69, Jalan Thambipillay
50470 Brickfields, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Tel : 603-2276 4924
FB : MTR Malaysia
Business Hours :
Mon – Fri 8 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. ; 5 p.m. – 10:30 p.m. ; Sat & Sun 8 a.m. – 10:30 p.m.
Thanks to the wonderful invitation, I recently went to sample some delectable authentic South Indian vegetarian dishes at MTR, which is located in the busy area of Brickfields, Kuala Lumpur. The restaurant is walking distance from Kuala Lumpur Sentral railway station, or you can also park your car at the Kompleks TLK Brickfields that’s just opposite the MTR.
Delighting India with the best South Indian cuisine for close to 9 decades, Mavalli Tiffin Room (“MTR”) is an iconic restaurant from Bangalore, India that began in 1924 as Brahmin Coffee Club. Some of the signature dishes that you must try at MTR are Masala Dosa, Chicory-free Coffee, Bisibelebath, Chandrahara, and many more. The recipes of the dishes and quality of the ingredients have stayed the same even to this day.
Upon seated down at MTR, I was first introduced to their Rice Idly (RM3 for 1 piece ; RM5.70 for 2 pieces), the mainstay of South Indian cuisine that’s often eaten at breakfast or as snack. Available under the all-day menu, Rice Idly is a steamed rice and black gram cake served with green chutney and lentil sambar.
India was hit by the great Bengal famine during the World War 2 and rice was in very short supply. The founder of MTR, in a stroke of inspired genius, experimented with rava and invented the Rava Idly to replace rice idly . What began as an experiment to work around the shortage of rice, eventually turned out to be the most popular item on MTR’s menu until this day.
Served with ghee, chutney and potato sagu, the scrumptious Rava Idly (RM7.50) is a steamed semolina cake made with mixture of yoghurt, coriander, cashew nuts, curry leaves and mustard seeds.
It was my first experience trying the Pudi Dosa (RM10.50) at MTR. Served together with chutney and lentil sambar at side, it is a thick rice and black gram crepe topped with flavourful chutney powder and spiced potatoes. Soft and fluffy, I enjoyed it till I cleaned the whole plate!
Different texture from the Pudi Dosa, Masala Dosa (RM8.50) is a rice and black gram crepe with crispy outer layer and fluffy soft inside. Stuffed with spiced potatoes and laced with ghee, the green chutney and lentil sambar that served at side really complement the whole eating experience.
Curd Rice (RM8), a mixture of boiled rice and yogurt, tempered with black gram, mustard, cumin seeds, green chillies and curry leaves.
Bisi Bele Bhath (RM9), one of the rice dishes at MTR that made with lentils, assorted vegetables, spices, curry leaves and tamarind pulp. You can scoop up the rice with raitha for extra crispy texture.
Available on Saturday and Sunday only, Chandrahara (RM9.50) is the must-try trademark dessert at MTR. Topped with a thick, sweet liquid made from khoa, it is a deep fried Indian dessert made with maida flour.
After Yagnappa’s travel to Europe, he was fascinated with everything French. The Chandrahara he invented resembled a layered French pastry, and he initially called it the ‘French Sweet’ but it did not sell. He then changed the name to Chandrahara after a movie by the same name. It was an instant hit with the patrons and treated as royalty.
Wash down all the foods with a cup of Masala Tea (RM5.70), an Indian style hot chai with spices like cardamom, ginger and more. I feel so soothing now! MTR also offers other hot beverages like Filter Coffee, Filter Tea and Badam Milk to suit the different preferences.
Besides Malaysia, MTR has 10 outlets in India as well as presence in Singapore and Dubai. For more information and latest updates on MTR, do visit their official website at www.mtrmalaysia.com.
More photos at FOOD Malaysia facebook page, a Malaysian food and lifestyle blogger since 2010