D K L E

Mama Looi Private Kitchen: Penang-inspired Meal Delivery Service

January 2, 2021


Proving again that Penang is often the birthplace of brilliant chefs, Mama Looi Private Kitchen channels an island-born matriarch's four decades of kitchen experience into the Klang Valley's latest meal service.

Mama Looi, 54, is now a homemaker, but for many years, she cooked in Chinese restaurants, including in George Town clubhouses. In 2020, she moved with two of her children to Petaling Jaya to launch their own offerings of true-blue Penang fare. Her efforts have impressed new fans such as electric violinist Dennis Lau, who has become one of Mama Looi's official collaborators.

The secret to this family affair's lip-smacking triumphs is homegrown. Mama Looi and her son, Sean, were hard at work cooking in their kitchen when we met them; her daughter also helps behind the scenes. They're supported by F&B and hospitality professionals who've long run restaurant and hotel operations; the team of experts ensures Mama Looi Private Kitchen is a comprehensive service that uniquely emphasises Penang Chinese cuisine and upholds quality in every area.

At its heart, this is home cooking at its most satisfying - rich in depth and nuance, with a wide variety of fresh ingredients, free of preservatives, artificial colourings or MSG.

If asam laksa is your most cherished Penang classic, Mama Looi's Authentic Asam Laksa (RM15.90) is the must-try. The broth is remarkably resonant in flavour, enhanced with Sekinchan-sourced ikan kembung, simmered overnight with a complex medley of herbs that elevate this beyond a run-of-the-mill asam laksa. Served with fried beancurd, this is a weekend lunch special that takes plenty of painstaking labour to properly prepare, available exclusively on Saturdays.

Another ideal introduction to Mama Looi is the Hong Kong Soy Sauce Kampung Chicken (RM98), with poultry that Mama Looi personally hand-picks from the Taman Megah market, which she visits daily for her recipes. Marinated with her meticulous blend of 17 herbs and spices, this is the fowl of our fantasies, smooth and succulent, fresh and flavoursome, rounded out with four portions of fragrant chicken rice, HK kai lan and a soup of the day for a complete household dinner.

Mama Looi's chicken recipe is so irresistible, it even earned her the endorsement of Dennis, who offers the chicken on his own platform, Ah Lau Food King. The one difference is that Ah Lau Food King's version relies on kampung chicken sourced from a Johor farm.

Click here for Dennis' website: ahlaufoodking.com/shop/chicken/ah-lau-x-mama-loois-sibeh-gaolat-够力-hong-kong-si-yao-gai-菜园鸡-soy-sauce-kampung-chicken

For a different take on chicken, Mama Looi also serves the Sawadee Lemongrass Fried Chicken, an aromatic reinterpretation of Thai fried chicken (RM25.90), perfect for a lighter meal compared to the whole chicken. 

Pork pleasures are equally abundant. The Queen’s Pork Ribs is Mama Looi's subtly spicy, potently peppery rendition of braised pork ribs, with the meat infused captivatingly with herbs (RM27.90; suitable for three to four persons).

Also spectacular for sharing are the Penang Braised Pork Belly (RM35; a Hokkien-style creation that's tender from the first bite and tasty to the final chew), the gloriously gelatinous Black Vinegar Pork Trotters (RM26), and the Minced Pork Steamed Tofu with Dried Shrimp (RM12).

All in all, Mama Looi features more than 30 dishes on the a la carte menu, convenient for every sort of craving. 

For customers who want to keep the choices simple, try Mama Looi's Dinner Sets, designed for four persons. These come with two main dishes, plus vegetables and steamed rice, available every weekday evening for a reasonable RM60. A different selection of meals is offered each day, so you'll never be bored of Mama Looi's food and can always savour something special.

Corporate orders are also welcome. Mama Looi's Lunch Bento sets are an affordable RM9.90 each, much more fairly priced that most takeouts, ideal for providing sustenance to office staff in high numbers. The Lunch Bentos are also available Monday to Friday, with five choices of main dishes everyday.

Catering services are offered too, for events of 25 persons or more.

Mama Looi has come a long way from Penang, but its future in the Klang Valley looks bright, serving up top-notch cooking that makes eating in feel as fulfilling as dining out, without busting the budget.

Delivery costs RM5 in Petaling Jaya and Damansara and RM10 elsewhere in the Klang Valley. The minimum order is RM30.

Mama Looi Private Kitchen 
facebook.com/MamaLooi
To order, WhatsApp - 019-995-1367