only got one. Fool! It was a sweet puff pastry filled with a sugar beef that literally tasted just like candy inside, but with a weight of beef flavor and protein on the back of your tongue. I want another right now. Why didn’t I buy more?

Jln Alor - Beef Dessert

Jln Alor – Beef Dessert

The only thing bad about Jln Alor was all the hawkers shoving their menus in your face as you walked by, and them yelling to get your in thir stall.  That and all the obnoxious people coming up to your table trying to get you to buy their crappy wares (laser lights, utility knives, etc.).  All in all though it was the most amazing food experience of my life.

 

2 Comments + Add Comment

  • That is an amazing shot of the towers in KL. Did you take it? If so, where did you get it from because I would love to get a shot like that myself before we leave.

    Fantastic post btw.

  • I really should spend more time there…

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I'm Jothan Yeager and I am The Bald Gourmet. After years of experimenting in my kitchen, creating delicious food and eating at amazing places around the world, I wanted a place to share my experiences with everyone. Thus the Bald Gourmet was born. I hope to open the doors of great food and great cooking to you, to inspire you to reach beyond prepared boxed meals, and to teach you of a world of deliciousness that has brought joy to me and those around me. Please enjoy the adventure which is The Bald Gourmet and share it with those you love.