MELTING POT CAFE,
Concorde Hotel Kuala Lumpur,
2 Jalan Sultan Ismail,
Tel: 03-2144 2200 ext 2337
TAKING inspiration from the Straits Settlements and Peranakan culture, Concorde Hotel Kuala Lumpur will be playing host to a Malacca Nyonya Dinner promotion throughout this month at its Melting Pot Cafe.
Guest chef William Koh will draw from his 16 years of experience at various Nyonya restaurants in Malacca and from his family recipes to tantalise diners with his authentic Malacca Nyonya cuisine.
He cultivated his interest and passion in the cuisine from time spent helping his family in the kitchen, especially his grandmother (who, along with his grandfather, are Baba and Nyonya).
“I learnt all about home-style Malacca Nyonya cuisine from my grandmother, including how to grind our own blend of spices and ingredients,” said the 51-year-old.
Malacca Nyonya cuisine is generally sweeter and richer, with liberal use of coconut milk and more traditional Malay spices compared to Penang Nyonya cuisine.
Malacca Nyonya cuisine is also described as being heavily influenced by Portuguese-Eurasian cooking style.
Chef Koh and his team have prepared seven menus that will be rotated on a daily basis throughout the promotion.
The appetiser section offers local salads like Nyonya Kerabu Paku, Nyonya Acar, Kerabu Ong Lai Timun (pineapple and cucumber), Nyonya Sambal Timun, Kerabu Mango Prawn, Kerabu So Hoon, and Cincalok Mentah.
For some tummy-warmers, diners can help themselves to the soup of the day like Itek Tim Soup, Hee Peow (fish maw) Soup, Tofu Fish Ball Vegetable Soup or Shark’s Fin Nyonya Soup.
The Itek Tim Soup is similar to the Penang Nyonya version of Kiam Chai Ark (Salted Vegetable and Duck Soup), except it tastes more piquant with the liberal use of old ginger.
Diners can then feast their tastebuds on the main course, which includes Ayam Asam Buah Keluak, Nyonya Curry Steamed Fish, Famosa Prawns, Nyonya Curry Chicken, Nyonya Rempah Chicken, Tauchew Tauhu, Udang Goreng Assam, Nyonya Itik Sio, and Garam Chilli Prawns.
There are also variations of the omelette, like Omelette Petai Onions, Omelette Chai Poh (pickled radish) and Omelette Cincalok, as well as vegetable dishes like Terung Goreng Chilli, Lotus Root with Petai Belacan, Nyonya Chap Chai (mixed vegetables) and Peria Sumbat Masak Lemak.
In addition, local noodles like Nyonya Laksa, Mee Siam and Mee Goreng will be featured on some nights.
Chef Koh said the buah keluak, one of the key ingredients in Ayam Asam Buah Keluak, is a black nut originating from Indonesia.
“This dish itself requires a lot of work, from soaking the nuts to cracking it open, grinding it into a paste and stuffing it back into the shell, before slow-cooking together with the meat,” he said.
Chef Koh revealed that the curry paste for his Nyonya Curry Chicken is a blend of onions, garlic, serai, ginger, turmeric, candlenut, and fresh and dried chillies, while the cincalok used in the Omelette Cincalok is specially brought in from Malacca.
For sweet endings, there are tasty Malacca Nyonya desserts such as Shaved Ice Taibak (rice flour), Cendol, Sago Gula Melaka, Pulut Hitam and Nyonya Green Bean Sago.
Chef Koh said the Shaved Ice Taibak features a serving of shaved ice with red beans, longan and syrup, while the Nyonya Green Bean Sago has green beans cooked with gula Melaka, sago and coconut milk.
Diners can wash their dinner down with a glass of Coconut Shake, a concoction made from a blend of coconut flesh, coconut juice and vanilla ice cream, created just for the promotion.
Concorde Hotel Kuala Lumpur executive chef Arthur Heng said the Malacca Nyonya is held in conjunction with the opening of Casa del Rio Melaka, which is slated to open next month.
The Malacca Nyonya Dinner promotion is available from now till April 30.
It is served from 7pm-10.30pm, and priced at RM85++ per person.
This is the writer’s observation and not an endorsement by StarMetro.