Seasonal delights infused with Italian flavours

Chicken and pistachio pâté en croûte at Nook, Aloft Kuala Lumpur Sentral.

ALOFT Kuala Lumpur Sentral is putting an Italian twist to its Christmas buffet with a selection of culinary delights at Nook.

For this year, executive chef Arfizan Abdul Rahim said he wanted to move away from the usual flavours and try something new.

“When it comes to the festivities, especially at home, it is all about the food and being surrounded by family,” he said.

“And turkey carving is like the main event at Christmas.”

Arfizan is taking inspiration from the Lombardy region in Italy with roast turkey prepared with oregano rub and apple chestnut ciabatta stuffing.

“This is inspired by the Lombardy chicken recipe and in place of Marsala wine used in the dish, we use orange and citrus to give it a sweet and acidic taste,” he explained.

“Instead of normal white bread, we are opting for ciabatta in the stuffing to give it that extra Italian feel.”

Equally important to the seasonal menu is Tuscan Roast Lamb stuffed with tomatoes and herbs.

Despite not being a lamb meat lover, I found the cut of lamb to be surprisingly flavourful and juicy with just the right amount of fat.

Not too long after that first taste, I found myself heading to the carving station for another helping.

The hot smoked salmon was a dish I enjoyed very much too as I found it much richer in flavour than the usual smoked salmon.

Those who seek out a deeper smoky flavour than cold smoked salmon will definitely find joy in it as well.

Aloft’s seasonal offerings include a selection of pâté en croûte, namely chicken liver, foie gras, or pistachio and chicken, of which the latter was served.

The pâté en croûte is inspired by traditional Italian recipes but presented in a modern style, according to Arfizan.

I enjoyed my appetiser with a serving of salad with Roma tomatoes, and spicy tomato soup, which was deeply satisfying.

The soup also paired well with its cheesy pull-apart bread, which was soft on the outside and gooey inside.

The Aloft crew also gave guests a taste of provincial Italy with its sea bass cooked in tomatoes and smashed potatoes with gremolata.

The smashed potatoes are a must-have as it delivers lip-smacking flavours in spades.

The dish was a hit among the media as evidenced by it being picked up quicker than other dishes.

For dessert, pastry chef Zahrin Madzlan and his team prepared playful cake-pops, ice cream on pancakes, log cakes, gingerbread, mince pies and an assortment of cakes.

Wrapping up with a slice of “mangolicious” log cake was a true delight as the juicy mango cubes in this cake provided a refreshing burst of sweetness to cap off the feast.

Those looking for something a little richer can look forward to the Sweet Darkness 61, a dark chocolate made from 61% dark chocolate and decorated with chocolate stars.

And if you still have room, the eggnog pots de crème is another must-have before calling it a night.

The Christmas eve and New Year’s eve buffet is available from 6pm to 10.30pm and priced at RM168 per person.

The Christmas Day brunch and New Year’s Day brunch are available from noon to 3pm and priced at RM148 per person.

Children below six can dine for free, while children below 12 get 50% off.

Nook also caters to those planning to celebrate at home with its Italian Roast Turkey and Tuscan Roast Lamb as these are available for takeaway along with side dishes, such as butter and rosemary roast potato, sautéed garlic Brussels sprouts.

Other takeaway delights include the three types of pâté en croûte.

The Italian roast turkey is available for takeaway or delivery at RM450 per set while the Italian roast lamb costs RM348 per set.

Each set caters for up to five people and free delivery is provided within 10km from the hotel.

Limited turkey sets are available this year.

All Christmas log cakes retail at RM118 per cake and a 48-hour advance booking is required.

NOOK, Aloft Kuala Lumpur Sentral, 5, Jalan Stesen Sentral, Kuala Lumpur Sentral, Kuala Lumpur (Tel: 03-2723 1154, email: kulal.b&

This is the writer’s personal observation and is not an endorsement by StarMetro.

Cook your own Italian dishes. Buy herbs and spices at discounted costs with Shopee Discount Code Shopee Discount Code

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