Sometimes, when a starter to a meal is so tasty, it leaves the rest of the meal struggling to compete.
As a little bit of a celebration after a week away in Queensland, Pat and I took it upon ourselves to participate in some more Malaysia Kitchen fun. We chose a little restaurant over in Concord (near Ryde) called Jackie M Malaysian Cuisine. The place is tiny, tiny — like you can only fit 20 people or so in the restaurant at one time, but I guess that makes it all feel more personal.
We started off with the fried chicken only after struggling with starter choices for many minutes. After placing our order, I cursed myself for not choosing curry puffs or splitting beef noodles instead. When the order arrived, my taste buds were singing a different tune.
This fried chicken is absolutely delightful. It tasted as if the chicken was marinated in satay sauce and herbs before being deep-fried. So, forget your typical satay starters when at Jackie M’s; it’s all about the fried chicken!
I chose to wash my chicken down with an iced coffee, which I was happy did NOT contain the same amount of condensed milk you might find in a proper Malaysian drink.
Pat ordered the laksa, of course, and I gave it a try… but alas, the fishy flavor was there. Pat said it was a pretty decent laksa, but it also cost $18, which is mighty steep for something that is just sitting around and ready to be dished out. We decided that we are going to make a vegetarian laksa at home in the near future and leave out the belachan (the shrimp paste) because I’m sure I’d fall in love.
My main dish was the beef rendang with some coconut rice. At first bite, both Pat and I were in LOVE with this dish. It tasted like spicy, soft, slow-cooked meat chunks and gravy. I loved this dish intensely until I got to the pieces of big, sticky, chewy fat. There is a reason this dish was so soft, and it was the fat, but I just can’t handle the texture of fat in my mouth. Eating became a chore as I investigated each bite, but… that’s just me and my silly food ways.
For dessert we had the option of some shaved ice treats like the cendol or some roti. The roti pisan (with bananas) was much more expensive, so Pat and I decided to share a roti kaya — the roti filled with the coconut egg jam. To be honest, we weren’t too impressed and really thought the roti was quite doughy. Half of our dessert was left on the plate when we called it a night.
Overall, we may have been a tiny bit disappointed with our meal at Jackie M’s, especially since I had heard so much about her in the past with her product line success. Of course, we didn’t try that many items on the menu, so we’ll be sure to give it another shot… and get some fried chicken to start off with.
Until next time!