Subscribe to my RSS Feeds

Motormouth From Ipoh

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

LEMONGRASS Kajang Satay ?!!!

Back to Ipoh food (temporarily, for fear of amnesia strikes) for today's post. After that mediocre outing at Haji Samuri Kajang Satay in Bukit Tinggi, Klang (read my laments HERE) last month, I lost all hope in yummylicious satay, or KAJANG satay, for that matter. I mean, Haji Samuri's supposed to be THE best Kajang Satay, with heavy promotions, branches more than an oak tree, and throngs of satay-lovers sacrificing their beloved hearts for the cholesterol-laden and charred temptations.


Serai=Lemongrass ... !!! ARGH !!! Paranoia strikes !!!

SERAI Sate Kajang opened last month or so, tucked near the end of a rather secluded row of new shops, behind Ipoh's Tesco hypermarket in Medan Ipoh Bistari area. Previous strolls revealed the immense crowd on weekends, a positive sign of either the satay IS good, OR we Ipoh-ans are just desperate for a taste of Kajang satay.

Less than stellar review by a Malay colleague, probably a foodie herself, Ms Suzy whom hyper-ventilated-ly lamented the poor service, and low quality of food marred my plans to visit this outlet for a potential review.

But the temptation was too much to resist, and I found myself magnetically-attracted to the place one fine evening, for a light dinner. Or that's how I hoped my meal would be.

Typical peanut gravy with spicy sambal - A signature of Kajang satay outlets

As expected, the place was pretty packed, and it was before dinner hours. Variety's limited, only chicken, beef, perut (cow's stomach), lamb and deer meat are available. Other selections include nasi himpit (rice with coconut milk ~ ketupat), chicken rice and even Muar otak-otak.

First to arrive on your table would be the sauce for the satay. A bowl of peanut gravy - thick and sweet with lots of crunchy peanuts, and a smaller bowl of fiery dark red sambal chilli sauce.

Messy DIY concoction of rich, thick and spicy peanut sauce

The concept's simple. Add the sambal into your bowl of peanut sauce, according to how much your stomach can erm .. stomach the spiciness. Be warned, do not go overboard before testing your bowl of fire.

Double servings of Nasi Himpit (RM0.50/serving)

The nasi himpit at Haji Samuri fares better compared to the ones served here. The nasi himpit at Serai was too mushy and soft, a wee bit sticky, and lacking in texture. Unlike the more compact offering by Haji Samuri.

Chicken and Beef Satay (Rm0.70/stick)

Yup, a stick cost 70 cents now. Even pricier than Haji Samuri's. Still reminiscing the good old times when a stick cost a mere 30-40 cents. Sigh ... Blame it on the petrol?

Of course, all that matters is the taste. And at Serai, I'm glad that the satay are grilled on the spot, fresh and piping hot, unlike their counterpart (gee, I'm REALLY comparing these two outlets, huh?) where you get your satay in an instant, grilled in bulk, thus the meat may be slightly cold. And the chunks of meat are fat-less, marinated well, not too sweet nor salty, and char-grilled to perfection. Minimal burnt parts=More edible parts.

Lamb Satay (Rm1/stick)

But what satisfied my lust the most (no, not THE lust, but the cravings for meat lust) were the lamb on skewers. Thicker cut compared to the chicken and beef, but lacked the gamey texture, these were really good. Though good things come at a price, RM1.00 per stick, no less.

We did not go crazy on the orders, as this was not our sole dinner for the evening. =P More like a tea-time/dinner hybrid. A meal for two including drinks came to RM12 only. And was I glad the name Serai (Lemongrass in Malay) is nothing but a name. And their meat is devoid of over-powering lemongrass scents. Shudder to think the possibilities ....

Location : SERAI Sate Kajang, Jalan Medan Ipoh 1E, Medan Ipoh Bistari, 31400 Ipoh.

Specifically, this shop is somewhere behind the McDonald's drive-thru restaurant on JalanTasek, Ipoh. It's at a new row of shops, directly behind the row of 4-storeys shoplots facing Jalan Tasek, noticably with HUGE signboards/billboards.

19 comments:

Life for Beginners said...

RM12? RM12 only? Wah, I think I have been de-sensitized by KL prices that everywhere else seems so affordable. Satay looks delish, but I'm still nursing a raw throat... so skipping for now. Next round, please! :)

jason said...

I don't remember if Kajang serves lamb but WTH, the sambal is such a copycat job (assume that this is not a branch of Kajang).

lingzie said...

kenape? kenape? penang no have kajang satay!! (or at least i haven't discovered it yet)

after reading your post...my chicken pie lunch is looking very forlorn liao... want kajang satay!! :P

J2Kfm said...

life for beginners : hehe, sore throat or not, after that satay assault and yday's pasar malam galore, I'm starting to feel under the weather as well.

jason : oh i didnt ask though, but probably the cook is from there?

lingzie : typical Malaysian food, most foreigners also like. satay deserve the limelight!

Elinluv said...

Hey, heard about it from my nephew but haven't try it yet. Thanks for enlightening us on the satay and the price. Don't mind going there to rasa and see whether it is better than the traditional one from Gourmet Square in Ipoh Garden. :)

Tummythoz said...

Can hear you scream lemongrass all the way here!

RM1 per stick? Argh, pocket pain.

550ml jar of faith said...

You'd think there aren't many ways to mess up meat on a stick but alas, there's enough bad satay to give it a bad name! This looks good though, never mind the pricing.

J2Kfm said...

elinluv : I also long time din go Gourmet Square liao. Do compare and blog them, ok? :)

tummythoz : yeahloh, everything's mahal nowadays.

550ml jar of faith : hmmm, not too expensive, if you compare these to yakitori. hehe ...

genuiness said...

Hmmm.. I'm definitely going to give this a try although might put a huge hole in my wallet (I routinely eat 30-40 sticks for a snack...)

Oh one small thing (putting on hat to be english teacher) the use of the word 'gamey' refers to the taste/ flavour (what chinese call 'sou') and not the texture. Some people like it some people don't - kinda like eating durian lah.

J2Kfm said...

genuiness : thanks! yeah, the gamey flavour puts my mum off. but not me. :)

i meant the chewy texture, sorry.

Lyrical Lemongrass said...

Wei I come back from MC ony I see all these hate posts for lemongrass. :-P :-P *whacking you on the head with stalks of lemongrass doused with extra lemongrass scent*

J2Kfm said...

ouch ouch ... *pinch nose* and would rather submerge head in puddle of mud, followed by mass-demolition of lemongrass plantations (if there's any) ...

Lyrical Lemongrass said...

I guess I shouldn't tell you about the entire range of lemongrass scented bath products I use daily, hor? From soap to shower gel to scrub to lotion to spritz. Hawhawhaw....now i know how to kill a j2Kfm. Muahahahahhaha. So shall we meet sometime, dear? *fangs coming out*

J2Kfm said...

is that TRUE? Oh dear ... I kinda pity the Bald Eagle. =P

how to kill a J2Kfm? HAH! not in your wildest dreams, O'Pest !! have you heard of Ridsect? hmm? :)
Or does the name Shelltox sound a bell,in that lemongrass-infested mind of yours, huh? ...

Lyrical Lemongrass said...

LOL. Lemongrass is a repellent, not a pest leh.

J2Kfm said...

ok, then how does DDT sound huh? muahaha ...

Hulk said...

Hoho!! Finally!!
I too has my dinner there & I kinda of like it since there isnt any Sate Kajang outlet in Ipoh. So this thus far the best.
The sambal is soooo darn spicy man. Me like it. The meat as said wasnt over grill..just perfect & notice the size of meat is a little chunkier then Samsuri's.
The bad...service is a little slow. the Nasi Impit is a bit soft.
Quite overcrowd...my max is 7 sticks & 2 Nasi Impit. As usual I finish up the bowl of peanut sauce dip.
I'll definately go again but will u????

J2Kfm said...

hulk : hey, glad you like it as well. and thanks for the prompt, as I wouldnt have given it another thought, had it not been your comment. :)

I MAY go again, and probably we'll bump into each other someday. with peanut sauce dripping down our chins. LOL

Ah Lock said...

When it comes to satay, in Ipoh, do try out the satay stall in Ding Hao food court in Jalan Pasir Puteh, Ipoh. Simply delicious, and the meat is very generous. (Portion big and well-marinated). Gravy also come in large portions, so unlike most places which are very stingy with peanut gravy.