Malaysian food is heavily influenced by Thai, Chinese, Indonesian and Indian cuisine. These influences extend from the use of the wok to the combinations of spices used in many popular dishes.
Malay food is generally spicy. Dishes are not always necessarily chilli-hot per se, but there will always, at the least, be a chilli-based sambal on hand. Traditional Southeast Asian herbs and spices meet Indian, Middle Eastern and Chinese spices in Malaysian food, leading to fragrant combinations of coriander and cumin (the basis of many Malay curries) with lemongrass, kaffir lime leaves, cardamom, star anise and fenugreek.
These 2 dishes are very similar to Indian Coastal dishes ofcourse the flavor is absolutely Malaysian
Prawn Sambal with Roti Jala
- 3 medium onions, peeled, and chopped roughly
- 4 cloves garlic, peeled
- 2 lemongrass stalks, white part only, chopped roughly
- 2-5 Birds Eyes chillis
- 1 tablespoon belcehan (fermented shrimp paste)
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- ½ teaspoon ground turmeric
- 500 grams (about 18 ounces) raw, peeled prawns (shrimp)
- ⅓ cup water, just boiled
- 3 tablespoons tamarind concentrate
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons light soy sauce
- Process onions, garlic, lemongrass and chilli until finely diced. Use 2 chillis for a mild-medium curry, 4 for a hot curry and 5 for an extra hot curry.
- Heat up a wok until smoking and then add oil. Heat for a few seconds until it starts to shimmer then add processed mixture and belcehan.
- Fry over a medium heat for a few minutes, stirring all the time, until fragrant and starting to ‘split’.
- Add turmeric and fry for another minute, stirring briskly, and then add the prawns and ⅓ cup just boiled water.
- Stir to combine, coating the prawns with the mixture.
- Add tamarind, sugar, salt and soy and continue stirring, until prawns are pink and cooked through.
- Serve with steamed rice and fried Chinese vegetables.
Roti Jala—means “net bread” literally—is another malaysian roti . These lacy and net like pancakes/crepes are very popular during the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan, where vendors set up temporary stalls selling roti jala to go with various curries offered. Roti Jala is also very popular as an afternoon tea snack.
- 1 cup (150g) all-purpose flour
- ¼ tsp ground turmeric
- ¼ tsp salt
- 1 egg, beaten
- ¾ cup (180ml) coconut milk mixed with ¾ cup (180ml) water
- Vegetable oil to grease pan
- Sift flour and ground turmeric into a large bowl. Add salt. Stir in beaten egg and coconut milk until a smooth batter forms.
- Strain batter to remove any lumps.
- Brush a little oil onto a non-stick pan on medium heat. Pour a little batter into the roti jala cup until about half full. Move the cup in a circular motion over the pan to form a lacy pattern. Cook until set. This only takes about 2 minutes. Slide crepe out of pan onto a plate. Repeat until all batter is used up.
- When cool enough to handle, fold in both sides of the crepe and roll to form a neat package.