LG-08, Lower Ground Floor, The Weld,
No 76, Jalan Raja Chulan,
Kuala Lumpur.
Tel: 03-2022 1519
Business hours: Mon-Sat, 8am-6pm. Closed on Sundays.

The restaurant’s dishes combine the best of local fruits and comfort food.

IN a bid to kickstart the locavore movement here in Malaysia, the proprietors of Proud Janny have decided to introduce a fruit-based cuisine that will be available for a limited time at the restaurant.

Proud Janny located at The Weld, Kuala Lumpur.

Proud Janny located at The Weld, Kuala Lumpur.

The dishes are from a menu that was specially developed for Agrobazaar Singapore and served to two prime ministers — Malaysia’s Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak and Singapore’s Lee Hsien Loong — at the project launch in late August.

Located at Sultan Gate, Agrobazaar Singapore is a venture driven by the Federal Agricultural and Marketing Authority (Fama) to promote Malaysian fruits and agro-based products globally.

The agrobazaar focuses on premium tropical fruits and fruit-based products. It also offers agro-based products and food and beverage services.

Proud Janny proprietor Loke Lee Sah said the fruit-based cuisine features local comfort food incorporating various types of popular fruits, and leverages on the locavore movement that is trending worldwide.

The word “locavore” was coined from a combination of “local” and “-vore” (as in carnivore).

According to the Oxford American Dictionary, the locavore movement encourages consumers to buy from farmers’ markets or even grow their own food.

Locavore advocates the use of locally-grown produce and taking advantage of ingredients that are in-season, as they are believed to be more nutritious and taste better.

The movement also promotes sustainability and eco-consciousness, as locavores are encouraged to purchase food grown within 100miles (160km) of its point of purchase or consumption.

While the movement was initiated in 2005 in San Francisco, the United States, and has gained global popularity, Loke said the concept had yet to be picked up in Malaysia.

“We hope to promote local food and farmers or agricultural producers, as well as explore the many incarnations of Malaysian fruits with this menu,” said Proud Janny co-owner and chef Ryan Khang.

“Having worked with Fama for many years, fruit is a medium we are very comfortable with.

“While often consumed raw, it is a diverse product that can be used as a cooking ingredient in many ways.”

Proud Janny, which opened in early 2013, offers local cuisine prepared in the French style.

The restaurant serves as the retail unit of Khang and Loke’s business venture, which also handles publishing, food consultancy and marketing services.

Khang, who had studied food science and nutrition, created seven dishes for the special menu.

The Dragonfruit Fried Rice (top pic) stands out for its reddish-hued rice and chicken flecked with the dragonfruit seeds.

“Dragonfruit is used to marinate the meat and colour the rice. The enzyme is extracted to tenderise the meat. This dish has been a bestseller at Agrobazaar Singapore since its introduction,” said Loke.

Depending on the season and availability, the Fruit Curry with Crispy Chicken incorporates either mangosteen or lychee, and pineapple.

“The combination creates a sweet and salty taste,” said Loke.

“This particular curry is a northern-style Malay dish, but the chicken is done in a confit style.”

The use of fruits certainly added a different flavour and texture to the dish.

The Grilled Calamari with Mango Salad and Tamarind and Mango Fried Noodles both feature mango salad — a dish familiar to those who enjoy Thai cuisine.

The Grilled Calamari with Mango Salad is a dish familiar to those who enjoy Thai cuisine.

The Grilled Calamari with Mango Salad is a dish familiar to those who enjoy Thai cuisine.

Loke recommended mixing the mango salad with the noodles for a better taste to the Tamarind and Mango Fried Noodles dish.

The noodles were pleasant to the taste as they were more springy and thinner compared to the conventional yellow mee.

Meanwhile, Loke said the Johor-style Mee Rebus was included in the menu as it was one of Lee’s personal favourites, though it does not feature any fruits.

The desserts were delectable and marked a great way to end the meal.

Khang had tapped into his food science training to create the Banana Cake and Cendol Cake — which were inspired by the Malaysian desserts, Apam Berkuah (pancake with rich banana sauce) and cendol, respectively.

“The Cendol Cake and Banana Cake were created with the idea that bitter can be a taste of addiction, hence pure pandan essence and caramelised banana were included into the respective cakes,” said Khang.

The Cendol Cake is a multi-layered, solidified version of the popular Malaysian dessert.

The Cendol Cake is a multi-layered, solidified version of the popular Malaysian dessert.

Proud Janny’s fruit-based cuisine will be available this month until March 2015.

For this promotion, the restaurant is offering a 10% discount to corporate workers in the Jalan Raja Chulan vicinity (upon presentation of their business card).

This is the writer’s personal observation and is not an endorsement by StarMetro.

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