NASI Ayam Penyet has originated from Indonesia, but this traditional Javanese meal is certainly well-loved by Malaysians.
The star of this dish is chicken that is fried to a perfect crispy brown, served with red-hot savory sambal.
The word “penyet”, an Indonesian word for smashed, refers to the cooked chicken being further “tenderized” with a pestle before being served alongside the rice.
Some cooks sprinkle the chicken with bumbu kuning, a blend of fried spices and seasoning such as ginger, turmeric, galangal, nutmeg, and pepper, to enhance the aroma and flavor of the dish.
In Klang Valley, the Ayam Penyet Best restaurant chain offers traditional food enthusiasts a chance to taste this delicacy.
With 11 branches in the region, there are plenty of places for diners to choose from.
As someone who loves spicy food, the sambal was a perfect addition to the chicken, which was crispy on the outside and tender enough on the inside.
The banana leaf on which the dish was served gave it a rustic, kampung feel.
The menu here is not limited to chicken as the restaurant has diversified its offerings to include fish and beef too.
Unlike the Ayam Penyet sambal, the Balado sambal had a bit of sweetness to it, which went great with the fried mackerel.
All these dishes come with sliced cucumber and salad.
The Terong Balado, which is fried eggplants served with some sambal, was sweet and sour, a perfect addition to the rice, which you order separately. Terong Balado is sweet and sour and goes well with a serving of rice.
For something lighter and sweeter, you can try the Gado Gado, a salad that comprises steamed vegetables served alongside hard-boiled eggs, fried tofu, and tempe. They were all slathered with a sweet Kuah kacang.