Nasi Kandar is a really popular dish here in Kuala Lumpur and throughout Malaysia: it’s basically rice served buffet-style with different curries, vegetables, noodles, and other sides. ”Nasi” means rice and “kandar” is the pole that vendors use on their shoulders to balance two buckets of rice. One heaping plate of warm delicious-ness that leaves you feeling like passing out costs a whopping 6 or 7 Ringgits (USD $2). Basically its heaven.
Today, my Polish couchsurfing hosts Magda & Jurek took me to their favorite Nasi Kandar restaurant, and I spoke with the owner, Norshaw Izzarudin and her son Raffik. Raffik’s brother in law is the chef and it’s a family business through-and-through.
They’ve been running the business for 7 years, which, like most similar establishments, has no name or address. However, just because they’re not on Google Maps doesn’t mean business isn’t booming.. its a friendly neighborhood shack and the locals use their hands to eat (according to Magda it tastes better this way). A nice cold Lime Ice Tea helps wash down the spicy chilis peppered throughout the curries while you sweat in the shade, karaoke from the wedding accross the street filling your ears.
My favorite dish was Pajeri Nanas (pineapple curry) and Raffik’s is Siakap (fish with coconut milk and chili).
For dessert, we headed right next door to the women cooking up a storm. Colorful squishy blobs made of sticky rice, tapioca, and flour confused but delighted my taste buds.
The photos might do the whole experience more justice: