Malay cooking in Kuala Lumpur – the “caramelized” version

In touring Kuala Lumpur, who could miss and who would pass up the chance to visit the glorious Twin Towers in Petronas? Take a shot of it in daylight! But it’s way better to gaze at it at night.

Glorious Twin Towers

Glorious Twin Towers

But really aside from the usual, what else do we do in Malaysia? Thanks to The Kitchen Musical and Tourism Malaysia, I was able to join in on the gastronomic adventure in Kuala Lumpur.

I may have cooked breakfast once in a while and burnt myself most of the time but let’s just say I’ve been trying, ย OK? ๐Ÿ˜› Good thing we had LAZAT as part of the itinerary. It was a mini-cooking school in KL which didn’t require any background on cooking whatsoever (to my relief.)

Lazat Cooking Class in KL

Lazat Cooking Class in KL

As promised I’d review their cooking school as gratitude for teaching me how to cook Malay cuisine.

Everything here was a first. From preparation to cooking a dish that was unfamiliar to me. But it was a great experience nonetheless. For a while, I felt like a Masterchef! (Caramelized dishes by Chef Gia no less)

First off was the appetizer, Kuih Cara Berlauk,ย a savoury meat filled cup. And so begins our curry adventure.

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Our instructor, Saadiah first demonstrated how to cook the dish. It seems so easy when she does it! I heard somewhere that the gift of chefs (on TV) is that they can make the dish easy to cook that you would have the confidence to cook them at home. I guess it applies to cooking class too.

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Teacher Saadiah demonstrating the first dish

But let’s just say my confidence started and abruptly ended [after burning my hand on the hot pan.] and immediately resurrected. I am not easily discouraged you see.

Saadiah also taught us how to crack an egg properly and even helped us crack it open by using the tip of her knife. She was really very motherly to all of us.

I enjoyed the first cooking session. We just had to mix in everything, stir fry the meat filling and prepare the garnishing. It was quite easy, I really enjoyed oiling the pan using pandan leaves, pouring in the batter and meat and putting in some garnishing. I felt like a pro. Take note, FELT. ๐Ÿ™‚

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Eh… No wonder I got burnt

My caramelized appetiser

My caramelized appetizer

Ta-da!

Ta-da!

so Garnish the plate will yo

so Garnish the plate will you

Next on the To-Cook list is the Main dish, a traditional Malay dish, Nasi Lemak. This is rice in coconut milk and according to our instructor this is their usual morning dish. So who says only Filipinos eat rice in the morning? ๐Ÿ™‚ Now you know they do too.

Nasi Lemak basic ingredients

Nasi Lemak basic ingredients

ย This was easy! And you can easily find the ingredients in the store too. You would just be needing water, rice, pandan leaves, ginger, coconut milk, hot water, salt and sugar. Mix the coconut milk, hot water, salt and sugar together and you’re halfway done!

Next just place the rice, water and ginger on the bowl and cook on low heat. When water has been absorbed, add the coconut milk mixture. Just wait until all has been absorbed again.

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Before caramelizing Nasi Lemak

Before caramelizing Nasi Lemak

Sounds easy right? Well whaddyaknow!? I burned it again. Oh excuse me, my teacher would rather say, “Never burn, only caramelized”. Ok so I caramelized it again ๐Ÿ™‚ You see I’m starting a career on caramelizing dishes.

Then for our “viand”, Sambal Udang,ย which was prawn in sambal sauce. This was MMM.. delicious.

Sambal Udang ingredients

Sambal Udang ingredients

We had to pound all the ingredients and much to my luck, onions was a part of it. So after the pounding period and crying session, we each had a souvenir shot as reward for pounding the ingredients hard.

boo-hoo

boo-hoo

We had to fry all the ingredients together and added in the prawns soon after. It was supposed to be a little saucy and cooked over low fire, but I was really excited to eat and cooked it over high heat. It then turned out a little more saucy than it should be.

According to my instructor, back in the olden days, there wasn’t so much to do so the people took their time in cooking. But now in this fast paced life, gimme instant! So this was really something new to me.

My saucy Sambal Udang

My saucy Sambal Udang

And now… after all the arrangement (the nuts, dilis and egg yes I cut it too), and all the hardwork, sweat and literal tears, PRESENTING my NASI LEMAK AND SAMBAL UDANG!

My Nasi Lemak and Sambal Udang

My Nasi Lemak and Sambal Udang

I loved it! Of course I needed to love my own. But seriously it was really delicious! The secret was in the measurement.

For their dessert this was a treat from our instructors – Sago Gula Melaka, Sago Pudding with Palm Sugar. This is a growing favorite of mine and a restaurant in Shangri-la Mall seems to carry the same kind.

Sago Gula Melaka mmmm

Sago Gula Melaka mmmm

Really thankful for the instructors for this experience. I was able to overcome my fear of cutting off my finger or accidentally pounding my hand or chopping it off (gruesome ok i’ll stop).

Plus the instructors were really nice! and very patient as I caramelized all my dishes thank you. Now I can get on to the real thing! here back in the Philippines.

This is definitely a must-try when you go to Kuala Lumpur. What better way to learn about the culture of the place than immerse yourself in their cuisine and even have the chance to actually cook it. LAZAT is a must-go to place if you want to try out something different in traveling. ๐Ÿ™‚

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Lazat Cooking School

www.malaysia-klcookingclass.com