Nasi Kandar Ayam Merah@Jalan Yang Kalsom, Ipoh

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Demona: Do not be fooled by the extremely chinese looking shop as the food served inside is far from anything porky/ non-halal.

I discovered this place thanks to my colleague for being a gracious host in her birth town. According to her, this was the first nasi kandar business to open in Ipoh and she grew up eating this with her family during weekends.

It is currently run by the founder’s grandson Ahmad Haris, who appeared humourous. He scared me initially by raising his voice while I took some pictures of his stall’s display of dishes. I quickly apologised and *tsk*tsk*, gave some “sales talk”, by telling him the reason I took those pictures was because the food looked extremely delicious! Suddenly, he laughed out loud and for a split second, I thought he had a split personality. He explained later that he was just pulling my legs *PHEW* and told me to take as many pictures as I want.

His grandfather, started off originally peddling door to door to sell his rice and curries. From then onwards, everyting else was history.

50 years down the road, the crowd was still packed to the brim at lunch time, and the long queue of customers by the stall constantly remained, LONG. Customers of all different races, were seated everywhere, hungrily devouring this deliciousness while sweating away in the hot weather and spicy food.

Demona: I could not wait to sink my teeth in … THIS!

Demona: My colleague told me that, at one period of time, the nasi kandar from word of mouth, was nicknamed as Nasi Ganja (Heroine Rice) because customers enjoyed the deep fried ayam merah (red chicken?) and sambal so much that they came again, and again, and again for it, sometimes a few visits in a week. They had no idea why, but the mysterious craving for the nasi kandar just forced them to return to the shop, queue up, and eat it again.

Some people said that it was due to the big amount of a certain spice (I do not know what) added into the ayam merah and sambal, so much that it could trigger an addiction, some people said, real heroine was added in, in small amounts.

Rumours, rumours, rumours.

My colleague was also telling me about the spice story, and she said that they had reduced the addition of the “heroine-like” spice to a smaller amount to adhere to the food compliance. From then onwards, the nasi kandar tasted slightly different from what she ate previously, but still… managed to maintain the tastiness of it.
HMMMMMMM… I found it strangely interesting. πŸ™‚

Demona: Mysterious spice? Heroine-like? Addictive?….. THIS. It may look a little wierd from the pict, but trust me, it was… UMPH UMPH UMPH. We wiped the plate clean and went for a sambal refill.

Verdict: Sweating in the heat, from the crazy blazingly hot weather and from the curry and sambal, ladies.. your make up will melt! But it is all worth it. You can cool off with a icey, dicey cold cup of lime juice. Just the perfect drink to complement the fiery, tummy growling dish.

The best part about the nasi kandar without a doubt was its trademark ayam merah and sambal. The beef rendang, was unsatisfactory. The meat was too tough, obviously overcooked.

Each plate, with a chicken and egg, cost RM 4. Not cheap for Ipoh, but a normal price for KL. It is worth the queue, sweat and dollar. However, this shop will definitely stand up against plenty competition from the Penangites Nasi Kandar stalls!

Teh Candu@Restoran Asam Pedas, Kamunting

Demona: I am ashamed at myself, as a Taiping-ian.. for I never knew the existence of Teh Candu (Opium Tea without the real opium of course). Thinking that I found something new, I immediately called Dogma, excitedly telling him about this, only to be shot down by his giant rifle.

Dogma: “Teh Candu? I know. (GREAT, BIG YAWN)Everywhere also have.”
Demona: “SERIOUS? HOW COME I’ve not heard of it?”
Dogma: “Dunno you. They have Teh Candu Air-Cond too.”
Demona: “Teh Candu WHA-?”
Dogma: “Yeah. Air-Cond, means that the ice cubes are placed on the plate, surrounding the base of the cup.”
Demona: “………………..oh.”

(AIYOYO. I am dumb)

Demona: Cool way of serving milk tea. Milk on the bottom layer, tea on the top, finished with a fluffy foamy milk covering the cup, and a dash of milo powder in the middle of it.

Demona: Check out the up close pict of the separated layer. I wonder, is it because of the difference of the molecular weight of both substances that allows the layers to separate for a fairly long while?

Verdict: RM 1.50 for a hot cup of teh candu on a windy cloudy evening (See the coconut leaves helpless blown by the strong winds). BLISS. The tea was very sweet. One cup was more than enough for me. I will definitely try out the Teh Candu Air-Cond next time!

Oh yeah, one MAJORLY lousy thing about this Asam Pedas place was how ungodly filthy it was. Bits of leftover food was all over the place, flies buzzing around, stray cats lying around. I could not sit still. EEEKS!