Six Dishes Should Try At Kuala Tahan

Chef Ismail Yusof, 34 urges the visitors to spending time to taste the traditional foods at Kuala Tahan, Pahang other than enjoying the flora and fauna at the National Park.

  Other than spending time to see the flora and fauna during weekend at Kuala Tahan, Pahang, one should spend a little bit of their holiday to search somebody who can cook the traditional cuisine for them.
  Three days is enough to try all the traditional foods at the area where the massive floods attack on 2014.
  Even the place still in recovery process, it does not a barrier for food enthusiast to try this six menus for their holidays.
  "Try to taste Tempoyak Ikan Patin (Iridescent Shark cooked with overripe durian), Gulai Asam Rong (a special curry cooked with rubber tree seeds), Kulat Sisir Masak Gulai Lemak (a kind of fungus in the genus Schizophyllum cooked in coconut gravy), Gulai Ikan Busuk (smelly fish curry), Sambal Belimbing Hitam (a kind of spicy dish made from averrhoa bilimbi) and gulai masam (a sour curry made with Garcinia atroviridis Griff).
  "Lately, some of these cuisines was no more cooked by the community as the technology was made them keep the food in the refrigerator," said Ismail.
  The chef who worked as welder said Gulai Ikan Masam was now hardly to find as the latest generation cannot stand with the smell.
  "A long time ago, there is no refrigerator to keep the fish from rotten.
  So, they ripened the fish with salt up to four days to cook it.
  "Usually ‘hampala macrolepidota’ fish was used to cook this cuisine," he said adding the fish usually called as Sebarau by the locals.
  He said there is no price for the cuisine as if it was sell in the restaurant, nobody wanted to eat it even the taste is good.
  For Gulai Asam Rong, Ismail said the inner of the rubber seeds will be dry in the sun and then smashed it by mortar and pestle before put it into the curry.
  "To cook this food must be carefully because if the step was wrong, one could be like a person stupefied by alcoholic drink.
  The price for per serve depends on the way it is cooked.
  "If the ‘gulai’ was cooked with fish, the price was depends on the fish market price.
  "This cuisine usually can be getting at the locals restaurant from RM6 to RM7 per serve if the ‘gulai’ cooked with the vegetables such as fiddlehead fern, cassava, sweet potato and eggplant.
  "The price of the rubber seeds was RM30 per kg," he said.
  Ismail said if visitors come during the dry season, they are lucky to taste the Gulai Kulat Sisir.
  "Schizophyllum commune is like mushrooms that usually grow at the rotten tree. The locals will picking it during the dry season," he said adding the mushroom prize is just RM3 in a F&N milk size cup.
  "Per serve it can be between RM3 to RM4."
  "Sambal Belimbing Hitam or commonly named as Sambal Hitam was quite popular recently.
  "It can be eat with vegetables and rice as replacement to budu (a type of sauce made from pickled anchovies), sambal belacan (a sauce made from shrimp paste) and cencaluk (a type of food made of small shrimps, salted and fermented for some time).
  "There are also several other dishes such as Pucuk Asng-Asing Masak Lemak and Gulai Ikan Asam Belimbing vegetables that can be eaten raw like Ulam Serai Kayu (bay leaf), Daun Selom (water dropwort), that can try by visitors," said Ismail.

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