Sunday, September 7, 2014

Mama Yu Indonesian Bistro - Halal

10815 Beechnut @ Wilcrest

I am indebted to Zain Mohammed for introducing me to this one.  Zain is a UH student who blogs about Halal places; he tipped me off to his blog recently and when I read his review of this place I headed right over.  The restaurant has been in existence for around a year and a half but I just haven't been paying much attention to the restaurant scene and I had not heard of it.

I had the Nasi Goreng Jawa on my first visit.   Jawa means this is a Javanese version of Nasi Goreng (fried rice) with a fried egg on the side instead of scrambled egg mixed in. This came with some sambal, the Indonesian hot sauce, and kecap manis, the Indonesian syrupy soy sauce sweetened with palm sugar.  I had ordered the spicy version of the dish and didn't need the sambal but really enjoyed adding a few drizzles of the soy sauce around the edges to mix in.  I got the version with beef, shrimp and chicken.

My only visit to our other Indonesian restaurant had left me underwhelmed and I've never gotten around to going back.  I may have just ordered wrong or caught them on an off day because I know a lot of people rave about that place.  It was just the opposite here -  I went back very the next day (and once again within a week) and tried the Ayam Goreng Mama Yu - traditional Indonesian fried chicken (1/2 order).  The chicken has a lite crispy batter and came with a dipping bowl of a spicy shrimp paste sauce; I also ordered a small side of rice and Teh Botol, one of the two packaged jasmine tea drinks available. Indonesians eat rice with everything but if you don't order one of the rice dishes then rice is extra.

I went back for another visit really craving some more of the Nasi Goreng but once I started looking over the menu again, I realized there were so many things I wanted to try it would be foolish to start picking favorites now.  I wound up with an Indonesian 'meat 'n 3' dish, Nasi Padang Rendang.  This had been recommended by one of the staff and the description on the menu sounded fantastic but the picture hadn't really appealed to me (there are pictures on the wall of many of the dishes).  It exceeded my expectations considerably.   It was a portion of tender beef rendang, cooked in coconut milk with spices, rice, of course, a vegetable curry with some variety of green bean, cabbage and jackfruit, a hard boiled egg in a spicy sauce and an anchovy sauce at 9 o'clock.

My only disappointment so far has been Tongseng, a lamb stew that I ordered on a day when I wasn't feeling very well and thought a hearty stew would be just the thing.  Nothing really stood out about the dish and it got rather monotonous by the time I finished it.  But clearly there are many more things on the menu here to try.

The restaurant is open 7 days a week and also serves Halal Chinese food except on Mondays.

Mama Yu is a great addition to our international food scene.

Mama Yu

I see the Facebook pages say they take orders for Tumpeng, just this year declared the official national dish of Indonesia by the Ministry of Tourism.  


Zain's Halal Reviews said...

Aww thanks! I'm glad you liked that place! I really like your blog too. Keep up the good work! :)

Zain's Halal Reviews said...

Another interesting place to try: Cafe Pita on Westheimer. Amazing Bosnian food! Keep up the good work!

Bruce said...

I always like to give credit to others who help me find good places.

I've been to Cafe Pita but not in a couple of years. There's a second location on Richmond near Chimney Rock.