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Popiah (Fresh Spring Rolls)

Popiah (Malaysian Spring Rolls)
Popiah (Malaysian Spring Rolls) pictures (1 of 14)

Popiah (薄餅) is a type of fresh spring rolls commonly found in Malaysia, Singapore, Medan, and Taiwan. Filled with shredded vegetables and more, Popiah is a popular street food in Malaysia. It’s also one of the popular dishes served at home; the concoction is especially fun and rewarding if shared with friends and family.

Popiah (Fresh Spring Rolls)

I grew up with countless popiah, freshly made by my late mother. On the days she made popiah, all the female cooks in my family would gather around to help: slicing and shredding jicama, cutting French beans, shelling shrimp, dicing bean curds, and cooking the filling—which would take hours as we would make a huge batch for our big family. But as soon as my mother declared the words “popiah is ready,” my elder siblings and I would all rush to the kitchen, grabbing our plate, and busy assembling, rolling, and savoring our own popiah. There was always so much energy, anticipation, and excitement in the house whenever we had popiah; not only was mom’s popiah delicious and utterly gratifying, we always had so much fun “playing” with the food.

Popiah is of Chinese origin, from the Fujian province. I have tried many variations, in Xiamen (probably its place of origin), Taipei, Singapore, Medan, and other places in Malaysia, but my favorite is still the ones made by mom. I love having friends over and having a popiah party, and everyone will be busy rolling and eating. Here is the popiah recipe of my mother, ones which is much-cherished, not only because of its supreme flavor, but also the flood of memories it brings.

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23 COMMENTS... read them below or add one

  1. Jayne Lee

    We just had popiah at my parent’s place 2 weeks ago. I could have gorged on 5 in a sitting but my hubby only had 2… I didn’t feel right having more than him. :-( Next time, I’m stuffing myself silly with popiahs.

  2. Rebecca Lee

    Hi, In Ipoh the most famous Popiah sold by a man in old cinema of Old Town– not the shop’s name !! Now his daughter took over but she made it into King size that frighten me off !! He added in deep fried 虾皮 which is tiny shrimps with mostly shell as it has a very distinguish aroma and the fried shallot also a must for popiah. Lily Ng teaches to make the popiah skin too .

  3. Rebecca Lee

    Oh yes, if you like to eat the deep fried popiah, please don’t wrap in lots of filling !! Only 2-3 spoons of filling ( as fat as a hot dog sausage ) and try to roll and roll and seal off the edge with some flour mixed with some water. If too fat it will not crispy !! It will look like wet sea cucumber instead of crispy popiah !! The crispiness comes from the skin, so the more skin, the more crispy !!

  4. Robert Danhi

    Looks great Bee – we are brining a team up to Penang from the Asian Food Centre at Taylors University to to field research and go IN DEPTH, I may actually to my Master’s Dissertation on the evolution of the spring roll!!! NO JOKE.

  5. Leshelle

    Just had to tell you I made these last night and they were delicious. My husband loved them. I am so making these on a more regular basis. This is the first recipe I have made from this blog and it was awesome. Thanks.

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