So, where does one find the *best* kaya toasts in South-East Asia? Personally, I thought Singapore has had it down pat - its thick, crisp toasts slathered with coconutty-eggy kaya jam, and topped with slices of cold butter are the stuff of dreams. Taken with a cup of thick Hainanese coffee ("kopi"), it's the perfect breakfast for some folks like me.
I'd never been able to find really good kaya toasts in Malaysia - not in Kuala Lumpur, nor Penang, nor Ipoh or Malacca. And I was beginning to think that perhaps, just perhaps, Singapore's revered old spots: Chin Mee Chin in Katong, Yakun or Killiney Road, might be the best there are after all.
That is, until I came across White House coffeehouse in Kota Bharu, Kelantan. A little dinky cafe, permanently full, strategically located between the Muhammadi State Mosque and the Kelantan Sultan's palace, it plays host to all and sundry - local Kelantanese traders, families, royal princes and princesses, politicians, etc.
The kaya toast at White House was an eye-opener - hand-sliced bread, toasted to a light crisp, then served with the *best* kaya I'd ever had, plus a small piece of cold butter. It was perfect, in every way.
Kedai Kopi White House
1329-L, Jalan Sultanah Zainab,
15000 Kota Bharu