YAN – A trader at the Pantai Murni Food Court here could barely contain her excitement upon knowing that Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak was coming on a visit today.
Rohana Shafie, 48, who was given the responsibility to prepare food for the prime minister in conjunction with the visit, said she started cooking ‘peknga’ (coconut pancake) and ‘Gulai Ikan Temenung’ (fish gravy), which are among the top ‘must-try’ foods in Kedah, as early as 3 am.
“My husband and I did not sleep at all last night while our three helpers had to take turns to sleep as we started cooking the fish gravy at 3 am and the peknga at 8 am. Alhamdulillah (Praise be to God), all 200 sets of peknga were served this morning.
“I’m excited and thrilled. Not everyone will have the opportunity and experience to cook a meal for the country’s top leader. Although we did not have any sleep, it’s fine, especially when he (Najib) said that the peknga was delicious,” she told Bernama here today.
The Prime Minister began his two-day visit to Kedah today with a breakfast with local residents in Pantai Murni before leaving for Tanjung Dawai to open the Muafakat Kedah Fishermen’s Housing Estate.
Nora Kasyamah Abdullah, 51, a trader who sells the ‘nira’ drink that is synonymous with the Yan district and which was also served at the breakfast, said she obtained the supply of drink from Sedaka near here this morning so that it was fresh and of quality.
“The nira drink from Sedaka is famous for its freshness. We ordered 200 packets of the drink, but only collected them this morning to keep their freshness,” she said.
Besides peknga and the nira drink, other local delicacies which were also served were roti jala with chicken and beef curry, ‘apam serabai’, ‘pulut ikan masin’, ‘pulut udang’, ‘pulut inti’, ‘kuih pulut sekaya’ and ‘tepung talam’.
Another trader, Sulaiman Mohd Zain, 49, said he started cooking the chicken and beef curry at 4 am before preparing 400 pieces of roti jala and apam serabai.
“I used to take orders for the PLKN (National Service Training Programme) camp. Today, I feel very proud for having been given the opportunity to cook for the prime minister,” he said.
Residents from around Yan and Pantai Murni arrived as early as 8 am at the food court so as not to miss the opportunity to see the prime minister up close. – BERNAMA