Tuesday, January 21, 2014

My Comfort Food Will Be...

any dishes related to Masak Lemak Cili Padi Negeri Sembilan (NS) and Petai.


You see, my late father was born and raised in NS. Being a true "orang nogori"  he loved masak lemak cili padi (the original NS way with no onion/tumis included). He loved petai too!

Me and my siblings grew up eating a lot of NS dishes although once a while Mak did cooked her famous Batu Pahat's asam pedas or some Javanese dishes such as sambal goreng, etc. Not only I inherited my late Abah's features and personality more than my sister, I also enjoyed more NS dishes compared to her and my brother. 

I don't cook masak lemak cili padi as often as Mak used to cook when we grew up, majorly because of health reason (since it involves thick coconut milk) but once a while, when I missed the taste or when I miss my Abah/my mom's cooking I will prepare masak lemak cili padi. Usually, it will be masak lemak cili padi ikan tenggiri with tomatoes, masak lemak cili padi cendawan terkukur, masak lemak cili padi daging salai with belimbing buluh or masak lemak cili padi petai. I am so lucky, that my half-pakistani husband loves it too! :)

The only masak lemak cili padi that I still haven't mastered (although it is my most favourite masak lemak cili padi!) is ikan masak palai (a Minang dish that my late grandmother used to cook). Hope I can learn the recipe from my aunt, Ateh in near future, am not sure of the ulam they use in this cooking :P

During the surprise lunch of Faaz birthday, few weeks ago, mak brought along some petai for me since she knew I loved petai (sambal petai racik in specific) and it's hard to get petai padi here in USJ. 


According to my late father, petai padi is the best for cooking. It can be identified from the biji petai itself. It's smaller in size. Petai padi is less bitter..lemak-lemak orang Melayu cakap :)

Since it has been a while since I had masak lemak cili padi petai (with ikan bilis/anchovies), I decided to cook this dish last weekend. Of course the first thing I did was to scrape the petai skin. This is an important step to omit the bitterness that came from the petai.

This is how petai padi looks like...

According to my experience, masak lemak cili padi's gravy tasted better overnight as the coconut milk gets thicker and the sour from either tomatoes/belimbing buluh or the garnicia (asam keping/gelugur) had blended well with it. That is why each time I cook this dish, I will ensure that I cook the gravy extra more so that I can still enjoyed it the very next day for breakfast.

Not eating it with rice like I did it for lunch or dinner. 

But with this.....

Cekodok kentang or cekodok bilis :)

Goreng garing-garing, and while it still hot, cut it into smaller pieces, put it into a plate, and pour the lemak cili padi gravy on top of it.


It's my late Abah's favourite breakfast snack and it's mine too! I still remember how me and Abah will race to get as much cekodok as we can the minute Mak transferred the crunchy cekodok from the cooking pan. Berebut nak paling banyak sebab masing-masing malas nak tunggu the next serving! hehe.

Until now, it never failed to make me smile alone whenever I have this meal :)  Reminded me a lot of those family moments we have with Abah...

....aaaaah, my comfort food!

Miss u, Abah. A lot. :)


p.s: The Malay believes in taking ulam daily can helps you look younger than your actual age. If this fact is true, I guess petai is "the" ulam for me! LOL!



Small Kucing said...

Mak oi...you mkg me drool. I love petai.....

dyana "his other half" said...

Al Fatihah for arwah abah. This entry made me smile and teary eyes at the same time :).

Nadine said...

Small Kucing,

ooopsie! hihi, hi-5 babe!! petai rocks! :D

Nadine said...

Cee D,

Ameen. Thanks dear. hihi, I used to have that feelings to whenever i think about my abah. Time heals, so as days passed by, I smiled a lot instead of teary, alhamdulillah... :)

Nadine said...