09 July, 2016

Bubur Cha Cha Pie & Mata Kucing McFlurry - Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

McDonald's Malaysia Bubur Cha Cha Pie - June 2016 
McDonald's Malaysia Mata Kucing Pie - June 2016

Consumed on 23 June 2016
Location - McDonald's Bangsar, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Pie Price - 3.50MYR = $0.88USD.  McFlurry Price 4.95MYR = $1.25USD
Calories - Unknown

McDonald's Malaysia Receipt June 2016

I think the middle box tearaway is new to Malaysia.
Going to combine two reviews into one today to hopefully clear out some of my ever growing backlog of reviews.  I happened to try both the Bubur Cha Cha Pie & a Mata Kucing McFlurry at the same time a couple weeks ago on a work trip to Kuala Lumpur (prior to the Beef & Egg Fan-Tastic with Meat Sauce in Hong Kong which I ate a week later, but I felt that was a more exciting review to read so I wrote that one first).  I'll start with the Burbur Cha Cha Pie, as that's the item I was looking more forward to reviewing.

For the month of Ramadan, McDonald's Malaysia launched a range of 'traditional' Malay inspired items, despite living just minutes away from Malaysia from 2012-2015 this is the first time they've gone so heavy with the promo items during the Ramadan period.  Unfortunately they didn't release any special burgers, but they did re-release the Foldovers which I was able to review a couple years ago, so I gave those a pass this time around. Bubur Cha Cha is a traditional Nyonya/Peranakan dessert consisting of taro and other hard vegetables like sweet potato boiled in a sweetened coconut milk and typically small tapioca balls also used in bubble tea are thrown in for good measure.  The McDonald's version of this pie just stuck with the basic two ingredients, coconut milk + taro.  

Now, I've had 'proper' bubur cha cha a number of times, and it's not really something I'd seek out as a go-to dessert but I do rather enjoy it whenever I eat it, but since The Wife does not like coconut, it's not something I eat all that often.  One bite into this pie I was immediately reminded of the coconut milk flavour from the traditionally served-cold dessert.  The coconut milk inside the pie was not overly sweet which I find a common problem with McDonald's pies, and despite my normal hatred towards deep fried pies, the oily shell here added a balance to the absolutely enormous amounts of coconut milk in this pie.  This pie was heaving with the filling, so much so that after each bite, a considerable about of the milk would fall out of the pie and cover both my hands my hands and tray.  I would actually have preferred less coconut milk and more pieces of taro, as there were only maybe 3-4 small pieces of taro in the entire pie, and therefore you couldn't really taste them (and I was not going to go fishing through the milk with my fingers to try and get a photo of one).  They were however cooked properly as you could tell they were boiled, since they had the soft, yet firm consistency expected in bubur cha cha. All in, I think it was a bit of a stretch to call it a bubur cha cha pie, and they should have simply called it a Coconut Milk Pie. Yes, it did have 2 of the major ingredients, but they don't go calling an Apple Pie and Apple Turnover Pie, even when most of the major ingredients are there. It was missing the expected chewiness from either the tapioca or other common sweeter ingredients usually found in the authentic dessert.

Rating - 3/5

Leftover Angry Birds promo cups from April-May.

The 2nd item I was able to try that Thursday evening was the Mata Kucing McFlurry, which was another dessert item introduced specifically for the Ramadan period. Mata Kucing is a Malay/Indonesian fruit which translates to Cats Eye, and it pretty much looks and tastes like a Longan.  To be honest, must have seen these countless times travelling around South East Asia, but I just assumed they must have been Longan fruit, I'll probably have to look a bit closer next time as I didn't even know this variant existed before researching this McFlurry...  Now to be completely honest, I didn't order this McFlurry to review, a friend I was dining with @matiassingers did order one and he let me get enough bites in to get a proper review in. 

Since the McFlurry is called Mata Kucing, you'd at least hope it tastes something like the fruit, but the syrup they mixed together with the small semi-dried pieces of fruit completely hid any taste they should have added to the ice cream.  The completely un-promoted surprise here was that the syrup was clearly palm-sugar and not the typical simple table syrup which did add a pleasant taste on it's own.  Palm sugar syrup is another traditional dessert topping in Malaysia and I was pleasantly surprised the used it in this McFlurry, as it did fit the "traditional" theme they were going for.  I tried maybe 3 spoonfuls, each of which had a decent amount of syrup and a couple pieces of fruit.  They could have completely skipped the fruit pieces and I honestly wouldn't have tasted anything different, that's how much the syrup overpowered it. 

Rating - 2/5

One other nice touch was that McDonald's Malaysia were offering free dates to any diner.  Dates are another traditional Ramadan staple, and they were completely free for anyone placing an order. Last year McDonald's Singapore offered a free date with McDelivery orders, but I think there was some absurd minimum order to get a single free date...

One other promotion McDonald's Malaysia was running was if you use contactless payment to pay for your order you would get a free frozen Coke. I was going to use Paywave anyway, so I ended up with one of these.  I've had them before, and they still were pretty disappointing.

Yet another Ramadan promotion was the new Cendol soft serve cones, which I didn't try either.  Cendol is another traditional dessert, and I have a feeling a the soft serve would have tasted just like palm sugar as well, as it's the primary flavour in cendol.