I have to wax lyrical about one of my favourite Nasi Padang stalls in Singapore.
It is Hajah Maimunah Restaurant at Jalan Pisang, which is somewhere between Arab Street and Victoria Street. The shop has a green entrance and it takes up about 2 shop fronts. I was first introduced to this place by my colleagues from my previous work place. we’d drive all the way down from the north side just to have lunch here, and only lunch coz the food is sold out by dinner. Business is so good they do not bother cooking extra for dinner. Nasi Padang is like the malay answer to chap chye png (mixed rice) / Tze Char where they have a WIDE array of dishes on display and you pick and choose what you want to eat and share it with your friends and family.
A lot of nasi padang fans prefer another stall just 100m away from this one, Warong Nasi Pariaman at Arab Street, which I agree isn’t too bad coz they have very good beef rendang and i love their fish curry. however what Hajah Maimunah has that most places don’t is the Special Sauce (see bottom right of picture). Special Sauce, as what Penguin and I term it, is really called sambal ketchup. if you were to order their grilled chicken, fish or squid, or even tauhu telur. they will slather the entire dish with Secret Sauce. actually it’s a lot like the black sauce they pour on the Indonesian grilled chicken you get at some places. Whenever the macik takes her tin can and starts pouring the Special Sauce over the meat, I always imagine myself beating her senseless over the head and stealing the entire can home to stick my face in.
I asked Penguin and Handsome (her husband) what’s the recipe to this. Handsome said to use Fan Mill sweet sauce, throw in chopped chili padi, grind them a little to release the spiciness and end off with a dash of lime juice. THAT’S IT. I stared at him in shock, not realising how simple these things really are. SPECIAL SAUCE THIS WEEKEND!