AL-AMAR LEBANESE CUISINE RESTAURANT,
Lot 2-27, Sunway Putra Mall,
100, Jalan Putra,
Tel: 03-4051 2533
Business hours: 10am to 10pm, daily.
CRAVING for authentic Lebanese food?
Head on over to Al-Amar Lebanese Cuisine restaurant in Sunway Putra Mall to enjoy the food which is cooked with spices flown in from Lebanon.
According to executive chef Maroan Abboud, the spices they use are not available in Malaysia.
“Even if they are available here, local chilli powder and black pepper don’t taste the same,” he said.
Although he was a bit secretive about the spices used in the dishes, he said Lebanese dishes had a lot of lemon juice and olive oil.
“Lemon trees are everywhere in my country, and that is why we use lemon juice in almost every dish,” he said.
I was looking forward to trying the hummus (RM17.55), a Middle Eastern dip made from chickpeas and blended with sesame seed paste (tahini), olive oil and lemon juice, which did not disappoint.
It may be easy to make, but not everyone can get the mixture right.
We were also served freshly baked bread, which was the best accompaniment for the hummus.
Another must-try at Al-Amar is the Warak Enab (RM18.45), which is vine leaves stuffed with rice and tomatoes, and marinated in lemon and olive oil.
It was a bit sour because of the tomatoes, but other guests at the table liked it.
For the salad, we were served Fattouch (RM22.95), which had tomatoes, cucumber, lettuce, radish, mint leaves and rocket with a splash of lemon juice, salt and olive oil dressing.
I’m not usually a fan of salad, but I loved how this bowl of greens was refreshing and crisp.
The salad was also topped with fried Lebanese bread, making it perfect for vegetarians.
Next, we were served the Hot Mezze, a selection of small dishes prior to the main course, comprising Falafel (RM20.25) and Batata Harra (RM19.35).
Falafels are deep-fried patties of fava beans and chickpeas, usually served withtahini.
The Batata Harra (top pic), a dish of potato cubes fried with chilli powder, garlic, coriander and lemon juice, was one of my favourite dishes.
It wasn’t oily and although it did not have a lot of ingredients, it was flavourful because of the coriander leaves and lemon juice.
For the main course, we had Al-Amar’s signature dishes – the Mixed Grill (RM62.90), Siyyediyeh (RM44.90) and Kabbseh Rice (RM13.05).
The Mixed Grill was the star of the night, consisting of lamb, chicken and beef skewers served with a special garlic paste.
The garlic paste had lemon juice, salt and olive oil, which gave the whole dish extra flavour.
The rice, however, lacked flavour, but the Kabbseh Rice was superb.
It was cooked with tomatoes and Lebanese spices, which was basically the Middle Eastern version of our tomato rice. It was full of flavour and tasted great on it own.
For desserts, we had the fruit platter (RM21.15), consisting of watermelon, pineapple, grapes and melon.
We also had the Baklawa (RM12.15), a decadent sweet pastry filled with nuts and honey – a perfect finish to our dinner.
This is the writer’s personal observation and not an endorsement by StarMetro.