June 10, 2012
Beef, chicken, fish _ you'll find 'em all smashed up here and served Indonesian-style.
The beef version, with crunchy fritter bits, tauhu and sambal. Aromatic, though some might find the meat a tad too tough and stringy.
Iga bakar. Grilled beef ribs, gelatinous and juicy _ punishingly laden with cholesterol.
Ayam Penyet. Fried chicken, well-marinated enough to recommend and reassuringly fragrant with the familiar spices and herbs.
Ayam Bakar, grilled in the style of the Javanese city of Solo. Everything is prepared to order, so expect to wait about 15 minutes for food at peak hours.
There's Ikan Keli Penyet too. We like the meatiness of catfish, but it can be a bit too bony.
Gado-gado. Not the best ever, but not bad either. Perhaps the peanut gravy could be thicker.
Slurp-worthy soto ayam _ chicken soup for the Asian soul.
Opor ayam _ a relatively obscure, rather watery recipe (at least in Malaysia?) of chicken cooked in coconut milk, which Wikipedia says is a popular Eid al-Fitr dish eaten with ketupat in central Java. No ketupat at Dapur Penyet, unfortunately!
For Asian delights of a Malaysian bent, take a 10-minute walk to Sheraton Imperial Hotel, where Toastina serves lunchtime favorites. There are hits and misses here nowadays, but the chicken rice is surprisingly satisfying for a hotel-cooked version.
Toastina's Penang prawn kuey teow soup is thick and tangy.
Stir-fried chicken with cashews. Will stuff the tummy, won't stun the taste buds.
Skip Toastina's wan tan mee and head to a kopitiam instead if you want some.
Maju Junction, Jalan Sultan Ismail, Kuala Lumpur.
Sheraton Imperial Hotel, Jalan Sultan Ismail, Kuala Lumpur.