Nasi Padang in Jakarta

Nasi Padang in Jakarta was scary. Wanted to buy my local driver dinner since it was my last day. It was just me and him (seen here in blue) and the restaurant brought out enough dishes to feed a village. Was relieved they only charge for plates that were partially consumed or touched.

Nasi Padang gets its name from the West Sumatran town of Padang, famous for the culinary rice dish or buffet. Turned out to be an awesome experience.

Book a hotel out of 715 hotels in Jakarta here.

Nasi Lemak At Hotel Farm Ville

One more from Farm Ville Homestay in Sekinchan the other day. Nasi Lemak from Farm Ville’s cosy cafe in a metal shipping container. Everything including rooms and toilets are in a metal container. Was cooling during the rainy weather. Not sure if the air conditioners can keep up during hot days.

Rice is presumably from the touristy Sekinchan Rice Factory nearby.

I have included the two ladies (local paddy farmers’ daughters) at the back to show it is not the deserted Hotel California it appeared to be and also to show the casual atmosphere (eg; her leg on table). You can make food shots atmospheric by including elements of the surrounding environment to tell a story.

Panasonic Lumix GM-1, ISO 250, f4, 1/320 sec.

#farmville #cafe #sekinchan #nasilemak #foodphotography #container #travel #adventure #homestay

A Crossover Food

I think it is rather uncouth to be spitting out prawn tails, prawn legs and shells. Plus I hate getting my hands oily as I need to handle camera equipment and the phone. That could be just me.

I ordered a nasi paprik daging that came with plain white rice (RM 6). It was spelled correctly as pad prik (ผัดพริก) on the menu. In Thai, it means stir fried with chillis. The beef is sauteed with chillis. Chinese long beans, onions and carrots are stir fried until crispy. Quite delicious as the gravy goes with the rice. It was a little too spicy for me, though. Supposedly a dish of Thai origin, it is now available at many Malay restaurants. Call it crossover food.

This post and pic is available as a bigger pic at

Panasonic Lumix GM-1, ISO 1250, f4, 1/320 sec.

#nasipaprik #padprik #thaifood #thai #localfood #spicy #malayfood #rice #m43 #kualaselangor #foodphotography

Park And Pump

Here, a farmer was seen pumping water from his vegetable plot (on right) and discharging the unwelcome flood water into an irrigation canal on left.

I was fascinated by the use of the PTO (power take off) transmission from the drive train of the tractor to power the water suction pump. The multi-tasking and multi use tractor is such a flexible tool for the farmer. Park and pump where it was needed.

Panasonic Lumix GM-1, ISO 200, f10, 1/320 sec.

#documentaryphotography #sekinchan #floods #sunshine #paddy #fields #weather #rice #farmers #tractor

Nasi Ayam Kunyit at Auntie’s Kopitiam, Kuala Selangor

That Sambal.

Nasi Ayam Kunyit (Rice with Turmeric Chicken). A favourite dish of mine at the humble Auntie’s Kopitiam in Kuala Selangor’s old town.

For so many years, I have always stopped here for a Kopi-O or for a simple meal when I am on the way to the paddy fields of Sekinchan.

A ray of sunlight, reflected off my car’s windscreen, crept through the edges of the wax paper holding the dish; highlighting the sambal and part of the rice.

You may want to park your car strategically when doing on-location food photography. Heh.

What makes the food special here? The food is of Nyonya and Hainanese heritage. Two cultures famous for their unique cuisine.

The eponymous Auntie or Madam Foo told me she inherited the coffee shop from her Hainanese father-in-law and Baba mother-in-law 43 years ago.

The shop was founded 80 years ago under a different name. Madam Foo is assisted by a Malay chef in the kitchen now. No pork is served.

What I like even more is that the kopitiam is patronised mostly by locals. A Chinese contractor treating his Indonesian workers to a good meal after completing a project.

A multi-racial group of schoolchildren celebrating a classmate’s birthday. An Indian lady letting her young grandchildren try chicken chop for the first time.

A couple of Malay cops having tea with a Chinese farmer. I don’t know whether the cops are off-duty or in plainclothes. I can hear the chatter on their walkie-talkies.

A lone French backpacker with a Lonely Planet book in her hand. Auntie’s Kopitiam is in Lonely Planet and is highly rated in TripAdvisor, according to her.

For me, the clientele is its testimony. Such a wonderful microcosm of the people in this fishing, agricultural and tourist area.

Where exactly is Auntie’s Kopitiam? Map and directions:

Sony Alpha a7R, ISO 320, f4, 1/60 sec.

#foodphotography #localfood #ayamkunyit #hainanese #nyonya #koptiam #kualaselangor #sonyalpha #a7r #zeiss