Khamis, September 11, 2008

Balik Kampung...

I was born, raised and so far, trapped in KL. Very much a city girl, the only place I could call hometown is, Kampung Baru, which doesn't exactly fit in what people would name kampung. Nevertheless, it's MY kampung!

Bersempena hari lebaran yang bakal menjelang, I decided to make this special posting tentang kampung kesayangan hamba. Hak hak...My fave uncle, if you're reading this, Viva Kampung Baru!!!

Source: Flickr

Kampung Baru is a Malay enclave in the heart of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

It is also one of the most valuable tracts of land in the capital and is estimated to be worth up to US$1.4 billion. But so far Kampung Baru elders have turned developers away, saying they want to preserve their ethnic Malay lifestyle.

Colonial British administrators gazetted Kampung Baru as a Malay Agricultural Settlement in 1900 to allow the Malays to retain their village lifestyle within the city.

Since then, Kampung Baru has become more than a village; it's glaring hold-out against development and modern-city living has turned it into a political symbol of Malay culture.

It already held a special place for Malay politics during the pro-independence movement that grew up after World War II. Anti-colonial protests were held there, and founders of Malaysia's dominant political party, the United Malays National Organisation, held their early meetings there.

New evidence revealed by the National Archives of Malaysia shows that UMNO has its origins at the Sultan Sulaiman Club in Kampung Baru. Culture, Arts and Heritage Minister Datuk Seri Dr Rais Yatim said the documents were unearthed recently when some work was being carried out at the club.

Kampung Baru, which sprawls over almost a square km (250 acres), also played a part in the May 13 Incident in 1969, where bloody racial clashes occurred between ethnic Malays and Chinese. The riots started after Chinese-led opposition parties marched through the village to celebrate their good showing in general elections of that year.


In recent years, Kampung Baru also played a central role in the Reformasi protests of 1998, when former deputy premier Anwar Ibrahim launched protests against then premier Mahathir Mohamad, calling for reforms to government and the judiciary.

At long last, Federal Territories Minister Datuk Seri Zulhasnan Rafique said the local plan for Kampung Baru in Kuala Lumpur will be unveiled to the public in April 2008. The plan will present in detail the Government of Malaysia's development agenda for Kampung Baru.

According to the minister, much thought had gone into drafting the plan with the government taking into account issues like the Malay image and land ownership. He also said the plan was drafted after many rounds of discussions with various parties.

“A sum of RM100mil has been allocated under the Ninth Malaysia Plan for four to five projects requiring the government attention pertaining to land development and the improvement of infrastructures. Some of the money will be channelled to Kampung Baru for similar purposes,” Zulhasnan said.

Source: Wikipedia

And this, came out in The Star today.
Kg Baru brings back tastes of long ago with a wide spread of food

KAMPUNG Baru is one of the oldest Malay settlements in the city and is also a place I hold dear to my heart.

Having spent a good 12 years of my childhood in this neighbourhood, I made friends with many of the residents here.

Today, most of them have moved on and names like Hashim Abdullah, Amran Harun, Amran Wahab and Dedi Syaripudin Arshad have been ingrained in my memory.

Plenty of choice: Just some of the delights available at Nasi Lemak Antarabangsa

They were my primary schoolmates and I spent a great deal of time at their homes when I was a kid.

Hashim, whose father was a Bahasa Malaysia teacher at a Chinese school in Segambut, was the closest childhood friend I ever had.

His mother used to offer cucur badak and tea in the afternoons when I hung out at his home while waiting for him to return from religious studies.

During Ramadan, I followed my friend to the pasar minggu located at Jalan Raja Muda Musa where good food was aplenty.

Hashim, wherever you are, thanks for the memories!

Traditional tastes: Chunburi Corner serves up East Coast delicacies in the heart of KL

Now, getting back to the good makan places, there are a few stalls that are a ‘must go’ whenever I make a quick visit to this neighbourhood.

First off, there’s the Jalan Raja Alang Ramadan bazaar at the junction of Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman.

This is one of the longest streets in the Kampung Baru area, covering at least four kilometres.

Along the road, one of my favourite stalls is the gerai nasi dagang bandaraya. This was also one of the makan places where I learned to appreciate Kelantanese food.

Highly recommended is the nasi dagang with kuah ikan tongkol, which will set you back about RM3, definitely inexpensive when compared to many other spots.

When you walk along the bazaar, you will also notice some Indonesian restaurants here. Most of these outlets are operated by naturalised Indonesians who came to settle here in the 1980s.

Yummy: Ayam percik from the Jalan Raja Alang Ramadan bazaar

If you love Minangkabau cooking, there’s the Restoran Garuda located about 150 metres away from the stall.

I have yet to try out what Restoran Garuda has to offer, but rest assured, I will do a piece specifically on Indonesian food in Kampung Baru soon.

Moving on, if you are into Kelantanese food, there is another place to check out. It is located at the flats near Jalan Raja Muda Musa.

Called Chunburi Corner, this makan place offers a large variety of East Coast dishes. Regular fare like nasi kerabu, nasi dagang and nasi minyak are sold here.

And the fare offered costs no more than RM4 a serving. Now, if you are one of those who adopt a ‘semua taruk’ (give me everything) approach to your rice, your bill may reach as high as RM9.50 a plate.

What I like about the Chunburi Corner is that you don’t have to travel to Kota Baru, Kelantan, to get a taste of good East Coast cooking.

No stopping us: Rain did not deter these young patrons from buying food to break fast with.

This eatery is open till late and, if you hang around long enough, you might catch some local celebrities having their makan there.

The next makan place I want to highlight is the gerai nasi lemak Antarabangsa. Now, this is the stall that put Kampung Baru on the culinary map and I started eating here more than a decade ago.

The fare is priced from RM4 onwards. What I would recommend if you plan to break your fast here is the sambal sotong, daging rendang and paru goreng.

Popular spot: Nasi Lemak Antarabangsa is a favourite with many in the city

And, since these additional dishes do not come cheap, don’t go overboard.

Ironically, the stall is located near the home of Amran Harun or Amran Gemuk (Fat Amran) as my classmates used to call him.

He has since moved out of the neighbourhood and the house where he once resided is now the service centre of Titiwangsa MP Dr Lo’ lo’ Ghazali.

Apart from the three places which I specifically mentioned in this story, there are more makan places that await discovery.

So, someday, I hope to rope in my wife and some friends for a nostalgic walkabout around Kampung Baru.

To get to Jalan Raja Alang, you can take the monorail and get off at the Medan Tuanku station, it’s a 15-minute walk from there.

Jalan Raja Muda Musa is located near the Kampung Baru LRT station, so if you want to save some time looking for a place to park, it’s best that you utilise the city’s public transport system.

Source: The Star Online


2 ulasan:

Nurul berkata...

kampung mu kampung ku jua...kangen zaman kecik2 di bulan puasa...perang mercun! asiiik.

f a r i n a berkata...

huhuhu...those old days!

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