While Malaysians have long been proud of our breakfast staple nasi lemak, it’s nice to see this uniquely local dish getting more international recognition.
Nasi lemak recently hit another global milestone when it made it on to TasteAtlas’s 100 best traditional dishes of the world. In its description, TasteAtlas said, “No other dish in Malaysia is as famous as nasi lemak”.
The dish typically consists of rice cooked in pandan and coconut milk, topped with a fiery sambal, cucumber, hard-boiled eggs and fried ikan bilis.
TasteAtlas is an online world food atlas dedicated to preserving knowledge about heritage food and disseminating information on the best traditional meals and drinks to travellers eager for a taste of authenticity.
The site was launched at the end of 2018 and already contains over 10,000 traditional foods and ingredients, with recommendations by local food experts on where to eat these dishes.
In the site’s top 100 listing, Malaysia shares the spotlight with 99 other meals, including sushi and sashimi from Japan, xiaolongbao from China, wiener schnitzel from Austria, steak tartare from France, som tham from Thailand and peri-peri chicken from Mozambique.
Interestingly, curry laksa and char kway teow also made it on to the list, although both are credited to Singapore.
The attribution to Singapore is particularly mysterious as just last year, Lonely Planet ranked eating curry laksa in Kuala Lumpur the second best food experience in the world.
Additionally, the famed Siam Road char kway teow in Penang was named one of the top 50 street foods at the World Street Food Congress 2017.
Somehow, the international accolades assigned to these popular Malaysian dishes went unnoticed.
The site’s listings for the best places to eat nasi lemak are derived from the recommendations of local food bloggers like Sean Yoong of Eat Drink KL and include spots like Nasi Lemak Tanglin, Restaurant Nasi Lemak Antarabangsa, Village Park Restaurant and Ali, Muthu & Ah Hock, among others.
For the full list, go to www.tasteatlas.com/tag/top100.