The whole object of travel is not to set foot on foreign land; it is at last to set foot on one’s own country as a foreign land.” – G.K. Chesterton

Sunday, 17 April 2016

Tasty Malaysian @ Alice's Makan, Sydney (Australia)

During my pregnancy with #3, I experienced terrible sickness and food aversions, and I lost 4kg by the time I reached my third month. There was little I could eat or cook that wouldn't make me feel ill or throw up, but I would get strong cravings for a particular food. These were often for unhealthy food that I don't eat (like McDonald's burgers, which I haven't had for over 15 years!), and I just could not bring myself to satisfy some of these unhealthy cravings. I remember seeing a photo of a delicious-looking plate of chai tau kueh pop up on my Facebook feed, posted up by a friend during his trip to Singapore, and it spurred on an immense craving for them greasy, salty and oh-so-delicious fried radish cakes. Unfortunately, I had no idea where to get such a dish in Hong Kong that was a good enough version of this Malaysian/Singapore street food, and I also didn't have the energy to venture far from home. So this craving went unsatisfied for a month, until our trip to Sydney, and my younger sister had promised to take me to a place that did dished out yummy chai tau kueh. I know I can get good Malaysian food easily in Australia, and that is one of the many things I look forward to whenever we visit Australia. Alice's Makan is located inside a busy food court, and I was pleased to note that it was a popular choice at lunch time amongst the office workers and casual lunchers like us. Malaysian cuisine is delicious but the appearance and description of many dishes may prove too different, "too exotic", for unadventurous non-Malaysians, so I am always happy to see people outside of Malaysia enjoying my birth country's cuisine. There were quite a few items on the menu board, a nice variety for a food court shop. Indeed, there was chai tau kueh on the menu - labelled as 'Fried Radish Cake' on the menu board - and I could finally satisfy my month-long craving!

The food court in Pavilion On George:

The ordering counter at Alice's Makan:

Sister ordered Wonton Mee (AU$11), with an iced Teh Tarik. The noodles were delicious - springy and nicely seasoned with a black sauce:

Hainanese Chicken Rice (AU$10.50) for the kids - the soft fragrant rice with silky poached chicken is always a favourite for the little ones:

Char Hor Fun, also known as Wat Tan Hor (AU$13) as labelled on the menu - one of hubby's favourite Malaysian food. Grilled flat rice noodles with seafood and vegetables, topped with egg sauce. This version was nice, but it lacked a certain depth of flavour that comes from wok hei. The menu described this as grilled, not fried, so perhaps therein lies the difference:

And my beloved Chai Tau Kueh, aka Fried Radish Cake (AU$11). Eggy and spicy, this was a good version of chai tau kueh:

There were very good-looking Nonya kuih for sale, and my sister bought Ang Koo Kuih (red tortoise cake, made with glutinous rice flour and sweet mung bean paste)and Kuih Dadar (pandan crepe with sweet coconut filling). Both were excellent:

I was happy with our experience at Alice's Makan, and would love to try all the other items on the menu another time.

Alice's Makan
Food Court, Pavilion On George
580 George Street
Sydney NSW 2000
Tel. +61 2 9262 7771

Alice's Makan Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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