smashed chicken, or flattened chicken? whatever it is exactly, that’s the literal translation of ‘ayam penyet’ – a very popular chicken dish originating from indonesia.
i’ve read about the delight of ‘ayam penyet’ in countless blogs, and it’s time i try one. i went to the one in sunway pyramid – at level LG2, the area with the arabic interior - ‘ayam penyet ria’.
yes, i’m an ayam penyet virgin about to have her first one ever!
how did i end up at sunway pyramid?
my mom’s sister whom i call aunty na wanted to do some raya shopping at sunway pyramid, and asked me to join. so aunty na and i, along with my cousins shina and nadhirah went round and round the shopping mall, looking for the perfect baju kurung or kebaya.
me? i’ve done my shopping weeks ahead! songkok, sampin, baju melayu and baju kebaya – all done after the tiring shopping spree, we had iftar at ‘ayam penyet ria’.
to avoid the iftar crowd, we booked a table as early as 3pm, placed our orders and straight away paid for it. we took the ‘chicken family set’ which comprised of white steamed rice, the ayam penyet, rawon or beef soup, chicken soto, chicken satay, and gado-gado. the set is fit for four.
add rm3 and you can choose a refillable drinks between ice lemon tea or lime juice.
to my surprise the menu is not that extensive. everything seemed to be ‘smashed’ or ‘flattened’ – there’s ikan keli penyet, udang penyet, and bakso penyet! all penyet! in addition, there were just a couple of soup dishes – and that’s it.
with my mak’s younger sister aunty na
i’ve seen a few ayam penyet restaurant, and so far this has the best interior. i was immediately impressed by the pretty rattan chairs that add a certain class to an otherwise simple eatery. there are also booth seats, as well as a whole area for those who wants to eat sitting on the floor! this is usually for bigger groups.
i also like the white tree-branch thingy they have as dividers and wall decor. it gives a feel of a japanese restaurant, though. as an indonesian restaurant, shouldn’t they have like the indon batik or something as wall decor?
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we already booked a table, ordered AND paid for our food so we decided to perform maghrib prayer first before going to ‘ayam penyet ria’ for our iftar.
when we arrived, the restaurant was completely full, and there was still a long line of people waiting to go in. we saw one empty table on the front that must be ours. seronok je masuk dengan selamba passing the line of people queuing up because we already booked a table!
my ice lemon tea with my cousin nadhirah in the background
our drinks were ready on the table, along with 4 small cups of mash potatoes as starters. the mash potato has a slightly cheesy taste, which made it even more tasty!
the rawon, a surabaya beef soup, and the chicken soto
first came the soup. we had ‘rawon’, a surabaya beef soup. i’m not really a soup person, but this beef soup is fantastic! really delicious. spicy, yet not too overwhelming and spoiling the taste. and the beef – oh, man – shreds so easily at a touch of a fork and spoon. excellent dish.
soto ayam or chicken soto was also part of the dinner set. i didn’t try this one as i was too busy sampling the delicious rawon soup!
there’s also chicken satay and the peanut gravy was already poured over. it’s served on a cute wooden plate, with banana leaf. nice.
fried shallots were sprinkled on top of the peanut gravy, which i don’t appreciate. menyibuk! the peanut gravy, meanwhile tasted too sweet for me. and weird enough, also leaning towards peanut butter taste! yes, weird!
next is the gado-gado, or like my aunty na put it – the indon salad. it’s basically cut up cucumber, tomato, salad, tauhu and boiled egg. and instead of thousand island dressing, it was kuah kacang or peanut gravy! there were also keropok (fish crackers) on top of the whole thing.
i generally love salad, but not a fan of gado-gado. my aunty na loves it, though! aku amik keropok je!
my first ayam penyet!
finally, the star of the show – the ayam penyet! my first ever!
at first glance, there was nothing special at all about this dish. the chicken looked just like any other ayam goreng kunyit. why was it so popular then?
it’s served with the indonesian sambal (which was very, very spicy to me), fresh green salad and some crunchy bits sprinkled on top of the chicken. the chicken looked – yes – flattened, probably using a butcher knife.
one try and i understand why ayam penyet is more than just an ayam goreng kunyit. it’s got more spice. eat together with steamed white rice and slurps of rawon – perfect. i love it!
with kazim and aunty na
you want authentic indonesian ‘penyet’ dishes, with ultra-stinging sambal and delicious soups, head on to ‘ayam penyet ria’. great environment, friendly and helpful staff and of course good food.
the good food prepared fresh, newly fried and presentable with banana leaves and the works.
my cousins; shina and nadhirah
in fact, as we’re eating, the line of people waiting to go in trailed longer. and they were willing to wait for more than half an hour for seats – that was how good the food was.
i wanted to speed up my eating so that the people could have a seat – but i was enjoying my first ayam penyet too much to bother. sorry folks! and i wasn’t even feeling guilty as some were eyeing our seat which was close to the entrance.
come early, book, order and pay for your food in advance – then you’ll be fine!
thanks aunty na for the awesome treat. how bout it honey, wanna try some ayam penyet when you come back?