Nasi Lemak 椰漿飯 – How to cook (the complete guide)
Nasi Lemak 椰漿飯 is the basic breakfast and lunch in Malaysia. This drooling-worthy gluttonous gem is offered in almost every local Malay and mamak restaurant. Wrapped in paper and banana leaf, Nasi Lemak Bungkus (rice wrapped in coconut milk) has become the quintessential food for the locals.
Nasi lemak is also known as the national dish of Malaysia for many tourist brochures and promotional materials.
Like many Asian dishes in the Asian culinary repertoire, Nasi Lemak has bounced around the world and could have assimilated into the local culture. For example, Indonesian nasi uduk shares many similarities with nasi lemak.
My cousin Angie Branca is the owner of Sate Kampar, a restaurant offering Malaysian food on Passyunk Ave, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, that offers the real business Nasi Lemak. She imports most of the unique spices and ingredients directly from Malaysia. PappaRich, a chain of restaurants, also spread its wings to Melbourne, Australia, to offer authentic Malaysian delicacies. Air Asia, the Malaysia-based low-cost airline, also offers Nasi Lemak Pak Nasser on its menu.
If unfortunately you don’t live in these places and your stomach growls, read this article. I’ll cover all the tricks and techniques I’ve chosen to prepare this ultimate comfort food that can satisfy almost every palate.
1. What is nasi lemak?
No introduction to Malay and Singaporean about Nasi Lemak is required. However, people who live outside this region may not be familiar with it.
Nasi Lemak means creamy rice in Malay. It is prepared with long grain rice (or medium grain), coconut milk, ginger, onion and pandan leaf (screw pine leaf).
The main ingredients for nasi lemak are rice and thick coconut milk, but it is recommended to use a good chicken broth to replace water to increase the flavor of Nasi Lemak.
Nasi lemak is served with a variety of side dishes. These are sambal (Ikankan Bilis (dried anchovies) chili paste), hard-boiled eggs, fresh slices of cucumber and peanuts.
Nasi lemak is commonly served during breakfast. Chicken curry, assam prawns or fried chicken are added to make a full meal for the more luxurious version.
Arabic numeral. How to cook nasi lemak (coconut pudding rice)
In this article, I am pleased to share with you this time-tested Nasi Lemak recipe, which attracts massive followers to our coffee
Please note that we are revealing our Malay style Nasi Lemak recipe, which may be different from others you might have tried. After all, the chef injects his idof interpretingret Nasi Lemak to your expectations.
Are you ready to dig deeper? Let’s start with step one.
the rice Long
grain rice is the preferred choice for preparing Nasi Lemak
The preparation begins with rinsing the rice, as well as steaming the rice
How many times should you rinse the rice?
It’s an interesting question raised by our kitchen staff. My opinion is that if the rice is relatively clean, you only need to rinse it once or twice. If you’re concerned about cleanliness, rinse it with water for a few more rounds. Cleanliness is the main goal.
The secondary goal is to wash as much starch as possible so that the rice is less sticky. Repeatedly rinsing rice is useful if you prepare fried rice, the goal of which is to prevent the rice from sticking to the wok.
Since we want to cook Nasi Lemak, which should ideally be creamy, I suggest you stop rinsing the rice once it is clean
Then cook the rice in the rice cooker or on the stove with all the ingredients of the recipe. There is no complicated step, just a simple kitchen. Success lies in the combination of ingredients. However, you may need to pay attention to the amount of liquid you use to cook rice.
liquid I use is 1.75 times the weight of dry rice.
- Measure the dry weight of
- Rinse the rice. Remove as much water as possible.
- Add all ingredients in the rice cooker except coconut milk and water.
- Now for every 100g of dry rice, I will add 175ml of liquid to cook the rice. (Long grain rice in this case). The 175 ml liquid consists of 1 part coconut milk, one part chicken broth and one part water. In practice, I put an empty container on the digital weighing scale, then added the coconut milk and broth. Finally, fill the amount to 175 ml with water.
- Pour the liquid into the rice cooker, and that’s it.
Note: I use fresh coconut milk (also called coconut cream). If you use them in a package, make sure the fat content is between 20% and 25%.
B. Prepare sambal
for nasi lemak This nasi lemak
sambal is specially developed for nasi lemak. Sambal is the Malay word for chili paste. It is the most important component for Nasi Lemak apart from rice. Below is my method of doing sambal.
Prepare the onion and garlic
- Mix the onion and garlic with oil. Some cooks like to add a few slices of galangal and ginger to onions, which is optional.
- I advise against adding water to mix the aromatics, as it will prolong the time required to caramelize the onion. Therefore, it is better to add cooking oil to the onion instead. The amount of oil in the recipe is for reference only. You should add the oil to the food processor slowly and stop when the amount of oil is enough for the onions to turn gently.
- Blend the onions until it forms a smooth paste. Then transfer it to a wok or frying pan. Sauté the paste until caramelized and turns brown, which will take about ten minutes over low to medium heat.
chili and dried shrimp
- Cut the dried chili into small sections and remove as many seeds as possible. If you do not remove the seeds, they will remain in the sambal since the blender cannot crush them. As a result, many seeds will be present in the sambal, which is undesirable.
- Boil the dried chili in water until it becomes soft, which can take ten to fifteen minutes. Then remove and drain into a wire mesh strainer. Dried chili peppers are soft enough to mix into a smooth paste.
- Next, remove the seeds from the red chili peppers and then cut them into short pieces.
- Soak dried shrimp in hot water until softened.
- Now put the dried chili, red chili, dried shrimp and some oil to mix into a paste.
- Combine chili paste with caramelized onion in a wok or large saucepan. Simmer for half an hour. The mixture will become thicker. Add some water if it is too dry.
- Add the onion slices. (Slice, do not mix.)
- Add the tamarind water, palm sugar and salt to season the sambal.
- Simmer for an hour or until it turns shiny and the oil separates from the sambal. Now it is really to serve.
Use red onion,
- which is sweeter than yellow onion
- Also, our recipe does not include belacan (shrimp paste).
- Use oil instead of water to facilitate mixing. Sambal requires a lot of oil to cook well. If there is too much oil after cooking, you can remove the excess oil floating over the sambal. This oil is delicious to cook goreng, fried eggs, or used during the next batch of sambal.
- Simmer the sambal for at least an hour to remove as much water as possible. In this way, the sambal can be kept at room temperature for three or four days. You can also freeze the sambal if you want to keep it for a few months.
- You can also add some fried anchovies to the spicy sambal to become sambal ikan bilis. However, I don’t do that as I’m serving with lots of fried anchovies separately.
C. Frying peanuts
The next element for Nasi Lemak is fried peanuts
. You can lightly fry peanuts
with minimal oil in a pan or toast
peanuts in the oven. Since fried
can be stored in an airtight container for a long time, it is more efficient to make a large batch. The extra can be used in other recipes or as a tasty appetizer.
D. Frying Ikan Bile (anchovies) The
third standard serving item with Nasi Lemak is fried anchovies (Ikan Bilis). The
preparation is a no-brainer. However, it should not be taken too lightly as it has to fry until crispy.
Here are the steps:
Heat the cooking oil in the
- Fry the anchovies in oil. The oil should be enough to immerse all anchovies.
- You need to fry the anchovies until they are crispy. It is ready when the oil stops bursting small bubbles emerge next to the anchovies. It will take at least five minutes.
- Remove the crispy anchovies with a slotted spoon and drain them on paper towels.
- Store it in an airtight container if you are not serving it immediately.
E. Prepare some hard-boiled eggs
The last common ingredient to serve with Nasi Lemak is a
We have a complete guide on how to make the perfect hard-boiled egg on this blog; You can check the details
In summary, here is a brief instruction on how to do it:
First, boil a
- pot of
- in the water completely, then simmer the eggs at the boiling point reducing the heat to just enough to maintain a minimum boil
- Boil for sixteen minutes for hard-boiled eggs and eight minutes for boiled eggs.
- Transfer eggs to ice water to prevent them from cooking more immediately.
- Peel, cut and serve.
water. Dip the eggs
3. Put it all together
Place the rice on the plate. Place
- the crispy anchovies, hard-boiled eggs, cucumber slices, and ground nuts around
- Place a tablespoon of sambal on top of the rice
- It is served with chicken curry, fried chicken, beef rendang or tamarind prawns.