Nasi Lemak

14 Feb

Everybody said it’s the most easiest Malay dish to be cooked. Knowing what a great cook my mom is and her level of expertise, I somehow felt that this was not going to be that easy for me. I had to ensure the recipe I had was a tried and tested (successful!) one. And not only that, it had to taste somewhat remotely similar to mom’s.

The opportunity came not too long ago and I decided to give this a shot. Not too bad for a first timer, aye. So, here goes the recipe for Nasi Lemak… the good ole type you can easily find in Malaysia, wrapped in banana leaves 😉


Coconut Milk Steamed Rice

  • 2 cups rice
  • 3 screwpine leaves (tie them into a knot)
  • 200 ml coconut milk
  • some water
  • 3 cm ginger (smashed lightly)
  • salt to taste

Sambal Ikan Bilis (Dried anchovies sambal)

  • 1/2 red onion
  • 1 cup ikan bilis (dried anchovies)
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 4 shallots
  • 10 dried chillies
  • 1 teaspoon belacan (prawn paste)
  • 1 cup water + tamarind pulp (size of a 50-cents coin)
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • salt to taste

Other ingredients

  • 2 eggs (omelette)
  • 3 chicken wings (fried)
  • chicken franks and crabmeat sticks (fried)
  • 1 small cucumber (cut into slices and then quartered)


Just like making steamed rice, rinse your rice and drain. Add the coconut milk, a pinch of salt and some water. Add the pandan leaves and ginger into the rice and cook your rice.

Rinse the dried anchovies and drain the water. Fry the anchovies until they turn light brown and put aside. Grind the prawn paste together with a little bit of water, shallots, garlic and deseeded dried chilies with a food processor. Slice the red onion into rings. Soak the tamarind pulp in water for 15 minutes. Squeeze the tamarind constantly to extract the flavor into the water. Drain the pulp and save the tamarind juice.

Heat some oil in a pan and fry the spice paste until fragrant. Add in the onion rings. Add in the ikan bilis and stir well. Add tamarind juice, salt and sugar. Simmer on low heat until the gravy thickens. Set aside.

Clean the chicken wings, cut them into half and season with fried chicken batter mix*, corn flour, turmeric powder, salt and MSG. Deep fry.

Cut the cucumber into slices and then quartered into four small pieces.

Dish up the steamed coconut milk rice and pour some sambal ikan bilis on top of the rice. Serve with fried chicken wings, cucumber slices and omelette. Feel free to change the other ingredients according to your preference.

*Note: I got mine from Sheng Siong, it’s the Kruangwangthip Fried Chicken Batter Mix.


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