If you talk about South-East Asia, it is pretty much a traveler’s delight. From the beautiful beaches of Thailand, Philippines and Indonesia to the temples of Cambodia and the culture of Vietnam, the region pulls towards tourists from all over the world. Another great reason for the immense popularity of South Eastern Asia is the incredible cuisine it offers as travelers move on from one country to another. Almost all of these countries have a great street food culture putting forward authentic regional dishes at highly affordable prices. However, if you’re not yet sure about the stuff to try when you’re backpacking across the various magnificent locations of the region, consider this list for the most scrumptious dishes in SE Asia.
- Nasi Goreng:
This is undoubtedly one of those flavorsome preparations that you must try when in Indonesia. Nasi Goreng is a pleasurable version of the fried rice, topped with a fried egg and served with shrimp crackers, available almost everywhere in the country. I’d still suggest you to try it at one of the nice and authentic restaurants because just any eat-out might not do justice to the precise taste of this dish.
It is the kind of meal that you can eat just anytime, night or day. It’s immensely popular in Vietnam and a trip to the country isn’t complete without experiencing the Pho. It is essentially a rice noodle soup which is served with beef or chicken and garnished with basil or mint leaves, onions, sprouts, lime and chili. Also, it’s incredibly cheap.
- Black Pepper Crab:
If you love sea-food, this particular preparation is going to blow your mind. The black-pepper crab or fish are massively popular in Singapore and you’d find them at many small and big restaurants and eat-outs. It is made of hard-shell crabs and fried with black pepper. In some places, it’ll be served in a black-pepper sauce with rice to make it a complete meal.
- Pad Thai:
This one is undoubtedly the most famous dish of South East Asia that has it’s versions available all through the world. Thailand’s well-known delicacy, the Pad Thai, offers all that you need from great food: a remarkable flavor, accurate sweetness and spice, bona fide preparation and a reasonable price. It is made of flat rice noodles which are stir fried with egg, spices and veggies or meat.
- Nasi Lemak:
Considered as the national dish of Malaysia, Nasi Lemak is an aromatic rice dish cooked with coconut milk and pandan leaves (found in the region). It is served with a spicy sauce, roasted peanuts, fried egg and sometimes with fried chicken and small fried fish. Most of these additions are spicy in nature which makes the whole meal even more delicious.
If there is one dish that makes Cambodia eminent on the food-scene, then it has to be Amok. It is made by cooking fish or chicken inside banana leaves to retain the utmost flavor. Then, a special curry is prepared with the resulting product where coconut milk serves as the base. Several indigenous and Indian spices are used for the seasoning. The final result is a delicious and creamy coconut curry that you won’t find anywhere else. Advice: eat as much as you can.
- Chicken Satay:
This one is yet another impressive endowment from the Indonesian cuisine. It consists of chicken which is seasoned, skewered and grilled or barbecued over a wood or charcoal fire. The Satay is usually eaten as an entrée or snack and is served with peanut sauce. It can also be prepared with beef, goat, mutton, pork, fish, some other meats or tofu.
- Fried Spring rolls:
These crispy and oily spring rolls taste extraordinary. They are a travelers’ delight in Sapa, Vietnam and everyone who has been there won’t stop talking about these rolls filled with crunchy vegetables and dipped in a delicious peanut sauce. The filling can also have a mix of pork, noodles and shrimp. Despite being unhealthy because of the excess oil, they are exceedingly irresistible.
- Tom Yum:
Another Thai delicacy that is extremely popular and well-liked. Tom yum is a clear, spicy and sour soup whose broth is made of fragrant herbs. It has several variations throughout South East Asia and often includes meats like chicken, beef, pork, or prawns or shrimps. It’s creamy, it’s appetizing, and it’s complete. Also, healthy!
There are the fried pancakes found in the streets of Laos or the coconut pancakes doled out in Northern Thailand and both of these have the potential to take your heart away with their incredible taste. These pancakes are usually dished up with bananas and are served warm. The ones in Laos are fried in butter and are filled with whatever you want. One word to sum it up: Paradise.