IN A sea of the usual Ramadan fare such as murtabak, satay and nasi kerabu in Kajang, one stall stands out from the rest by offering one-of-a-kind ikan patin masak tempoyak.
The stall, manned by Mohd Ismadi Ahmad, has been operating in the Dataran Prima Saujana Ramadan bazaar for the last five years.
“I never miss opening a stall here every Ramadan.
“I have some regular customers who keep coming back for the ikan patin,” he said.
Ismadi added that the fish was specially transported from Sungai Pahang in Temerloh, Pahang every day.
“We transport the fish by bus every morning so it will arrive fresh and ready to be cooked,” he said.
Selling at RM10 per slice, the dish is a favourite among visitors to the Ramadan bazaar as visitors keep stopping to buy it to break fast.
“We sell only ikan patin as this is what we specialise in and we are sold out almost every day,” said the 35-year-old entrepreneur.
Ikan patin masak tempoyak is a staple dish from Pahang and Ismadi said many of his customers were from the state and wanted a taste of home.
Ismadi opened the stall with his mother Asrah Jaamah, who cooks the dish.
“I use my mother’s recipe so customers can expect to have a homemade taste,” he said.
He also sells sambal sayur tempoyak, which Asrah said was a perfect companion to the ikan patin masak tempoyak and steaming white rice.
The dynamic duo own a restaurant specialising in the freshwater fish in Taman Melawati, Kuala Lumpur.
“Every year, we would take time off to open a stall here so that our customers in Kajang can have a taste of our signature dish as well,” said Ismadi, who is from Temerloh.
Visitors to the Ramadan bazaar will also find it hard to miss the aromatic smell from Anuar Ahmad’s stall selling an assortment of grilled fish.
“Some of the customers’ favourites are ikan kembung (mackerel), ikan pari (stingray) and ikan cencaru (torpedo scad),” he said.
Anuar added that the speciality was the sambal he used, which was a mix of the Johor and Kedah styles.
“I use tomatoes, chillies, lemongrass and ginger, with a twist of lime,” he said.
He added that if customers were not sambal fans, they could opt for the air asam, a mixture of water, chillies, onion and tamarind.
Dataran Prima Saujana has about 100 stalls that offer mouthwatering Ramadan favourites such as murtabak Singapura, satay Kajang, nasi tomato and nasi kerabu.
Rows of colourful drinks are also available for visitors to quench their thirst after breaking fast.
Some stalls open as early as 4pm and the crowd starts to flock in by 5pm.
The Ramadan bazaar turns into a sort of festival, with many vendors shouting to get the attention of visitors.
For the comfort of the visitors, Kajang Municipal Council has provided a parking space adjacent to the Ramadan bazaar.