Friday, August 20, 2010

Nasi Kandar Week : Confession Of An Addict - Part Duex

Mixed review on nasi kandar Line Clear. I guess the stigma of the place being dirty eatery and some with bad experience only add more color (and toilet visits) when food from Line Clear was eaten.

I remember back during my first experience, after consuming Line Clear, i had my system cleared as well. It will only happen ONCE. Meaning it is not an occurring issue after consuming it (i.e. food poisoning).

Food hygiene and preparation is subjective. Some home cooked food is not as clean as you think they could be too. Some expensive restaurants are known to pick up food dropped on the floor and serve it back for the customers. My take is that one should be more worried if the food preparation was hidden behind closed door.

Anyhow, my Nasi Kandar adventure continued the next day when i landed in Ipoh for lunch with an ex-colleague and a family friend.

Some of you might recall my silliness when i drove all the way to Tanjung Rambutan in search for the best Nasi Kandar in the state of Perak. It was only after careful reading that i realised that the shop is in old town, in front of the former bus station to Tanjung Rambutan; and not at the bus station in Tanjung Rambutan (which by the way, is none existence).

The shop is not hard to find. It is situated near the front portion of the old town if you are coming from the former Jalan Gopeng or the now renamed Jalan Sultan Azlan Shah. Landmark would be the Ipoh Police Station on your right and passing an Esso station on your left. You turn into Jalan Yang Kalsom.

Nasi Ganja, or the proper shop name is Perniagaan Nasi Kandar Ayam Merah. However, you will not find the signboard anywhere. This nasi kandar is so 1Malaysia it operates in a Chinese Kopitiam called Kedai Kopi Yong Suan!

And the Nasi Kandar is so staple here that the kopitiam serves nothing but drinks and steam buns. Don't look for your usual Ipoh mali food here.

Now, compared to Line Clear, the food preparation/serving of Nasi Ganja might leave you nauseated. Bare hands in plastic gloves are used to take your chicken, move your fish and scoop the "ganja" onto your plate. Imagine you got your hand smeared in (lets say) engine oil and you tried to rub it away. Now imagine you rubbing it on the plate where you will eat.

But let me tell you and don't lose your appetite as yet...the food is worth the "smearing" and "taruking" it was given.

Then, curry of many varieties are poured over the rice and voila, lunch is served.
There was no crowd yesterday due to the fasting month. But somehow the whole place looked uber busy. Rice were packed non-stop, drinks were made non-stop as well. Most were placed in black plastic bags. Then, i noticed that this place is serving as a "drive through" as well. Customers literally drives through, stick their hands out, take the packed food and drinks, pay and drive away.
Well, it's fasting month. I leave you to your own conclusion. I am not here to judge, but as Joyce mentioned, it was the most entertaining lunch she had at this place, ever!

As usual, i took many photos before actually sinking my mouth into the food. Unlike Line Clear, this one got to be enjoyed with all my five fingers. After happy with my photos, i washed my hands and started mashing the food between my fingers.

If there was taste buds on my fingertips, it would had been wet with saliva.

Nasi Ganja has it's own "oomph" The key to this is the spicy curry and the secret "ganja" which was a secret blended spices which they preparer smear on the side of your plate. Seriously.
The chicken was fried to bone crunchiness goodness. I left nothing on the plate and literally licked the plate clean. The squid which i took was nicely done and not overcooked.

And i tried very subjectively to judge this plate of Nasi Kandar...not helping as the Line Clear night before still lingers in my mouth.

Having said that, this is a keeper. Again, licking the plate clean should be proof enough of the tummy-worthiness.
I will drop by Ipoh again, when i go up north. :)