Malaysia Nyonya Restaurant, Howick, Auckland

Nyonya (or Peranakan) cuisine is a regional specialty that evolved from the fusion of Malay and Chinese cultures in Malaysia (Malacca, Penang), Singapore. Indonesia and Brunei. In the 15/16th century, Chinese men who sojourned to these places were bachelors, and often took Malay wives. These amazing women adapted Chinese ingredients and Malay spices to create a new blended cuisine.

Nyonya cuisine, which includes Kapitan Chicken, assam laksa and kuihs, is now part of the mainstream food culture in Malaysia.

Location: Unit D, 87 Picton Street, Howick
Phone: (09) 537 6168
Opening hours: Wed – Mon for lunch and dinner, closed Tuesday.

Pie-tee (Top Hat) is a well-known nyonya snack, which consists of a crispy deep-fried case filled with shredded vegetables (3 for $5.50).

The specialty of the house is ‘Golden Pillow’; this is a creation of the restaurant, but contains elements of what nyonya food typifies, – a blend of cuisines. Golden Pillow consists of Kapitan Chicken (you can request Beef Rendang as a substitute as we did) wrapped in foil and encased in bread, $28. It was fantastic to have crusty bread to mop up the savoury rendang gravy, and this is definitely a must-try when you visit. This must be pre-ordered, so make sure you let them know you when you book your table.

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The butter prawns ($28) was good, but did not have the depth of flavor of what we were expecting.

Garlic Kankong ($16) never fails. The regular dish on the menu is sambal kangkong, but I unfortunately have a low tolerance for spicy foods (yes, I know, I am Malaysian, – this is a constant source of mockery in my family).

To finish off, we ordered bubur cha cha ($5.50) and chendol ice ($5.50). The chendol was a huge disappointment, – the bright luminous green colour, texture was sort of crumbly and had a hint of sourness. Got to learn to make this myself.

Overall, this place has some unique dishes, which makes it worth a visit, or a few.

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5 thoughts on “Malaysia Nyonya Restaurant, Howick, Auckland

  1. ChrisTina says:

    The chendol texture should be chewy ,what we had was way off the original !!!
    Ya ,must attempt to make authentic chendol .
    The GOLDEN PILLOW is the saving grace for the meal !!!

  2. cilipadi says:

    Mi – we have to try the other chendol place when you're next here.

    Masak Masak, – time to come back for a visit, – stop making us jealous by traipsing all over Europe! 🙂

    josashimi – I've paid up to $20 for kangkong. Yup, the going rate is rather shocking, considering a bunch of the stuff is less than $2.

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