Monday, March 8, 2010

Padang's Best Seafood in all its Glory - Indonesia

Fishes just landed from the boats on display.
One of the best way to relax when visiting a coastal city is to have seafood along the beachfront. There is a strip of beach in Padang where there are quite some stalls occupying good real estate; meaning good location, location and location. It is within the city. Anyone can point you there. There are 3 that do very good business weekday or weekend nights. Just go to the ones with a lot of customers. The ambiance may not rival that from Bali beaches which I have dined there twice but Padang seafood is well ahead in taste and price. It was so good that I went for 2 of my dinners there.

So in the midst of crashing waves, the tide was coming in from the rear and enterprising buskers in front, the food was served in plebeian environs. But then try to imagine natures' music filling the air and the strains of great Indonesian singing the evergreen "Widuri" blending together making the meal a relaxing and pleasurable one. We were also thankful that the merciless beating we got from the heat and humidity of the day dissipated quickly in the evening at Padang.
More fishes from another day.If you are not happy ask them to open up the boxes for more choices.The assembly line at work. Fish after fish getting the quick bumbu (marinated with sauces) treatment then on to the fire.The embers were red-hot. The men tending the grill are experts.
My red Coral Grouper weighed in at 1 kg. Priced at RM30 per kilo plus the cooking - any style. The meat was firm, succulent, sweet and moist. The sauces used is good enough with no additional condiments need. The base of the marinate seems to be some dessicated coconut and santan (coconut milk).
This Trevally weighed 0.6kg. This fish are without scales and the taste and smell is stronger giving variety to the palate. Meat was denser and coarser. But the taste is so fresh and yummy. RM25 per kilo.Below common grouper tipped the scale at 0.5kg. Priced at RM30. Similar the the coral grouper. My preference went to the coral grouper for the slight edge in taste and texture.
This Seabass was at 0.6kg and priced at RM25 per kilo. This fish lost out in texture and taste. Mild to the palate and the meat was soft.Grilled Prawn albeit of smaller frame at RM9.50 for 5pieces.Grilled squid (cumi-cumi in Indonesian). The marinate that clings to the squid imparts the taste. The squid was fresh, soft and slightly chewy. RM9.50 per 5 sticks.
By now one may be thinking that why all the fishes were grilled. How about deep-fried in oil for variety? My honest opinion is that such fresh fishes do not deserved to be fried. Period. But then my brain took leave as I got my giant prawns fried. I wished I could have done it the variety of ways like those in Tg. Tualang and Pusing. 7 Prawns will weigh in at a kilogram. Each kilo cost RM56. Meat was firm, with a slight chewiness but with full-bodied prawny taste.Mobile buskers having a few day. Pay/tip as you leave. Expected. The interior. The black void at the rear is the sea.
Pantai Wisata Ikan Bakar


J2Kfm said...

Gorgeous. Now THAT'S a REAL seafood feast, at such dirt cheap prices!

5 L-sized prawns for RM10?! Unheard of. And yeah, I dont like fried fishes as well.

thenomadGourmand said...

Yup, no fried fish for me as well. Either steamed (1st choice) or at worse scenario - curri-ed.

That's a fish fest there! ;p I love indo food, tho i must admit my only exposure to it is via Sari Ratu and some PAdang stalls ard KL.
Still, their mix of spices ensures each piece or veg/meat/seafood imparts such an unforgettable intense flavour!

Tummythoz said...

Big time drooling on my keyboard, mien! Padang a gd place for a holiday?