Showing posts with label quail. Show all posts
Showing posts with label quail. Show all posts

Thursday, December 14, 2023



Allow spice master and culinary maestro Yogesh Upadhyay a.k.a. Chef Yogi take you on a whirlwind tour of India, culturally and gastronomically at Flour.
Throw whatever you presumably know about Indian food and let Chef Yogi change your perspective of Indian cuisine. The chef-restaurateur is redefining the food of his native land for the future in his own intrepid way, where “each and every course at Flour is a planned journey of the food feeding the body; the intention feeding the soul.”

His mind-changing, progressive French-Indian offerings are so future-forward, only adventurous and liberal diners will find his specialities acceptable.

According to Chef Yogi, “the Indian continent consists of different regions and each has its own unique flavours and ingredients. Likewise, each course in Flour’s menu is my interpretation on how Indian food has evolved whilst remaining faithful to its roots.
“Indian specialities are characterised by the use of spices, not chilli. You’d discover fresh narratives on the judicious and diverse use of spices here, learn about the origins of regional dishes and delve into vegetarianism which is inherent to India’s foodscape. I’m serving a taste of culture, not just food at Flour.”

Housed in a charming, white-washed bungalow in the heart of KL since 2020, Flour was initially located at Damansara Heights some seven years ago. The sleek and contemporary interior is almost monochromatic in its colour scheme, with some eye-catching artworks and a water fountain serving as key focal points.

According to the Rajasthan-born chef, “The restaurant name was inspired by flour, an essential ingredient for the making of bread. Without flour, there’d be no Indian food.”

Although Chef Yogi was roped into his father’s restaurant business in his teens, the rebel in him opted to pursue hotel management and French culinary arts. Determined to make his own mark, he relocated to Dubai and ventured into the aviation industry.

In 2014 Yogi came to Malaysia, to work for Air Asia X. He met and married his wife who then encouraged him to open Flour. “She said my culinary efforts changed her perception of Indian food and I should showcase my skills to a broader audience.”

Chef Yogi said “Flour brings the future of Indian cuisine to the present, based on my knowledge and research on the past, using modern French techniques and thoughtfully composed degustation-style menus.”

The chef will personally share interesting facts on the historical aspects and origins of the food served, with every element down to the smallest details meticulously planned. “I’m the guide on the culinary journey; to help diners gain greater understanding of Indian cuisine. Dining here is more than just an experience; it’s a taste of culture.”

From the a la carte menu, the stellar opening of smoky Quail Tikka (RM35++) left us spellbound. Spiced curd-marinated quails were tandoor-roasted to perfection, rendering the quail tender and juicy down to the bone. A side dip of housemade curd dotted with tamarind lent a lush, appetising dimension.

“Quail and game birds are native to India; in the old days, people used to forage for them as the native protein source” said Chef Yogi. “The secret lies in mustard seed oil, to give the quail deep-seated flavour and incomparable aroma.”

Unsurprisingly, his adroit skills shone through in the Vegetable Charcoal Roast (RM38++). Banking on a useful tip gleaned from the Persians, he infused rose water into the saucy base of housemade curd and bird’s eye chilli oil, letting it bring the inherent vegetal-fruitiness of the roasted baby eggplants, capsicum, and cherry tomatoes to full bloom onto our palate.

Italian Marzano tomatoes formed the backbone to Flour’s legendary Butter Chicken, listed as Spring Chicken & Tomato (RM68++) in the menu. Lightly spiced with green cardamom powder and fenugreek leaves, Chef Yogi had cooked those tomatoes to such velvety consistency, it seemed like he had unleashed a burst of brilliant sunshine onto our tastebuds, through the vermillion sauce.

Dousing that sumptuous sauce onto Jeera Rice (RM18++) then savouring the cumin-speckled rice, as we picked the bones clean off those deliciously tender chunks of spring chicken tikka, was heavenly.
How could we not lick the plate clean when the stellar dish of Konju Moilee appeared. Every exquisite bite of the charcoal-grilled prawns in mustard seed-accented coconut milk sauce and bird’s eye chilli oil knocked our socks off.
Also jostling for our attention and tummy space was Ajwaini Baingan (RM55++), cute roasted baby eggplants in a robust sauce of onion, tomato with ajwain and thyme.
We couldn’t help but soak up that bright, tantalising sauce with freshly made Laccha (RM15++), thin, multi-layered wholewheat bread which the chef referred to as the croissant of India.
For textural contrast, we returned to sample those irresistible dishes again with pieces of feather-light Puri (RM15++), fried wholewheat bread with semolina, with equally agreeable results.
Served with basil curd, crisp-fried shallot graced the bowl of Mutton Biryani (RM90++); a show-stopping speciality that could have easily left us replete on its own. Cubes of meltingly tender mutton embedded within the saffron-scented basmati rice, proved second-to-none in the taste department.

Wrapping up our lavish cultural passage to India came Kubhanika Meetha (RM35++), a dainty white apricot tart which the chef told us to eat in one bite. Its ephemeral sweetness was a most befitting masterstroke to conclude our insightful discovery of Indian culture through Flour’s refined repertoire.
For reservations at FLOUR, tel: 03-4065 7400, 012-9600 053. Address: No.12 & 14, Jalan Kamuning, Off Jalan Imbi, Kuala Lumpur.


Monday, October 09, 2017


Travelling for work isn’t all fun and games. The plus point is we get to explore the town or city we’re in and discover new eateries along the way. A recent foray to Pontian, Johor saw us staying overnight in Johor Bahru (JB). Coincidentally, the owner of Crab Factory T.Y. Ooi was down south to oversee her new Crab Factory outlet...the rest is now food history.
Photo courtesy of
The restaurant set-up reminded me of the now defunct Crab Hut in Cyberjaya – it has the same functional interior with bare bone, industrial vibes and mellow lighting. It's ideal to rope in your gang of besties especially the crab-crazy ones if you like to dig into the seafood spoils.
From the surfeit of specialities our gang gobbled up, I'd say go for the show-stealing Sotong Sumbat Coconut (RM33). We just walloped the tender whole calamari with a delicious stuffing of turmeric, spices and grated coconut in a jiffy as the critters were sedap giler tahap dewa.
Here's a quick PSA: Crab Factory’s signature Louisiana crab boil offerings now come in good value Crab Lover Giler sets featuring 2 NEW sauces: Cheese Sauce and Salted Egg Sauce (more on these later). Cheers to Happy Seafood Meal Deals too like the Crab Lover Shiok at RM149.70 per set (good for 2-3 persons) consisting of Meat Crab XL (2 pieces), King White Prawns, Mussels, Squid, Hamaguri Clams, Corn, Brocolli, Fried Mantao and Shallot Rice.

Our Gang Giler #1 set (RM539.10 per set, enough to feed 7-9 persons) in Garlic Butter Sauce had King White Prawns, Squid, Mussels, Hamaguri Clams, Corn & Broccoli. We also upgraded our set to include an imported Brown Crab (RM40 each). This seafood variety hit the spot for my friends who can’t stomach hot sauce - best for tastebuds hankering for the unadulterated sweetness of seafood.
To please the opposing divide, our Gang Giler #2 set came in Medium Hot Southern Bang Sauce. We did justice to the 2 XL Meat Crabs, Mini Lobsters, Freshwater Prawns, Jumbo Sweet Prawns and Corn. We realised the riot of hot, salty and spicy flavours reached new level of sedap savouriness when Crab Factory’s newly introduced Cheese Sauce (add RM13.80) was thrown into the equation!

The kids in our midst were left to chomp on the accompanying serving of Fried Chicken Wings, a serving of Fried Mantao, a serving of Fried Squid Tentacles and 7-9 servings of Shallot Rice…food crazy people like us managed to wipe almost everything clean-lah.

Somehow, our gang managed to put away 12 BBQ Oysters (RM69) too. Topped with 12 different saucy toppings, the succulent mollusks whetted our appetite before the mother lode of seafood arrived. This speciality comes under the Bara BBQ menu available exclusively at Crab Factory JB.
A choice of Cajun or Garlic Sauce is served with the BBQ Crabs here (RM39 per crab). If you’re the surf & turf kinda diner, I recommend ordering the Best of Both Worlds (RM56.80) set featuring Signature Coke BBQ Lamb Chop, Fried Freshwater Prawns & BBQ King White Prawns with sautéed vegetable and French fries. The only time ‘yat kiok dap liong shuin’ – a Cantonese idiom for being a two-timing scoundrel is acceptable.
I also like the crowd-pleasing Fried Quails (RM22.80) and Corn Croquettes (RM11.80), both notable appetisers to nibble on to stave off hunger pangs and keep you from being too crabby should you need to wait. Har har.
No time to feast on crabs for lunch? Fear not, CF has you covered too. Order ajer the Lunch Special (up to 3pm) of Hainanese Fried Chicken Chop (RM15.50). Family and kid friendly to satisfy with Ice Lemon Tea & a scoop of Ice Cream on the house.
Apa lagi you mahu? Oh, noodles and rice? Sixth Bowl quickie selection offers Mix Balls (RM13.50) – soupy Fuzhou, Squid Ink & Fish Balls with Mi Xian (mee sua noodles) in Superior Soup and Freshwater Prawns (pic below, RM16.90 + 50 sen for spicy sauce) with Mi Lidi in Special Spicy Broth.
The good folks at CF also invites customers to ‘Bowl-IT-Forward’: enjoy a Free bowl of Bouncy Balls for every 6 bowls purchased OR be a do gooder by donating it to Charity. Donated bowls will be channelled to selected children’s or old folks’ homes every 2 months when Crab Factory will visit and cook for them.

Crab Factory
For reservations at CRAB FACTORY JB, call tel: 07- 351 4062. Address: Little Paris, Mount Austin, G14, Jalan Jaya Putra 1/1, Bandar Jaya Putra, Johor Bahru, Johor. Business Hours: Tuesday to Sunday, 12pm to 10pm. Closed on Monday.

Monday, April 20, 2015


Out of the slew of new a la carte offerings rustled up by Topshelf's youthful chef cum owner Christopher Yee, I'd be tempted to return for that crisp-skinned Orange Quail (RM27). 
Nestled on a bed of fried shredded leek accompanied by bacon hash topped with a shivery poached egg, it's that kind of soul-satisfying dish that leaves you in a happy, weak-kneed stupour. We love the quail's inherent gaminess (a bare whisper on the palate) and that runny egg yolk that amplifies the sublime flavour of the to-die-for bacon hash.
The heavy evening downpour that heralded our recent visit to this mod French-Italian bistro in TTDI was made bearable by a comforting Prawn Bisque (RM16). A tot of brandy and a dollop of creme fraiche added extra allure to the orange-hued broth with its heartwarming crustacean sweetness. Even this non-soup fan was tempted to paraphrase Oliver Twist's plaintive cry of "please sir, may I have some more?" had I not been distracted by the next exquisite dish of diver scallop.
Now, the uninitiated may quibble at paying such a hefty price for Hand Dived Scallop (RM30) but honestly, this delicate shellfish costs more because it's hand collected by divers who care about the sea and sustainable fish/seafood stock; an eco-friendly practice that's kinder to the environment just like line-fishing.
Lightly pan-fried to caramelise its edges, the plump scallop barely needs embellishment save for some delicate threads of braised leek and miso eggplant in white wine that blend marvellously with its pristine sweetness.
Seared to medium doneness, the juicy and tender Roasted Rack of Lamb (RM55) is another splendid speciality that should spur repeat visits. Complemented by chargrilled broccoli salad, potato puree and jus, you'd pick the bones clean off this subtly smoky and meaty rack.
Boost your green quota with Apricot & Nut Salad (RM25), a crowd-pleasing assortment of healthy lettuce and rocket, sliced cucumber and cherry tomatoes with apricot dices, parmesan shavings and nut vinaigrette.
Homely French comfort food such as Duck Cassoulet (RM38), Pot-Au-Feu (RM43), Iberico Loin (RM56) and Baked Snapper (RM40) also rule the roost in the latest menu.

According to Larousse Gastronomique, cassoulet originates from Languedoc but its recipe varies from region to region. There is even a decree in 1966 which stipulated that a cassoulet should comprise 30% pork (which can include sausage), mutton or preserved goose; 70% haricot beans and stock, fresh pork rinds, herbs and flavourings.
Chef Christopher's Duck Cassoulet warms the cockles of your heart with a whole seared duck leg confit augmenting the deep-seated flavours emanating from the chunky stew of cannellini beans, cubed potato, sliced sausage, bacon and tomato.
Provencal veggies and white while bouillon form a rustic base that captures the natural sweetness and soft flaky texture of the Baked Red Snapper. This simple preparation should reel in fish lovers who prefer their catch served in its entirety, complete with head and bones intact.
If you prefer to avoid dealing with bones, we recommend the Iberico pork loin. Roasted and served with pureed potato and sauteed veggies with some mushroom, the tender, juicy meat is a breeze to savour.
Pot-au-feu is a meal in itself for most French; a tasty classic winter warmer with a melange of textures and flavours due to the inclusion of various meat cuts, veges (carrot, turnips,  onion, leeks and celery are the norm) and aromatic herbs. The serving we sampled packed a noticeably beefy accent with a lingering savoury aftertaste.

Four types of pasta are listed in the menu, to satisfy die-hard carb lovers who can't bear to go without. Despite its minimalist approach, the Pesto Capellini (RM30) is a notable choice with the delicate pasta strands scented with truffle oil and fetchingly graced with Topshelf's house concocted pesto and a shower of parmesan shavings.
Dessert saw us foraying into Christopher's 'chocolate factory' where devilishly decadent treats like Chocolate Fondant (RM21) and Chocolate & Coffee Cremeux (RM19) held us spellbound. I'm partial to the melt-in-the-mouth goodness of the former - an impossibly airy-light yet lushly smooth creation using Valrhona 70% accompanied by chocolate 'soil' and vanilla ice cream.
Olive oil, maldon sea salt and berry compote lend distinct finesse to the chef's Chocolate & Coffee Cremeux, helping the 70% noir dark chocolate cream to coat the palate and leave a long-lasting impression of Topshelf's treasure trove of culinary gems.

For reservations at TOPSHELF, call tel: 03-7727 7277. Address: 61, Lorong Rahim Kajai 13, Taman Tun Dr. Ismail, Kuala Lumpur

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