Last week, we were invited by The Cooking House to attend a cooking demo with Celebrity Chef Dato' Ismail. During the cooking demo, Chef Ismail, owner of Rebung Restaurant in Bangsar as well as celebrity chef of TV programme, Ala-ala kampung, shared quite a few tips with us on how to prepare traditional Malay cuisine. And I'm happy to report that I have tried his recipe for lodeh siam at home and my family loves it :D (Will post the recipe later today so that you guys can prepare it for Aidifiltri if you wish :D)
Baby Sumo and Chef Dato' Ismail
Chef Ismail is a person who believes in using fresh ingredients in his cooking and whenever possible, organic. He has been a chef for over 32 years and have been cooking from the tender age of 10. He names his late grandmother as the inspiration for him to cook.
The first dish that Chef Ismail showed us was the ayam rendang Rembau from his hometown Rembau in Negeri Sembilan. He tells us that this is a very spicy dish, however he toned down the chillies for us. The chicken can also be substituted with beef topside. He tells us that nowadays we can easily buy blended spices in the supermarket such as marsala powder, however it tastes better if you blend the spices yourself. I have to agree. ;)
Toasting the spices
Hubby has a go
Ayam rendang Rembau - the spiciness level was just nice for me. It was very delicious!
Me "cooking" the ayam rendang Rembau ;)
The ayam masak merah is a fusion between Malay and Indian cuisine. This is another dish which I love eating out, but have never attempted to make at home. I'm planning to try this recipe when The Unc comes back for his holiday. Chef Ismail also made nasi tomato udang, and he recommends using basmati rice for this dish as it is less starchy. All fragrant rice, including nasi briyani and nasi minyak must have ginger, shallot and garlic. I also noticed that he uses white pepper powder in his cooking, which he explains gives body to the dish.
Chef Ismail uses a lot of this in his cooking..
Finally, the lodeh siam which was one of the simplest dish he prepared that evening. Lodeh siam is a vegetable dish originating from Indonesia, and Chef Ismail has given it a Thai twist. For this dish, it is common to use cabbage and long beans, and other additions may include tempe, deep fried tofu and beancurd skin (fu chuk). I like this very much since it has got two of my favorite ingredients, cabbage and tom yum.
After the cooking demo, the attendees berbuka puasa together at The Cooking House. Everything was absolutely delicious, I enjoyed the food very much. Now that I have the recipes, I can recreate them at home too. Otherwise, for those feeling lazy, you can always visit Chef Ismail's restaurant in Bangsar.
For more info on The Cooking House and the cooking class schedules here, please click here.
Full set of photos can be viewed on my Facebook page here.
Location: The Cooking House, 20-1, Jalan 31/70A, Desa Sri Hartamas, 50480, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Tel: +603 - 2300 1070
GPS Coordinates: 3.162852, 101.648195
*Recipes will be posted soon, starting with lodeh siam which I will post later this evening.