Closed: Jalan Kayu Prata Cafe, Dhoby Ghaut MRT

I suspect in one of my past lives, I was an Indian because I adore Indian food. (In my other past life, I was Black…. er.. you know what the Blacks are famous for right? ;) Because… so shy to say… because I love African food! you dirty minded people.)

Anyway, wanted to look for somewhere cheap, fast (catching a movie in 30 minutes), restaurant-like environment, and delicious. Trust me, it’s very hard to find such a place at Dhoby Ghaut. I asked my hairstylist at The Cathay what nice food there is in the area. He replied “Popeyes.” If you’re rushing for time and Nando’s and Aston have long queues, and if it’s too far to walk to Concorde Hotel, then I highly recommend Jalan Kayu Prata Cafe (JKPC).
Someone told me before prata is south Indian cuisine and naan is north Indian cuisine but here at JKPC, they sell everything. Since it was my first time here with Emmy, we didn’t know that the place is better for the south Indian cuisine. We were idiots, or rather I was the idiot who ordered. Other people were just ordering cheap stuff such as mee goreng ($5 or something) or biryani but we ordered the expensive dishes although I was so broke.
We ordered (in the first photo) buttered chicken ($10) and cheese naan ($3 each) and (in the second photo) masala tikka chicken ($10) and garlic naan ($2 each). Why so much chicken? Because they don’t really have other meat on the menu.
Despite the limited choices, the food turned out very good. Both the chicken dishes were tender and soft and the sauce really penetrated into the chicken. I love the butter chicken for the creamy sauce, which wasn’t spicy at all. But I also love the masala chicken for its full-bodied flavors: the onions, the cloves, and other spices just exploded in the mouth. Very saliva-inducing. The portions were also generous.
The naans as you can see were pratas in disguise; the naans are ninja pratas. Authentic naans are supposed to be thicker, and smaller and the cheese are inside, not like a pizza. But who cares about authenticity! I only care if it is ho chiak or bo ho chiak, delicious or not. And the cheese naan was awesome! They used a saltier cheese (is it cheddar?) so you can even eat the sweet naan–sweetness came from carbs, carbs are sweet–on its own. The salty-sweet naan with butter chicken sauce was a lethal combination. The naan was also slightly char-ta (charred), but the slightly burnt taste went down so well! Gave the naan a smoky flavor. On the other hand, the garlic naan didn’t have much of a garlic taste.
I also ordered the teh halia (ginger tea) and although I liked it very much because it wasn’t overly sweet, my ideal teh halia should be spicy from the ginger and this wasn’t spicy enough for me.
The entire meal cost $17 per person but if you order the biryani and a drink, this meal could go less than $10 per person. Service was fast. Ambience was coffee-shop or food-court kind. I thought, if their non-specialty is already so awesome, then their specialty should be awesomer! (wow, my vocab sucks.) Next time, me big beng will being my kar-kia here. Nice lah!
Jalan Kayu Prata Cafe
60B Orchard Road
The Atrium @ Orchard (did you know the place at the dhoby ghaut MRT is called the Atrium @ Orchard????)
T: 6341 9935
Rating: 4.281/5 stars

Categories: $0-$20, Dhoby Ghaut, Indian

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