Penang Halal Food: CMR Cina Muslim Restoran, D’Piazza Mall Bayan Baru

This is part of #RebeccaPenangHalalGuide. See full list here –> List of Muslim friendly food outlets in Penang by Rebecca Saw

Restaurant Name: CMR China Muslim Restaurant 
Address: 70-01-12A , D Piazza Mall, Jalan Mahsuri, 11950 Bayan Baru, Penang
Tel: +604 6443718
GPS:  N05° 19′ 36.8” E100° 16′ 58.1″

Opening Hours: 11:00am – 2.30pm (lunch)
5.30pm – 10:00pm (dinner)
Closed on 2nd & 4th Monday of the Month.
Website: http://www.cmr-restoran.com
Halal Checklist:
Muslim Owned: Yes (3 owners – 1 Muslim and 2 Chinese)
Halal Certified: Y (JAKIM)
100% Halal Ingredients: Y
Cleanliness Grade – A
Serves Alcohol: N
Years of Operation: 4 years
Extra Comments/Notes:
5% service charge
No government tax

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CMR China Muslim Restaurant is the 1st original Chinese cooking restaurant from China in Penang that acquired HALAL certification from the Department of Islamic Development Malaysia (JAKIM).

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The restaurant cooking is Halal “Qing Zen” using all Halal materials and cook by Muslim Chefs from The Ningxia Muslim Autonomous Region of China. NingXia is the densest Muslim populated area in Northwest China.
CMR provides a venue for different races and religions from all classes to dine and enjoy delicious Northwest China dishes together.

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It was baffling to me at first that a small island with a dense Chinese population has a restaurant that serves specifically Muslims friendly cuisine.
However, barely 10 minutes in the restaurant I realized that 60% of the diners are actually Chinese!
They were enjoying their meal with their Muslim friends and for some, family members.

The expansive menu could be another reason. And the fact that the cuisine here isn’t your average Cantonese/Hong Kong/Teo Chew chinese cuisine. For most Chinese, this is a cuisine unique to them as well.

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A minimally decorated spacious restaurant, the dining area seats about 100 pax while upstairs is can accommodate up to 130 guests for weddings and other private functions.

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Craving for something soupy I started the meal with a bowl of Beef La Mian (RM4.50).
Now here’s a hint; if you would like some theatrics with your meal, order the la mian.
Since it made to order, the Chinese Muslim chef will come out from the kitchen to handpull the noodles for you.

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We observed him in awe as he deftly knead, stretch and looped the dough and thin strands of noodles miraculously took form.
Once cut the noodle were given a quick blanch before noodles and clear, tasty soup were poured into a bowl. Slices of beef and a sprinkling of green onions completed the dish.

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The Shark Fin is RM6.00 per single serving and came generously loaded with actual crab meat. While the consistency is right, it could do with a bit more flavour.

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A few of the popular dishes of CMR are the Signature Lamb (RM38 – S), (RM68 – M), (RM88 – L) , the Stuffed Tofu with Broccoli (RM38) and the Stuffed Brinjal (RM12 –S).

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The spices used to marinate and the preparation method was the outstanding element of the lamb.
At first glance the stuffed brinjal looked like a squid, but it was actually a brinjal shaped into a big spring, then coated with flour and deep fried. Just prior to serving, a sweet sauce cooked with chicken meat and vegetable was poured over it to complete the dish.

Penang Halal Food -CMR Cina Muslim Restoran, D Piazza Mall Bayan Baru

Our Crispy Fried Duck (RM28 for half a duck) was superb! Crispy skin, firm but tender meat minus any gamey taste.
When I was in China, cold appetizers served on the table even before the meal is the norm.
I remember one common cold dish was this pickled cucumber. The version here was close.

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The Mapo Tofu (RM10 – M) would have tasted better if the tofu was cooked longer in the sauce. Somehow it tasted as if the fresh tofu was added into the sauce and given a quick stir before it was served.

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On the other hand, the fried seafood and tofu balls (RM8) were additively tasty.

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Beef is on the menu as well.

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Eggs doesn’t have to be boring. A simple egg dish here is given more flavour stewed with tomatoes and wood fungus.

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For individual diners, single serving of fried rice and noodles are available on the menu with the reasonable price of RM6/portion.

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The traditional “NingXia Pa Pao” tea was seen on nearly every table. This tea is served in a transparent jug and it is really pretty as you can see the blooming tea leaves and flowers via the glass.
However we didn’t think we could finish a whole jug so we ordered individual bowls of Lean Chee Kang (RM2.80/bowl) instead.

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As we paid the bill, it dawned on me that the prices for the food is really reasonable especially if you order the meat and seafood items.
Portions and ingredients are generous and the food is good.
I would highly recommend CMR Restaurant to all friends’ Muslims or otherwise as the unique cuisine itself warrants a visit.

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