When I was told that the best Cendol is found in old Klang town, the statement was met with skepticism by yours truly. However, curiosity got the better of me and I decided to make a trip down to the ‘royal city’ just to find out if the cendol lives up to its reputation. Upon seeing the cendol shop, I was startled to see the word 1972 prominently displayed on the signboard. Apparently, the cendol shop was founded by Mr. Mahalingam way back in 1972.
There is an interesting story of how Mr. Mahalingam began his cendol business. He came from a very poor family and had no choice but to pawn his Seiko watch for $20 to start a part-time cendol business at Nibong Tebal in Penang. His first day profit was only $1.60 but his persistency paid off when he was offered to take over a business from another cendol seller in Klang when the later need to go back to India. The rest as they say is history.
There are many types of cendol sold at Klang Cendol ranging from cendol biasa (plain cendol), cendol ais krim and cendol pulut (cendol with glutinous rice). I ordered the cendol pulut which costs RM 2.20 per bowl.
The cendol was served in a metal bowl. Instead of a mountain of shaved ice covered with coconut milk and thick gula melaka (palm sugar), the bowl of cendol came with a few chunks of glutinous rice in a pool of melted ice with brownish gula melaka, milk, green jelly and red beans.
While it doesn’t look impressive, the taste was truly fantastic. While it wasn’t overly dense with gula melaka which made it less sweeter than those Baba cendol in Melaka, it still hit all the right notes with a perfect combination of fresh coconut milk with gula melaka.
I believe Mr. Mahalingam has fine-tuned his recipe over the years and has successfully come up with a lips smacking bowl of cendol that truly lives up to his reputation.
It was also my first time trying cendol pulut which adds a new dimension to the texture of the dessert. While cendol biasa comes mainly with shaved ice, the cendol pulut has a more chewy texture due to the glutinous rice soaked in the coconut milk. Two thumbs up!
Apparently, Cendol Klang do sell rojak as well. The sauce is slightly lighter in colour and not as thick or as spicy as those other mamak stalls.
There were fried tofu, a piece of boiled egg, sliced cucumber and even lettuce.
Taste wise, I wasn’t really impressed with it. After tasting the cendol, I was hoping that the rojak would be equally good but I still prefer Rojak Mustaffa at Petaling Jaya.
But the whole purpose of going there was to taste the cendol and I wasn’t disappointed at all. True enough, apart from Bak Kut Teh and seafood, Klang can proudly proclaim cendol as one its repertoire of signature dishes in this royal town.
No, 78, Jalan Nanas
Selangor Darul Ehsan