Sydney edition: Mamak

Our last meal in Sydney consisted of having to walk 2 blocks to get to because I didn’t know the exact address of Mamak. All I knew was that it is on the same street as our hotel so I assumed it was closeby. But with all the walking and rushing and having to get to the airport on time I could’ve sworn that mum wanted to thump me on the head for not checking what the exact address is.

But all is well. We got there before the dinner rush so we were able to get a table right away. My Sydney-sider friend warned me that lines are crazy during peak meal hours and I wasn’t keen on getting to the airport late either so power walking helped (only mum had to power walk as well).

We started off with some roti to fill that hunger that was the source of all our impatience with each other.

Roti canai (on the left) and roti planta (on the right). Both came with 2 types of curry for diping. My personal preference is the roti planta, which Mamak describes as “a rich buttery roti”. It’s not as dry as roti canai and the buttery taste gives a little cooling effect from the heat of the curries.

Our main was a Kari Ikan – “a tangy fish curry cooked with fresh tomatoes, okra and eggplant” – with a serve of rice to share.

I really can’t fault anything with this fish curry. In fact, this is one of the best fish curries I have had. It is almost like what L’s mum cooks but definitely up to restaurant standards. I was glad the fish weren’t cheap basa fillets but rather steak cut of some fish I can’t recognise. The fish held it’s shape and the okra wasn’t slimy. More importantly, though, it was the curry that did it for me. The blend of spices was just right but it really is not for the faint hearted. Mum is not used to eating spicy food and she found it really hot. I’m quite accustomed to spicy food, specially Malaysian curries, and yet I still found this curry quite hot.

Just as well the chicken satay sticks were ordered came after the fish curry.

The waiter told us this was made to order so it would take about 15 minutes to be served. The sweetness of the peanut sauce helped with the spiciness of the curry. We were literally eating spoonsful of sauce while wiping the sweat off our foreheads. The chicken sticks I found too small. I was definitely expecting bigger chunks of meat but these were miniscule in every sense of the word.

So by the time we left the restaurant to get to the airport, there was already a long queue outside. These long queues are there for good reason. Next time I’m in Sydney I’ll definitely head back to Mamak for a curry fix. As a side note: I’m not a major fan of curry but Malaysian curries are the only types of curries I’ll voluntarily eat.

Mamak on Urbanspoon

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