Ramadan is just around the corner so lets continue with the second instalment of buka puasa buffet 2014 review, this at The Saujana KL hotel’s new Charcoal restaurant, remodelled, redecorate, and definitely an improved version of the old Suria Cafe.
Charcoal is a new open-grill concept restaurant that was opened on the 6th of June, 2014, but a review of what the restaurant has to offer will come later, this post is solely about the Ramadan buffet, and this one is served under the stars by the poolside.
Ramadan buffet 2014 at The Saujana KL’s Charcoal restaurant
The Saujana is located near Subang airport, offering ample outdoor parking space free of charge. Situated directly next to the golf course and hotel swimming pool, the restaurant also enjoys a tranquil and beautiful view.
I was told that the spread we sampled represent only about a quarter to a third of what will be served during the fasting month.
Ramadan buffet at Saujana offers quite a variety of Asian appetizers that will surely please Malay food lovers. There’s kerabu hati ayam (chicken liver), kerabu mangga muda (young mango), kerabu kacang botol (long bean), kerabu nanas (pineapple), kerabu nangka, and even gado gado. These offer some intense sourish and spicy taste that opens up the appetite real well.
For those who wants to veer a bit towards the West, there’s a selection of Western dishes such as grilled asparagus with roast beef, chickpea with roasted pumpkin salad, and shredded salmon with zucchini julienne and wasabe mayo as well.
bazaar Malay and bakar stalls offering ayam percik, ikan bakar, and more
Like many ramadan buffets in town, the concept of food stalls is implemented here as well.
The bazaar Malay and bakar stalls offer nasi kerabu (the blue rice above), ikan bakar (grilled fish), sotong bakar (squid), ayam percik, as well as other classics such as otak otak.
grilled lamb, ulam ulam, soup, satey
Grilled lamb is also available here (basically at every Ramadan buffet I’ve been), and the version here did not disappoint either, the meat was tender and goes well with mint sauce.
If you like ulam like me, they have quite a selection with the accompanying sambal that includes my favorite – tempoyak, or fermented durian.
There’s also an Indian stall that serves putu mayam, tossai, masala vadai, coconut chutney, dal curry and more.
KY & Haze, with various main dishes including vegetable, meat, rice, curry, and seafood
When it’s time to fill up your stomach, main dishes such as ayam redang, nasi minyak, udang masak tomato (prawn), terung hijau (eggplant, one of my favorites!), danging kicap berempah (beef with dark sauce), gulai masam tenggiri (mackeral curry), and more are available. I find the taste true generally stays true to classic Malay cuisine.
fruits, desserts, traditional kuih, and drinks
Desserts is available in the form of various Malay kuih, bubur durian with pulut, pandan cream caramel, assorted French pastries, cheese cake, dodol, and fresh fruits.
Quality of food here is definitely top notch, and I think this would definitely be a place worth checking out for those who stays near this part of Klang Valley, and especailly those who love traditional Malay cuisine.
Charcoal The Saujana KL,
Jalan Lapangan Terbang SAAS, 40150 Selangor GPS: 3.108849, 101.578474 Tel: 03-7843 1234 email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Tucked right next to the Philippines embassy and just a stone’s throw away from Pavilion and the KLCC Convention is Maison Francaise, an elegant French restaurant situated in what was formerly a bungalow.
Dining area is separated in a few areas that used to be patio, living room, pool side, and so forth. Art works, white tablecloths, leather seats, fresh flowers; decoration is simple yet classy.
Maison Francaise at Changkat Kia Peng
Being at the less glamorous of KLCC area has its benefits, you can get here without having to go through any traffic bottle necks, and you never have to park your car more than a few steps away from the restaurant.
While dinner session is usually pretty busy, as the manager and chef mentioned, Maison Francaise is usually pretty quiet over lunch. So for this session, we sampled the lunch set priced at at RM59++ for 2-courses or RM75++ for 3-courses.
amuse-bouche came in the form of in-house smoked salmon
Even though it is a set lunch, we still started out with amuse-bouche, a bite size pre-appetizer selected and prepared by the chef. The in-house smoked salmon isn’t anything fancy, but carries a delicate smoky taste which we like.
duck pate, home-made mushroom soup
The lunch menu may change from time to time and usually carries a couple different options for each course.
Appetizer was between duck pate with truffle and walnut dressing and mushroom soup finishing with truffle oil and whipping cream.
The pate, with its inclusion of walnut dressing, is a little drier than your normal pan-fried duck liver, and should delight fans of this appetizer. Mushroom soup was beautiful, creamy, and those truffle oil really gave it an extra dimension which we love.
leather jacket with green olive & garlic, slow cooked beef angus
Main course was either fish or beef.
The fish option was leather jacket with green olives and garlic, braised fennel. The seasoning was perfect with accompanying vegetables positively enhanced the seafood.
The slow cooked Angus beef, an “oyster blade” cut, is meticulously prepared in seven hours cooking. The result is a piece of meat that’s so tender you can cut it with just using the fork. The flavour of the meat is not lost, and the supporting cast of root vegetables complimented the dish beautifully.
raspberry mousse temptation
To conclude the lunch set was the dessert in the form of raspberry mousse temptation, a cacophony of sour, sweet, and very rich creamy taste. I particularly like the tiny bulbs of raspberry “bubbles” that pops in your mouth.
Haze & KY at Maison Francaise
Maison Francaise is a pork free establishment that carries a good wine and champagne selection, the restaurant also serves liqueurs and espresso coffee.
I want to go back again.
Address: Maison Francaise 5 Jalan Changkat Kia Peng 50450 Kuala Lumpur GPS: 3.151256, 101.715215 Tel: 03-2144 1474, 019-243 1200 Web: maisonfrancaise.com.my
It’s time for another recipe sharing session. This time it’s seafood – fried prawns with soya sauce, a simple to prepare and yet pretty luxurious dish (just because prawns are so expensive these days).
I had some prawns in hand thanks for mom who actually works in a market, and since I ran out of asam to make my favorite nyonya style sam prawn, I went online to look for something simple to prepare, and landed on this fried prawns with soya sauce recipe from Babe KL. I know Babe KL & Capt’n Hook personally and was sure that her recipe wouldn’t go wrong.
trim off all sharp edges, add pepper, salt, corn starch
Anyway, here are the ingredients you need:
big prawns, I had XL prawns, bigger the better
1 bulb garlic – chopped
2 inches ginger – cut into stripes
2 tablespoon corn starch
salt & pepper
1 tablespoon worchestershire sauce
2 tablespoon dark soya sauce
1 tablespoon soya sauce
a couple stalks of spring onion
cook the prawns and place it aside
Prawn preparation steps:
trim off the all appendages of the prawns with a scissor
clean and pad dry the prawns with paper towels
marinate prawn with salt, pepper, and cover with corn starch
heat up some cooking oil and fry prawns till reddish (2-3 minutes)
set prawns aside
ginger, then garlic, then prawns, and all the sauces, finally spring onion
heat up oil (or just use the remaining from frying prawns)
fry ginger for a minute, then add garlic (because it takes longer to cook ginger)
when garlic & ginger starts to turn golden, add in the prawns
add worchestershire sauce, soya sauce, and dark soya sauce
stir fry till fragrant
add green onion and stir a little more just prior to serving
there you go, classic fried prawns with soya sauce
So there, the dish really turned out pretty well, I actually wished that we had put in even more garlic & ginger cos they really brought out the taste of the prawns and went well with rice. For those who likes it a little sweeter, feel free to add a teaspoon of sugar too.
There’s a new diver in town! Haze just did her PADI Open Water certification at Pulau Sembilan, which is a cluster of small islands half an hour’s boat ride away from Lumut. The underwater condition, and thus diving, was subpar at best. Visibility was quite poor except for one of the dives, and there wasn’t exactly a lot of exotic creatures to spot either.
However, for whatever that is lack in diving, the couple dinners we had at the area more than made up for it.
Hai Tien Di Seafood Restaurant, Sitiawan
On the second night of our stay at Lumut, Haze and I joined our fatty dive master James, together with fellow dive buddy Alan to Hai Tien Di seafood restaurant at Sitiawan with the promise of awesome fresh oysters and yummy seafood.
It was about a 20 minutes drive away from where we stayed at Marina Island Pangkor, and we were not disappointed.
check out the size of fresh oyster there
We ordered 10 big oysters as appetizer (RM 5 a piece), and just check out their size! They fleshy part of the oysters were as big as my palm, easily the biggest oysters I had.
Coupled with the fact that these creatures were actually alive in the tank prior to being served, they were absolutely delicious. A dash of lime or some Tabasco sauce was all it takes, and try not to make the mistake of putting it in with one mouthful lest you wanna make a full of yourself having oysters spilling out at the corner of your mouth.
steamed prawns, they were alive moments ago
Our biggest main dish was the steamed live prawns. At Hai Tien Di, you get to choose between the “normal” frozen prawns, or the live prawns from the tank. We of course, went for broke and chose the later.
With live seafood, the simplest cooking method is usually the best. This is to preserve the essence of the taste, so for this dish, we have it steamed, as recommended by the operator.
The prawns sliced in halves, and steamed with a bit of ginger, fried garlic, spring onion, light soya sauce, and Chinese wine. It was delightful, packed with that seafood sweetness. At RM 65 this was definitely not cheap, but worth it nonetheless.
fresh oyster, fried vegetable, steamed grouper
A seafood meal is not complete without fish, so we ordered a live grouper, steamed teow chew style (RM 35). It was of course, absolutely fresh and went well with steamed rice.
We also had a plate of vegetable (RM8) to satisfy the vitamin c/fiber requirements. You must always have a serving of vegetable at every meal, no?
we sure did have our stomachs stuffed
The service at Hai Tien Di was pretty good, food came quite fast as well. I can’t say that this is a place that is economical (for a small town), but the quality of fresh/live seafood here was stunning, and those oysters were absolutely delicious.
If you find yourself at Lumut/Sitiawan, this would be a place worth visiting.
Address: Hai Tien Di Seafood Restaurant 522 Kampung Cina, 32000 Sitiawan, Perak GPS: 4.190067, 100.684217 Tel: 05-692 4679
Lot 10 is one of those shopping malls that has seen better times. Some 15 years ago, it was the premier place to shop, that was before Suria KLCC, before Mid Valley, and of course, before Pavilion.
These days, Lot 10 is keeping up with the newer malls by reinventing itself a little bit, starting with the excellent food court that is Hutong, and now, the Shabu One steamboat buffet restaurant. I’m not sure if that’s their strategy, but stuffing the mall with good food might just bring in the crowd.
Shabu One, the new steamboat place at Lot 10
I first got to know about this place from my colleague Sheng, who has a bit of a hobby in monitoring online group shopping deal sites. The dude brought 4 coupons to the Shabu One, so we headed over to Lot 10 for a Friday lunch without much expectations.
After all, the full price for lunch/dinner was only RM27.99+, and we had bought the coupons for something like another 40% off of that.
seafood and fishball-ish choices are aplenty, check out the clams!
While the restaurant is certainly not very posh, it was clean and comfortable. If you’re looking for decorations the class of Shogun or Jogoya, this is not the place for you.
On the other hand, if you love steamboat with a good selection of seafood at reasonable price, this is the real deal!
veges, noodles, and there are some pre-cooked dishes too
There’re three types of soup to choose from: clear soup, tomyam, and ma-lak (嘛辣). We had our pot split between the ma-lak and clear soup.
To be honest, the ma-lak soup was a bit of a let down. The clear soup too was slightly bland, but nothing a bit of seafood (crab in this case) can’t fix. We didn’t try the tomyam soup, so I can’t commend on that.
beef slices, various condiments, desserts, ice cream
The selection of food here is as good as anywhere else at this price point. I particularly love the super big clams they have on that day (not sure if it’s an everyday thing), along with the cuttle fish, lala, prawns, bamboo clams, and more. They are constantly being refilled too, which is always a plus.
Other than seafood you do get the usual suspects: plenty of fish ball lookalike and taste-alike stuff, big selection of vegetables, mushrooms, noodles, egg, and sliced beef.
There are also a buffet line of pre-cooked dishes such as fried noodle, curry chicken, hot and sour soup, sausages, tea leaf eggs and more so you can start stuffing your mouth from the get-go, before the steamboat is boiled.
our stomach was completely stuffed, was a great lunch for sure
As for desserts, the choices aren’t great. There’s ice cream, kuai leng gou, fruits, and a few other Chinese/Taiwanese jelly thingy. Then again, who has stomach for desserts when you go for steamboat?
Overall it’s a pretty decent place to go, pretty good value for what you have to pay, and I think we’ll be back again for some long lunches in the future.