"Inside the badak (hippopotamus) we put grated coconut soaked in palm sugar. It is very delicious...can get us addicted. When I make (badak berendam, made with glutinous rice flour) I put lots of coconut inside and eat it non-stop (that I might become as big as hippo)”.
The sense of humour of the young couple from Japan - Jimmy and IChang - as they devour the famous traditional dessert badak berendam’(literally translated as soaking hippo), has endeared them to their viewers on their YouTube channel (iChang), which has amassed over 132,000 subscribers.
In fact, Jimmy (whose real name Yusuke Nishida) and his wife IChang or Ai Nishida, discovered the dessert - very popular in the east coast - through the recommendation of one of their followers on social media.
The couple, who currently live in Hong Kong, loves Malaysian food and tries to prepare dishes themselves from scratch.
Apart from badak berendam (which is their favourite dessert), the pair also have learnt to cook chicken curry and asam laksa, although they say they sometimes find difficulty in locating basic ingredients such as certain spices and bunga kantan in Hong Kong.
"We don't have many options here. We need to go to a specialty store for the spices and herbs required. We then make our own spice blend using the mortar and pestle, ” said Jimmy.
Eager to enjoy the authentic Malaysian food experience, they eat their meals on banana leaves and with their hands.
They've even tried Pavithra’s curry dish after watching a video by a national bodybuilder Sazali Samad who tried the recipe.
Jimmy said they love watching Sugu and Pavithra's videos as they are presented in a casual manner.
"Her videos are easy to follow and should there be any words that we don't understand, we just use Google Translate to understand what the gist, ” he said.
On top Malaysian food, they have also learnt some Malay words such as garam (salt), daging’(meat) and bawang putih (garlic).
Also read: Malaysian cooking couple Sugu Pavithra become YouTube sensation
"It wasn’t hard for us to learn the Malay words because the pronunciation is quite similar to Japanese. We're trying to learn more words”, he said.
They have visited Malaysia 10 times: they fell in love with Malaysian food on their first visit.
"We went to Penang and tried durian for the first time. We knew there are many different types of durians and we have tasted the Musang King and D24... we love it.
"We also visited Melaka, Kota Kinabalu and Johor to try the different variety of local food and dishes including the street food”, he said.
The couple are looking forward to return once it is safe to travel again.
"Hopefully things will be better soon. We want to enjoy more Malaysian food and we miss Malaysia very much”, he said. - Bernama
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