Food has always held an elevated position in human culture. No matter how different the social and economic standings are, people have always managed to bond over food. Food has always had the power to unite people through its enticing succulence. The gratifying experience that is consuming one’s favourite food is a feeling that is yet to be mimicked by any other worldly activity. The emotional versatility that food consumption transpires is impossible to quantify. Food is used in moments of celebration for elation, in hours of sadness for comfort, and in the daily grind of life as motivation to survive a particularly difficult day.
Food comes in many shapes and forms, each more delicious than its predecessor. Each culture has its own unique food culture that is wholly and thoroughly ingrained in the collective identity of the nation it hails from. It pays homage to the beautiful, locally or internationally sourced produce. It is intrinsically tied to the people and their national identity. Each country’s food culture tells a story about the said country. It talks about the country’s history and its largest cultural exports. The flavours blend together to tell a rich and sauce narrative of what the country was, is, and will be.
Cooking is one of the only few art forms in the world that has remained true to its roots while still adapting new techniques that are in line with the evolving world. An integral part of cooking is the produce and how it is handled. Any kitchen staffer and chef knows that a dish’s success is heavily dependent on the produce used, but the taste of the said dish can be elevated if made with care and respect.
Each nation has its interpretation of food. They have their own understanding of what high end, fine dining constitutes as their food culture and what constitutes their street food. Street food is generally classified as food that is sold out of portable food carts, food booths, or food stalls. Street food is always cheaper than a restaurant dine-in experience and is meant to be consumed as soon as it has been purchased e.g out on the street.
According to a study from 2007 carried out by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, a total of 2.5 billion people consumed street food on a daily basis. Most of these consumers were middle-class people who preferred street food over traditional food consumption methods because of the convenience it offered and how inexpensive it was.
Travel enthusiasts tend to depend on street food whenever they visit a new country for a variety of reasons. These are.
- Flavour food in a socially acceptable condition.
Eating from food stalls in cities is socially acceptable in today’s world. Given how busy everyone eating on the go is the new trend in terms of time-saving endeavours.
- Prompt service.
Food stalls, carts, and booths offer prompt service. The order is processed within seconds of being placed and travellers are allowed to enjoy hot food without having to wait for it.
- To try ethnic food.
Most travellers use food as a way of experiencing culture when they go to a new country. It is a safe option that has the least chance of offending the country’s native population by what might be deemed prying questions. However, given that most travellers are backpackers, their purse strings are taut. Street food allows them to experience the local food scene and culture on a budget.
- Inexpensive food-
Street food is quick, flavourful, and inexpensive.
People can consume street food out on the street or while walking. It does not require stagnation and in some cases even utensils.
Malaysia, an incredibly diverse country, has a very rich street food culture. Each major city and township of the country has charming little food stalls dotting the pavements which provide nutrition to the never stopping population of Malaysia. It is customary in Malaysia to consume five meals a day. Since each meal cannot be consumed at home and people are too busy to order in during the workweek, the working population of Malaysia heavily depends on street food. While there are innovations in the industry every day, there are certain staples that are found in every city from Kuala Lumpur to Sabah and Sarawak.
- Nasi Lemak-
A cultural landmark and a national favourite, nasi lemak is found at 1 in 3 food stalls all across Malaysia. The fragrant rice, cooked coconut milk with peanuts, crunchy anchovies, and coupled with spicy sambal and boiled eggs make for an indulgent meal.
Satay is a simple dish that follows the no-nonsense rule of street food. It is made up of skewered seasoned meat that has been meticulously grilled. It is served with a peanut sauce and is a thorough meat dish that can be made using chicken, beef, and lamb.
Rojak embodies the very spirit of Malaysia. It is a mix and match of multiple flavours until that perfect and flavourful matrimony is achieved. The sweet version involves fruits and vegetables while the savoury version is made up of a series of fritters. The two flavour bombs are tied together using a rich and thick sauce. It is advised to consume the food fresh off the stove in order to prevent it from becoming soggy.
Malaysia serves as a paradise for any food lover. It caters to their needs by providing cheap food that is extremely flavorful cooked using traditional techniques. The food of Malaysia tells the story of the country. Each spice, each flip of the spatula, each grain of food has a purpose, to reflect the nature of the country and its people. Merely reading about street food does not do it justice, though. So, upgrade to Unifi to browse street food places in your local city without any delays or interruptions. Apply for a Unifi package Malaysia today!