Posted by: tonkatsudelights | July 29, 2007

Sinar Medan, Jakarta

One of the things I enjoy whenever I go back to Jakarta is… the chance to eat all my favorite food again. This means Bakmi GM. Soto Gebrak. Ketoprak. Martabak terangbulan. The things I can not find yet in Singapore.

Apart from that, there will usually be one trip to a Chinese food restaurant with my parents or my extended family. The older generation usually prefers places that serve good Chinese food or seafood. The place usually is not a fancy one. They focused more on the taste.

One of such a place is Sinar Medan restaurant in Kelapa Gading Boulevard, North Jakarta. Located in Kelapa Gading, Sinar Medan is facing tough competition considering many good restaurants opening in the same area. But on any given day, Sinar Medan is never in drought of customers. Their recipe for success? Good food at an affordable price.

The menu in Sinar Medan is really not that much different from what we can find in Singapore. This time we ordered steamed nila fish Hongkong style (in soya sauce). Deep fried prawn in mayonaisse. Beansprout with salted fish. Clams in chilli sauce. Fu yung hai (Chinese omelette) Jakarta style. Deep fried shrimp spring rolls. Rice and drinks for all 5 adults and 3 kids.

And the price is… staggeringly low at Rp 222,000 only! Depending on the exchange rate, this comes to only about SGD 37 to 39. Now… in Singapore that might be enough to get you the fish only…

Rice and the spring rolls –> The deep fried shrimp spring rolls, one of their signature dish. And they put the rice in a bakul, traditional rice container. You don’t see this much in Chinese food restaurant because they typically serve rice in an individual bowl.

Steamed nila fish Hongkong style –> Steamed nila fish in soya sauce (Hongkong style). Very nice. Definitely better than what you can find in places like Jumbo Seafood. Or even Crystal Jade.

Deep fried prawns in mayonaisse –> Their prawns in mayonaisse is slightly different from the Singapore version. The prawns are deep fried with thicker coating. Plus they add the sesame, resulting in a different taste. I personally like the Singapore version more than this one.

Fu yung hai Jakarta style –> Fu yung hai Jakarta style. Basically this is similar to an omellete. Egg and flour mix, filled with shredded cabbage, and fried. It is usually served with tomato sauce. The fu yung hai definitely is better than the version sold by Crystal Jade. Thicker and more tasty. The only complaint is the sauce itself. It is the sour tomato sauce version. The best fu yung hai sauce I ever tasted was the one near the place where I used to stay as a toddler. They had special recipe for the sauce — it’s sweet and not sour at all, probably due to the sweet soya sauce they put in it. Too bad the place has closed down a long time ago. The old man who used to sell it has passed away and the kids were not following his step in selling fu yung hai…

To note, Sinar Medan is a very simple place and far from fancy. But it is clean. I watched how meticulously the waiters and waitresses clean up the table every time. Definitely much better than a lot of other comparable restaurants in Jakarta.

But then again, for the price of less than $40 for 8 pax, who would complain? Hehe.


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