Aug 152011

I”m fairly sure most of us in Malaysia and Singapore know what Ramly burger satu means. For you who haven’t been to Malaysia or don’t quite understand Malay language, Ramly burger satu simply means, one Ramly burger please – usually directed to the burger seller or his assistant.

RM 2.50 a pop (SGD$1.20), Ramly burger can be found on just about every street corner in Malaysia, particularly in the streets of Kuala Lumpur (KL). Sloppy, greasy and utterly delicious, your street eats adventure in KL  would not be quite complete without giving  this a try before getting the KELUAR (departed) stamp on your passport.

Created by Ramly Moknin, Ramly Burger started out in 1979 as a small family business operating from a mobile kiosk in Kuala Lumpur. The family recipe soon became a hit among Malaysians and the rest of the story is history….

These days, Ramly burgers not only can be bought from Ramly burger carts in Malaysia, but you can also get the frozen patties over at supermarkets too.

When Babe in the City invited me to participate in this year’s Merdeka Open House – Makan Through Malaysia, i didn’t need to mull long to decide what to cook. So why this dish?

Apart from wanting to try whipping this up for the longest time for my loved ones, particularly Darcy, who refuses to try this burger from Ramly burger carts, there’s a little story behind my accidental love for this burger. :)

Before i met my first puppy love, i was not big on this burger to be honest. I hardly eat it at all. It was through him, let’s call him L, i was introduced to the world of Ramly Burger. Burger ayam, burger lembu, Ramly burger special… without fail, L will insist on having his fill for the week every Friday date night when he sends me home, after our very first burger adventure together on one fateful hungry night.

For the first few months, it was always me who did the ordering because being in an overseas boarding school  since very young, L cannot speak Malay. Because he was so greedy, he would insist me on ordering 2 burgers at one go, satu ayam, satu lembu, even though i sternly told him not to. You see, it wasn’t because i was a bad girlfriend or something, it was more like i felt obligated to eat my share too, hungry or not, because L can never finish both burgers and i don’t even like ketchup!

Aaahh, silly little girls… Yes, that’s right. Silly little girl me then!
(errm, though i’m no longer a little girl, i’m still as silly– always vacuuming up unfinished food by others!)

Needless to say, not too long after that, it was not L who will impatiently open up those wrapped burgers. :)

When i decided to whip this up in my very own kitchen 13 years later for Darcy and the little ones, truffle fries are a must. To wash down all the grease, the helper suggested beer for the adults (actually, it was more for herself! grin) and freshly squeezed orange juice for the boys.

Ramly Burger

Homemade beef patties :

500g minced beef
120g fresh breadcrumbs
1 large egg
2 1/2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp black pepper

1. Combine all the ingredients in a large bowl.
2. Divide into 8-10 portions and roll into balls.
3. Set aside.

(adapted from food & travel)

Burger Bun :

1 1/4 cup milk
1 cup cream
1/4 cup warm water
1/4 oz yeast
1/4 cup sugar
5 cups bread flour
2 tsp salt

sesame seeds, for sprinkling


To make dough, using a stand mixer :

1. Bring milk and cream to a bare simmer in a small saucepan over medium heat. Cool mixture to lukewarm.

2. Add warm milk mixture, sugar, flour, and salt to yeast and warm water and mix at low speed, scraping down side of bowl as necessary, until flour is incorporated. Increase speed to medium and beat 6 minutes. (Dough will be sticky.)

Transfer dough to a lightly oiled large bowl and turn to coat with oil. Cover with a kitchen towel (not terry cloth) and let rise in a draft-free place at warm room temperature until doubled, about 2 hours.

To make hamburger buns :

1. Butter 2 large baking sheets. Punch down dough, then divide dough into 10-12 pieces. Shape these dough into a ball and press them down a little use fingers before arranging them 3 inches apart on baking sheets.

2. Loosely cover buns with oiled plastic wrap or cloth and let rise at warm room temperature until they doubled in size, 45-60 minutes later.

3. Preheat oven to 375°F.

4. Brush buns with some of water and sprinkle with sesame seeds. Bake until tops are golden and undersides are golden-brown and sound hollow when tapped, 20 to 25 minutes. Transfer to racks to cool completely.

(adapted from Epicurious’ Homemade burger buns)

To assemble :

(serves 2)

2 homemade patties
2 homemade burger buns, each split into half
2 eggs, beaten separately
2 leaves butterhead lettuce
4 slices cucumber
chili sauce or ketchup
2 slices of emmantel cheese, optional


1. Heat up frying pan over medium heat. Place a beef ball in the pan and press down with your frying slice so that you get a disc about 1 cm thick and roughly 6cm across. Cook for 2 minutes on each side, or according to preference for doneness. Remove.

2. Using the same pan, lower the heat and lightly toast the buns that have been slathered generously with butter for 1 minute. Remove.

3. In a clean wide pan, heat up a little oil and pour over the beaten egg. Tip the pan so that the egg omelette spreads evenly and is large enough for you to wrap the patty in. When the omelette is set, place one patty in the center and using a spoon and chopsticks, fold up the omelette on 4 sides so that you get a neat, squarish package. Repeat with other egg.

4. Place an omelette-wrapped patty on one half of the toasted bun and top with lettuce, cucumber and tomato. Squirt on mayonnaise and chili sauce/ketchup. Cover up with the other half of the bun.

5. Bon appétit!


If you are teeny weeny bit (yeah right!) lazy like me, you can forgo the whole omelette, squarish package idea, because it’s really not easy to wrap the patty up. We like our food piping hot, so i did the whole wrapping thingie in the burning pan itself.

Ramly special or not, so long you get the basic burger formula right, your burger will kick ass!

Ramly burger basic formula : soft buns – toasted with butter in  pan, moist and juicy meat patty, crunchy vegetables and tomatoes + generous squirts of rich, thick mayonnaise and sweet chili sauce.

Behind the scene after photographing – boy1 & helper helping themselves right there and then. Too messy and bothersome to transport those burgers to the kitchen again.

Yup, no special photography equipments for always-pressed-for-time-me. It’s just me, the camera, me and the camera. 5-10 minutes is all i can afford, including styling. You have no idea how much i envy those of you who have the luxury of time to do proper set ups, styling, test shots, etc. Nevertheless, i’m still thankful for that short time frame which i can afford, even if it’s just 10 minutes long. :)


I’m submitting this to Muhibbah Monday too, hosted by Suresh of 3hungrytummies.

Mar 312011

Gula Melaka (Palm Sugar)

Ever since C’s handsome baby fed me his purple sweet potato in Shanghai 2 weeks ago, i can’t help but think about it occasionally. So very sweeetttttttt and the colour was gorgeous! — i cleverly managed to forget how pretty they are despite the fact that i had once baked a few loaves of lovely purple sweet potato bread before.

2 days ago at the wet market (have i mentioned that i love wet markets? i do, i do and i do!), i was merely trying my luck and asked the popo casually with zero expectation if purple sweet potato was available. Needless to say, we all know what her answer was aye? ;)

Don’t you just love this Ondeh Ondeh’s colour?!?!

I know i do.

Very much.

Initially, i only had 2-3 ideas in mind on what to do with my prized purple sweet potatoes, apart from roasting them.

But right after i tweeted my thoughts out aloud — not knowing what to do with the potatoes, yet — my tweet tweet friends tweeted back almost immediately with some very fabulous ideas and this Ondeh Ondeh was one of them, courtesy of Ellie from Almost Bourdain. :)

Not too long ago, i’ve made quite a bit of ondeh ondeh using a new recipe. I didn’t like it that much then.

Then, i remember loving my first attempt’s Ondeh Ondeh quite abit. So, for this attempt, i made sure i use back the very same recipe.

Alas, chewy but not so chewy texture obtained.

Perfect for fussy me! Hehe.

Ondeh Ondeh

(makes 20-22 balls)

180g sweet potato, mashed
50g glutinous rice flour
20g tapioca or corn flour
25g sugar
30-45ml water, depending on the dough

80-100g gula melaka, chopped

1/2 young shredded coconut + pinch of salt, steamed for 5 minutes

1. mix skin ingredients and knead into a smooth dough.
2. divide into small balls and wrap in filling.
3. put balls into boiling water. boil until balls float up, remove and coat with shredded coconut.

For more detailed steps with photos, click here!


Something which you might wanna know :)

~ Purple-fleshed sweet potatoes are a fantastic source of anthocyanins (especially peonidins and cyanidins) and have outstanding antioxidant activity. In one study, the antioxidant activity in purple sweet potatoes was 3.2 times higher than that of a type of blueberry! An equally amazing fact about sweet potatoes is the antioxidant capacity of all their parts. Recent research has shown different genes to be at work in the flesh versus skin of the sweet potato producing different concentrations of anthocyanin antioxidants. Even the leaves of the sweet potato plant have been shown to provide important antioxidant benefits and are included in soups in many cuisines.

Of course, that is not why i love sweet potatoes.

I love sweet potatoes because well, i simply love sweet potatoes! Heh.

Oh, and their leaves too — think stir fry sweet potato leaves with sambal + dried shrimps (hay bee).



Submitting this for Muhibbah Monday to Suresh from 3hungrytummies! :)

Mar 212011

I’m back! :)

The China trip is nothing but wonderful, lovely and breathtaking. I’ve been gone for 11 days but it felt like just 3 days! The clock ticked by waaayyy much faster than i’d like it to be, even when i was climbing the 21566184131648733 (in short, endless!!) stair cases! Lol!

Anyway, here’s something to work your appetite for the week while i work on my trip’s photos. I really can’t wait to share all my stories with ya! ;)

Ipoh Hor Fun (from Cantonese hor fun – 河粉) — from Wikipedia :

These are flat rice noodles prepared in the hard water. There are two varieties. Sar hor fun – 沙河粉 is served in a clear chicken and prawn Chau hor fun is fried with a little dark gravy, as opposed to Penang char kway teowwat tan ho which is completely immersed in clear, egg-starch gravy. soup with chicken shreds, prawns and spring onions. which has no gravy but is fried with egg, prawns and cockles. It is also different from Cantonese-style

In my case, my version is Sar Hor Fun.

I had at least 1.5kg of prawn heads sitting in the freezer that waiting to be used. Initially, i wanted to cook Prawn Noodles but unfortunately, i didnt’t have most of the ingredients needed except just a couple. Then, i stared hard at my pantry and fridge for a quick few seconds. In the end, i decided to cook this instead and i must say, no regrets! ;)

All of the ingredients used in this noodle dish is always readily available in my kitchen so, yes.. i’ll be cooking this quite often from now on! It’s extremely easy and very tasty (think of the stock!). Best of all, i could make use of the chicken breast meat which usually would end up in the thrash bin. :P

Ipoh Hor Fun

(serves 4)

For stock

1 chicken breast with bones
300-500g prawn heads, depending on how prawny you like your stock
2L water
fish gravy or salt, to taste


1. Boil chicken breast with water using low heat for at least 1.5 hours.
2. Add in prawn heads and simmer for another 20 minutes before switching the fire off. Stir in fish gravy or salt.
3. Cover and let it sit for another 10 minutes.

For the toppings

chili paste, optional (recipe follows)
2 hard boiled eggs, boiled, peeled and halved, optional
chives, washed and cut (i replaced with spring onions)
200 – 300g bean sprouts, blanched
12 prawns, cooked
chicken meat (can be any part you like, not necessarily breast meat), shredded
fried shallots
800g – 1kg hor fun or flat noodles


1. Prepare all the toppings above — For myself, i enjoy involving the little ones in my meal preparation.. eg ; shredding the chicken meat, peeling the eggs and prawns.

2. Boil a pot full of water and very briefly blanch the noodles in it.

3. Divide the noodles equally among for big bowls before adding in the soup and arranging the toppings onto it.
4. Serve with a spoonful of chili paste if you like for extra oompphhh!

Enjoy! :)

For chili paste
(adapted from here)

15 dried chilies (de-seeded and soaked to soften)
5 shallots (peeled)
2 cloves garlic (peeled)
1 tablespoon of water
3 tablespoons of cooking oil

Blend the chili paste ingredients with a mini food processor until finely ground and well blended. Heat up the wok and add cooking oil. Stir fry the chili paste for 5 minutes. Dish up and set aside.


Submitting this to Muhibbah Monday hosted by lovely Sharon from Test with Skewer.