For the lamb version, the meat is roasted before it’s added to the rice whilst the chicken is spice-marinated. The original version uses cauliflower but to suit local tastebuds, eggplant, potatoes and carrots are used instead. Raisins, peanuts and almonds are included as well.
Formerly a trainer for the housekeeping department at Concorde Hotel Kuala Lumpur, Mas first ventured into the food business by serving mostly healthy salads, soup and sandwiches out of a rented kitchen in an old bungalow, for patrons of a yoga studio in the same premise.
Then she ran a small café at SACC Mall’s indoor kids’ playground before partnering with another home-based caterer to open Spiced Pumpkin Café in 2016.
Now she is the sole proprietor after her business partner opted out due to unforeseen circumstances. “I’ve maintained her husband’s Middle Eastern recipes such as Nasi Maqlubah and Nasi Mandy but I’ve also added some Malay specialities into the menu.”
The former comes laden with the house special sauce, melted cheese, hot sauce and chilli flakes. Cheese lovers can relish the latter as the nibbles are topped with three types of melted cheese, beef bacon bits and chopped jalapeño.
Mas levels up her Kunafa with Tres Leches (RM16.50): mozzarella and cream, orange blossom syrup, dried rose petals and crushed pistachios. The whole ensemble is creamy, mildly sweet and nutty; with pleasing whiffs of orange blossom and rose.
She also bestows similar treatment to Kuih Lopes with Tres Leches and Ice Cream (RM9.50). Coated in coconut flakes, the wedge of pandan-infused glutinous rice pairs marvellously with gula Melaka, cream and vanilla ice cream. Ditto for the Sago Pudding with Tres Leche and Gula Melaka (RM7.50).
Somehow, we couldn’t wrap our head around the South American-inspired Tres Leches Cake (RM15). Dry sponge cake is traditionally soaked in cream, milk and fruits, but Mas improvises hers slightly by immersing the sponge cake into milk prior to serving. Topped with canned fruit, this dessert fails to hit the spot for us.
For reservations at Spiced Pumpkin Café, call hp no:019 2728317. Address: Lot 291, Kompleks KPPMS, 2, Jalan RU 3/9a, Shah Alam, Selangor. Business hours: Mon-Thurs 12 pm –7 pm, Sat 12 pm – 930 pm. Closed on Sun.