KUALA LUMPUR, July 17 — During the Ramadan month, one of the highlights is the food bazaars that pepper streets around the city. My all-time favourite is the massive bazaar reputed to have more than 300 stalls, located at the carpark area of Taman Tasik Permaisuri or what is also known as the Cheras Football Stadium.
Sweets reign supreme in the bazaars since they give you that sugar rush after one day of fasting. Popular items include tepung pelita, the soft rice flour pudding with coconut milk, steamed putu piring or colourful puddings topped with a myriad of fruits like pink dragonfruit, strawberries and kiwi fruits.
This particular bazaar boasts a profusion of Kelantan desserts like the rich and egg-y akok with various toppings such as coconut and pandan.
The sweet treats are cooked in special moulds over a gas fire. This year, one particular stall is selling unusual East Coast sweets such as Sira Pisang or bananas in syrup and Puteri Mandi or glutinous rice balls coated in syrup and freshly grated coconut.
Apart from the traditional Malay desserts, there is also a little cuteness for the children, in the form of Ultraman or Sponge Bob topped cakes.
For the savoury side, the murtabak reigns supreme with all kinds of varieties. One new version currently making its rounds at the different bazaars, is the Murtabak Layer Singapura.
This variant means more work, as it involves two or three layers of dough with the egg and meat mixture.
This bazaar is also popular for its glistening honey chicken reputed to be from a Turkish recipe. The whole spatchcock birds are roasted on a large rotisserie contraption using a charcoal fire.
The list goes on with ayam percik, nasi kukus with ayam dara, fortifying beef soups, laksa, etc. It's not all Malay food, as nowadays you even see Japanese takoyaki stalls, fried chicken franchises from Taiwan or even burgers lining the bazaars.
* Ramadan Bazaar Taman Tasik Permaisuri, Jalan Yaakob Latif, Cheras, Kuala Lumpur