Malaysia is a land of many flavors, spices,
and tastes it cuisine comprises of three main groups namely
Malay, Chinese and Indian. Malay cuisine is mainly rich and
spicy arising from a great use of spices.
As with most Asian countries rice is popular and is often mixed
with spices and meats to create a whole meal, meats are more
common in Malaysia than with some other Asian countries. Satay
is a dish popular throughout Malaysia, small pieces of meat are
often mixed with a spicy peanut source to create a fantastic bbq
Common ingredients that can be found in Malaysian cuisine
include coconut milk, chillies, onions, cucumber and spices such
as cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, garlic and coriander.
Malaysian cuisine has spawned many individual cuisines mainly
Kelantanese, Kedah and Nyonya. Kelantanese cuisine, is similar
to Thai cuisine for example, it has a sweet taste due to liberal
use of coconut milk and sugar. While Kedah cuisine is spicier
due to the influence of Indians who arrived here centuries ago
during the spice trade.
Nyonya cuisine evolved out of a unique blend of Malay and
Chinese cooking styles. It is characterized by sweet, sour,
spicy and pungent flavors. It originated from the Straits of
Malacca over 400 years ago. This was the result of
inter-marriages between Chinese immigrants and local Malays,
which produced a unique culture.
Nyonya cooking blends spices like galangal, turmeric and ginger
with aromatic leaves like pandan leaf, fragrant lime leaf and
laksa leaf, together with other ingredients like candlenuts,
shallots, shrimp paste and chilies. Lemon and tamarind add a
tangy taste to many dishes.