Sunday, 2 March 2014
MyKuali Penang White Curry versus Prima Taste Singapore Laksa 面对面 Instant Noodle Shootout
MyKuali Penang White Curry Noodle 槟城白咖哩面 and Prima Taste Singapore Laksa La Mian are the two most popular instant noodles now in Malaysia and Singapore.
Both noodles have their fans. I thought it would be interesting to do a comparison of the two hot favourites (which are similar in many aspects).
Side by side, Prima Taste's packet dwarfs MyKuali's pack. The net weight of Prima Taste's is 185 grams, whilst MyKuali's is only 110 grams.
A packet of MyKuali retails for about RM1.80 while Prima Taste retails at around RM7.25 a packet - quite a big premium.
The noodle blocks look very different. Prima Taste's noodles are air dried, so they look cleaner and are grease free. On the other hand, MyKuali's noodles are conventional generic oil fried pasta. There is a slight film of grease on the noodles.
The seasoning pastes and powders. Prima Taste's come with two large sachets of laksa paste and laksa premix. MyKuali's come with three smaller sachets of chili paste, seasoning powder and non dairy creamer.
Prima Taste's laksa paste has a stronger dried shrimp (hae bee 虾米) aroma. The aroma of MyKuali's chili paste on the other hand is dominated by blended curry spices.
Prima Taste's "laksa premix" is mainly coconut powder. MyKuali's packaging did not specify what the sachet of non dairy creamer is made of. Non dairy creamers are usually made of coconut or palm kernel oil.
MyKuali's package also has a sachet of seasoning powder.
The two instant noodles were prepared following instructions on the packet to the letter. When cooking MyKuali, the aroma of curry spices and lemon grass filled the air. When cooking Prima Taste, the dominant aroma was the smell of coconut.
MyKuali's noodle felt generic. They were curly, soft and spongy. Acceptable but ordinary. Prima's noodles were thicker, straighter, firmer, more chewy. They were a little like properly cooked spaghetti in texture. Prima's noodles have a stronger wheat taste.
Most people who have tried both prefer Prima's noodles.
MyKuali's broth has a more layered blend of flavours resembling the curry laksa in Malaysia which are made with a blend of Indian and local spices. Prima's broth is simpler and the dried shrimp hae bee 虾米 flavour is dominant.
MyKuali's broth is spicier than Prima's broth. MyKuali's broth has a hot sting which lingers for a while. I like. Prima's broth is mildly spicy with not much kick.
MyKuali's broth has medium weight body and a subtle graininess similar to those at the curry laksa hawker stalls. Prima's broth is heavier bodied and smoother, slightly creamy.
I personally enjoyed MyKuali's broth more.
Now for the dip stick test.
I was a little surprised at the amount of grease stuck to the dip stick from the MyKuali broth. On the other hand, the Prima Taste broth was less greasy.
Prima Taste also seems to the the healthier choice based on the labelling on the packet which states that no MSG, artificial flavouring, colouring or added preservatives were used.
There are MSG and preservatives in MyKuali's broth.
Both instant noodles are certified Halal.
Both noodles were scored 6.5/10 by Instant Noodle Grader.
In a perfect world, we would have a package that uses MyKuali's seasonings and Prima Taste's noodles and retails at a price somewhere between the two (but preferably closer to MyKuali's price :D ).
For the price sensitive, MyKuali has the edge.
For taste and flavour of the broth, I prefer MyKuali.
For the health conscious, Prima Taste would be more appealing. However, I prefer smaller packets of instant noodles rather than the current "up-sized" packets of Prima Taste.
If I have to choose, which one will it be?
I am with Prima Taste, mainly for health's sake.
Of course, choice is a matter of personal preferences.
There you have it, the shootout between the two most popular instant noodles in Malaysia and Singapore.
Join the Instant Noodle Facebook group for more fun with instant noodle fans.