My late grandfather used to get up at 5am every day for breakfast at a nearby coffeeshop in Sitiawan. He would buy some pau back home for my breakfast but more often than not, I would only eat it at noon – that’s usually the time I wake up, involuntarily. In KL, I can never fathom how some people can have their breakfast as early as 6am. My only exception for breakfast this early is when my night out ends at 5am.
rif and I were up at 6am one weekend to send my parents to KL Sentral for their trip abroad, so we decided to revisit the Imbi Market. It’s been 8 years since we last visited this market and I could vaguely remember how the kaya toast was.
At 6.30am, the place was dark with market vendors setting up their stalls. With my smatter of Cantonese, I ordered a set of kaya and butter toast, two portions of steamed bread with butter and kaya and Hainan tea. The toast – thinly sliced and crisply toasted – came with a thick slab of cold butter and generous slathers of kaya. Crumbly, light and still as good as I remembered it to be.
rif preferred the steamed bread for its softer and fluffier texture. This had more bite compared to the crumbly nature of the toast and was just as tasty. The Hainan tea however, wasn’t thick, aromatic or sweet enough. Quite disappointing, this one. I’m not sure how much each item was, but we paid slightly over RM8 for the above.
The Chinese style nasi lemak was alright. I’m generally not a fan of Chinese nasi lemak because the rice lacks coconut milk and the sambal isn’t spicy enough. This sambal was VERY spicy but the rice was hardly lemak. I also thought the sambal tasted very one-note.
The curry wantan mee stall was quite popular so I ordered a bowl (RM4.50) to try. It was nothing to shout about. While the noodles were toothsome, the broth was quite bland and watery. On the bright side, the cockles were plump, slightly bloody and fresh.
I plan to try the popiah and egg tart next round (they were not ready when I was there), but only if I have to up at 6am. Otherwise, nothing beats my bed and pillow.
Food: 5/10 (non halal)
Verdict: If you’re an early bird, check out the food stalls here.
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Imbi Market (Pasar Besar Bukit Bintang)
Pudu, 55100 Kuala Lumpur.
Opens: 6am – 12noon
Closed on Monday