First Look

Angel Touch Kitchen in Carrollton Endures Challenges, Keeps Drawing Fans of Indonesian Dishes

Nasi rendang daging
Nasi rendang daging Didi Paterno
It’s a miracle to be one of the two food establishments left at the once-bustling food court of the former Galleria Mart, which is now Oh! Mart International Food. Here at the corner of Highway 121 and Hebron Parkway in Carrolton, Angel Touch Kitchen is the only exclusive-Indonesian restaurant in North Texas, and it’s fighting hard to survive.

Owner and cook Yenni Haryanti started this venture in a commercial kitchen with pickups in Plano and McKinney.
click to enlarge Angle Touch Kitchen is located inside Oh! Mart International Food in Carrolton. - DIDI PATERNO
Angle Touch Kitchen is located inside Oh! Mart International Food in Carrolton.
Didi Paterno
This isn’t Haryanti’s first foray into the food industry; eight years ago, she owned and operated a food truck in California. She recently weathered building lockouts, changes in building ownership and contracts, as well as gas and water shutdowns. And still, she cooks on with the support of her husband, sister-in-law and other family members, all of whom work alongside her in the kitchen.

Buoyed by the 300-strong WhatsApp group of Indonesian Americans and curious DFW foodies turned loyal customers, she is always surprised and motivated by new customers who drive two to three hours, even from Houston, just to have a taste of home.

Her weekly rotating menu keeps customers coming back for traditional Indonesian specialties.

“I cook what I want to eat. I don’t want to eat the same thing every day,” Haryanti says with a smile, explaining they still are figuring out what dishes sell best, anticipating the opening of the supermarket next door.
click to enlarge Nasi campur ayam woku - DIDI PATERNO
Nasi campur ayam woku
Didi Paterno
Ask about their nasi padang of the week, which is an entire category of food in itself, essentially steamed jasmine rice served with several other rotating dishes: a meat, vegetables or another non-meat protein.
One week it was nasi campur ayam woku: chicken curry, sambal potato and green beans with sweet corn fritters. Another week it was nasi rendang gaging, a rich beef coconut stew and spicy sambal and boiled egg.
click to enlarge Soto ayam and mie ayam japur - DIDI PATERNO
Soto ayam and mie ayam japur
Didi Paterno
For cold winter days, the soto ayam is Indonesian chicken noodle soup for the soul. Glass noodles, shredded cabbage, chicken, boiled egg topped with fried shallots in a clear broth are the perfect balm for cold winters — hot, comforting and filling. Squeeze a slice of lime and some of the green chili sambal to brighten it up.

If you don’t care for soup, mie ayam jamur is for you. Handmade flat yellow wheat noodles tossed in chicken oil topped with diced chicken and mushrooms comes with clear chicken broth on the side. It’s bursting with umamit.
click to enlarge Batagor and es cendol - DIDI PATERNO
Batagor and es cendol
Didi Paterno

There’s also a wide selection of Indonesian snacks to share. Try the lemper ayam, spiced chicken shreds sandwiched in between two layers of sweet sticky rice, wrapped in a banana leaf. Or the otak-otak, a fish mashed into a paste folded into a banana leaf and grilled. Batagor is fried tofu stuffed with fish paste dipped into a crunchy creamy peanut satay sauce with a kiss of kecap manis, sweet soy sauce, and fried shallots.
click to enlarge Lemper and klepon - DIDI PATERNO
Lemper and klepon
Didi Paterno
Round out the meal with sweets like the klepon, glutinous pandan rice balls filled with molten palm sugar, coated in grated coconut. Have a glass of es eendol, pandan jelly strips in coconut milk liquid and palm sugar syrup on ice, which is refreshing even in the bitter cold.

With a renewed year-long contract and a new building owner, Angel Touch Kitchen will survive. They still take preorders through their website even with the brick-and-mortar location. And be sure to check their Facebook page for the weekly menu updates. Order promptly as they do sell out fast.

Angel Touch Kitchen, 4060 Highway 121, Building 150, Suite 188 (Carrollton). 11 a.m. - 2 p.m. and 4 - 7 p.m. Tuesday through Friday; 11 a.m. - 7 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Closed Monday.
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