April 17, 2018
When it comes to the Ramadan buffet, The Melting Pot remains one of my firm favourites. At this year’s media preview, I notice that the kitchen team, led by chefs Dzulkarnain Salleh, Rogayah Sharif and Azizah Abdul Malik, has come up with new items.
|Gearbox Soup and Beef Soup with soft bone, tripe and oxtail|
For instance, apart from the ever-popular Gearbox Soup, diners can now take their pick of pre-cooked oxtail, tripe and soft bone – individually or combined – and the chef will heat this up with beef stock.
|Roti John with chicken and beef filling as well as Murtabak|
Then there’s Roti John, stuffed with chicken or beef serunding. The chicken version is so moist and delicious that I am tempted to have seconds.
Chapatti with dhal and sardine sambal and murtabak are also new. While I am not enamoured of the chapatti, the murtabak is worth a try.
|Ulam-ulam with various dressings|
|Chicken Liver kerabu|
|Green Mango Kerabu|
|Kerang (cockle) kerabu|
|Thai Prawn Salad|
|Oysters on ice, ready to be shucked|
|Seafood on ice|
But let’s get back to the appetisers. There are western style salads with the various dressings as well as dressed salads. For kampung flavour, there’s ulam-ulam with sambal belacan, budu, air asam, tempoyak and cincaluk or various types of kerabu that include Thai-style Prawn, Green Mango, Chicken Liver, Cockles and Deepfried Fish Egg.
Seafood on ice is popular, especially freshly shucked oyster, red prawn and mussel.
|Hot and steaming Bubur Lambuk|
To start with something hot, go for teh tarik/coffee or Bubur Lambuk, a must-have for the fasting month. Or chill with iced drinks such as soya bean milk, air bandung, mango juice and sugar cane.
Some diners prefer to dive straight into the hot mains. At the teppanyaki station, chefs stirfry or grill your choice of fish, prawn, squid or meat while you wait.
|Fish head curry with eggplant and lady finger|
|Beef Lungs in Chilli|
|Lamb Shank Stew|
I am rarely bothered to wait, so I head for the trays and claypots filled with Indian-style Fish Head Curry, Ayam Lemak Pucuk Ubi and Dry Spicy Beef Dendeng or Lamb Shank Stew.
|Siput Sedut with basil leaves|
I spot my favourite, Siput Sedut Daun Selasih. The sea snail is cooked in creamy coconut gravy with basil and best of all, the flesh comes out without much hard coaxing on my part.
|Spicy Udang Galah|
Seafood is a favourite ingredient at Melting Pot. Claypots are filled with Spicy Clam, Sambal Kepah Minang, Spicy Crab and Spicy Udang Galah. The Spicy Crab is delicious enough to make me get up from the table to grab another piece.
|Deepfried Tenggiri marinated in spices|
Then there’s tenggiri fish, well marinated in spices and so well deepfried that the meat remains moist while there’s a pleasing crisp on the outside.
The good thing is that the food is cooked in small amounts and continuously replenished throughout the evening.
|Sambal Udang Tempoyak with Petai|
Durian lovers will enjoy Sambal Udang Tempoyak with petai (stinky beans) though my main complaint is that the aroma of petai seems subdued by that of durian.
|Ikan Percik is popular|
|Kailan with Salted Fish|
A whole fish is cooked Percik style but if you prefer something less spicy, the Chinese corner offers, besides dim sum, fish steamed with ginger and there’s Stirfried Kalian with salted fish too.
|Roasted Lamb and biryani|
Roasted Whole Lamb is carved and served with mushroom sauce, rosemary sauce or mint jelly with biryani rice on the side. The rice pairs well with Asam Pedas Ekor, scented with bunga kantan.
|Pucuk Manis with Keledek|
To my surprise, my favourite dish of the day is Pucuk Manis with keledek. This is so well balanced in flavours and there’s a creamy texture that gives this humble vegetable dish a star quality.
|Part of the dessert counter|
|Local Malay pastries|
Dessert is a choice of fresh fruit, bread and butter pudding, cakes, pastries, ice cream with various toppings and local kuih-muih such as kuih lompang, serimuka, ondeh-ondeh, kuih talam, cekodok, fried banana, fritters, kuih keria, kuih cara, serawa durian, bubur pulut hitam and sago gula Melaka.
Midway through dinner, Begema 5, a band from Indonesia which has been rocking Concorde for decades, serenades diners at their tables.
MELTING POT CAFÉ
Concorde Hotel Kuala Lumpur
Jalan Sultan Ismail, KL
Tel: +603-2717 2233
When & How Much
Buka Puasa buffet
May 21-June 10: RM148 nett
May 1-20 & June 11-14: 15% discount
Sahur (pre-dawn) buffet
Sun to Thurs: 3am to 5.30am
Fri & Sat: 11pm to 5.30am
The special sahur spread includes bubur lambuk, mee mamak, nasi lemak, Teochew porridge, assorted sandwiches etc.