One of my regular hang out places is this simply decorated outlet tucked at the Promenade called Mark's Assam Laksa. I was introduced to this place by my cousin from Toronto who declared that it had the best assam laksa in 1 Utama. He was on vacation from Toronto for a few months and he regularly visited 1 Utama so he knew what he was talking about. When he made that statement, that was before Jusco Home Centre opened their deli which also serves assam laksa. I have tried both assam laksas and find them to be great. The difference between the one at the Jusco Home Centre is their gravy is more spicy than the one at Mark's and thicker. However, I tend to eat more at Mark's since it is a short walk from the supermarket plus they serve quite a wide selection of cold desserts here.
For those who are unfamiliar with assam laksa, the spicy gravy is slightly sourish and is made from assam (Malay for tamarind) and originates from Penang. It has flaked mackerel, lemon grass, ginger flower, lengkuas (Malay for blue ginger) and chilli in it's gravy. Thick laksa noodles are used and it is garnished with mint leaves, lemon grass and cut red chillies. An essential addition to the laksa is the he-ko, which is prawn paste that is thick and sweetish. In the picture below, it is the dark stuff in the spoon.
Another must have I eat at this place is their Nasi Kunyit with Chicken Curry. Nasi Kunyit is made from glutinous rice soaked in coconut milk that has turmeric added in hence the yellow colour. At this place, I think they mix glutinous rice with normal rice as it is not as sticky. I prefer it that way as if you eat too much sticky glutinous rice, it is bad for your digestion. This particular dish used to be so popular in parties when I was young but nowadays you only see them whenever you receive a full moon package. When a newborn baby is one month old hence the full moon reference, the parents will celebrate by distributing red eggs, nasi kunyit and chicken curry to their friends and relatives. Looks like I will be getting some soon as a friend of mine just gave birth to a baby girl yesterday.
I also had some Cendol which was full of green cendol bits, red beans and some corn topped with shaved ice sprinkled with gula melaka syrup (palm sugar) and evaporated milk. Sorry but I did not take a picture of the inside bits when it melted as I was too busy finishing it. They have quite a wide selection of cold desserts here with different toppings that are great to cool you down after a bout of shopping.
Mark's Assam Laksa
Lot G213A, Ground Floor, Promenade,
1 Utama Shopping Centre
Bandar Utama, PJ
Tel: 03-6273 5530
*Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here is entirely based on my personal tastebuds and may vary for others. The reviewer also declares that she has not received any monetary or non-monetary compensation from the restaurant for writing this review.