Even though I have Malaysian roots, I have not been exposed a lot to the Malaysian (food)culture. I got to know more about it when I met some Malaysian students in my study time and when I went to Malaysia and Singapore in 2014. Later on I notice that there are more Malaysian people living here then I thought. Did you know that there are also restaurants where you can taste authentic Malaysian food? I visited two of them: Nyonya Malaysia Restaurant in Amsterdam and Kampong Express in Rotterdam.
Nyonya Malaysia Restaurant in Amsterdam
My first experience with authentic Malaysian food in the Netherlands was here. This restaurant is in the city centre of Amsterdam and it is recommended to reserve beforehand. It is a small restaurant and it is always crowded. On the menu we could already see many different Malaysian dishes. On their menu they marked some popular dishes. We took some of them. We choose:
Nasi Lemak Nyonya
Literally it means ‘fatty rice’. The rice is cooked in coconut milk and pandan leaves. It is served with fried anchovies, sambal, cucumber and other vegetables, boiled egg and fried ground nuts. I like the mixture of flavours in this dish. It fits really well.
Char Kway Teow 炒粿条
Literally it means stir-fried ricecake strips. It is made from flat rice noodles and it is stir-fried with dark soy sauce, fishcake and bean sprouts. In general I like the flat rice noodles, but in some dishes they can taste quite oily. In this dish that was not the case. It did tasted a little bit burned.
Hainan Chicken Rice 海南鸡饭
With its origin from the Hainan province in southern China, this chicken is first boiled in a stock and then it is served with rice that is cooked in the chicken stock. Here they also served it with fried onions, cucumber, soy sauce and chili sauce. It doesn’t look like the Chicken Rice I know in the way they display it, but I still really love this dish! The chicken has a perfect flavour to it and was very tender. I also loved the rice with the chicken flavour in it.
Kari Bami Soup (Laksa)
Laksa is a spicy noodle soup with rice noodles.The soup is made from a spicy curry with coconut milk and there are prawns and fish cakes in the soup. I cannot handle very spicy food, but this one was not too spicy. It was creamy and full of flavour.
As drinks we had Tea Tarik. This is a strong Malaysian tea with sugar and milk in it. It thought it would taste very sweet, but that wasn’t the case. The flavour was well balanced. We also had Sarsae/Sarsi. This is some kind of root beer which tasted like very sweet cola or red bull.
I was happy to have the chance to visit this Malaysian restaurant. The service is good and the people are very friendly. According to my mother the dishes are better in Malaysia, but for the Netherlands they give a good introduction of the Malaysian cuisine. Please take into account that they don’t serve alcohol and you have to pay by cash.
Nyonya Malaysia Restaurant
1012 CW Amsterdam, Netherlands
Monday till Sunday from 13:00 – 21:00
Kampong Express in Rotterdam
The other Malaysian restaurant I visited is at the West-Kruiskade in Rotterdam. That is the multicultural street in Rotterdam, which is also close to the train station.
There we took the Hainan Chicken Rice, Mamak instant noodles, fried tofu sate with light-spicy peanut sauce and Daging Rendang. The Mamak instant noodles is a popular street food dish served with a piece of chicken spam and fried egg. Daging rendang is slow-cooked malaysian beef. We choose to serve it with coconut rice. As a drink we had the Kampong rose, which is made of rose syrup with coconut milk.
Again the Hainan Chicken Rice was really nice! They also served it with some soup. I liked the peanut sauce they added with the fried tofu sate and the beef from the daging rendang was very tender. There was quite some ice in the kampong rose drink, so it was very cold and a little too watery, but still refreshing.
I am glad I get to eat here. This restaurant is a must try! The tastes are really authentic! It is also nice to have a Malaysian restaurant at the multicultural neighborhood of Rotterdam. It is a bit hidden behind the Felicity Bakery, but you cannot miss the sign they put on the street. The place is decorated in a very Chinese and streetfood style way. It is very small, so it might not be easy to come with a very large group. You can also do a takeaway.
3014PN Rotterdam, Netherlands
Monday: 12:00 – 20:00
Wednesday: 12:00 – 20:00
Thursday: 12:00 – 20:00
Friday: 12:00 – 21:00
Saturday: 12:00 – 21:00
Sunday: 12:00 – 20:00
Other Malaysian hotspots
Besides the two I visited, there are also some other Malaysian restaurants in the Netherlands. I haven’t been there. If you have, let me know what you think of them. If you know other restaurants with Malaysian food you can also let me know.
Maleisisch Restaurant Wau
1012 AR Amsterdam
This is an Indonesian?Malaysian toko and restaurant
2564 JG Den Haag
Restaurant Kampong Kita
Cor Kieboomplein 508
3077 MK Rotterdam
Taste of Life
This is Indonesian/Malaysian, but it appears to be more Indonesian
1078 PZ Amsterdam