Moving beyond her modern French Raya offering at Bistro à Table, intrepid chef Isadora Chai presents contemporary Malaysian cuisine through a Ramadan menu at her second establishment. Diners will enjoy a six-course affair of Antara Restaurant’s beloved dishes mixed with Malay-centric delicacies of a soulful impression that’s wholesome, familiar and gratifying. 

The menu is priced at RM198++ per pax and features premium ingredients and made-from-scratch, comfort flavours that take Malaysian culinary specialties to the next level.

First course: Local salad edit IMG_0807.jpg (original size)

This fixed dish on Antara’s menu, a fiddlehead fern salad, is served with imported salmon ikura (caviar), shredded crab flesh and ikan serunding floss. When tossed together, each bite is refreshing and packed with texture from the popping ikura, crab meat strands and toothsome floss, that gently awaken the tastebuds. 

 Second course: Briny pancake edit IMG_0822.jpg (original size)Seafood is a mainstay on Isadora’s menu evident in the next course of orchien’ oyster omelette but served with a prized slab of halal-certified foie gras. The pancake is modeled after the Penang-style gooey version in all its crisp-edged, chewy middle and briny goodness from premium grade oysters. Not putting a single drop of prized fat to waste, Isadora cooks the omelette in the oil from freshly seared foie gras. 

  Third course: Crabby nibbles edit IMG_0870.jpg (original size)

Soft shell crab is the star of this course, accompanied with a pair of deep-fried mantao buns to soak up its gravy. Smothered in a thick plum sauce, pounded chilies, galangal, onions and turmeric, with egg to thicken, the softshell crab was cooked as a satisfying nibble. A consideration of Isadora’s when curating the menu was for food to be easy to enjoy – in this case, no peeling needed. 

  First main: Baked fish edit IMG_0845.jpg (original size)

A cast iron pot arrived with a golden salt-baked crust, that upon cracking, unveiled a whole, steaming hot sea bass. Simply rubbed with some salt, the fresh fish was enjoyed with Isadora’s own homemade sambal kampung-durian tempoyak (fermented durian), a salad with cincalok from Malacca, tangy raja ulam and mango, and vegan pumpkin curry. We highly recommend you enjoy the fish on its own before scooping it up with the classic condiments. 

 Second main: Lobster laksa edit IMG_0895.jpg (original size)

Hands down the star of Antara’s menu, the marron lobster laksa takes pride of place on the Ramadan lineup. Ever hearty and sweet, the fresh and generous white lobster meat brings the dish together, springy beehoon noodles and all. The gravy is noticeably lightened, but still robust with the essence of spices and seafood; the result of a laborious three-day process. 

 Dessert: Banana pudding edit IMG_0904.jpg (original size)

Ending on a sweet note is the classic pisang pengat, or better known as a creamy banana pudding with sweet broth. Mini plantains are cooked in a broth of pearl sago, gula malaka and coconut milk, simmered to a delicate sweetness. A spiced coconut ‘crème caramel’ pudding is served alongside as a custard finish. 

 Antara Restaurant’s Ramadan menu is available from now till June 30, 2017. It remains open from June 25 to 27 for Raya. For more information, visit antararestaurant.com or make your reservations at 03-207 88881.

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Tags: Antara Restaurant, Malay food, dining, Malaysian food, contemporary dining, Isadora Chai, feast, ramadan, raya, Malaysian fine dining