IN THE hustle and bustle of city life, do you not crave for the taste of a home-cooked meal?
Sure, the metropolis has no shortage of food, but all of us crave for food that reminds one of home.
One sunny afternoon, as I walked along the streets of Brickfields, I found a quaint stall in a narrow street between a bar and a hotel.
The first thing that grabbed my attention was the voices of energetic workers trying to get the attention of passers-by.
“Come try our food. Have lunch here, you will like it, ” they called out.
As I was hungry, I decided to take a chance and have lunch at Sami’s Corner, a place I had heard about.
The sight of the dishes was enough to whet the appetite, with 42 different types that had me awestruck.
The spread included dishes such as chicken curry, chicken peratal, chicken varuval, chicken 65, fish curry, kurma, rasam, sambar, fish sambal and aviyal.
Selected dishes are also prepared on demand.
Fried rice, fried noodles and roti canai are available any time of the day.
Its simple menu of vegetables, chicken varuval, mutton peratal, fried fish and a variety of curries appeals to the residents and working crowd around Brickfields.
The business was founded 30 years ago by Loganathan Ramaiah, but he named the stall after his brother Periasamy Ramaiah.
“I started the business right after SPM. Although we changed locations a few times, our customers followed, ” said Loganathan.
Customers stream into this hidden place for its variety, hospitality and good, affordable food.
Mohammad Abdul Halim, 56, is a loyal customer from Penang.
“I usually travel past Kuala Lumpur and when I do, I always stop here to have roti canai with kurma, ” said Mohammad.
“It’s fast, cheap, easy and tasty. I even became good friends with the owner. It’s a package deal, ” he added.
Loganathan said after 30 years, he has not changed his style nor cooking method and most importantly, the menu.
“The number of dishes has been the same for many years now.
“Our regular customers come here expecting to have the fried fish or mutton peratal, so the menu never changes, ” he said.
Loganathan (pic) aims to serve authentic Indian food in the simplest form.
“I want people to come in and enjoy the food. It’s not about making money but about satisfying people.
“It’s so hard to get food outside that tastes home-cooked at a reasonable price these days. I want to be able to provide that for all three meals, ” he added.
True to his words, the food here reminds me of home.
For people like me, who work in Kuala Lumpur and not able to return home for periods of time, food like this is comforting.
I had the basic chicken peratal, stir-fried cabbage, chicken curry along with rasam and papadam on the side for RM7.
The curry was thick, the rasam flavourful, the chicken spicy and with the added crunch of the cabbage, it was a perfect balance.
Another thing that surprised me was the briyani set meal, available only on Sundays.
It comes with briyani, chicken kurma, hard-boiled egg, cucumber salad and rose syrup for RM10.
This is a good bargain, considering that neighbouring shops serve only briyani at RM14.
All in all, it was a pleasant lunch and I walked away with a smile on my face and a happy tummy.
Sami’s Corner is located at 194, Jalan Tun Sambanthan, Brickfields in Kuala Lumpur.
It is open from 7am to 9pm daily.
For details, call 019-380 9402.
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