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Saturday, 27 September 2008

Breaking Fast With A Secret

Since we rarely eat out during this Ramadhan, I thought I would treat my family to buffet style breaking fast this last weekend of the month. My choice is a restaurant that to me serves the best buka puasa spread that is value for money, and it is no other than one of the best kept secrets, the Rahsia restaurant in Jalan Damai, Kuala Lumpur. More well known as a bar and bsitro, I guess not many people know that this is a great location for breaking fast with a family, and for those who want to do their prayers they have for their convenience a whole room on the bungalow the restaurant is located in to carry out their duties. This and the fact their food still tastes home -cooked even though served buffet style clinch the restaurant as the choice for the one and only buka puasa event outside the home for the family. The best thing is that even though they have added a barbeque section serving barbecued lambs, satay and chicken in addition to a fried noodles station serving just cooked mee goreng and char kuey teow, the price for the buffet only increased by two ringgit since last year's Ramadhan.

You can choose to have your meal in the garden under the stars or inside the bungalow or on the upstairs verandah, though the last choice would entail you travelling quite a distance as they only serve the buffet on the two long tables at the downstairs verandah. Even though I requested to eat inside when I made my reservations as I worried about possible rain, they requested that I eat outside as they lost my reservation and they have already prepared the inside for large groups of diners. No loss actually as the weather was fine and we had a great time eating under the stars, especially since I requested for the centre umbrella to be removed. Either place was also not far from the food as it was located midway, so you do not have to move far to reach the buffet tables. Another point I liked about the place is that it seems to be patronised by a higher class of people, therefore there was no rush for food and the food need not be replenished so frequently, so the food was not prepared in bulk as normal buffet places tends to do so the taste was preserved.

Now let's talk about the food. The buffet spread offers a spread that is true to their advertisement, though tonight I was not interested in kampong style dishes though my wife told these were cooked without any stinginess in the ingredients. Thus they are as good as home-cooked ones, though this also means for those that cannot stomach hot stuff, to be aware as their chili factor is as authentic as the original recipe. You have been warned! Tonight is the night for me to practise my Atkins diet and I did this with glee as the amount I ate was really worth the meal ticket. First up was the spicy beef soup where I took four large pieces of melt in your mouth beef steaks swimming in nicely spiced soup, and here spiciness is the key and not heat in your mouth sort of sensation. This was followed by a platter of the restaurants chicken satay accompanied by two pieces of barbecued lamb on the bone, medium cooked to my request fresh off the grill. This was accompanied by a mint sauce and thai chili sauce, though the satay peanut sauce was also a good dip for the lamb. Finishing this really filled up my belly and this signalled it was time for me to do my prayers. But that did not mean the end of the meal for me. Far from it. In fact before I forget may I inform you that you do not really need to order any additional drinks with buffet, as they include a fruit punch and Ais Batu Campur(ABC) drink in the buffet. And this is no watered down drinks, they are a hearty concoction and both are chockful of fruit mix and ABC ingredients including real salted peanuts in the ABC. Well on to the next round of my meal and this was the fried noodles with whole prawns in it, with a sampling of green beef rendang, fried chicken and a barbecued chicken drumstick. Even though these tasted great, it was still a chore to finish as my belly was already stretched beyond its normal fasting limits, thus I took some time to finish them and I had to remind myself it is bad to waste good food. And yes for the parents reading this, I can vouch that the fried chicken, sausages and potatoes and the barbecued stuff would delight your children as they did mine. And the nicest surprise was that at the end of the meal the restaurant decided to be generous and told me that the children ate for free, a fifty ringgit savings there itself. So for a price of a single person's buffet at a hotel restaurant or other hoighty-poity outlets elsewhere, my family really ate well tonight. So you can believe me that we will return next Ramadhan to this pleasantly fulfilling secret garden.

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