Ravi’s Bananna Leaf

Lei Wan, my new found Malaysian best friend took us to yet another delicious eatery for lunch today, after searching for a car. Her picks have been wonderful and so local. We have eaten Mee (noodles), Kuay Teow (wide noodles, Rorey’s favorite) and Teh Terik (Cody’s favortie.) Last night I ate dried sardines and a sunny side up egg in sardine broth and noodles. This is the type of food Cody and I find when we are by ourselves and do not have Lei Wan to navigate through the Malay menu. I can tell you that getting food without red meat in it is near impossible, especially since you don’t know what you are ordering before it arrives to your table. Getting a mystery dishes has happened quite a few times but last might I made it through my meal and those crunch little buggers were actually good.

Ravi’s Banana Leaf was amazing. She asked us if we wanted local Chinese food or local Indian and I jumped at the chance to eat Indian. I have been loving her Chinese choices and have found some great options, but my heart is in India when it comes to culinary decisions.

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We arrived and sat down at a white communal table. The servers placed a large banana leaf on the table for each of us and Cody and Lei Wan went up to make the selections. When they returned, we washed our hands and got ready for the ultimate feast. Our attentive service men, who Lei Wan affectionately reffered to as Boss, came each bearing a collection of silver pitchers and bowls. With each man came a choice of offerings. We had rice, green beans, potatoes and a cucumber salad. Then they poured curry onto the rice and the fish, chicken and mutton that Cody and Lei Wan had selected just minutes earlier arrived to the table on little pink plates. We received mango chutney, smoked chilli’s and fried bitter gourd on our plates to accompany our meal. The woman who seemed to be the owner came over and spoke to us. She was so friendly and encouraged us to eat with our hands with a warm smile, although secretly we had already signed on for this task before we arrived. She mentioned that foreigners often do not know what to do and end up smearing food all over their faces like two year olds. With that said, I was a little nervous and intimidated, especially since we were seated right by the cashiers station where she returned to after chatting with inquisitive and encouraging eyes on us every few minutes, but I dug in none the less.

And boy were we all rewarded. The food was a pleasure to eat and oh so tasty. One of the best meals I have had since arriving. The only caution I have for others, is watch out for those small paper cuts you may have on your right hands, because the pepper gets in there and makes every bite noticed not only on the tongue, but also on the fingers.

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