Merdeka Highlights : Top 5 Malaysian Dishes And Where To Find Them

It's Merdeka week, and what better way to show your patriotism than by chowing down on some local delights!

Malaysia has an abundance of good food, with many of them being local staples. This article will be focusing on dishes that are uniquely Malaysian and make up the backbone of our culinary scene. Read on to check out our top 5 Malaysian dishes selected by our editors!

Nasi LemakPhoto By Asian Inspirations

Of course the list starts off with Nasi Lemak. Probably the most symbolic of all Malaysian dishes, here are some notable places to try.

  • Ali, Muthu & Ah Hock
  • Even the name is 1 Malaysia. The Nasi Lemak here is perfect for those who don't like it too spicy, so you won't have to worry about it being unbearably hot for anyone you decide to bring along

  • Gerai Nenek Meletopp (BOJ Tebing Dato' Onn)
  • If you like your Nasi Lemak accompanied by a variety of amazing dishes, this is the spot. The serving size here is pretty sizeable so don't go overboard with ordering extra dishes!

    Otak-OtakPhoto By Utusan TV

    The pride of Johor (Muar to be exact). But did you know there are also Nyonya Otak-Otak that hails from Penang? And that there's even a Thai version? Here are two spots we recommend, one for traditional Muar style, and the aforementioned Thai version.

  • Otak Shiduoli (士多利乌达茶餐室)
  • The most well known Otak-Otak place in Johor. Try them out to get a good idea of what this grilled dish should taste like.

  • Busaba Heavenly Thai (Bangsar Shopping Centre)
  • Otak Otak in a Thai restaurant? Yes! Their Otak-Otak is called Hor Mok Talay, which they deem as a seafood soufflé with coconut milk. Otak lovers should definitely give it a try

    CendolPhoto By Kacang & Peanut Cafe

    This cold treat can be found almost anywhere and is a welcome sight during especially hot days. Here are two places we recommend trying

  • Kacang & Peanut Cafe
  • This café located in JB has the best modern Cendol we have ever tried. Using shaved coconut ice instead of regular ice, you'll surely be surprised by the amount of thought put into their Cendol

  • Khan Cendol Stand (The Famous Melawati Cendol)
  • Hiking Bukit Tabur? Don't forget to grab some Cendol from this popular place!

    Chilli Ban MeePhoto By Super Kitchen Chilli Pan Mee

    Ban Mian may not be a Malaysian dish, but Chili Ban Mee definitely is! Usually accompanied by a poached egg, anchovies, minced meat, green onions and of course, a healthy amount of spicy chili paste. Here are the two spots we recommend.

  • Sabah chili pan mee
  • We weren't going to leave out our East Malaysian brothers and sisters in this list. This place serves up the quintessential Pan Mee experience. They've since expanded and you can now find outlets in Selangor too!

  • Restoran Kin Kin Chili Pan Mee (Chow Kit)
  • The one that started it all! This is where you go if you would like to delve deeper into the history of Chili Pan Mee in Malaysia!

    Roti CanaiPhoto By Asian Foodie

    Mamak culture is a unique Malaysian past-time, where everyone from all races and walks of life gather to chit-chat over a cup of tea or some good food. Roti Canai (known as Prata by our Singaporean friends) will be our poster child for Mamak cuisine, and here are our favs.

  • Valentine Roti
  • Roti Telur Bawang (Egg Onion Prata for our Neighbors down south)! This is the most recommended item at Valentine Roti, which some have also called "the best roti spot in KL". With a claim like that, you definitely have to check it out!

  • IV Restaurant
  • The droves of customers should be evident towards the quality of the Roti here. We recommend any of their Roti as the main attraction would be their thick curry! After all, what is Roti without curry right?