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Thursday, June 13, 2013

KL Sedap Part 4: Nasi Kandar Pelita

My parents started driving up to KL for short trips since we were kids.
And the routine was almost always the same - leave the house at 6am, drive up to KL, makan Nasi Kandar and then finally check-in at the hotel.

We would literally drive straight to the Nasi Kandar and have lunch first. Kind of like a tradition.
Our Nasi Kandar place is actually Mohd Yaseen Nasi Kandar (along Jalan Tunku Abdul Rahman) which my darling wife and I have had in a recent trip there.

But since her trip up to KL with a friend, she's been raving about the Nasi Kandar from Pelita.

I remember having it once but I can't really remember much.
And since our hotel this time was nearby a rather famous Pelita branch, Razali, Azim, my darling wife and myself decided to have a hearty lunch before heading out for shopping.

So what exactly is Nasi Kandar?

Apparently, Nasi Kandar actually originated from Penang and is basically mixed rice with an Indian influence. That means you'll get a wide spread of dishes including seafood (fish head, squid, crabs, prawns), meat (chicken, beef, mutton), vegetables and other assorted side dishes.

You'll normally also get a serving of veggie mix (normally cucumber, pineapple and carrot) as an accompaniment.

So far like normal right? But what makes Nasi Kandar unique?

Well just give the guy dishing out your food the 'word' and you'll find out.
Say 'kuah campur' and he'll put a little bit of each type of curry/gravy on display for you including the special 'kandar' gravy which is dark and tasty.

Don't worry he's not going to drown your rice in gravy until it becomes a soup.
But just how many types of gravy are we talking about here?

Well it's normally at least 5 types and mostly curry.
Crab curry, prawn curry, chicken curry, meat curry and Kandar gravy. If there's more then he'll put more.

So common things to have with your rice?
Chicken is a popular choice like fried chicken for example. They also have a special dish of chicken which is basically the chicken with the Kandar gravy. (RM6.00 per piece of chicken)

You can also have seafood. Prawns will cost between RM5.00-RM15.00 depending on size.
Squid will be about the same. And trust me - they have some pretty big prawns and squids.
You can even get a Fish Head (Curry) for about RM30.00.

Nasi Kandar with Ayam Kandar, Ladyfingers and Salted Egg

Nasi Kandar with Fried Chicken, Cabbage, Ladyfingers and Salted Egg
 The average price per plate for the servings above is about RM9.00.
And it may not look like much in the photos but believe you me that's a full meal right there.

For my Ayam Kandar though, it was a little different from what I usually have at the other Nasi Kandar place. It seems that here, they fry the chicken here first which mean they just put it in the gravy later.
This kinda makes the outer skin have that Kandar taste but the meat is completely clean.
Definitely a minus for me.

And apparently, Azim had the fish and he wasn't really impressed either.
Only the Fried Chicken seemed to be okay. Maybe because it was just simple.

And another thing. He may have put all the different curries and gravies for us but somehow it still turned out to be only a little bit of gravy on our plates. A case of stingy-with-the-gravy?
Normally at other (Pelita) outlets they apparently are a lot more generous and dish out the kuah the way it should be in Nasi Kandar.

Sotong Goreng Tepung (RM15.00)
We also decided to have the Sotong Goreng Tempura.
As this is only made to order, this would mean it was supposed to be fresh and hot and crispy but unfortunately this was not the case. I'm guessing it was sitting on the counter for awhile before the server finally picked it up and sent it to our table.

Anyways, don't expect much in the flavour department. The batter was completely tasteless.
But at least the squid itself was not overcooked.

Adam's Verdict:
Nasi Kandar 2.5/5 -- Sotong Goreng Tepung 2/5

Maryah's Verdict:
Nasi Kandar 2.5/5 -- Sotong Goreng Tepung 3/5

Razali's Verdict:
Nasi Kandar 2/5 -- Sotong Goreng Tepung 3/5

Azim's Verdict:
Nasi Kandar 2.5/5 -- Sotong Goreng Tepung 3/5

Pelita is actually a very famous Nasi Kandar chain in KL so I have no doubt that it's actually a nice place to have Nasi Kandar. Maybe we just went to the wrong outlet on the wrong day. Maybe next time other outlets might be better.

Oh. Any by the way. Avoid going during lunch hour unless you're okay with a large crowd.

Nasi Kandar Pelita

No 149 Jalan Ampang, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Tel: +60 3 21625532

Operating Hours:
24 Hours Daily (Closed between 1pm til 2pm on Fridays)

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