Hainanese Food @ Malacca Hainan Association, Malacca.
Continued from my previous visit to Malacca, under the event of A Date With Bloggers 2012, we were invited to this Malacca Hainan Association nearby Jonker Walk for a scrumptious traditional Hainanese lunch with the Chief Minister of Malacca-- Datuk Seri Mohammad Ali Rustam. A lot of activities were planned for the bloggers, including to witness and participate in the making of the Malacca Chicken Rice Balls, biscuit-making demo by Mei Zhong Yuan confectioneries, new product introduction fruit tea by Jonker Gallery and food tasting on the various kinds of traditional Hainanese food. Most of us in our group agreed that it was definitely one of the best meal we've had in Malacca.
A guest-welcoming speech given by the person in charge of the Malacca Hainanese Association and a brief introduction on the food about to serve to us.
The fruit tea that I've mentioned about, product from Jonker Gallery. Unfortunately, you can only find these drinks at Malacca and we bloggers, get to sample some of the chilled fruit tea, it was truly refreshing and a thirst-quencher. This series of fruit tea comes with four flavors in total, namely the Apple with Lemon, Apple with Peach, Apple with Passion Fruit, and Apple with Guava. I had a sip on the Apple with Peach but I was told that most of the bloggers from our group prefer Apple with Lemon. You can get each of these at Rm 4.
The food demo for the making of Malacca Chicken Rice Balls started shortly right after that. Bloggers were shown on the making of these rice balls by the ladies from the Hainanese Association and some of the bloggers did participate together too.
Followed by food demo from Mei Zhong Yuan confectioneries, showing fellow bloggers on how to make the famous Malacca pineapple tarts. I did not get to shoot a lot of photos as the stage was surrounded by bloggers and I can't even find myself a chance to sneak in.
The lady owner from LW Nyonya Pineapple Tarts House came and provided fellow bloggers with some of their freshly made pineapple tarts as well. I've tried and sample some of them and personally, I find the Pandan (green color) flavor of pineapple tarts most appealing and unique in its own way. I did buy some of them and brought them back to Penang too.
We had to wait for the arrival of Chief Minister of Malacca before we can dig in. We had to wait for quite some time before his arrival. The friendly Chief Minister shook every participant's hand followed by a welcoming speech by him.
The lunch started shortly after the delivery of speech by the Chief Minister. The first thing that I've started with, was none other than the famous Malacca Chicken Rice Balls and their Deboned Boiled Chicken. The rice balls were very impressive, every single bite from the rice ball was robust in the aroma of chicken lard, not to mention that the texture of the rice balls was just perfect. On the other hand, the deboned chicken was not up to par in my opinion, perhaps my expectation on the chicken was rather high, I find the chicken was rather rough in texture, the meat was not as juicy as I thought they will be too. The chili sauce that meant to be complementing the chicken and the rice balls was satisfying, but I would prefer if they could slightly squeeze some lime juice just to increase the sourness and making it more appetizing.
Up next, was their Ladies Finger served with Sambal Belacan. The main soul of this dish was the Sambal Belacan, however, to my liking, the sambal belacan was nicely done, it was very flavorful and the spiciness was just there. This combination paired well with the chicken rice balls too.
We get to sample this Sotong (Squid) Sambal Belacan as well. This was actually one of my favorite dishes as I am a huge fan of squids. The sauce did complement well with the squid but I would prefer if they could serve the petai as a whole as they actually halved the petai and it lacked of the texture. Nevertheless, it was still a very good dish.
Assam Prawns was okay, I would prefer the dry version of the Assam Prawns instead of this version with some sauce. I think I can get better ones back in Penang.
Ayam Buah Keluak (Scientific Name: Pangium Edule) was something special and unique. I have never tasted nor have I heard of this Buah Keluak before and such, I've tried to dig the seeds out from the buah keluak and tasted them, it tasted like some fermented beans with some alcohol aroma. As for this dish, it was too sweet to my liking and surprisingly, the flavor of buah keluak was not too distinctive and it was more to a normal chicken cooked with sweet sauce to me.
As for desserts, we were served with these Bua Ta Art which made of glutinous rice and sprinkled with some coconut flakes and brown sugar, then topped with sesame seeds. It was not that bad actually, at least credits should be given to the chewy texture but somehow it failed to impress me further.
Deep Fried Glutinous Rice Ball with Sesame Seeds was something very common to me, not to be cocky but I can find tonnes of these in Penang, they are basically everywhere in Penang. As for these, I had one small bite only, taste-wise, pretty much similar to those in Penang.
One of the highlights of the day was this Ou Bua Kia which made of 鸡屎藤 or Chicken Fevervine Herb and Roots. The juice from the herbal roots was extracted and and mixed with the glutinous flour. They were then molded into these round-shape thing. They were served together with ginger tea. Despite of the fact that this dessert has proven medicinal effects but I was not fond to these things. All I can blame was the natural flavor of the Chicken Feverine Herb and Roots.
Last but not least, we get to sample these Yi Bua too, they were obviously made from glutinous rice flour and possessed a very chewy texture. The fillings were all coconut. I think I've seen and tried these in Penang before. Taste-wise, was okay, nothing much to shout over.
That basically concluded my trip to Malacca this time, it was a truly awesome experience to meet with the other bloggers from other states/countries and get to sample various kinds of Malacca's traditional and famous food/snacks. Special thanks to the Malacca Hainanese Association for the food and the awesome event and a big salute to those aunties for treating us such a scrumptious meal.