Thursday, April 9, 2009

Little India Penang

Penang is an island off the northeastern coast of Malaysia near the Thailand border. Unlike the tropical paradises of islands in Thailand, Penang was more colonial and had a very timeless quality.Georgetown is the big city on the island of Penang and all around the outer rim of the island you can find beach resorts.So you can have both city and beach, but we stayed in Georgetown and soaked up the unique Malaysian culture. First up was Little India.Bollywood hits blared out of the cd and music stores while the sweet smell of curry and incense surrounded the air.
World’s largest incense – dang!
Finding somewhere to eat in Little India was incredible easy, especially when the kitchen and the food is in plain site on the street.We took a gander of the dining area and spotted people eating off a banana leaf with their hands and immediately we were ready to sit down and try some food! We ordered a banana leaf lunch set and a tandori chicken chapatti set.For the banana leaf lunch set we were given a banana leaf and 3 sauces before a man carrying metal tins with three different kinds of vegetarian Indian food came by and spooned a pile from each tin onto the banana leaf before another man put a big pile of rice on the banana leaf and then another man came by with crispy poori.The vegetarian items were spicy tomato greenbeans, creamy yellow bean spinach and carrots, cabbage, garbonzo beans salad. The three sauces on the side were creamy curry, spinach daal and sour curry, all eaten with our RIGHT hands.The tandori chicken was quote “a religious experience”, bringing a tear to Mike’s eye and hands down the best chicken we have ever had - EVER.The chicken was the perfect juicy texture with smokey, tangy, garlic flavors with a thin crispy layer from the tandori oven. Cooked in a wood burning clay tandori oven on the sidewalk, the chicken was extraordinary. Here’s even a picture of the man who cooked it.This meal was one of the most, if not the most memorable meal on our trip and all for less than $5 US. Now if only every city with a Chinatown would develop a Little India also...

1 comment:

Tri and Justin said...

The banana leaf lunch is how it's served in southern India. Every meal we had in Chennai was like that. Mmmm.... There's a Southern Indian restaurant in Seattle on the Ave and we haven't gone yet. Will report back once we do, although I doubt it'll be the best chicken ever.