The judges had criticised chef Zaleha Kadir Olpin’s nasi lemak, with one, Gregg Wallace, saying that the chicken rendang that accompanied the main dish was not “crispy enough”.
That was enough to rile up most Malaysians, and even the British High Commissioner to Malaysia, Vicki Treadell, pointed out on Twitter that chicken rendang should never be crispy.
Chicken rendang is a dry curry dish where the chicken is stewed in coconut milk and spices until it is tender.
If nothing else, it got Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak and his political nemesis Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad on the same page: don’t mess with our rendang.
“Mana ada orang makan rendang ayam ‘crispy’? (Where do people eat chicken rendang that is ‘crispy’?)”, Najib posted on Twitter and Instagram on Tuesday (April 3).
Meanwhile, former prime minister Dr Mahathir quipped, in response to one of the chefs on Twitter, “Maybe you are confusing rendang chicken with KFC,” in reference to the fried chicken chain.
Malaysia is expected to go to the polls by late April or early May, where Najib will lead the incumbent Barisan Nasional coalition against an Opposition alliance led by Dr Mahathir.