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Thursday 26 December 2013

Nasi Padang Istemewa

(within Restoran Ramai)
Jalan Banggol
20100 Kuala Terengganu
(Coordinates: 5° 19' 53.50", 103° 8' 7.3")

Meeting Abang Buyong and eating his 1Nasi Padang often evokes memories of days gone by, and at times it will move me to tears. Each time I come here time stands still, and I am transported back to the days when my hair (when I still had it) was long and my jeans tattered.

1padang-style rice, a miniature banquet of meats, fish, vegetables, and spicy sambal (fiery-spicy condiment) eaten with plain white rice

my time tunnel
it actually says "Istemewa"

The aroma of his Nasi Padang dishes soothes my soul; I leave after every meal feeling lighter. Alright then, enough with the melodramatics and let’s get down to the business of eating.

the aroma from these dishes...
... have magical qualities
come and try it for yourselves

This time around Abang Buyong was nowhere to be found as he was shorthanded and it was all hands on deck in his kitchen. Brendan as usual had the Chicken Curry (Minang style) with his white rice; Cat opted for the Fried Ikan Keli (Catfish) with her white rice while I had the Chilied Ikan Kembung (Rastrelliger Mackerel, is that right?) with my white rice.

Brendan's chicken curry with white rice
Cat's catfish (pun intended) with white rice
My mackerel with white rice
our beverages
let's dig in!

The verdict? Most Nasi Padang fare that we’ve had were the fiery spicy variety, and this is where Abang Buyong comes up trumps since his version is more soothing and mellow, a little easier on the mouth and in the belly. Besides, along with a round of Coca Cola for Cat and Brendan and Tamarind juice for sore-throated moi the total came to light-on-the wallet RM25.00, well within the domain of the everyday food for the everyday person (or in my case food to soothe the soul).

looking good Abang Buyong!

If you’re ever in Kuala Terengganu looking for some Nasi Padang cuisine then head on over to Jalan Banggol and give Abang Buyong a holler. And oh, we managed to catch up with him before we left the restaurant. He looks jolly as ever, and pleased that we came to see him again.

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