One of the best things about living in Malaysia - food is readily available to all, at anytime and everywhere. I reckon that's the reason why it'll be hard for me to relocate anywhere else in the world as I love Malaysian food too much.
Since I am flying solo this whole week with Splashie Boy in Thailand/India and my mother in Beijing, I had the itch to visit the pasar malam to get dinner. Unfortunately I was too early for my favourite Assam Laksa man but I did pull out an old archive picture of the salivating laksa for all of you. The picture has me dreaming about his tangy broth and the chunks of fish, so don't be surprised if I'm at the SS4 pasar malam later today.
Although there are two assam laksa stalls/vans at the Petaling Street pasar malams, this one is by far the more popular one. Known as the "four eyed man" in Chinese by his regulars, everyone knows the system. Take a number from the pile of tiny cardboard pieces stuck at one side of the van and wait for your number to be called. Once your lucky number is picked, order your assam laksa. Either pack back (the most popular choice) or sit at the sole table next to the van to slurp down the laksa. The plus point of eating there is you get to add as much prawn paste (har koh) into your laksa from the bottle. The downer is you'll have an audience of people staring at you slurping down those slippery strands of noodles and giving you death stares since you got ahead of them in the queue.
This particular hawker actually started out as a stall at a restaurant on SS3/64. However ever since he moved to the van and started trade in the pasar malam, business is so good that he only works for four days a week i.e. from Monday to Thursday. It's back breaking work though as he has to get up at 6am every day to prepare the broth plus the fish which is deboned and flaked. The toppings - shredded cucumber, pineapple and onions will also need to be prepared ahead.
To get full satisfaction for your laksa, order a portion with extra fish for RM1.50. The small portion is RM3.50 while the big portion is RM4.50.
Assam Laksa Stall (Tan Hock Hai)
Pasar Malam at SS2 (Monday), SS3 (Tuesday), SS4 (Wednesday) and SS2 Cheow Yang area (Thursday)
(Starts around 5 pm)
Updated on 16 May, 2008 - I understand the 4 eyed guy has sold off the business. Not sure if the assam laksa still tastes great but I can see the lady who took over, still maintains the queue with the numbers.
*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.