Peranakan Kitchen offers the delicious flavours of Indonesia in Metro Vancouver
Made in Vancouver is a collaboration between Vancity and Daily Hive. Together, we’re turning the spotlight onto local businesses, organizations, and individuals who are helping to create a healthy local economy.
If you’re craving the flavours of Indonesia — or curious to try Indonesian cuisine for the very first time — then PK is for you.
This new eatery, which opened a couple of months ago in New Westminster, offers mouth-watering takeout, delivery and catering services, along with convenient frozen dishes.
Vancity has been supporting people in our communities since 1946. As part of our Made in Vancouver series spotlighting local businesses, we talked to Harry Jacob Alamsyah about his new eatery, PK. Learn more about what Vancity is doing in your community at vancity.com
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Owner Harry Jacob Alamsyah was running a private school when the pandemic started, but border closures kept the international students away. And restaurant closures meant he was eating at home a lot.
Although Alamsyah has been in Canada for almost two decades now, still he missed the flavours of Indonesia from his youth. He tried to find the cuisine of his memories in Vancouver.
“I couldn’t find it. So I had to cook it myself,” he says.
With time on his hands thanks to the pandemic, he phoned anyone he knew in Indonesia with a restaurant — and anyone with a grandmother known for her excellent cooking — and asked for recipes. Then he began experimenting in the kitchen.
With a laugh, he talks about how it took him a while to perfect his recipe for siumai (Chinese dumplings) and that his friends ate all of his less-than-perfect attempts. “All my friends who live nearby, they know, ‘Oh no, I’m going to get another siumai next week.’”
Fortunately, Alamsyah’s hard work and dedication paid off, and he ended up with a stellar menu of dishes that reflect the flavours of Indonesia from his childhood. So he took the plunge and opened PK. The initials stand for Peranakan Kitchen.
Peranakan cuisine blends ingredients from China with spices and techniques used in Indonesian and Malay cooking.
The end result is a rich and flavourful mix, familiar to anyone who’s ever been to Southeast Asia. Alamsyah sums up this cuisine in one word: “Spicy!”
The PK menu includes dishes such as bakmi goreng (Chinese fried noodles), nasi goreng (Indonesian fried rice), sambal prawns, chicken katsu and, of course, pork and shrimp siumai. Vegetarians can opt for the gado-gado (Indonesian salad), japchae (noodles) or tempeh bowl. Appies include crispy pork cakes, chicken satay and spring rolls.
Alamsyah feels fortunate that he’s able to run both a school and an eatery. It’s important to him to give back, by supporting orphans at Bhakti Luhu Orphanage in Indonesia.
“We have two children that we are sponsoring right now,” he says. “They are three years old and five years old.” As his business grows, so too will his charitable giving: “If we make more money, we’ll sponsor more kids.”
And as PK’s frozen meals start to become available in Vietnamese and Chinese supermarkets, Alamsyah plans to sponsor orphans from those countries as well.
“I’d rather spread it, like spread the love,” he says. “Because we are multicultural here. We are not just Chinese, we are not just Indian, we’re not just Dutch, we’re not just British. We’re from everywhere here.”
Sharing food, sharing love, sharing support — sounds to us like Alamsyah has figured out the real recipe for success.
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Are you ready to taste the flavours of Indonesia yourself?
PK offers limited delivery to Vancouver through their website. Delivery within New Westminster is available via Uber Eats, DoorDash, and Skip the Dishes.
You can pick up meals directly from PK, or find frozen dishes at Stong’s Market. PK also offers catering services for Christmas parties, weddings, movie sets, corporate events and more.
PK (Peranakan Kitchen)
Address: 1122 5th Avenue, New Westminster