Adelaide Eats: House of Pearl at Gouger
One thing I miss most when I am in Adelaide is my chilli and Sambal Belachan. Somehow, I have yet to find a place that sells good chilli that will make your tongue burn, leave you gasping for air as you try and down as much water as you can to kill the spiciness yet find it so shiok that you want more. Singapore is home to this and you can find it in almost every cuisine- Chinese, Indian and Malay. I just love their spices and smells.. Ok now that just made me even more homesick.
Anyhow House of Pearl on Gouger is a relatively new Malaysian restaurant to the scene. Maybe about a year old now? Not too sure but I remember I was attracted to the place because I saw an Indian man at the window of the restaurant flipping Roti Prata (it’s called Roti Canai here, so they can charge you up to $4.50 apiece) and I was like ‘Hey! That is such a scene from home, especially in hawker centres’. Furthermore, the pictures outside with words such as ‘BBQ fish with Belachan Sauce’ and ‘Pineapple Rice’ looked so tempting so I decided to walk in and try it!
Please excuse the quality of my photos because they were taken with an iPhone 3G (not even 3GS) so the colours are not as nice as I would like them to be.
So of course I could not resist ordering the Roti Canai since it looked so freshly made. And this is by far one of the better ones I have tasted, very crispy, not too oily and quite yummy with the curry. The Curry Vegetables on the other hand was only average and you are better off ordering the Sambal Kangkong (which I did the second time I came back here and it was heaps better!)
And of course I had to settle the spicy craving so we ordered the ‘BBQ Fish with Sambal Sauce‘ and BBQ Squid with Sambal Sauce‘. You actually had a choice of Tom Yam Sauce or Sambal Sauce but I thought Tom Yam Sauce sounded a little dodgy so I didnt dare try it..
Conclusion: Singapore still does it best. The Sambal Sauce here was too sweet and not spicy at all! Ask for extra and you have to pay 50 cents for a measly portion so dont bother asking. The fish was not too bad, quite fresh and crispy. The squid was nice at the beginning but maybe because it was too big, it got a bit fishy towards the end (that’s the main purpose of spicy sambal-to kill the fishiness!!) These 2 dishes (I think all the BBQ ones) are cooked outside, near the entrance so you get to smell the dish even before it reaches your table ;)
My absolute favourite dish that night was…
BEEF RENDANG!! Ever since National Day celebrations at The Stamford, I thought I would never get to taste such spicy and tender Beef Rendang but I found it here at House of Pearl! :D :D :D Remember to ask them to make it extra spicy though if you can take it because it was definitely a real winner..I like :)
Moral of the story when you go to restaurants for Asian Cuisine- Always ask them to make it extra spicy if you like your chilli as much as I do because most of them tend to suit the taste buds of the locals and it is not very spicy at all!
45 Gouger Street
Adelaide SA 5000
(08) 8231 1995
Anyhow to kill the fishy aftertaste of the squid, I walked down to Gelatissimo to get some much needed ice-cream in the sweltering heat of summer. Gelatissimo is currently having a Mango Tango deal with their famous Mango ice-cream mixed with Nutella/ Passionfruit/ Coconut etc etc. I settled for 2 scoops of Pistachio and Mango with Coconut. Loved the coconut bits in the mango ice-cream but could only find 2 pistachio nuts in my Pistachio ice-cream.. -.-
101 Gouger St
Adelaide SA 5000
(08) 8211 7774