Our country enters Day 7 of the Restricted Movement Order (RMO), also known as Movement Control Order (MCO), in an effort to flatten the curve of the COVID-19 pandemic.
While I am safe and sound in the warmth of my own house, and luckily, my lifestyle hasn’t been affected much, yet, I can’t help but think of my friends who are passing these two weeks in the capital city of Kuala Lumpur, either by themselves in their rented room or with their housemates.
Most of my friends who work in the capital city do not have their own kitchen to cook. Therefore, during these two weeks, they depend heavily on food delivery Malaysia, and have shared almost all their meals on their respective social media accounts, which I diligently follow.
Here, I have randomly compiled eight local foods in KL that appeal to me as a reference point for my next visit to Kuala Lumpur. Ah, can’t wait for the trip to materialise.
1) Nasi Lemak
Like any true blue Malaysian, I love nasi lemak and try to get a dose of it wherever I am, especially when I travel within the country. Whether it’s a basic RM2 pack or a pricier RM10 with ayam goreng on the side at a fancy café, nasi lemak is definitely my comfort food. Although the secret to a good nasi lemak is in its sambal, I’m just as happy devouring my plate of santan rice without dipping into the chilli paste. Yumz.
Village Park Nasi Lemak
Location: 5, Jalan SS21/37, Damansara Utama, 47400 Petaling Jaya, Selangor.
Business hours: Monday to Saturday 7 AM — 8 PM | Sunday 7 AM — 6 PM
2) Bak Kut Teh
Pork is the staple food for most Chinese, so don’t be surprised to see this “tak halal” food in this list. Only for non-Muslims, obviously! Unlike my Chinese friends, I am fine to go without pork for a long duration. However, when I am in a place that’s well known for its Bak Kut Teh, I usually do not pass up the chance to give it a try.
Yeoh’s Bak Kut Teh
Location: Bangunan Persatuan Hokkien (Kantin), Jalan Batu Tiga Lama, 41300 Klang, Selangor Darul Ehsan.
Business hours: 8.30 AM — 3.30 PM daily
3) Banana Leaf Rice
You’d probably think it’s weird when I say that I grew up on a diet of Indian food, but that’s the truth. Till now, I still enjoy a savoury platter of banana leaf rice, eaten with bare fingers, similar to any Indian, washed down with a metal cup of rasam, the sourish and spicy Indian appetiser. Sometimes, the choice of beverage is iced mango lassi, to quell the fire in my stomach.
Sri Nirwana Maju Banana Leaf
Location: 43, Jalan Telawi 3, 59100 Kuala Lumpur.
Business hours: Daily 10.30 AM — 1.30 AM
One can never go wrong with popiah for tea. I had my favourite popiah stalls in Ipoh but the old timers are gone, and I can’t seem to find the new generation popiah that suit my taste, yet. Haha fussy me. One of my friends ordered Sisters Crispy Popiah via FoodPanda Malaysia Delivery. I wish I could do that, too!
Sisters Crispy Popiah
Location: Imbi Market (Pasar Baru Bukit Bintang), Jalan Melati, Kuala Lumpur.
Business hours: Daily 6.30 AM — 1 PM or until sold out (Closed on Monday)
5) Yong Tau Fu
Living in Ipoh, my go-to yong tau fu stall is Dai Shu Geok (Big Tree Foot), along Jalan King, Off Jalan Pasir Pinji. According to a friend, Kuala Lumpur’s Ampang is also just as popular for their yong tau fu. Oh, I didn’t know that! I must give them a try one day when I am in KL. Many foodies have told me that Dai Shu Geok’s yong tau fu are larger than many other eateries but Foong Foong seems generous, too!
Foong Foong Yong Tau Fu
Location: 621-A, Jalan Besar Ampang, 68000 Ampang, Kuala Lumpur.
Business hours: Daily 9 AM — 4 PM (Closed on Tuesday)
One of my friends had porridge delivered to her for lunch. I was caught by surprise. As a Cantonese, I’d only eat porridge if I were unwell. On ordinary days, I prefer a heavier meal. From what she told me, Hon Kee is famous for the “sang yu chok” or snakehead fish porridge. Ah, there… it’s exactly the type of congee that my clan would have after a surgery as snakehead fish is said to promote healing.
Hon Kee Porridge
Location: 93, Jalan Hang Lekir, Kuala Lumpur.
Business hours: 8 AM — 10 PM daily
7) Chilli Pan Mee
I eat noodles as often as rice. When in Ipoh, if I crave for hot and spicy noodles, I would go for chilli pan mee. Now that I am stuck in my hometown, I tapau from Uncle KinG, the Original Chili Pan Mee. In Chow Kit, Kuala Lumpur, one of the old trademarks (low chiu pai) is Kin Kin. Luckily, even though everyone complies with the Movement Control Order (MCO), Kin Kin Chilli Pan Mee can still be savoured via food delivery app.
Kin Kin Chilli Pan Mee
Location: 40, Jalan Dewan Sultan Sulaiman 1, Off Jalan Tunku Abdul Rahman, Chow Kit, Kuala Lumpur.
Business hours: Weekdays 7.30 AM — 9 PM | Weekends 7.30 AM — 4.30 PM
Another popular local item on the everyday menu of Malaysians is cendol, especially when the days are scorching hot. When in KL, I seldom fail to get a bowl of sweet, ice cold cendol, especially when on foot in places like Pudu. Uncle Sulaiman’s cendol is the order of the day for many locals to quench their thirst. What makes it interesting to patronise Uncle Sulaiman’s stall is his fluency in Cantonese. It makes the cendol all the more unforgettable.
Location: In front of Restoran M.S.S. Maju, Jalan Pasar Baharu, Off Jalan Pudu, Pudu, 55100 Kuala Lumpur.
Business hours: 8.30 AM — 5 PM daily
Does this list make you drool already? I get so hungry just compiling it. This is what RMO is doing to our psyche. Thankfully, it’s not a full lockdown, as we can still order our food via food delivery apps!
Note: All visuals for illustration purposes only.