On some days when the stars are aligned and we're all in the area at lunch-time, we makan at Warong Mak' Shukur. Nasi padang!!! It's situated in a kopitiam right opposite the main entrance of Singapore Press Holdings (SPH). Its proximity to SPH helps since we lurk there frequently for all sorts of reasons. It's a good way to catch friends if we don't see them for drinks or at whichever events/gigs.
I haven't managed to break out of a certain mode of choosing dishes when eating nasi padang. Without fail, the standard items on the plate are begedil, sambal kering bilis dan kacang, and soft paru goreng (don't fancy the crispy kind) accompanied by a ton of sambal tumis or sambal belado. I do consider eating something else, but on many occasions, these are all that sufficed for a satisfying lunch. Unsurprisingly, I judge all nasi padang stalls by how well they do these dishes, especially begedil. With no meat in the filling. Making those potato cakes is easy, but to get the taste right without using MSG or a ton of salt, takes some skill. And the oil used for frying affects the taste too. I've eaten some truly horrible begedil at supposedly good eateries.
We don't care that it's ridiculously hot in the day and there isn't air-conditioning at the kopitiam. Eat faster. Warong Mak' Shukur's food is worth the perspiration. If you go at noon and before 1pm, it's easy to grab seats. It's quite a popular kopitiam with the lunch crowd. Don't go too late because they do run out of food. Few places offer good nasi padang nowadays with fabulous chilli. Very sedap nasi padang with super spicy tasty sambal belado.
Warong Mak' Shukur
Hai Fong Coffeeshop (right opposite the main entrance to SPH)
203 Toa Payoh North #01-1121
Weekday lunches only.