PETALING JAYA, Sept 13 — Started in January this year, Homm Homm The Project showcases home-cooked Thai recipes from Isan-born chef Piyanat Yowabut (or Gugs as he is better known).
Previously attached to Damansara Heights Krung Thep Restaurant, Chef Gugs started "Homm Homm" or food with a fragrant smell in Thai, to deliver authentic Thai cuisine to people's doorstep.
Based in Section 17, Petaling Jaya, you get to dine at home with their weekday single-person meals on Wednesdays and Thursdays. And on the weekends, it's a family style menu with an assortment of dishes.
Limited portions are available since Chef Gugs is doing this on a solo basis. He also offers various desserts and small bites on the side.
Let's start with their family meal. The set is for two (or three) persons and is priced at RM160. Your dishes will come with jasmine rice.
It's a feast for your senses as each curated dish has bright, intense flavours that you won't be able to resist. What makes the meal incredibly interesting is Chef Gugs will send you notes to explain each dish, just like how you get introduced to a meal at a restaurant, via WhatsApp before the delivery/pick-up.
This truly makes each meal a journey into the depths of Thai cuisine.
There was muu pad gapi, a stir-fried pork dish with the delicious flavours of shrimp paste, fish sauce and sugar. There's also some lime juice to cut through the richness. In between the tender pork slices, you discover plump stink beans or petai mixed with whole chillies.
Thai cuisine has many curries, some which we don't see outside of the country. The geng leuang pla gab nor mai dong is a unique one with its light but distinct sourish and spicy taste. It's also a yellow hue, thanks to the use of turmeric.
The curry is served with fresh sea bass and bamboo shoots. It uses hot chilli peppers to give it a spicy kick, while lime juice gives it a tartness. For the seabass, a whole fish was used and it was poached perfectly.
There was also an assortment of raw vegetables like long beans, cucumber, starfruit and betel leaves to be paired with different condiments like salted egg and sweet pork made with tender pieces of pork belly. The highlight was the nahm prik gapi or the shrimp paste relish. It's absolutely addictive with its fermented shrimps, and packed with chillies and garlic. An absolutely addictive dip.
The pla deng tort kamin sounds simple as it's just deep fried silver sillago fish or what we commonly call, ikan bulus. What made it exceptional was the combination of crispy skin and bones, paired with sweet fish flesh and the bright nahm jim dip with its pounded chillies, garlic and shallots.
The colour of the deep fried fish may look a little darker than what we usually see. This is because it is marinated with a paste that is made from garlic, lemongrass, black peppercorns, fresh turmeric, chillies and just a touch of curry powder. This keeps away any fishy smells.
Last but not least, the unusual bai liang pad kai which is stir fried malinjo leaves with egg. The leaves have a thick texture that gives a good bite when paired with the fluffy egg and lard fritters.
For last week's weekday lunch, it was a comforting noodle dish of guay tio gai mara or braised chicken noodle soup with bitter melon (RM18) for Wednesday. This will be available for this upcoming Wednesday as well.
The broth may look light but it has a nice depth. This paired well with the silky rice noodles and the tender braised chicken. You get two textures of bitter melon too. One which is soft as it is braised in the broth and crunchy as it is raw. There's also sliced mushrooms, lard croutons and fresh cilantro sprigs that complete the noodle dish.
For last Thursday, it was the crowd favourite of pad krapow (RM18). This version is executed well with fluffy stir fried pork with garlic, chillies and holy basil leaves. The dish is also perfectly seasoned with fish sauce, dark soy sauce and sugar. What completes it is the fried egg with a golden oozing yolk and crispy edges that is perfect with the pork and fragrant jasmine rice. If this is your favourite, look out for this item as it is offered on rotation.
For this coming Thursday, it's another crowd pleaser which is their flavour-packed kao soy gai from Chiang Mai. The slightly sweet tasting curry that accompanies the egg noodles is packed with so much depth of flavour that you will be licking the bowl. It is topped with crunchy fried noodles that gives a nice contrast of textures.
You can also order various bites that rotate each week. Last week it was saku sai moo or tapioca dumplings (RM12). These pearl-like dumplings have a slight chewy texture and a meat filling that is slightly sweet. Each dumpling is sprinkled with crunchy fried garlic to give it a nice texture contrast. Eat it with the lettuce leaves and cilantro sprigs for a fresh taste.
I also sampled khanom chan or the pandan layer dessert for RM12. Ita texture is similar to the kuih lapis with a chewiness. What makes it nice is the rich fragrance of pandan leaves paired with the coconut milk. You can just eat it on its own or do like how we used to eat kuih lapis... peel each layer to prolong enjoying a childhood favourite.
For this week, Chef Gugs is offering tako peuak which is taro pudding and coconut topping. There is also bua loy or glutinous rice balls served in coconut milk and a sweet egg. Both items are priced at RM12.
Each week, the weekday offerings menu is released during the weekend before. For the weekend meals, the menu is usually released later in the week.
It's best you follow Chef Gugs on his Instagram account as updates are posted on it. As the account is marked as private, just request to follow. Some items sell out quickly so it is best to book ahead. Delivery can also be arranged for the meals with a third party provider as long as the charges are paid by you.
Homm Homm The Project, Section 17, Petaling Jaya. You can WhatsApp +6016-7895602 to place your orders for the upcoming week. Instagram: @desktop______error