Thursday, August 09, 2007

South Indian Aiyer Restaurant - indian vegetarian

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The rain poured in torrents as I pulled up near Palm Court in Brickfields. School buses lined up both sides of the road preventing me from finding a suitable parking lot.

I was desperate. I spied a parking lot reserved for school buses on the opposite side of the road. In one sweep that would have made Lewis Hamilton proud of me, I was safely parked in that lot with another car following close behind me thinking that I had found a way out of the hellhole. After much cursing, both on her part as well as mine, I managed to turn off my engine only to find that my umbrella refused to open.

The rain made my precious Hogan handbag look like a drenched puppy. Ah well, all in the pursuit of food...


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It wasn't just any food. Located within the apartment premises with a rather dingy exterior was an indian vegetarian restaurant. I absolutely love indian vegetarian food. It is not so much for health reasons that I eat vegetarian food (because it is easy enough to pile on the carbohydrates with the unlimited serving of white rice), but more for the variety of vegetarian dishes that are offered. I am not an avid fan of mock meat (although the occasional serving is acceptable) simply because I am not a vegetarian and when I do eat vegetarian food, it is not because I am looking for a meat replacement. What I do look for are the creatively prepared vegetarian dishes and the use of a multitude of spices to flavour the dishes.


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My lunch, served on a banana leaf, comprised white rice, pepper rice, six different types of vegetables, pickled lime, fried chilli, papadum, several types of curries, dhal and rasam, moru (yoghurt drink) and desert. I loved the deep fried bittergourd (above, bottom left) which was crispy and had the right amount of spiciness. The mashed pumpkin was rather interesting; it was naturally sweet and was spiced with something that tasted of cardamoms. However, it would have tasted better as a dessert (and maybe it was!) rather than as a condiment to be eaten with the rice.


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The pepper rice (second picture from the top of the post) was fluffy and the taste of pepper was rather distinct. It was flavourful enough to be eaten on its own. My favourite for the day was, without a doubt, the yoghurt curry. When I first saw it, I thought it was another popular curry known as "sothi", essentially a thin curry made of coconut milk, tomatoes and turmeric. However, after tasting it, I found that it clearly tasted of yoghurt. The yoghurt made the curry extremely creamy while providing it with a naturally sour taste which went so well with the white rice. I must qualify this by saying that it may be an acquired taste for those who are not used to the tart taste of homemade yoghurt.


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I washed down the food with a tumbler full of moru, a drink made by diluting yoghurt with water and adding a pinch of salt. It is refreshing and doesn't have the cloying feeling that fresh milk sometimes gives. At home, I would sometimes chop raw onions and chillies and throw them into the moru for some added crunchiness and flavour. The complimentary dessert was payasam, a drink with a thick, soupy consistency made of milk, cardamoms, cashewnuts and vermicelli.

All these, with unlimited servings of rice and vegetables, for just RM5 (US$1.50) per person!


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Other sweetmeats are also available for sale, including ladoo (picture above) and pal kova.

South Indian Aiyer Restaurant
B1 Block B, Palm Courts Condo
Jalan Sultan Abdul Samad, Brickfields, 50470 Kuala Lumpur.

Tel: 03-2272 1009

Opens 6.30am to 12.30am daily.
Note: This restaurant uses alliums in the preparation of food.

58 comments:

Anni said...

oooh sweets - sorry fixated on your new header.

Anyway, parking in a space reserved for school buses - tut-tut! :)

Argus Lou said...

Whoa, lil' sis! That's a whole lot of food for RM5. I love vegetarian food too, both Indian and Chinese.
Can just blithely pour it down my throat. ^_^

Precious Pea said...

Sista, is this the lunch place you told me where you overloaded yourself with 2nd helping of rice?? LOL! Looks great though...i love fried bittergourd too!

Xiu Long Bao said...

i like banana leaf rice, but not during lunch time cus I'll always hav too much rice n feel stuffed for the next half day.

msiagirl said...

Now this is what I call a lunch! :)

Paprika said...

Brickfields is such a treasure trove of fantastic Indian food, I really must explore it thoroughly. Call me next timelahhhh

"Joe" who is constantly craving said...

when i move office to sentral..im gonna come over here..definitely..tats if i m in the same company la keke..good stuff man..definitely want to witness ur hamilton driving skills..

daphne said...

oh yummy! that looks really good. Being a yogurt fan, that yogurt curry really intrigued me!

kalei said...

Hi, been following ur blog for sometime.. linked fr masak-masak.

And yes, thx for this post. For 5 ringgit, it is fantastic vegetarian food. sometimes you get vadai and a small serving of briyani in the set. I first ate 3 years ago and im glad they maintained the price.

parking's a drag, tho. but worth the hassle to every lick of your finger finally! lol!

k.t.x said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
k.t.x said...

aiyerrrrr, south indian vegetarian is really down to earth and this particular one u hv juz featured must be the most comprehensive and complete vegetarian meal one can get. i must admit that my selection would not be as complete as this as there r many side dishes featured here which i'd hv left out incl the yoghurt.

i think the pepper rice is interesting too and lots more.

btw, u makan with cutlery or hand....the former would render this meal not too complete...lol.

barbie said...

Sigh, I miss the cheap, good food. And I miss all the good Indian food too! Slurps!

Latha said...

That looks absolutely delicious! Thanks for the visual treat! That yogurt based dish that you're talking about we call "Mor Kozhambu". Its a Tamilian speciality! One of our favorites at home too. Its best served with rice and some green beans poriyal on the side!
Oh how i miss such authentic aiyer food and all for just over a buck!
You have a lovely blog here!
Cheers
Latha

bhags said...

this seems to be a complete south indian meal. Lucky you. The snaps are moouth watering.....nice blog, first time here

Lyrical Lemongrass said...

anni:

LOL!

Hey, when in Malaysia, do as the Malaysians do! :-P

argus lou:

The beauty about living in Malaysia...you can't go hungry even if you're poor!

I guess we should add vegetarian food to our ever growing list of must-eat makan places when u come back, hor?

precious pea:

I cannot tell a lie. Yes, I had another helping of rice just so I could enjoy the lovely yoghurt curry. :-P

xiu long bao:

yeah, that's the problem with eating rice at lunchtime. But this meal is worth it!

msiagirl:

absolutely!! hehe.

paprika:

sure...will call you when we're doing a nice long lunch in Brickfields next time!

Nipples:

It isn't walking distance from your new office, but yeah, you should try it if you can. You're so gonna enjoy Brickfields, dude!!

daphne:

High 5! Another yoghurt fan! Oh, you'll definitely love this yoghurt curry. Am gonna look for the recipe.

kalei:

welcome! Briyani and vadai too, eh? I'm having cravings already!!! I plan to visit this restaurant again...very soon! hehe.

k.t.x:

you don't like yoghurt? how to be my friend then? :-Pj

I admit I used cutlery, but when you have manicured fingernails, a bit susah to use fingers leh. heehee!

barbie:

you enjoying Shanghai 10 arr??? ROFL. We miss you, girl.

latha:

Thanks for giving me the name. I shall update my post accordingly. You don't, by any chance, have the recipe, do you? *begging with eyes wide open*

bhags:

Thanks for dropping by! We get pretty good south indian food here. I'd consider myself pretty lucky alright. :-)

k.t.x said...

i dint say i dont like yoghurt. i actually meant, should i hv not read this post, i'd hv left out a lot of side dishes which was supposedly be accompanied in a south indian vege meal....lol.

Lyrical Lemongrass said...

k.t.x:

My apologies for not understanding your comment.

well, luckily for you, dear k.t.x, they won't ask you what you want. They just bring it on until you yell STOP!!!! hahaha.

Big Boys Oven said...

lyrical lemongrass:
Thanks for dropping by our blog. Thanks again to be the first one to congrat us. Big Boys Oven

barbie said...

Thankfully, haven't had to step foot into that place so far. Found a couple of places that serve decent lunches at a reasonable price. :-) I'll take you round when u come by on Fridays, once I've checked out all the other places. :p I miss you all too!

Lyrical Lemongrass said...

BBO:

Good luck in your new venture, boys!

Barbie:

only on fridays, meh? :-P Okay...looking forward to visiting some of Bangsar's best kept secrets. :-)

wmw said...

I would love to eat the rice with the yoghurt curry too...but such heavy lunch, sure sleepy after that! :)

Henry Yeo said...

Leaving in Selayang, I probably have Indian food everyday for breakfast...

*checks cholestral levels*

and I mean, everyday.

Lyrical Lemongrass said...

wmw:

no lar. it's not that bad. I didn't feel sleepy at all.

henry yeo:

why u need to check cholestrol level? Indian food can be quite healthy, ya know.

jason said...

OMG, RM5 for all those?? I wouldn't mind to eat them everyday!

KampungboyCitygal said...

rm 5 only!!?? they will regret it after they see the servings that kgboy can take..

Tummythoz said...

Pepper rice? That's new to me. Looks intriging. Can I get it at just any Indian restaurant?

Kusahi_Keat said...

Banana leaf rice must alwuz hv with your hands....superb taste

Ross B said...

LL, what are you doing to me? Those pics are cruel.

Truly, I think the Indian food in Malaysia is something pretty damned special - more consistently sensational than much of the food I had during 3 months in India (although that was long ago now).

The variety is incredible, and the value simply unbeatable.

Here's food for thought (scuse the pun): a delectable spread such as that you have presented here would set you back $20 minimum in Australia, and possibly double that - and that's if it was available in the first place. That's right: 60 - 120 ringit. AND, the quality probably wouldn't be anywhere near as good.

Count your blessings, my Malaysian friends!

Cheers to all.

Poonam said...

Looks like a nice lunch place! Have you tried this restaurant?http://www.saravanabhavan.com/index.php

If you haven't, you will love to eat here.

tigerfish said...

So damn cheap. Time for me to eat some indian vegetarian ard my area. Did you eat with your fingers? :p

Mythili said...

Wow..that is a delicious spread :) Just looking at the pictures is hearty enough.

-Mythili

Lyrical Lemongrass said...

jason:

LOL! Yah, why not, eh? :-P

kampungboycitygal:

hehe!! thankfully, it doesn't show on kampungboy. :-P

tummythoz:

actually, I haven't seen it in other restaurants. It's very tasty!

Kusahi Keat:

Welcome, my friend!! I guess you know the best way to eat banana leaf rice. :-) For me hor, susah leh...got long nails somemore. :-P

ross b:

Oh we certainly know we're blessed, both in terms of variety of food as well as the cost. I always say that it is hard to go hungry here. One can get a packet of nasi lemak for RM1 (US$0.30) which will fill the tummy until the next meal.

I would love to go to India one day and experience the wonderful food there.

OKlah...Oz is a close second. :-P

poonam:

Hi again! Yes, I love Saravanaa Bhavan. Great restaurant! Check out my review here --> Saravanaa Bhavan

tigerfish:

I hope you'll get your fix soon!! Nope, I didn't eat with my fingers this time. It depends on my mood wan. :-P

mythili:

I'm glad you like my pics. Thanks for dropping by!!

MeiyeN said...

da ladoos looked like rice balls! i wonder how it tastes....?

The Cooking Ninja said...

wow, that's very cheap.

Kenny Mah said...

I like yogurt. Can I be your friend?

Lyrical Lemongrass said...

meiyen:

it doesn't taste too different from the other balls i've tasted...

the cooking ninja:

ya lor. only in Malaysia.

kenny mah:

And I like you. PERFECT. ;-)

Kenny Mah said...

Perfect. I like me too. :D

Lyrical Lemongrass said...

Perasan Kenny:

Lyrical Lemongrass said...

Oops. Did I forget to say something? Guess u don't need it when u're so full of urself, dahlink. :-P

Kenny Mah said...

Oh, I'm not the only thing I'm full of... ;)

Lyrical Lemongrass said...

Kenny:

Other than crap?

Kenny Mah said...

Uh huh, uh huh. We'll continue this later, Luscious-pie... ;)

Argus Lou said...

Kenny & Lyrical in 'like' again?
Full of crab, more likely. Heh heh.

Lyrical Lemongrass said...

kenny:

Ooooo. Did you enjoy your luscious pie tonight, Kenny? ;-)

argus lou:

hehehe. I would love to be full of crab. Lots of crab. Salted egg yolk, butter, marmite, black pepper, chilli....you name it, I want it, baby! Mmmmmmmmm!!

Kenny Mah said...

Now I'm really hungry for all them crabs, and at 12:29am at that! Oh, boo!

Lyrical Lemongrass said...

LOL Kenny! After the bad dinner we had tonight, I don't blame ya, dude. Trust Argus to whet our appetite!! At 12.38am too!

msiagirl said...

LL & Kenny: hey! get yer comments off each other. In public too. Might have ta get yer own private chatroom or something - or better - anymore room for another gurrl to get in on your action?

Lyrical Lemongrass said...

Come on in, Msiagirl! The more the merrier, I say. :-D (We're talking about eating crabs together, aren't we? hehe)

the team said...

omg ! got space for just one more say ah , managed to sqeeze in by the skin of....
...this kind of veges we are dumbfoundedly lost.
H E L P !

Jun said...

wow. ur magnified rice certainly looks yummy! die! craving for rice now!

boo_licious said...

Ahhhh, this is the place. It looks good. Brickfields is such a hub for good food that I am slowly exploring it. Thxs for the tip on this one.

teckiee said...

ll, whats the rice with the specks of black stuff called? And my first time seeing the yellow rice balls. Looks like its easy to tapau and eat anywhere.

Jackson said...

what a fiesta! pity me looking at yr blog with empty stomach!

Lyrical Lemongrass said...

the team:

ooo...change of name, eh? of course got room for one more. aiyah, a vege by any other name is still a vege, mah.

jun:

lol. magnified rice! hehe. it's certainly very yummy. :-)

boo:

yeah, this is another place you really ought to check out. gotta love Brickfields!

teckiee:

it's called pepper rice. The ladoos in the picture are not made of rice. Those are made of lentils. They're normally distributed at hindu weddings here in Malaysia.

jackson, suamiku:

hehe. that can be easily rectified. go look for an indian restaurant. :-)

TBC said...

Being aa south indian myself, I loooove SI food!Your pics are so good! Making me drool:-)

Lyrical Lemongrass said...

tbc, thanks for dropping by. :-) I love SI food too. Even the simplest of foods is soooo yummy.

SteamyKitchen said...

WOW. Thats a TON of food for so cheap!

Lyrical Lemongrass said...

Hey Jaden! Yeah, food is relatively cheap here. You should visit some time. :-)