Cravings in Malaysia

Saturday, July 30, 2016
I was speaking with a friend the other day and the topic of blogging came up. ‘Wasn’t your last post the one where you said you would start blogging again? And wasn’t that one like.. ages ago?’ I know, I know! I’m guilty! It’s easy to think that something you don’t like would be difficult to do, but it’s surprisingly difficult to get myself to the computer to type... although admittedly, when I’m here, it’s even harder to make me stop.

I have lots to say about graduation and all its associated feelings (happiness, confusion, uncertainty, etc.) but inevitably, when I returned here, my life instantly began revolving around food once again. Before I was due to come home, I was so eager about all the food I was going to have in Malaysia that I almost completely forgot about shedding the weight I put on over the exam period. Of course, it hasn’t helped that I’ve been closely following Bangsar Babe’s food adventures. But rather than deprive myself of all my favourite things, Boyfriend suggested I come up with a list of 5 things that I really wanted to have and pace those out.

With the entire packing period being too hectic, I wasn’t able to eventually come up with a list, which eventuated into glorious meals with my friends and family. From delicious banana leaf rice with my mom, oooey gooey matcha lava cake with my friends, yummy durian, to amazing chicken rending from my very own kitchen, I’ve really been able to indulge, hehe. 



Now that I’ve settled down a fair bit in the past week though, I’m finally sitting down to put this list together. And in no particular order, with images sourced online, I’ve narrowed down these cravings to:

1. Mee Mamak (+ ayam)



I haven’t found the one true place that does it to my heart’s content, but mee mamak is my ultimate favourite order at a mamak shop. Not even maggi goreng can top this for me. For the uninitiated, mee mamak is pretty much fried noodles with egg, tofu, a hint of vegetables, and a huge burst of flavour. I always add some chicken to it which takes the entire dish to another level.

2. Nasi kunyit + curry chicken




I’ve had cravings for this for ages. Ever since I was a kid, I’ve adored nasi kunyit. It is chewy and sticky, and when warm, it just goes down so incredibly well with a side of curry chicken. For my non-Malay speaking friends, kunyit is turmeric, which is what gives it its distinctive yellow colour – so none of that artificial stuff! I didn’t know how good it could be for you (read more about its benefits here!), and in this day and age where so many food articles seem to indicate foods being harmful and cancer causing, it’s great to justify my indulgence with good news.

3. Claypot lou shi fan














Man, a good bowl of this and I’m satisfied for ages! Silky noodles and runny egg are the absolute perfect combination. It’s not exactly a new thought, considering carbonara runs on the same principle. But throw in some minced meat, chopped mushrooms, lots of soy sauce and you get this glorious steaming bowl of deliciousness. If you think it’s good, wait till you get to the bottom charred bits.

4.  Face 2 Face Dry Curry Chicken Pan Mee



I have been having a particular craving for this dish. The curry here is thick and spicy, going well with the springy noodles. When topped with a huge tablespoon of chilli, this dish gets me sweating and gasping for water, but I can’t stop till I reach the end. I don’t think anyone else I know has the same affinity for this, but I put it down to them not having tried it the way I have. If you’re ever in Malaysia, look for Face 2 Face (it’s a chain restaurant) and if you can handle the heat, please give it a try! 

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I don’t actually have a 5th dish although I thought about it for ages! So I’m leaving my 5th as the abundance of iced Milo I’m bound to drink back here. Although we can always make our own from sachets, it isn’t quite the same as having a cool glass in front of you, sweet from a more condensed milk than I’d ever put on my own, and served in that iconic mug that will always remind me of my childhood.

Cheers to being back!

Afternoon Tea in Harrods

Saturday, July 9, 2016

Right now, I have no clue if I'm jetlagged or just plain tired. Or if in fact, whether there's even a difference between the two. All I know is that my eyelids feel heavy at 7pm, my brain is awake at 4am although my body's begging for sleep, and at 11am, I'm groaning as I force myself awake. Bright-eyed and chirpy in the mornings, I am not.

But as a woman on a mission - that mission being show my mom around London - I've been determined not to allow the days to pass by idly in bed and we force ourselves out of the house and into the outdoors for the beautiful summer days that have been so kindly presented to us. 


Today was one such day, which began with my favourite duck confit sandwich at Brunswick Square Gardens, which you must must try! Head over on a Saturday, fork over the £6, pile on the plum sauce and savour every happy bite. I've had it more times than I can remember and every single time I've gone, I've murmured Ahhs and Mhmmms in between bites of delightfully crispy duck confit and warm bread. 

But as much as I love the sandwich, the star of today's post is the afternoon tea at The Tea Room in Harrods. After some strolling along King's Cross to make room for more food after the sandwich and some paella we got at the market, we boarded the tube and set off to Knightsbridge for a lovely afternoon spent indulging, both in the food and in people watching. 

If there's one place to people watch, The Tea Room is most certainly one. With a huge window facing the inside of the department store, you could argue it was specifically designed to allow half your face to remain hidden behind a floral cup of aromatic tea with your eyes peeking over to watch all sorts of people walk by. Many have designer bags on one arm, shopping bags in another, and almost all are dressed incredibly well. 

It was 2pm and we queued for about 10 minutes before being seated, and for £32, ordered The Wedgwood which came with a pot of tea, two scones, one of their sweet treats, and some finger sandwiches.





The first time I had scones there when Boyfriend took me for Valentine's Day, I was blown away by how buttery and melt-in-the-mouth they were. Combined with their clotted cream and Raspberry jam, it was like a very sweet happy party in my mouth. This time, their scones didn't come out as warm and was more dry than the previous time, but after lathering on their delicious cream and wonderful jam, I still finished every crumb and my mom had no complaints. 

I really enjoyed the sandwiches too which comes in three flavours - egg, smoked salmon, and beef. I especially liked the one with beef which was very tender and flavourful. Was there caramelised onions in there too? I'm not sure, but whatever it was, it was fantastic and the clear winner of the three. Although the rest were nice, I feel like I could have them anywhere else, yknow. Not with the beef. No, this one tasted special. 



We had a choice of a dessert from their display and oh boy, was that a hard decision or what! With a weakness for chocolate, I almost went for their chocolate bar, but was strongly recommended to try their Strawberry Pistachio Fraisier and I was so glad I did! 





This was absolutely delicious! Not only were there huge fresh strawberries on the outside, the cake was light and fluffy - almost like mousse but less creamy - and right in the centre, there is a molten wonder of pistachio goodness. My mom and I took a bite, and our eyes widened because it was just so good. Apparently it's a big bestseller of theirs and I can see why. 


Although not the best value for money afternoon tea set out there, I say it's worth the money for the chance to have that 'English experience' of having tea in Harrods, sitting in the company of those with vastly different lifestyles and for a moment, sharing in it too.

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