Thursday, November 20, 2008

Best Nasi Lemak, and then some...

with family for breakfast

This is a favourite of Edward and I when we go on our bicycle makan sessions. It remains a favourite with us, and Kin. I also brought my good friend Frank Muller - a German who lives in Dresden, to eat, and he too loved it.

The stall next door at Stall 1 also sells Nasi Lemak...and in days of yore there was only one queue...at Stall 2. However, recently business seemed to have picked up for Stall 1 as well, and when visited both queues were almost as long.



The rice, cooked from basmati rice was very fragrant. This is the first store I have come across using basmati rice to cook nasi lemak. It makes great sense. Each grain of basmati is typically less starchy, and dryer...and hence is able to take on and absorb flavours. In nasi lemak, this would be coconut milk and pandanus leaf. Fragrant. Very fragrant. We use a similar technique at home to cook chicken rice, where the absorbent qualities of the rice is put to good use to soak up the chicken stock for a power packed full flavour rice.

As a bonus, the rice is also medium glycemic index. this means that it releases sugars more slowly into the bloodstream than starchy rice like Japanese rice or even Jasmine Thai rice. I understand the Canadian Diabetic Association recommends basmati rice for diabetic patients (in moderation).



I always order the Full House, and it used to come with either a dollop of achar or sambal sotong gratis. But times, they are a changing. They still charge the same for a Full House (comprising of rice, one deep fried battered chicken wing, one fried egg, some deep fried anchovies and peanuts, and a grilled otak), but if you want the sambal sotong, it will cost $1 more. I don't think it is really worthwhile adding the sotong...a small miserly portion...you can see in the pic above merging with the sambal.

The sotong is admittedly very good...this is made from slices of cuttlefish, rather than calamari, and cooked, probably for a long time with spices and sambal. While by no stretch of imagination one would describe the sotong as tender, it has a chewy complexion and tough-ish texture, but it tastes excellent - a blend of sweetness, sotong-ness and goes well with the sambal.

The chicken wing is exceptional. Freshly fried, it was very crispy on the outside, it retained all the juiciness and flavour on the inside. Very satisfying to eat. I sometimes order additional chicken wings at $1.50 each (which is more worth the money than the sotong). I once asked the owner why he didn't offer chicken drumsticks or legs...he said that they once did, but the demand was for chicken wings.

The sambal is also extremely good...spicy, with a great kick, it was coyly also sweet with just the right tinge of sour to balance. Superb. I greatly prefer this nasi lemak to the famous ones in Changi Village.


Wash this all down with a cup of teh tarik halia, and alls well that ends well.

I didn't find much variations in the teh halia from the various stalls...I have been drinking at the Adam Road Sarabat stalls since my university days...where our seniors dragged us for tea and roti prata at 3am in the morning after a whole day of orientation (dare we say ragging?) as I lived in Raffles Hall, a hostel just across the Bukit Timah Road.

Perhaps I am not discerning enough in teh halias, but this one tasted similar to the others...I always order "kurang gula" meaning less sugar. The astringent tea goes very well with the sharp, pungent ginger, and blends well with the milk. Nice cuppa.

Read ieat's review.






Selera Rasa
2 Adam Road
Stall 2 Adam Rd Food Centre
6:30am to 10pm (used to be 24 hours)
Tel: 9843 4509

Photonotes: shot with Canon EOS 300d with kit 18-55mm lens. Colour balanced in PS3.
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