WHEN I was thinking of a dish that resonates well with me for this column, images of hot soothing rice porridge came to mind.
The fact that I was feeling under the weather might have contributed to my craving for porridge.
I find rice porridge comforting but there are condiments that are must-haves when placing an order for this dish including sesame sauce and soy sauce.
Here are five stalls and restaurants that I visit when in need of rice porridge.
Master Chicken Porridge
43, Jalan PUJ 3/2, Taman Puncak Jalil, Seri Kembangan, Selangor. Business hours: 10am to 10pm. Closed every Friday.
This is my neighbourhood porridge stall and needless to say it is my go-to porridge place.
What I like about this place is that it offers options in its rice porridge as there is a plain and spicy version.
Since I have a liking for spicy food, I opted for the latter.
For RM5.50, a simple meal of porridge can be satisfying with condiments such as shredded chicken, fried onion, white pepper, sesame oil, parsley and spring onion.
The porridge texture is rather thick with bright red chilli flakes dotting the white boiled-down rice.
The spiciness of the flakes, to me, was somewhat subtle.
It was nevertheless enjoyable as this particular chicken rice porridge filled me up right away.
OtakKing@The H Hartamas
Jalan Sri Hartamas 22, Desa Sri Hartamas, Kuala Lumpur. Business hours: 6pm to 2am, daily.
This restaurant is known for its grilled fish cake better known locally as otak-otak.
While queueing up and waiting to place my order, I heard many customers asking for chicken rice porridge.
I placed an order for myself and it proved to be a wise decision.
Priced at RM10, the bowl was filled with condiments such as shredded chicken, salted egg, peanut and spring onion topped with sambal kicap and sesame oil.
I had the chance to talk to the business owner and she said that the homemade Johor sambal kicap berapi and peanut were ingredients that gave the dish its distinctness.
To me, the chicken rice porridge was exceptional with generous amounts of condiments.
Because it was that good, I forgot to pair my chicken rice porridge with the famed otak-otak.
Looks like a return visit is a must.
Pak Li Kopitiam
42, Jalan Kristal K7/K, Seksyen 7, Shah Alam, Selangor. Business hours: 8am to midnight, daily.
When I exchanged notes with some friends on places serving good porridge, many suggested the chicken rice porridge at Pak Li Kopitiam.
It has six eateries located in Shah Alam, Banting, Bandar Bukit Tinggi and Klang.
While enjoying the kopitiam ambience, I found so many tempting dishes on the menu.
However, I had to stick to my plan of eating chicken rice porridge that day.
The RM7.30 serving came with condiments such as shredded chicken, peanuts, anchovies and spring onion.
Plain porridge is also available on the menu, priced at RM2.40.
Unlike the other rice chicken porridge I tasted, this one had a twist to it. Those who enjoy soft-boiled egg will find this tucked at the bottom of the bowl.
If you fancy soy sauce alongside, ask for some sambal kicap cili potong.
Bubur Nasi Melawati
X Sri RampaiJalan Rampai Niaga 4, Rampai Business Park, Kuala Lumpur. Business hours: 6.30pm to midnight, everyday. Opens from noon to midnight (Monday and Friday).
If you like trying a different take of porridge, Bubur Nasi Melawati is famous for its bubur berlauk.
The are various lauk to choose from to savour with the rice porridge.
The plain porridge with fried onions and spring onions is priced at RM3.50.
Condiments such as tempeh, anchovies, egg roll, shredded chicken, begedil, quail eggs sambal and many more are available priced from 50 sen to RM1.
I chose shredded chicken, begedil, spicy anchovies and grated carrot sambal for my porridge.
It came up to RM7.50 per bowl.
Some other places that sell bubur berlauk I have tasted are usually plain and watery in texture but this one had thicker consistency and was flavourful.
I decided to have two types of sambal with my porridge that night.
Mr Johan Bubur Berlauk & Seafood
14, Jalan Daud, Kampung Baru, Kuala Lumpur. Business hours: 11.30am to 3am, daily.
Rice porridge is available from 5pm to 3am. Although rice porridge is often associated as a meal for the sick,
I definitely was not sick of having it.
So I paid this place a visit with a friend knowing I could try a spoonful of another rice porridge dish that my friend ordered.
I was instantly amazed with the various choices of lauk here.
At Mr Johan Bubur Berlauk, rice porridge is priced at RM1 while the lauk is between RM6 to RM7 per plate.
There are more than 10 lauk from kerabu chicken leg, cashew nut chicken, tempeh and salted fish.
I could not decide on what lauk to get so I asked for the best sellers. I was told to go for the kerabu seafood and black pepper stir-fried beef.
If you are looking for a twist in your basic Asian porridge, this is the place.
The rice porridge itself is somewhat watery, texture-wise.
I found myself eating until the bowl emptied out as the tangy kerabu seafood added a lovely touch to the porridge.
As the restaurant is located at one of the top spots for amazing local food, my advise is go during non-peak hours.
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