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Satay

Is a dish of marinated and grilled meats; usually of chicken, beef and lambs. It originates from Java, Indonesia but one can easily find satay in Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand. Satay is usually eaten with peanut sauce, slices of cucumber and rice cake (nasi impit).

I cannot speak for satay from any other countries except for my home country, Malaysia.

The most successful satay chain is, without doubt, Sate Kajang Haji Samuri whose speciality is the peanut sauce with sambal. It has more than 20 branches nationwide with its headquarters in Kajang, Selangor. My review for this satay chain is over-rated. I have to admit the peanut sauce is the best of all.

Moving on, the best marinated, glossy and juicy satay are the ones sold at Satay Zainah Ismail Keramat. I was first introduced to the satay place two years ago and it keeps me coming again and again. The superb taste of the satay has been verified by all patrons I took to the restaurant.

A month ago when I was in Lombok, Indonesia, I brought along Hishamudin Rais biography on travels and guilty pleasures of a fermented Malaysian – Tapai. The book has its very own chapter of Satay Zainah Ismail. Guess what, Zainah Ismail is the descendent of Majid Satay who was once crowned as Raja Satay in the Fifties. He used to have a stall in Campbell Street, near Merdeka Square during pre-Merdeka.

Kedai Zainah Ismail’s satay is really of top rank. Satay daging always failed me. Most times I avoid satay daging because it is hard and unplesant to chew on. At Kedai Zainah, the satay daging was soft, tender and sweet – the meat must have come from daging batang pinang…
Tapai at page 128