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This Westside takeout spot provides pure comfort food

Rama curry at Malaya is well-rounded, with spice, sweetness and a smooth, full-bodied texture that comes from coconut cream.
Rama curry at Malaya is well-rounded, with spice, sweetness and a smooth, full-bodied texture that comes from coconut cream.

Credit: Henri Hollis

Credit: Henri Hollis

Dish of the Week: Rama curry from Malaya

Neighborhood takeout restaurants engender fierce allegiances. Not only do we have our favorite places, we also have our favorite order. It’s what we get on a Friday night after a long week, or when we’ve returned home from a trip and have nothing in the fridge. It’s familiar, reliable and personal, and therefore satisfying in a way that goes beyond appetite. For me, it’s the Rama curry with chicken from Malaya.

Debate rages on the Underwood Hills Nextdoor about the best neighborhood takeout. We’re a Malaya household. This is partly because Malaya is a very solid, consistent restaurant that offers some intense and flavorful Malaysian and Thai food in addition to Chinese-American classics. But, it’s also because that’s where we first ordered from when we moved to the neighborhood.

The Rama curry is so good because it’s well-rounded, with spice, sweetness and a smooth, full-bodied texture that comes from coconut cream. It is a simple pleasure, and even though it may not be super healthy, it feels like it isn’t too bad for you, because it incorporates spinach and lean chicken.

As the COVID-19 pandemic disproportionately affects restaurants and their workers, takeout business is incredibly important. Whatever your favorite is, now is the time to order from them, as well as any other restaurants you want to support.

Just don’t try to tell me that your order is better than mine from Malaya — I’ll defend that Rama curry to the end of the earth.

Malaya Restaurant, 857 Collier Road NW, Atlanta. 404-609-9991, atlantamalaya.com.

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