Thursday, December 08, 2005

Madam Kwan's Fish-head

The fourth floor of Suria KLCC (Kuala Lumpur) has a host of interesting restaurants, but we noticed that the more popular ones were Madam Kwan's and the Little Penang Cafe. Having only two nights in KL (with the first one reserved for Nando's grilled chicken - story in the post before this), we did what Singaporeans normally do - patronize the place with the longest queue. We saw the long snaking queue, we saw the packed restaurant and the delicious-looking dishes that were being served to diners within (you see, the restaurant has a verandah spanning its length immediately next to the public walkway within the mall, and passerbys have ample opportunity to spy on the diners and their food) - and the decision was made to dine at Madam Kwan's.

Fishhead Curry
We ordered the Fish-head Curry, and our jaws dropped when we saw the huge tureen in which it was served, not to mention our surprise in finding this very large and 'meaty' (fleshy) fish-head within. With lots of long beans, brinjals (aubergine), ladies' fingers (okra), tomatoes and taupok (fried beancurd), this dish is truly a meal in itself. The curry gravy, thickened with coconut milk, is wonderfully fragrant and truly, we couldn't stop spooning the gravy onto our white rice. Beware though that the fish-head curry is served in only one size, and that size was just too much for the 4 of us - I'm pretty sure that the entire tureen could comfortably serve at least 6 to 7 fish-eaters.

Grilled Otah Another good dish to order is the grilled "otah" (fish paste mixed with spices and coconut milk, steamed and then grilled on banana leaves). Served in the form of a thick mini brick-slab, it was definitely more satisfying that the usual otah served in tiny elongated thin slices. The grilled chicken (ayam panggang something or other - I forget the exact name) was also quite a pleaser for us, well marinated and nicely grilled with crispy skin - unfortunately, no pic of the same cos' I was pre-occupied with the fish-head by the time the chicken arrived at our table.

Ice KacangTo round off the meal, I decided to order the Ice Campur (transliterated into 'mixed ice') which is almost similar to an ice-kacang minus the peanuts. It does look good, doesn't it, after that hot spicy curry. Unfortunately, I have been spoilt by Annie's Peanut Ice Kacang, and this one didn't quite live up to expectations. It was also quite a drag to have to eat up half the ice before we could get to the ingredients at the bottom of the bowl - the other alternative, to try and nudge the ice aside bit by bit so that one can slip one's little spoon into the edge of the bowl in the hope of scooping out some jelly etc. The danger, of course, is that one could end up 'nudging' too much of the ice to the other end of the bowl resulting in an 'icy avalanche' down onto the table.

Madam Kwan's is not cheap though - in fact, I would say it's more or less equivalent to the pricing of a Singapore hotel cafe serving the same kind of food. We saw quite a few orders of Nasi Lemak and Nasi Bojari (with fried chicken) - must be its signature dishes - KIVed for the next time!

Being a short weekend jaunt crammed with shopping and mall-hopping (by the way, loved the F.O.S. - Factory Outlet Store - wonderful bargains on t-shirts, tops and bottoms, got quite quite carried away), we didn't get a chance to come back to KLCC to try out the Little Penang Cafe which is diagonally across Madam Kwan's. You can however feast on the tasty food pics of Boo_licious at Masak-Masak who recently posted on her visit there.

8 Comments:

Anonymous dimsumdolly said...

wah, that otah looks damn good!!!

12/09/2005 11:32:00 AM  
Blogger fooDcrazEE said...

ha! to think even local KL ppl didnt even try this outlet....hmm....better buck up Mike.

12/09/2005 01:24:00 PM  
Blogger boo_licious said...

I love Madam Kwans' Nasi Bojari esp the assam prawns. yummy. Now I want to eat some. Cath, did you try the new escalator/walkway from Crowne to KLCC?

12/09/2005 07:09:00 PM  
Blogger eatzycath said...

hi dsd, and it tasted *damned* good too!

hi foodcrazee, awwwh, dun beat yrself up too much on this.. there's just so much good food in the city.. it can be a lifetime eating adventure for some.

hi boo, I must remember to try the Nasi Bojari the next time - we saw the escalator/runway but unfortunately, it was not opened yet to public traffic...sheesh!

12/09/2005 09:36:00 PM  
Blogger fooDcrazEE said...

Nasi Bojari, whats that ?

12/10/2005 12:17:00 AM  
Blogger eatzycath said...

foodcrazee, i echo ur question - I too would like to know, better still, I would like to taste a 'Nasi Bojari' :P

12/11/2005 11:49:00 PM  
Blogger slurp! said...

Otak looks delicious, home-made style are usually done this way as it's too much hassle to make spoon into coconut leaves for grilling. wow! the fish head got so much meat!! wonder what type of fish is that! sounds like a great weekend getaway and convienent too ever since we got 1st class bus services KL :)

I think a trip to KL for feasting & followup by Cameron Highlands for detox & rejuvenate will be great! :)

12/12/2005 02:03:00 PM  
Blogger eatzycath said...

hi slurp, like the KL-Cameron Highlands combi-trip - eat, shop and relax!

12/13/2005 04:16:00 PM  

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