Featured image Photo Cred: Flickr/Geoff Peters
Ducking into Banana Leaf Cafe on a cold and grey lunch hour in November is like stepping into a warm oasis of colour. The bustling energy of great good is in the air. Aromatic spices waft out of the kitchen as the quick-footed staff scurry in and out of the swinging doors carrying feasts of flavour…And just think of all those chumps gnawing on their stale sandwiches back in the lunchroom!
If you didn’t already know, Banana Leaf Cafe is traditional Malaysian cuisine, which is basically the intersection of many different surrounding cultures and cuisines – Chinese, Indian and Thai. Even though it’s from the far east, in a city like Vancouver, it feels like home.
For any meal, the recommended starting point is definitely the Roti Canai. This is the best fresh bread you’re going to have in just about any restaurant. Homemade layered dough is mixed with semi-sweetened milk and fresh eggs to make a flaky and soft roti that quietly melts when dipped into the accompanying vegetarian red curry.
From there, it’s the caramelized ginger black cod. The succulent cod is delicate, despite it’s subtly crisped skin. It embodies an adventurous flavour profile, of sweet vs sharp, as the caramel mixes with the ginger.
Or actually, maybe it’s the steamed lobster tails with garlic lime. Served with piping hot vermicelli noodles and kicked with fresh chilis, this is a savoury spice that will hold you over til dinner, or maybe even further.
Scratch that, there’s also the superb Nasi Goreng. A Malay staple of rice with sweet soy sauce, shrimp, beef and fresh veggies all fried to complete perfection. Maybe this is where you should start…
You know what, lunch is only an hour. Trying to pick a menu favourite is like wandering through a Kuala Lumpur bazaar, it’s easy to get lost in all the sensations. Save time and earn rewards towards a free meal at Banana Leaf when you pay with Glance Pay! As always, new users get $5 off their first payment with Glance Pay – that’s like getting a free Nyonya Fried Calamari or eggplant fries from Banana Leaf’s Happy Hour menu!