Along with giving me the calamansi, when I met up with Pink Candles at Ridgemont High I suggested Yazmin Malaysian Restaurant in Alhambra because I knew she liked to try new cuisines. Also, it gave me a chance to revisit the restaurant and to finally blog it.
So I'll start back in June 2008 when I first went to Yazmin with cousin Q and his younger brother.
I wanted to try the rojak salad of pineapples, tofu, cucumbers, mango, jicama in a light sweet chili shrimp sauce sprinkled with peanuts, $6.95. The sauce was very sweet. I couldn't taste the shrimp sauce or chili peppers at all and I was hoping it'd be more like how I like to eat fruit Vietnamese-style with chili peppers and salt. It just tasted like a fruit salad with tofu.
We ordered roti canai which came with the curry sauce and two pieces of flatbread for $4.25.
Nice and flaky.
I also got belacan ladyfingers, okra in shrimp paste sauce.
Curry laksa, egg or rice noodles (They let me have both kinds of noodles) with chicken, shrimp, and tofu in a light curry soup, $6.75. A little too light in flavor, but good.
So while my first experience was alright, nothing overwhelming. Maybe I just wasn't getting Malaysian food?
Which brings us back to this past January, when I dined with Pink Candles at Ridgemont High and her family. We got the roti canai again. Flaky bread and curry sauce always goes over well.
The restaurant added some new specials to the menu so we tried rempah udang, grilled sticky rice with spicy ground shrimp wrapped in banana leaves, $1.75. Yummy. Can't go wrong with grilled sticky rice. I loved their chili sauce too.
Otak otak, grilled fish paste with coconut milk, chili, spices, and lime leaf wrapped in banana leaves, $3. A generous portion and again, that awesome sambal chili sauce. I could smell the kaffir lime leaves in the fish paste and thought it was very good.
Nyonya nasi goreng (Nyonya fried rice) with shrimp, egg, ground dried shrimp, topped with shredded cucumber $7.25. A basic fried rice. Nothing that made it stand out.
Char kuei teow, Penang-style flat rice noodles with bean sprouts, shrimp, chicken, eggs, and leeks, $7.55. This reminded me of Chinese beef chow fun, which I like, but wasn't anything unusual.
Beef rendang, beef simmered in coconut milk and lemongrass in a light curry broth, $8.95. Really yummy and flavorful. I was happy just eating the rendang with rice.
Since the otak otak was a new addition to the menu, and knowing how much Gourmet Pigs loves the appetizer, I mentioned it to her. So we were back again the very next day. It helped that I had a 20% off coupon too.
It was cold and rainy and a hot Malaysian pulled milk tea for $2.50 was so smooth and oh so good.
Of course, we got the otak otak.
Nasi lemak with chicken rendang, anchovy chilies, calamari, dry sambal shrimp, eggs, peanuts, coconut rice $7.75. Whoa! In comparison to the portion I got at Belacan Grill, this was an absolute feast!
A whole meal in one and then some. Generous servings and each item was tasty.
Penang Assam Laksa, thick rice noodles in tamarind fish soup with shrimp, pineapple, onions, and cucumbers, $6.75. Pretty good, but a little muted in tamarind flavor. After making asam laksa from a packet and eating this soup a few times, I figured I could make this at home. And so I did.
Masak Ikan Menas Pedas, deep-fried fish fillets with pineapples, bell peppers, and a spicy tamarind sauce, $9.95. I really liked this. Might be too fishy for some people, but the sweet, spicy fish flavor was just right for me.
A few weeks later, I got another 20% off coupon in the mail, so off I went with Tony of SinoSoul and the missus.
Ayam Goreng Istimewa, deep-fried chicken with garlic, $7.95. Just battered chicken pieces, deep-fried, but I was in the mood for fried chicken so this hit the spot.
Petai Goreng Udang, stinky sator beans with shrimp, $8.95. Stinky beans! It's all good.
Claypot fish head curry with okra and eggplant, $15.95. A very generous serving with lots and lots of okra and eggplant. It's hard to tell by the photo but the claypot was huuuuge!
A whole fish head! The curry sauce was amazing as well.
Yazmin Malaysian Restaurant has been in Alhambra for 18 years. It took me a while, but I'm glad I gave them another shot because this is by far my favorite Malaysian restaurant. The family is super nice, the portions are generous, and the dishes are all good.
June 16, 2014 update: Sadly, because the owner was injured, this restaurant is now closed. :(
Who else ate at Yazmin?
Pink Candles at Ridgemont High blogged about our meal.
WeezerMonkey conveniently dined here after watching a movie around the corner.
Other Malaysian restaurants:
Belacan Grill - Redondo Beach
Little Malaysia Restaurant - El Monte
Yazmin Malaysian Restaurant
27 E. Main St.
Alhambra, CA 91801
Monday to Thursday 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and 5 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.
Friday 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Saturday 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Sunday 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m.
1 year ago today, waiting for peony.
2 years ago today, once upon a time, Garden Cafe - Alhambra was my favorite Hong Kong cafe.
3 years ago today, how I learned to cook and my ba noi (Vietnamese paternal grandmother)'s death anniversary dinner.