Street food in Asia is something that is full of flavour and cultural history. We have selected our favourite Asian street food dishes.
The most famous dessert for Thais is the Mango Sticky Rice. This wonderful dessert is made by combining sweet coconut milk sauce, sticky rice, and fresh mango on top. A simple recipe, but packed of heavenly flavors.
You’ll smell it from a mile away and although it might make you want to run in the opposite direction, just close your nose and head straight towards it. This deep-fried or grilled tofu gets its distinctive odor from the fermentation process, which also gives it a very flavorful, almost salty taste. It goes perfectly with picked vegetables. You can find stinky tofu all over Asia but in Taipei it’s hand-made and you know what they say, food made with love always tastes much better.
What constitutes a good bowl of Penang Assam Laksa? The tangy, distinct spicy fish broth, coupled with dollops of Hae Koh (spicy shrimp paste) and an array of chopped vegetables which bring about a soup base that is unbelievably satisfying and appetising. Nothing screams comfort than slurping on the comforting sweet and spicy broth.
Fish Amok is a traditional dish of Cambodian cuisine. It is fish coated in a thick coconut milk with kroeung, either steamed or baked in a cup made from banana leaves. It is often eaten during the Water Festival, which celebrates the reversal of the Tonle Sap River. An important part of the dish is the addition of the leaves of the noni tree and the use of finger root.
Thailand is known for its street food. Pop up stalls and motorbikes doubling as kitchens are a common sight on the streets of Bangkok and on Khao San Road the prices are unbelievably low, thanks to the competitive business environment. Head up the street towards Chakrabongse Road and turn right – the stalls at the top of the road parallel to Khao San sell the best Pad Thai I’ve ever tasted. Not bad for 35 Baht.
Pani puri is a popular street snack in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Nepal. It consists of tiny round hallow crispy puri, filled with a delicious chaat mixture consisting of chickpeas and some other ingredients. Then flavoured water (pani) is poured over the entire thing, making for a delicious explosion of flavours in each mouthful. I have covered the channa chaat and puri recipes earlier (links given in the instructions below).
It’s hard for everyone to agree on the best satay spot, but that’s just because satay is so good anywhere, anytime. Unless you’re vegetarian. Beef or chicken are commonly used for the grilled meat on skewers, and served with a creamy, chunky peanut sauce. Satay also comes with slices of cucumber and onion if you want to create a sort of kebab. Otherwise people tend to just ignore it.