It's that time of year again where Muslims all over the world celebrate the holy month of Ramadhan. As with local tradition, Ramadhan also means the return of the much-missed bazaars and buka puasa set menus and buffets. For ideas on where to break fast in KL this year, here's a guide.
One of KL’s favourites Ramadhan bazaars, this bazaar probably boasts the best good food to number of stalls ratio in KL. While the bazaar isn’t particularly huge, there’s still a lot of variety on offer here – from pisang goreng covered in salted caramel to halal mojitos, there’s something here for everyone.
Section 14, PJ
This neighbourhood bazaar along Jalan 14/28 for PJ’s Section 14 folks is relatively small, but still offers good eats. If you’re still not sure how to get here, Waze to Anjappar Indian Chettinad Restaurant, park along the street and walk straight until you see the pasar near Jaya Shopping Centre or come across people heavily loaded with pink plastic bags of food.
Located just opposite Stadium Malawati at Padang Dataran Shah Alam in Seksyen 13, this mammoth Ramadhan bazaar is easy to find (just follow the crowd and the smell of grilled meats) with plenty of parking spaces. A word of caution: because of the enormous size of the bazaar, you might be tempted to bite off more than you can chew since pretty much everything looks good.
The chaotic atmosphere in this maze-like bazaar is punctuated by long queues, vendors yelling, a mixture of smells and smoke filling the air, and a huge amount of people crowding tight walkways. Here, it’s not so much the variety of food you can get but more the quantity as you’ll probably find three stalls selling the same thing. Tip: go to the one with the longest queue.
Kampung Sungai Penchala
Located on a parking lot parallel to the Penchala Link, this Ramadhan bazaar provides a great friendly and kampung atmosphere. While some of the food you’ll find here are the usual favourites, there are also some unique dishes you won’t be able to find anywhere else.
Ramadhan bazaar food guide
Yes, it's deep fried bread. Yes, it's bad for you, but if you want to #treatyoself, one of the best roti goreng can be found in Kampung Baru with a killer name as well: Roti Goreng McGyver (sic). These fried buns spent just enough time in the pan to come out nice and crispy, but what sets it apart is the filling available in sambal sardine, chicken and beef black pepper. This sure can fix anything, except maybe your cholesterol level.
The popular dish at every buka puasa meal (it's something like an iftar rock star, although a quiet one) gets its savoury flavour from spices like aniseed, fenugreek, cardamom, cloves, star anise and black pepper. Toss in bubur lambuk essentials like meat, dried shrimp, coconut milk, pandan leaves and fried onions for a warm comforting bowl during Ramadhan.
Makers of the familiar warung and childhood favourite agar-agar go all out during Ramadhan, as evidenced by the full trays of wobbly jewel-like jelly with flavours such as as pandan, gula melaka, mango, Milo and even dragon fruit. We say get one of each flavour and move on before you buy the whole stall.
Meals and buffets for families
Tonka Bean Café, Impiana KLCC Hotel
Save the hassle of cooking for buka puasa; instead bundle your family over to Impiana Hotel for their sumptuous Selera Serantau buffet spread featuring authentic Malay dishes put together by Executive Chef Mazlee.You’ll get to enjoy family-style favourites such as their signature sup gear box, kari kepala ikan pedas, gulai daging keting rebung, nasi kerabu and roast lamb, just to name a few. If your family is made up of durian lovers, then you’re in for a treat – Impiana offers an unlimited durian buffet alongside the regular buffet. At the end of the meal, kids will probably go for the 12 flavours of Baskin-Robbins ice cream. If not, tempt them with more traditional desserts such as pulut durian, Malay kuih and many more. May 27-Jun 24. Adults, RM148nett; children (4-12 years old) RM74nett.
Gobo Chit Chat, Traders Hotel
Break your fast with a delectable array of authentic Malay and international dishes at Gobo Chit Chat. You’ll be spoilt for choice as the spread includes more than 100 dishes, including kerabu kaki ayam, lemang pulut hitam, serunding daging, biryani rice cooked in bamboo, and more. Aside from the usual traditional and Western fares, Gobo Chit Chat further spices things up with a Japanese station where you can find maki rolls, sushi and even sashimi. Don’t miss out on the pengat durian and 30 different types of bite-sized Malay kuih to choose from for dessert. For the kids (and adults too), there are 12 flavours of New Zealand Natural ice cream served. If your family consists of six people, the sixth can dine for free. May 26-Jun 9, adults, RM124nett; Jun 10-24, adults, RM135nett. Children (6-12 years) get to dine at half price.
Restoran Rebung Chef Ismail
Craving for authentic and traditional Malay cuisine? Sample more than 50 Malay dishes by celebrity chef, Chef Ismail and team at Rebung this holy month. The buffet is heaped with Rebung’s specialties such as ikan patin tempoyak, asam pedas ikan pari, daging gulai kawah, daging salai masak lemak cili api, siput sedut and more. Don’t miss the food stations outside for additional dishes like Penang laksa, grilled fish, murtabak and rojak pasembor. For dessert, the pulut durian and homemade dodol here are winners. There’s nothing more heart-warming than gathering with family and loved ones to break fast over delicacies that remind you of home. May 27-Jun 23. Adults, RM75nett; children (4-11 years old), RM50nett.
Latest Recipe, Le Méridien KL
People say ‘quality over quantity’, but at Latest Recipe you’ll get both. With highlights such as roast lamb, rendang ayam pencen with pucuk ubi, gulai lemak merah, ikan bakar air asam and a variety of Malay salads, this is one buffet where you wouldn’t mind going for seconds, or thirds. You can also get Japanese fare (like teppanyaki and sashimi), Middle Eastern dishes (kebabs and koftas) and a whole range of fried delicacies at the fried corner. There are over 30 types of desserts here – kids (and parents) can look forward to a variety of sweet treats such as a Nutella cake, date cheesecakes, trifle and more alongside traditional dessert favourites such as roti jala and serawa durian. May 27-Jun 24. Adults, RM180nett; children, RM90nett.