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The Rojak Projek

Makan Mana: The Rojak Projek

The trio behind The Rojak Projek point us to their favourite places in the city for Malaysian comfort food

By Time Out KL editors
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This month, we asked the three people behind social art enterprise The Rojak Projek – Faye Lim, Jonathan Chong and Rachel Lee – to tell us more about the restaurants in the Klang Valley they recommend for a taste of Malaysian comfort food. Follow them at therojakprojek.com.

Charlie's Cafe
Photo: John Lim

Charlie's Cafe

Restaurants Kuchai Lama

This café in Taman Desa is more than just a café: the owners, Desonny Tuzan and Debra Leong – a husband-and-wife team from Sabah – are firm supporters of charities and worthy causes. There’s a Pay-It-Forward wall, for instance, where you can buy and pin up a meal voucher for those in need of a meal. We organised our first Rojak Party here, and since then this place is our go-to restaurant when we want to look up anything about East Malaysian food.

WHAT TO ORDER: The UFO tart – a custard and meringue dessert unique to Sandakan – and their chicken chop is seriously one of the best we’ve ever had. But if you don’t have anything else, at least have their durian soft serve ice cream. It’s so friggin’ good that it’s still on our minds.

Soo Kee Seapark
Photo: Daniel Chan

Restoran Soo Kee Seapark

Restaurants Chinese SEA Park

You don’t have to travel to Ipoh to have good Ipoh kuey teow soup noodles: this shop in Sea Park has some of the best chicken Rachel has had in a while – and if there’s one person who knows her Ipoh food, it’s her because her dad comes from Ipoh.

WHAT TO ORDER: The kuey teow chicken noodles – the meat is super-soft and the soup isn’t too salty; it’s very light and clear. The tauge is all right – it still can’t beat Ipoh’s – but the chicken is comparable or even better than the ones Rachel has had back in her hometown.

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Chuup

Restaurants Malaysian Damansara

Chuup is owned and run by Karen and Chic Wern, and what’s good here is classic and comforting Malaysian food like popiah, nasi lemak and Hainanese chicken chop. But they also love experimenting with new dishes; for one of our events, they came up with their own version of Melaka chicken rice balls that later became a permanent addition to their menu.

WHAT TO ORDER: The chicken rice balls we had here are slightly different from what you get in Melaka – the chicken is rolled inside the balls instead of being served separately. Karen herself is Hainanese, so you can’t go wrong with ordering the Hainanese dishes like the pork and chicken chops.

Anis Putri
Photo: John Lim

Anis Putri Gulai Kawah

Restaurants Kuchai Lama

This restaurant in Pantai Dalam was introduced by Faye’s family friend, Tengku Nasrun and his wife, Che Puan Rosila, who are both Kelantanese. Now, if you ever wanted legit Kelantanese food in KL, this is it. What makes the difference here is their sambal tumis, which takes hours to make, and is an essential ingredient in nasi kerabu and Kelantan laksam (a type of laksa that uses flat noodles). As Tengku Nasrun once told us, it’s not real Kelantanese without the tumis.

WHAT TO ORDER: Their laksam and nasi kerabu for sure, but also worth trying is the kuih akok (a traditional dessert using eggs, flour, coconut milk, pandan and sugar) and Jala Emas, a dessert made from egg yolk that’s cooked in syrup.

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