Posted : August 2014Author : HGW Editor
In this fifth part, we’ve listed the most well-loved Malaysian dishes that have been birthed as a result of the beautiful multicultural landscape of this great nation. Feast your eyes on these beauties, and then fill your bellies at our recommended spots!
Kristang food is Portuguese-Eurasian food ala Malaysia! This spicy, creamy delight of a curry dish gets its unique and earthy flavours from candlenuts, galangal, and vinegar, and although most widely found in Melaka, can be enjoyed everywhere else from Kuala Lumpur to Penang!
Otak-otak is a spicy fish paste wrapped in a banana leaf and, depending on which state it originates from, is then steamed or barbequed. While it most clearly traces its roots in Peranakan cooking, the slightly-Malay twist to otak-otak is also very popular and found in most pasar malams! The end result is almost always a smooth kuih-like savoury dish that is bursting with spices and the freshness of fish.
43. Ju Hu Char
Ju hu char is a nyonya dish originating from Penang, and is a fried salad made mostly from shredded jicama, carrots, dried cuttlefish, and mushrooms. Eaten with lettuce leaves and a dollop of sambal for the adventurous, this is a must-have for any nyonya food lover.
Cincalok is a Malaccan food made of fermented shrimps, and it’s usually served as a condiment together with chillis, shallots and lime juice. Salty, tangy and perfect on its own or with fried eggs, cincalok is a bit of an acquired taste, but we think it’s a real delicacy!
45. Kerabu Jantung Pisang
This is nyonya salad with a kick! Jantung pisang, or banana blossoms, is the star of the salad, which combines the wonderfully rich and creamy texture of coconut milk and the banana blossom, with the crunchy freshness of chilli and kerisik. We’ve had a pretty awesome rendition of this kerabu at Melaka!
46. Yee Sang
Yee sang is a Chinese-style salad that is consumed during the lunar New Year. This dish is only enjoyed in Malaysia and Singapore, making it really unique to this side of the world. Made of an assortment of freshly shredded vegetables and crispy fried crackers, yee sang is symbolic as an act of ushering life and prosperity. It’s also one heckuva delicious dish, and extremely healthy if you make it at home!
47. Ipoh Taugeh
OK, we know this may seem a rather thin definition of a dish but if you’ve ever had real Ipoh-grown taugeh (beansprouts), you’ll agree that this deserves to be on this list. Fat and crunchy, with a slight sweetness to it, Ipoh folks will swear that the water from the limehills surrounding this sleepy-hollow town is the reason for the exceptionally delicious beansprouts.
48. Kek Lapis Sarawak
Layer cake is always delicious, but kek lapis Sarawak has a unique consistency and taste, making it wholy Malaysian! Made out of a multitude of flavours, from Horlicks to Milo, to cheese and Oreo, this moist and delicious Sarawak favourite also comes in intricate patterns and designs.
Apam may have originated from Sri Lanka, but Malaysians have long made it our own. Fat and chewy, or thin and crispy, apam is awesome plain or with a variety of fillings, from crushed peanuts to corn and even cheese. The best place to get your fill of apam is at a local pasar malam, and we’ve chosen some of the best for you!
50. Ayam Pongteh
Another Peranakan favourite, ayam or pork pongteh marries the earthy sweetness of gula melaka with the pungent saltiness of preserved bean (taucu). A really appetising dish which goes perfectly with a bowl of white rice!