During my two years of blogging about the food scene in Johor, I noticed that there are more and more restaurants serving international cuisine from every continent.
One of the latest is Abu Mubarak Al-Mandi Rice in Taman Bukit Indah which offers authentic Saudi Arabian dishes, which I am excited to try.
Jasmi, Managing Director of Abu Mubarak Al-Mandi Rice invited me to visit his newly opened restaurant.
Stepping inside Abu Mubarak restaurant, the decor is simple, and the air conditioned dining area is neat and clean. There is also another dining hall, on the second floor.
Chef Ismail is the man in charge in the kitchen.
Coming in from the blazing midday sun, we ordered a couple of Barbicans to cool down.
Imported from the UAE (United Arab Emirates), Barbican is a zesty, fizzy drink that come in various fruity flavours. I had peach.
We also had Arabian tea (in a tea bag) which was mildly minty.
Jasmi started us off with the Mandy Lamb.
The lamb shoulder was with bone. The flesh was tender and it's juices were infused with aromatic spices and herbs. In the mouth, the meat was a mix of chewy, creamy and soft with mild gamey notes. As a lamb lover, I like this.
The basmati rice with raisins, spices and herbs were boiled in lamb bone broth. Unlike the familiar briyani rice which is cooked with ghee, Arabian style rice is cooked with broth. The tender rice grains were moist with the savoury broth.
For chicken lovers, you can have the Mandy Chicken, which Jasmi told me is very popular.
Kacang Pool RM6
Jasmi let us try kacang pool which is a Middle Eastern staple.
Abu Mubarak's kacang pool differs from those in other shops in JB. The bean stew is served with thin, plain flat bread instead of thick butter toast bread. There was also no sunny side up egg or minced beef.
Jasmi told me that kacang pool is eaten this way in Saudi Arabia, and sometimes along with hard boiled eggs.
I like the nutty, creamy, clean tasting bean stew. There was almost no oil in the stew and on the bread - a healthy choice :D
Tagathi or Saudi tripe stew served with flat bread RM10
Next up was a traditional Saudi Arabian dish which I have never tried or even heard before. This is Tahathik, a stew of beef tripe (stomach), tomatoes, lime and chili peppers.
I like this unique tripe dish a lot. The tripe chopped into small cubes were spongy and savoury, cooked with a paste of beans, tomatoes and chili. It's like a kind of meaty, soft, slightly sweet and savoury burrito.
Shurbah is another unique dish served at Abu Mubarak. This is a milky gruel made with oats and curly strips of lamb shank tendon.
Chef Ismail showed me the lamb tendon. It's that translucent strip at the upper right in the picture.
I enjoyed this interesting dish very much. The crunchy, gummy, gelatinous lamb tendon was lovely. The wholesome gruel makes a good tea time snack in my opinion.
If you want to try authentic Arabian dishes, check out Abu Mubarak in Bukit Indah.
Restaurant name: Abu Mubarak Al-Mandi Rice
Address: 20, Jalan Indah 28/1, Taman Bukit Indah, Nusajaya, Johor
Hours: Tuesday to Sunday: 11:30 am - 10:30 pm (closed on Monday)
Date visited: 13 Feb 2014
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