Mamak - Haymarket, Sydney NSW

August 29th, 2009 ยท Malaysian

"Honey, I'm home!"

Hello everyone, it's good to be back! Needless to say I had such great time eating my way around Malaysia, Cambodia, Vietnam and Laos for four weeks. I can see why Anthony Bourdain fell in love with these countries and the local food. There are simply an endless array of amazing exotic food to try, that really pushes all your senses to the limit. It's not even funny that I've only been back two days, and already feeling "food-sick", craving for that bowl of beef noodle soup for breakfast, having supper at mamak stalls at 12am, and ready for the sticky rice to clog my digestive system one more time.

Hence, the only way to bring me a little closer to the food from home is to blog about the Roti Tissue I've had with Suze and Helen at Mamak in Sydney before me flying out for my vacation. Sad? Yep. But that'll do.

"So.... what's for dessert?"

Of course, no one find it strange that the question is actually raised while we are standing on the footpath outside a restaurant, where we just had our 3 courses meal, including dessert. Instead, the question is beamed with approval and automatically we hop back into the car, and know exactly where we can find the dessert that we have been craving for.

Mamak at Haymarket is not new and definitely no stranger to the foodies in Sydney. They have had a constant flow of loyal customers since opened two years ago in a tiny shop at Goulburn Street. And with a recent 3 weeks renovations, Mamak has expanded to a more spacious dining area; having said that, they still try to squeeze in just as many tables as the restaurant could fit.

We arrive at Mamak at 9.00pm, 30minutes before closing time, but it is no surprise that we still have to wait outside for a table. Once seated, the menu are presented swiftly, but we only have one thing in mind - the Roti 'party hat' Tissue for three as our post-dinner snacks.

Blame my "sup"-culture gene (sup as in Supper), the night is still young and the greedy me decided to have something more substantial before dessert. Hence I decided to order a nasi lemak with sambal sotong. The subtly fragrant coconut steamed rice seems to blown out of ratio in comparison to the little dollop of sambal on the side, along with the crunchy roasted peanuts, fried crispy anchovies, half hard-boiled egg, and cucumber cubes. The sambal sotong is a spicy kick of crunchy cuttlefish slices in a sambal paste that really makes one gasping for water. And in this case, is my friendly "cham", a mix of teh tarik with coffee that is sweet yet tarty.

If synchronised-head-turning is a national sport, we would have scored a 10 out of 10 in the restaurant. It feels like the whole restaurant is slowing down in motion as three big cones of roti tissue brought out to our table. We have got everyone's attention fixated on the roti tissue, mesmerised by the sheer force of its golden beauty.

On the menu, the roti tissue is suggested to be served with vanilla ice cream. But if you want to experience it the Malaysian way, ask for the condensed milk instead and it comes in a tub on the side. Drizzle that thick milky lava from the top of the roti and slowly see the whole mountain coated in shiny glistening sweetness. Fork is optional, best with fingers - snap the crispy paper thin roti tissue into chunks, shove it in your mouth and feel that sticky goodness.

Hmm... now where can I find a Roti Tissue this size in Sydney? ( a roti tissue I recently had during my vacation in Malaysia, see it to believe it...)


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Mamak
15 Goulburn Street, Haymarket Chinatown, Sydney
P: +61 (02) 9211 1668

Open 7 days (no reservations)
Lunch: 11.30am - 2.30pm
Dinner: 5.30pm - 9.30pm
Supper: till 2am on Friday and Saturday

Mamak - A mamak stall, also referred to as mapley, is a food establishment which serves mamak food. In Malaysia, the term mamak refers to Tamil Muslims, who generally own and operate them. Although traditionally operated from roadside stalls, some modern mamak stall operators have expanded their businesses into restaurant or cafe-type establishments. Mamak stalls tend to be popular among Malaysian youths as hang out spots, due to cheap food and beverages being served 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
- [via wikipedia]

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