Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Madam Kwan's Nasi Bojari

My first restaurant's food review!! Since I started mysimplefood.com, one of the intention is to cover reviews on the different food that I taste whether it is my own recipes or the ones I eat outside of home. Since I have been back from the States a month ago, I have been going around enjoying my favourite Malaysian cuisine. Therefore, I am excited to write my first review on a popular Malaysian restaurant called Madam Kwan's.

Madam Kwan's originally started out as Sakura Restaurant along Jalan Imbi which was famous for their Nasi Lemak and Curry. I have never been to the Sakura Restaurant but I have heard great reviews about it. Many years ago, they rebranded and opened new outlets under the name of Madam Kwan's which offered old favourites from the Sakura menu plus new ones like the ever famous Nasi Bojari.

Nasi Bojari is their signature dish. I believe its origins is from Indonesia. However I have been searching to find out further info but yet not able to find out where it is from. I found the following statement from a forum which extracted an old article from NST -

Nasi Bojari is from Indonesia where the rice is meant for royalty, and is layered red, yellow and white. "We can’t do it here," said Madam Kwan. So she did the next best thing — frying the rice with bits of chicken, garlic and dried prawns and lightly tinging the rice with red, and yellow from turmeric. "It’s rice for royalty," said Kwan, which is why the Indonesians who come to dine have not had it before. There little bursts of flavours in the rice from the ingredients in it.

Thus, yes..there is a Madam Kwan. Infact, the word around town is that she personally mixes the spices before passing it to her cooks. That's the reason the food is tasty.

Nasi Bojari is quite a large serving. It comes with perfectly blended spices of coloured rice, assam prawns, shredded beef rendang (or you can opt for chicken rendang), hard boiled egg, slices of tomato and cucumber and if that is not enough there is a huge fried chicken thigh. The rice has a nice aromatic taste that goes especially well with the deep fried chicken. Madam Kwan has definitely perfected the art of a delicious deep fried chicken. Its crispy on the outside but on the inside.... mhhmmm ... it is still tender and juicy. You can even order the fried chicken thighs separately if one is not enough.

Madam Kwan's has gone from strength to strength with the immensely popular KLCC branch (there is a queue always) and another branch in Mid Valley, Telawi Street Bangsar (I wonder if it is still there?) and I heard they also have one in Pavillion now. While I am only featuring the popular nasi bojari on this blog, I would like to mention that they are very popular for other local Malaysian cuisine such as Nasi Lemak, Curry Laksa, Curry Fish Head, Hainan Chicken rice etc. ‘Truly Malaysian Cuisine’, is Madam Kwan’s tagline and they stay true to it.

Pros: 1. A great place to start off your foreign friends on. It has all the popular and delicious Malaysian cuisine and it is air conditioned. Therefore a good place to start for foreign friends vs the culture shock of mamak stalls -("street food stalls").

Cons: A bit on the pricey side for local food. While the food is delicious, you are paying a premium of more than RM10 for each item vs eating in local stalls.
Also, usually when a restaurant get too popular, the service is compromised.

Please go to Big Boys Kitchen for a recipe for Nasi Bojari.


twosuperheroes said...

Yeah...we believe the telawi street branch is still there. Haha.. :p

Salt N Turmeric said...

i went to the one in klcc and yes the food was pretty good. i miss klcc!

mysimplefood said...

Hi 2superheroes - oh ok, I really thot that they closed it down to focus on the ones in shopping malls. I wonder if the food at telawi is better??

Hi Salt n turmeric - Klcc is the most busy one, often with line outside, the next time you are back, you can visit so many new shopping malls - Pavillion, gardens :)

GK said...


Chanced upon your blog. I added your blog link to my latest post about nasi bojari and Mdm kwan. hope you don't mind. :)

mysimplefood said...

Thanks GK for your add. I like your blog. No need for the butterfly on your pics :)

Anonymous said...

Dear MK's owner,
It's vital that MK receives Halal certification from Jakim. This is to provide assurance to your Muslim customers.
Best regards.

Anonymous said...

bullshit. nasi bojari is something sakura restaurant made up and tell customers its royalty rice or some crap like that to sell. its nothing but a hoax. theres no such thing as nasi bojari in indonesia. might as well they say its their own idea and be proud of it. anyways madam kwans for posers. expensive food in a place where the food itself is cheap. its like buying as USD50 burger in the US where burgers are dirt cheap. still.. goes to show how KLites do not have taste at all. bloody fakes.

mysimplefood said...

Actually I think that Madam Kwan's really a great place to take overseas friends to intro them to Malaysian food. Other than Nasi Bojari, the Nasi Lemak and other local fares eg Char Kway Teow, Fried Rice, Chicken Rice etc. It is pricey but it provides a nice ambience for the local food.

KaKi Jalan said...

just went yesterday..love it :)

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