Babaloft by Nyonya Delights in Section 19 PJ hasn’t been around for long – I reckon they were in business a few months before MCO. Jien and I have been wanting to try the Nyonya Laksa here, as we enjoyed the version from Nyonya Delights in Melaka.
The interior is basic; almost bare, and the folks at Babaloft seem to be shorthanded in terms of service. There was only one girl running around taking orders and passing on menus when Jien and I visited for lunch and subsequently, dinner.
Get there early as they run out of food items quite quickly – we were lucky to have gotten the last bowl of Nyonya laksa (RM10.50) on our first visit. And if I may say so, it was a pretty decent bowl. Spicy and rich from the coconut milk, it is one of the better Nyonya laksa I’ve had in a while. The only thing missing is cockles which I don’t care for so it doesn’t bother me.
Ayam cili garam (RM9.90 – ala carte, RM14.90 – set) is good stuff. I was expecting it to be dry because pork is predominantly used for cili garam but Babaloft proved me wrong. There was plenty of kick from the cili garam – sweet from the shallots and spicy from the dried and fresh chillies. I like that they really fried the cili garam paste so it’s caramelised and flavourful.
Also delicious is the ayam rendang (RM9.90 – ala carte, RM14.90 – set), which begs for a plate of white rice to eat with. The rendang gravy is thick and spice-laden, and the chicken has well absorbed the rempah. The Nyonya nasi lemak (RM5.50) we ordered to go with this is also commendable – coconut milk rice with robust sambal. Just a bit of this sambal goes a long way.
Since we didn’t get to try the ayam pongteh during lunch, Jien and I returned a few days later for dinner. Ayam pongteh (RM15.50 – dinner portion) varies in Nyonya households and in our household, we like it thick and stew-like. Babeloft’s version is similar to what my mother in-law would make, but slightly sweeter. That said, it is one of the better ayam pongteh versions we’ve eaten outside of home.
Cincalok omelette (RM9.90) isn’t my favourite thing to eat in a Nyonya meal because I’m not a fan of fermented shrimps. But the version at Babaloft isn’t as pungent so you still taste the omelette with a bit of pungent note from the cincalok towards the end.
Despite coming in for dinner before 7pm (they open from 6pm till 9.30pm), we were out of luck as the Udang Lemak Nenas (RM28.50) was sold out – the table across the room had ordered Babaloft’s entire portion that night, which was just 4 bowls. According to the cook who came out to check on us, they don’t usually cook much seafood because of freshness issues so if you plan to try this, do give them a call in advance.
We settled for the sambal petai sotong (RM24.50), which packs a wallop. The sambal gravy is spicy and well-caramelised, and really kicks things up a notch for the sotong and fresh petai. Sotong is fresh too, so I reckon they are pretty serious about quality control.
Overall, we like the food at Babaloft, especially the Nyonya laksa, ayam cili garam and pongteh. Prices are reasonable though they need to work on speed – food takes a while to arrive during peak hours. Definitely a place to check out if you’re into Nyonya food from Melaka. :)
Food: 7/10 (pork-free)
Verdict: Casual, fuss-free dining. Try the Nyonya laksa, ayam pongteh and ayam cili garam.
Babaloft by Nyonya Delights
14, Jalan 19/3,
46300 Petaling Jaya.
Tel: 019-898 9552
Business hours: 11am till 3pm, 6pm till 9.30pm