As I write this, I am looking at a few artsy pictures I took of a mall here in Malaysia and listening to Nirvana-something about that combination seems so right. A lot of the fiction I have been writing while living here has been about this stranger in a strange land yet somehow it all seems so normal kind of vibe I have a lot of the time. More on that later. Right now, we are here to talk about the truly important stuff: Food! (the song was Serve the Servants, which starts off with one of the all time great opening lines for an album: “Teenage angst has paid off well, now I’m bored and alone.” I mean come one, talk about the struggle of what you think life should be and what it actually is. Or at least, that is how I see it somedays)
So this will be a kind of hybrid post because as the title says, it has been awhile. Seriously can anyone name another Nickelback song? If you answered yes, go sit in the corner and take your time out like an adult. If you groaned or yelled at your computer and said “Kevin, how do you not know that other great Nickelback song or for that matter, their entire catalog which I celebrate and honor?” Just leave now. Seriously, if you find it odd that I do not know any other songs by this band, leave this blog post and friendship now and never come back.
Okay, so everyone is still reading I bet, even the Nickelback lovers because who listens to something I wrote in the past in this blog, even if it technically was written in the future. Whoooooaaaaaaaaaaa..
Oh yeah, the hybrid thing. Food and some Deepavali stuff, that was what I wanted to say before I got off track. (The song now is “We Are Your Friends” great stuff.)
First, I promise we do eat stuff other than Indian food. But it is my favorite and it is really cheap and really good and everywhere.
Second, the older stuff. I picked up some food from a little food court/Mamak style restaurant near my work. It was pretty good except for an unpleasant surprise/Malaysian Language Lesson.
So what is great about the na’an here is not the bread itself-that was actually just okay. It was not a tandoori oven and let me tell you, you can tell the difference. The great thing was the sauces that came with it. The order was to go, but they gave us three good sized bags of sauces. We are not afraid to use sauces and we barely put a dent into them.
Seriously do you want to know what this is? Take a second and guess
It’s chicken hearts. So this is something that has been on my bucket food list for awhile. The taste was actually great. Like really great. The texture was not so great. It was very sandy, gritty almost. I had a few, and I might be up to trying it again but for now I am happy I tried it.
Not going to be pictured is some tofu we got. No idea why I did not take a photo of it. It was cooked in a kind of black pepper sauce and was pretty good.
Okay long story short. I had these baked chips at a banana leaf restaurant and they were wonderful. It took a very long time to figure out what in the heck they actually were. Some guy told me, I did not hear him, but after a lot of googling I figure out it was bitter gourd chips. These are a verstion of those. Two different version actually. Yes, they are bitter, the name is not a lie. Raw they are very bitter, cooked they are not too bad. These were not as good as the baked dry chips I had at Ravi’s but still good.
Do you know the Malaysian word for Octopus? Well I do know. It was on the same shelf as all the veggies in this mamak so I assumed it was a vegetable. I asked him what it was, he told me, and I had not idea as it was in Malay. I got home and tried it and you know what, it was not that bad. Iris took one bite and right away said “it’s octopus.” I looked up the word in Bahasa Malay for Octopus and she was right. Sotong. So there you go, you learned a Malay word today.
Okay, so next meal. Deepavali is a big holiday here. I am hungry and once again writing this before dinner, so I will not go into details about what it is. You are an adult, or a crafty minor, so look it up on google yourself.
Don’t I look festive in that picture? Every mall had a giant display for the holiday in the middle. Here I am wearing a short kurta. Traditionally a Kurta is longer, but I am not a big fan so I found ones that were shorter. Take that ages old traditional Indian clothing!
Iris and I went to the big Deepavali carnival out at the national Stadium. Here is a picture of the outside of it.
Of course the tent has air conditioners. This is the tropics, it is freaking hot outside. Now imagine being inside a big canvas tent crowded with a lot of people. Yeah, that would be terrible. We ate light but we ate well at this party.
The picture on the left is Roti Chapati of course, a favorite of ours. On the left is I do not know what, but it was amazing. Like a deep fried grilled cheese sandwich with some light tomato sauce of some kind in the middle. Amazing!
Okay, so dinner is almost ready, so a bit of a photo dump of some sights of Deepavali in Little India and elsewhere.
Okay, that is all for now. Selamat Malam!