46-48 in the Chinatown Arcade between Canal and Bayard
about $25 for two, without drinks, without tip
Don’t let the hard-to-pronounce items on the menu stop you from ordering food from New Malaysia. For my first visit, I ordered the more traditional nasi lemak and the roti canai just to be on the safe side. After those two dishes, I knew I had to come back with a bigger stomach. When Anna’s Malaysian friend told me that New York has the best Malaysian food, I raised an eyebrow. I don’t know many Malaysian restaurants in the city except for the so-so Jaya on Baxter and the Indo-Malay Nyonya and Penang franchises, so I was willing to try New Malaysia as soon as I could.
I was more adventurous during my second visit and I ordered the asam laksa, a spicy and sour soup with lemongrass broth and crushed sardines. If it weren’t so salty, it would be my new anti-cold soup of choice. Too bad it doesn’t come in a smaller bowl. The kang kung belacan is stewed in shrimp and anchovy paste, much like how Filipinos cook the swamp vegetable (spelled kang kong). It seems a little steep for $8 a plate but we cleaned it off even with four other dishes.