Before we feast your sight with pictures of nasi lemak, let us trace the origin of nasi lemak or in its English acronym - fatty rice. Traditionally, nasi lemak is wrapped in banana leaf and served with the core elements; sambal, roasted peanuts, fried anchovies, slices of cucumber and hard boiled egg. According to the words of Lord Bobo, nasi lemak began when Malaysia was still known as Malaya and locals worked primarily as fishermen and paddy field farmers. In order to preserve energy and have tasty yet delicious meals, nasi lemak was created.
Enough with the brief history lesson let’s move on the present world. On Saturday, 11 June 2011, few Loyarburokkers, Pepper Lim, Nadia, Azira, Audrey, Michael and Tee Ming (Michael’s friend) went for a Nasi Lemak crawl. The event started at around 8.30am. Our first crime scene was Nasi Lemak Pak Wahab beside Balai Polis Seapark, SS2. These are some of the verdicts from those who came:
Tee Ming: I ordered Nasi Lemak with rendang and sotong. The rendang was nice but the sotong was a bit overcooked for me and it doesn’t taste fresh.
Audrey: I ordered Nasi lemak with rendang daging. The rendang was soft and it has an even texture. The sambal was not too spicy and sweet.
Nadia: I shared my meal with Aud. I like the rendang daging a lot because it was not ‘liat’ and they cut it into small pieces. I asked for extra kacang and the guy happily scooped more for me. I like the sambal for a fact that the chillies were properly blended, without me having to worry that the chilli might stick in between my teeth.
Pepper: Nasi lemak with telur goreng. I like the sambal because it has lots of onions. This actually adds the sweetness into the sambal.
We chatted a bit with the owner of the stall – Pak Wahab to dig some facts about his stall. He started doing this business in 1976 – that would be 35 years in business!! He is from Malacca and his wife is from Kuala Lumpur (but Minangkabau ancestry). He uses his wife’s recipe to cook the nasi lemak everyday. To ensure that most of us have something fulfilling to start our day, he will start with the cooking as early as 2am (that would be bedtime for most of us I reckon). I realised that the workers look like him and Pak Wahab confirmed my doubt that they are his children who helped him with the cooking. This stall operates everyday (except Sunday), from 7am to 11am.
From our observations, most of the customers will hit the stall around 9am. It forms a long queue outside the stall. Some of them came with a family and some were just mates catching up with each other. It seems like the workers are very generous to add extra portion into your plate. The price is not too elitist, the nasi lemak with daging rendang costs about RM5+, the nasi lemak with telur goreng costs RM2.50. The owner was more than delighted to let us stick the LB sticker on his stall.
Next crime scene is the Village Park, Damansara Uptown. When we reached that place, the setting was a bit like a mamak stall at night where the restaurant set up tables and chairs along the corridors and at the parking spaces. The waiter took our order and we had to wait for around 30mins to be served. There were so many patrons and it seemed like they don’t have enough workers to handle the hungry patrons. These are the verdicts:
Azira: Nasi lemak ayam goreng berempah. I love the crispy chicken but the sambal tak cukup pedas. The rice is a bit dry, and they could use more ikan bilis. There were so many people today, hence the super-slow service.
Audrey: nasi lemak sotong, which I shared with Nadia. I like the fragrant rice. Sambal is spicy enough for me. Sotong is soft and its properly cooked. I agree with Azira, the service is slow, but look at the crowd, they can’t handle the massive crowd.
Nadia: I had the same menu as Audrey. Some people say that the best complement to nasi lemak is fried chicken and this place is famous for it, but I would like to try something less famous. The meal doesn’t disappoint my stomach.
They were so many people inside and outside of the restaurant. The cashier place was crowded. We didn’t have the chance to have an interview and stick the LB sticker. Looking at the amount of people having their breakfast here, that would be enough to have a verdict on this place.
The prices were a bit too much. We paid RM21 for 2 plates of nasi lemak and 3 drinks.
Nasi lemak SS2
Address: Need to look for Balai Polis Seapark, then you would see the stall.
Village Park, Damansara Uptown
Address: 5, Jalan SS21/37, Damansara Utama,
47400 Petaling Jaya, Selangor