After finishing up a traditionally hearty and filling Kelantanese breakfast of nasi (rice) and spicy chicken, my host cheerfully announced, "you're going to eat Kelantanese twice today. We're going to Nik's stall for lunch."
Well, my stomach groaned and said, "Are you insane?!" but the rest of me got excited right away. Nothing beats eating delicious Malaysian food cooked by my talented friends, so happily I followed along in pursuit of my next great meal
^ Nik Hafiz, one of the famous Nik brothers whose parents gave them all the same first name, was just setting up his stall for the day as we rolled in. He quickly built an impressive cooking fire and got to work in the chicken.
^ His sweet and pregnant wife set up most everything else. When I arrived, I found her sitting in the truck with the engine on and the AC blasting as she sliced cucumbers in the back seat. That's luxurious living for a hard-working stall owner.
^ Kelantanese pots of delicious mystery. I never know exactly what's inside but I can count on enjoying it.
^ After the initial rush of excitement, we sat down for the long, hard task of waiting for our lunch to cook. Four-year-old Aleesya and I entertained ourselves by making pictures with bits of dried leaves.
^ And my host carefully monitored the social networks for any signs of disturbance in the Force.
Eventually our plates were filled and we ate with abandon. The chicken was moist and flavorful; the rice comforting, the spices packed plenty of pow. Even if my protesting stomach was still full of breakfast, this was a meal to savor.