The facade of an old shophouses
Kuala Pilah. I've been attach to this district along with over hundred participants in Field Research Module. It was a two weeks program where every participant is required to stay with a foster family. My home in Kuala Pilah is in Kampong Terusan, Juasseh. My foster parents are indeed nice towards me. However, until today I still didn't managed to visit them since I left which is about six months ago. Their house was not how the Kampong used to be before.
Kids playing badminton at the lawn
Paddy field at the end of the road
One of a kind retro clock at the surau
During my stay, I hardly see my Makcik buying vegetable. The vegetable practically are available around the house's compound. Being in Negeri Sembilan, your stay here would never be complete without savoring their famous dish, the "Masak Lemak Cili Api". From meat to poultry, duck egg and fish, unripe papaya as well as young plant shoots are cook using this recipe. Unbelievably, I literally eat "Masak Lemak Cili Api" every single day. I kind of like it. I'll post my version of recipe later. My favorites from Makcik are unripe papaya "Masak Lemak Cili Api" and fried catfish with sauté bird-eye chilies and shallots. It was a finger licking good meal. To this date, I can help myself craving for those dishes. I've tried cooking them by myself but the taste was nothing like Makcik does. Makcik loves cooking a lot. She made variety of Malay delicacies such as curry puff, Kueh Koci (steamed glutinous flour with sweet young coconut flesh fillings wrapped in banana leaf) and more that I couldn't remember.
Fresh "Ikan Haruan Masak Lemak Cili Api" with tapioca shoots
She also arranged a Dodol and Lemang cooking activities. Both sessions require many works yet we enjoyed both very much. Here are several photos of the mouth-watering dishes by Makcik.
Makcik dan Pakcik checking out the Lemang
Lemang served with "Rendang Ayam Kampung" (Feels like raya again with Nasi Impit)
Pakcik taking his turn stiring the Dodol mixture
Yummy chewy Dodol
Pakcik is Makcik's husband. He has a number of catfish ponds built next to my room. He also rears goats and chicken. Makcik will cook catfish or chicken every other day.
One of the catfish ponds
A place the goats called home
Among other activities organized by us, one of the memorable is the "Gotong Royong Kacau Dodol". Dodol is a traditional delicacies made from a mixture of glutinous flour cook with coconut milk, cane sugar and palm sugar. This mixture took almost three two to three hours to thickened under medium heat. You'll have to stir it the whole hours thoroughly or the bottom will burn. That's why this kind of activities requires a large number of people. The unforgettable moment is when the hot sugary mixture landed on my hand. I cried like a baby. Not only because the unbearable pain but also because of smokes harassing my eyes.
One of many ways to deal with the smokes
Below are photos of bountiful greenery around Pakcik and Makcik's house.
3 acres rubber estate
Tapioca for shoots and the carbs
Green bird-eye chilies (a must in every Minangkabau's house)