Ikan Bakar is one of the type of local dish that has its name completely wrong. If you translate it to English, ikan = fish, bakar = burn (or grill if you stretch it). But instead of grilling on open fire, ikan bakar these days is more like frying on a flat pan with a sheet of banana leaf in between. Which is just the way we like it.
Kak Jat Ikan Bakar, Jalan Bellamy
A few months ago I wrote my first article on Jalan Bellamy’s ikan bakar stalls at Mak Alang, and while it was a pretty good experience, we only went there because the consensus best ikan bakar stall at the area – Kak Jat Ikan Bakar, was already packed to the brim. This time around, we made sure we’re early enough to get a table.
quite a good variety of other dishes as well as ikan bakar
Like most ikan bakar places, Kak Jat also offers a variety of different other dishes ala nasi campur style. Grab a few of these, order some fish to go with, pick your sambal of choice, grab some rice, and you’re good to go.
the tilapia (on the right) was surprisingly awesome
As far as choice of fish goes, you get pari (stingray), kembung, terubok, tilapia, and more. I felt that the fish here was prepared with that extra umph to it, the skin seemed crispier with the marinate they have that is different from others.
I’m not a big tilapia fan, but if you’re at Kak Jat, do yourself a favor and order it, they are pretty special. The tilapia skin here is a chunk of coagulated spices & marinate in which we had no idea what they are made of, but so-so delicious! Give it a try!
asam pedas with stingray (bottom right) was one of my favorites
On the side dishes, other than the usual ulam, I also really enjoyed the asam pedas (stingray with salted vegetable curry), I felt that their version here is almost as good as the one at Kampung Baru Man’s Cafe Asam Pedas.
And before I forget, the grilled squid here is definitely worth ordering as well.
makcik makcik agreed that this ikan bakar stall is the best
Overall, we had a great lunch and a bucket of sweat, but it was worth it. If you’re heading to Jalan Bellamy for ikan bakar, this is the stall to check out.
Wherever there are office workers, there’ll be mixed rice stalls, and often time it is very difficult to tell them apart in terms of quality. This is especially challenging at places like Wisma Sentral with a number of different stalls catering to wage earners working at KLCC and surrounding area.
Nasi Campur at Wisma Sentral, KLCC
But after years of being here, I think I’ve found my favorite halal food stall in the building – the Kelantanese place at the far right corner on ground floor.
On the surface, this place doesn’t look very different from the other half a dozen different stalls, but on closer inspection, you’ll notice that there are subtle differences.
the selection of ulam is what brings me here
Firstly, the selection of ulam is excellent. There’s always at least about a dozen different raw vegetable to choose from that pairs well with some the few choices of sambal. This ranges from cucumber, tomato, long bean, lady’s finger, to petai, ulam raja, and more.
Furthermore, they also have a pretty big selection of ikan bakar freshly made just prior to lunch hours. With patin, kembung, keli, and a few other choices available.
However, my personal favorite from this stall has got to be their solok lada – this unique East Coast dish is basically a stuffed green chili with a mixture of fish & coconut insert. If you think yong tau foo is good, this one will blow your mind. I love it!
some of the typical “lauk” we usually go for
So if you’re around KLCC area (or happen to work here), do check out this stall, it may not be the cheapest option among the few, but it is definitely the one I enjoy most.
Address: Nasi Campur (Right far end corner) Ground Floor Wisma Central, Jalan Ampang Kuala Lumpur
GPS:3.158728, 101.714473 Hours: Weekday Lunch
Nasi campur, or Malay mixed rice, is usually a pretty uneventful type of meal. You pick a few dishes from a couple dozen precooked “lauk” to put on top of steamed rice, and go about filling up your stomach.
Unless of course, you head to Istana Budaya.
Istana Budaya, Kuala Lumpur
Most people associates Isatana Budaya as a place where you dress up to catch a fancy play such as Puteri Gunung Ledang, but did you know that they also serve perhaps one of the fanciest nasi campur over lunch?
Well, I was just as surprised when I got there the first time with a couple of my colleagues who are just as big a fan of good food as me – Razi & Amalia.
yes, this nasi campur spread looks like a luxurious buffet
The nasi campur spread here looks as good as any hotel grade buffet, complete with a huge selection of halal dishes, including appetizer, main course, dessert, and even selection of kuih and other tea time favorites.
The modus operandi though, is the same as any nasi campur places – fill up your plate, go about filling it up with your favorite dishes, head to the counter to pay, and makan!
laksa, sago gula melaka, and more
Other than rice dishes, there are also noodle dishes such as laksa. I also recommend ending the meal with a small container of those really sinful yet delicious sago gula Melaka.
Amalia sure looked happy
Prices are not out of the ordinary, a usual meal cost less than RM 10 in an air conditioned dining hall, and being located at a big function building, parking is not a problem either. Have a try!
A couple weeks ago we had yet another “you’ve got bonus so you have to belanja” session with my colleagues, and this time around our destination was Puti Bungsu Batam at the nearby Lorong Yap Kwan Seng, which technically is close enough you can walk to from KLCC, but obviously we drove there.
Puti Bungsu at Jalan Yap Kwan Seng, jus alpukat
The restaurant is visible from Jalan Yap Kwan Seng itself, and located just a stone’s throw away from the Las Vacas. It is also clean, airy, and has a simple yet somewhat tasteful decoration.
Oh, the parking lot is good enough for perhaps half a dozen cars, get there early if you drive.
plenty of authentic Padang food to choose from
Puti Bungsu claimed to serve Authentic Padang food, and they have quite a big selection of dishes. There’s ikan bakar, a few types of ayam (including their famous ayam pop), kepala ikan, tunjang (beef tendon), and more.
Additionally, they also have a relatively big menu on drinks, and like any self respecting Indonesian restaurant, they have jus alpukat (avocado + chocolate), which is a must-order for me!
our lunch for 9 pax, with tunjang, ayam, ikan, and more
For the nine of us, we ordered up quite a feast. We had tunjang, fish head curry, daging salai (smoked beef), sambal cili (green chili sambal), ayam bob, terung (brinjal), and some vege. All these to go with steamed rice, since we’re after all, Asian.
The dishes were pretty good actually, apart from daging salai which I thought was slightly too tough to chew on. The tunjang almost as good as the version at Kampung Baru. We really liked it.
good food with great company
According to Syeka, the colleague who belanja all of us, the meal turned out to be almost RM 40 per pax, inclusive of some pretty fancy drinks we had. It’s definitely not cheap, but for the ambiance and location, not out of expectation.
Puti Bungsu is certainly a pretty decent place for a bit of a get-together, and one that happens to serve good, authentic Padang food. We enjoyed it.
Address: Puti Bungsu Batam 4 Lorong Yap Kwan Seng, Kuala Lumpur GPS: 3.162879, 101.713364 Tel: 03 217 11197