Indonesian/ Malay

Indonesian/ Malay

Featuring Boon Lay Place Food Village, Rumah Makan Minang (Bugis), JTown Cafe, Sinar Pagi Nasi Padang (Geylang Serai Market & Food Centre)
Terry O
Terry O

If you love our local min jiang kueh (peanut pancake), Indonesia’s martabak manis/ terang bulan is something that you gotta try. Since we can’t go to Indonesia to eat this, you can go to @jtowncafe to have a taste of the Indonesian favourite.

Freshly prepared upon order, treat yourself to a piping hot pancake that comes with butter and sugar by default. It’s so thicc and dense but somehow very soft, unlike min jiang kueh. Best eaten on the spot, it does survive well in takeaways too.

I got the Campur ($4.50 - Half/ $7.50 - Full) that comes with butter sugar, chocolate, peanut and cheese. Believe it or not, martabak with cheese is very popular in Indonesia. Grated cheddar, chocolate rice and crushed peanuts are mixed together in between the pancake dough.

The end result is amazing. Just think of the sweet chocolate rice that brings back childhood memories, the nuttiness of the peanuts and the saltiness from the butter and cheddar. A true flavour burst with some textural contrast from the crunchy peanuts.

I’d have this more often if the price point was a little lower. But I’ll have it again as it’s convenient and just so good.

I know there are a few other places in Singapore selling martabak manis so I’ll be on the hunt to try them too.

Craving for good nasi padang? Head to Geylang Serai Food Centre where there are many stalls to choose from. One of the more popular stalls is Sinar Pagi Nasi Padang which almost always has a queue at lunch hour.

Nasi Padang isn’t as cheap as cai fan but what I love about it is how simple, delicious and wholesome each dish is. Servings are generous and can slurp up all the curry. There’s just too many items to choose from. And don’t forget to ask for some spicy sambal on the side. Order the Tahu Telur ($5) too.

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Who finds Boon Lay Power Nasi Lemak is really POWER? If you think it’s POWER, then leave a comment below. If you want to check this out, then head to the main outlet at Boon Lay Place Market and Food Village (01-106). Continue reading to find out my thoughts.

Like any popular stall, there’s usually a queue. I had the Chicken Set ($3.50) which comes with rice, fried chicken wing, ikan bilis (anchovies), peanuts and cucumber and a good amount of sambal chilli. To complete my meal, I added a begedil a.k.a. potato cutlet ($0.50) and otah ($2).

So I found the rice to be quite fragrant but the texture was slightly inconsistent, ranging from fluffy to lumpy. It could do with a bit more coconut milk though. The highlight would be the fried chicken wing. But it was a little overrated. While it was crispy and had a nice marinade, the meat was a tad dry and didn’t have much flavour to begin with.

The ikan bilis (fried anchovies) and peanuts were crunchy. I like the sambal as it’s sweet and spicy. Personally, I would prefer a sambal that is spicier but this solely my personal preference.

As for the add ons, the otah wasn’t too spicy and I could taste the coconut milk in the paste. Begedil was pretty average - probably because I didn’t have it when it was freshly cooked.

Okay la, I think it’s decent but not say really power. I’ll have it again for sure if I’m in the West and need to satisfy my nasi lemak cravings.

Calling out all Nasi Padang fans! Check out Rumah Makan Minang at Kampong Glam or Our Tampines Hub the next time you want to get your Nasi Padang fix. There’s a vast selection of curries and dishes that you can choose from, some which are rather unique to the restaurant.

What are some of the must try dishes here? I would say it’s their signature beef rendang ($3.50 per person) and Indonesian tahu telur ($6). The differentiating factor for Minang’s beef rendang is in the gravy and the rempah (spice paste). While beef rendang at most places tend to be on the sweeter side, Minang’s rendang was spicy and aromatic which was a nice change from what I’m used to. The well-marinated beef may not be the softest but this is how it should taste if we were to go by the Padang-style playbook.

For those not familiar with Indonesian cuisine, tahu telur is basically a block of fried firm tofu (taukwa) mixed with eggs. It’s served with beansprouts, ground peanuts and sweet, watered down kicap manis (sweet soy sauce). What makes their tahu telur good is that the beancurd is fried till crispy but remains firm and moist on the inside.

We also had the gulai ayam ($3.50), sambal goreng ($4.50), sayur kangkung ($3.50), begedil ($1 each), salted egg ($1 for half). They were reasonably good too and the gulai ayam was rich in coconut milk but could’ve been spicier. And my favourites sambal goreng and begedil didn’t disappoint at all.

We spent $36 for 2 including rice and drinks which may be on the high side for some. My only gripe is that their delicious selection of sambal to accompany the food was charged separately at $0.50 per tub.

Considering what I have was already good, I’ll come back and try the rest of the dishes.

Terry O

Level 7 Burppler · 327 Reviews

The camera always eats first. Instagram: @eaterries

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