One thing that breakfast has in common within all countries, is that it is the most important meal - like they say, your mornings set up the successes of your day. Nevertheless, each country, or state has their own breakfast specialities. A Malaysian breakfast is truly unique itself, as with diversity, it means we have an abundance of choices and they vary from state to state. However, there are some that are commonly loved by locals, including the national favourite Nasi Lemak to the truly fulfilling Kaya Toast.
Although Nasi Lemak is now available until the wee hours of the morning, it is still widely known as breakfast food. Just travel throughout the states and you’ll find numerous roadside stalls selling Nasi Lemak early morning. The classic Nasi Lemak features rice cooked in coconut milk with a side of anchovies, peanuts, egg and sambal (a spicy paste). However, some variations include meat such as chicken, beef and even fish, as a side dish.
Roti Canai was believed to have been brought over by Indian Muslims from India and is popularly served in mamak stalls. The popular flat bread is made up of flour, milk, salt, sugar and ghee. It’s flattened by hand and tossed up in the air to be thinned out. A good hand-tossed Roti Canai is perfectly crisp one with flaky bits, and served with a dipping sauce which is usually Dhall or Curry.
If you’re keen on portion control, Dim Sum might be the perfect local delight to feast on before beginning your day. Dim Sum is served in small steamer basket and plates, while you’ll be spoilt for choice as you can choose from fried carrot cake to steam dumplings. Other popular Dim Sum dishes include fish balls, Chee Cheong Fun, egg tarts, glutinous rice, chicken feet, Xiaolongbao, Shumai and spring rolls. From quaint Chinese coffee shops to upscale restaurants, you’ll find there are many variations to Dim Sum, each with their own twist.
Kaya Toast, which is known to locals as Roti Kaya, is two pieces of toasted bread merged together with margarine (or butter), and Kaya, a coconut jam. Popular within urban Malaysia, Kaya Toast is served in mamaks and coffee shops. Some coffee houses are known to specialise in Kaya Toast, with crowds rushing in just to savour a few slices. Some even infuse their creations with eggs and other flavourings. However, to complete the Kaya Toast breakfast experience, pair it with a hot cup of tea or coffee.