Food review: Land of Malay comes to town

If you are planning to taste authentic Malaysian cuisine, The Raintree at St Mary’s Road has organised a Malayasian Food Festival till 24 November, at their restaurant, Chap Chay. With dishes curated by Chef Mat Safiee Bin Haroon, the restaurant hopes to offer true Malaysian food for Chennaiites. The food fest is held on par with the Malaysian Tourism campaign, Truly Malaysia 2020.

‘This is my first time to Chennai,’ says the chef. ‘I tried eating dosa and it was great,’ he adds smiling. Speaking to News Today, he says that while curating the dishes of the menu, he opted for famous dishes in Malaysia that are new and unique to Chennaiites.

As I settle to start my meal, I begin with Malaysian vegetarian tom yum soup. The soup is filled with fresh vegetables like mushrooms, lemongrass, kaffir lime leaves, cabbage and baby corn. Allowing these thick veggies to soak into the soup, the flavour adds a hot tingling sensation to my tongue and throat. Each sip munching along with the crunchy veggies is pleasing.

Eager to hope into the main course, I was then served the Satya Ayam. They are skewered pieces of flat smooth chicken, grilled with coconut milk, lemongrass and peanut sauce. Later, I tried the Ketumbar Ayam – chunks of chicken with oyster sauce, peppercorn and coriander. The sauce added a pungent flavor and tasted unique. The Fried Kway Teow is a noodle served with slices of chicken, green mustard and chiili paste. The noodles were super soft and easily wrapped my tongue.

Kari Sayur was served along with Malaysia’s famous dish, the Nasi Lemak. Nasi Lemak is basmati rice drenched in coconut milk. The rice was warm and to have them along with Kari Sayur, a gravy made with zucchini, baby corn and fresh brocolli was a perfect combo. The Lamb Rendang are pieces of meat soaked in coconut milk. Nearly every dish served always had coconut milk or a dash of lemongrass.

For desserts, the chef offered Cheng Theng made of dates, gingko nuts, sago and plum sugar. It tastes bitter but to savour it with a Jelly drenched in coconut milk ends your meal on a pleasing note.

(The Malaysian Food Festival at Chap Chay, The Raintree in St Mary’s Road will be held till 24 November. For details contact, 044 4225 2525)

Mohammed Rayaan