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Malaysian cui­sine

BBC Good Food - - News & Trends -

Each month, we ex­plore a new restau­rant trend – key in­gre­di­ents, dishes and drinks to go with them. This month, Adam Ab­dul­lah, owner of Malaysian-chi­nese restau­rant Zheng in London’s Chelsea, ex­plains what you need to know (zhengchelsea.co.uk).

Nasi Le­mak is Malaysia’s na­tional dish, which com­bines many in­gre­di­ents es­sen­tial to Malaysian cui­sine. Rice is steamed in co­conut milk then served with sam­bal bela­can (a pop­u­lar rel­ish, made of shrimp paste blended with chill­ies, shalots and lime juice), egg, cu­cum­ber, ikan bilis (dried an­chovies – we get them di­rectly from Malaysia but you can buy them here in Asian su­per­mar­kets) and peanuts. Nasi Le­mak is pop­u­lar at any time of the day, even for break­fast. At Zheng we serve it with ren­dang Chicken (slow­cooked chicken with a co­conut-based spicy sauce). Sa­tay skew­ers Sa­tay is prob­a­bly the best-known Malaysian dish, at Zheng we pound the peanuts by hand to make the sweet sauce and serve it with char­grilled mar­i­nated skew­ers of chicken, beef or tofu. Chai pu tofu is a per­fect ex­am­ple of the eclec­tic in­flu­ences in Malaysian cui­sine, we serve freshly made tofu with dried radish, chilli and spring onions. Crispy ce­real king prawns, fried prawns in a crispy oat ce­real coat­ing topped with curry leaves, is an­other very pop­u­lar dish. Curry leaves were orig­i­nally brought over by In­dian im­mi­grants, and are now of­ten used in Malaysian cui­sine for their fra­grance.

Bubur hitem A tra­di­tional Malaysian dessert made of black rice por­ridge cooked in co­conut milk. Sagu Me­laka An­other clas­sic dessert of tapi­oca pearls served with palm sugar syrup and evap­o­rated milk. Un­re­fined palm sugar (gula me­laka) is the most pop­u­lar sweet­ener in Malaysia, with a rich caramel flavour and hint of co­conut.

Malaysianchi­nese food at Zheng restau­rant

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