Exploring Malaysian cuisine
I love Penang! This Malaysian island is such a foodie hotspot with multiple cultures and cuisines and so many great things to eat. Join me as I eat Nonya kueh, Hainan chicken rice, Cantonese yum cha, fresh tofu and soy milk, and even have a turn stir-frying at a hawker stall.
George Town is a thriving melting pot of cultures. Malay, Nonya, Indian, Chinese and English culture are jammed together in a delicious whirl. It’s Malaysia’s second-biggest city, with around 700,000 inhabitants, but the centre of the city is compact and walkable. I really appreciated getting amongst it after spending a lot of time in air-conditioned malls in Kuala Lumpur. Charmingly dilapidated colonial architecture jams up against contemporary street art. Hand-drawn carts bump down steamy streets then set up to sell one special dish – buy it quick before it’s all gone! Markets are noisy, smelly, busy treasure troves. Elegant hotels seem to operate at a different pace altogether: there’s a hush and spaciousness that signals luxury. Yet five minutes away, backpackers crowd into hostels. In every neighbourhood, families throng to hawker markets, sitting together in casual, hungry happiness. I just loved every minute, ate about eight meals a day (I’m not joking) and learnt everything I could about ingredients, recipes, food culture and production.
As always, what I learn, I long to share, so I have lots of Malaysian recipes on the site.
- You’ll love these delicious Asian inspired recipes too:
- If you love Asian cuisine you’ll love the Chinese chapter in my Entertaining cookbook.
- A big thank you to Adam Chew who was not only my videographer but a generous guide to George Town, the capital of Penang.