Monk & Me

June 12, 2012

9 Evans Place, Camberwell
My family and I went to Monk & Me for dinner with some family friends; their youngest daughter goes to school with my younger brother, and their eldest has recently done an internship in NY (where I will be holidaying very, very soon), so I was keen to get to opportunity to grill, er, question her about her favourite places!
Monk & Me is around the corner from the Rivoli theatre in Camberwell, and serves a satisfied population of local families and students. The food isn’t very cheap, but it’s good, authentic Malaysian food. Like all good group dinners, we just ordered lots of plates to share.

The curry puffs were a favourite around the table – who doesn’t like spicy and sweet deep fried parcels?

The satay sauce was quality; the perfect consistency and intensely nutty, but I found the chicken a tad dry.

Moving onto mains, the beef rendang was a great rendition of the classic malay dish. Thick and flavoursome without being spicy, this one is good for younger kids. We ordered some stretchy sheets of roti (possibly the best type of bread on the planet) to mop up the excess sauce.

Noodles were a must; we decided on the Char Kway Teow, a dark golden mix of thick rice noodles with prawns and a hint of chili.

This next dish looks a little like a glistening mess, but it was actually succulent pieces of duck braised in honey-soy with (a little bit of) broccoli. I found this a tad too sweet, but the duck was tender and, being boneless, made eating it a cinch.

The king prawns, lightly battered with a tangy mayonnaise coating and ground peanuts were a strange dish, and I’m not sure they appealed to me. To their credit, the prawns were enormous and nicely tender. However I don’t really understand the idea of giving them a crispy batter but then coating it in mayonnaise and making them soggy. Anyway, perhaps I’ll order a different prawn dish next time, like the Udang Ria, prawns with tomato and capsicum, simmered in coconut milk and lemon juice.

My favourite dish of the night was actually the side of spinach in a sambal sauce, which is a light chili and prawn paste. The spinach is glistening and salty and moorish, and I could have eaten the entire pile.

Monk & Me is a good location for nearby residents looking for a Malay food fix. The clientele are a friendly bunch, the service is efficient, and the restaurant is large so is well suited for larger groups. In all, a relaxed and satisfying meal was had by all!

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Filed under: Camberwell, Malaysian