Nasi Lemak is the de facto national dish of Malaysia. A good nasi lemak recipe is not to be taken lightly; it should be have amazing quality, texture, flavors, and the right ingredients.
Secret Ingredients of Nasi Lemak
Pandan leaves or screwpine leaves in the secret ingredient. The leaves are highly fragrant with floral smell. They are used in many Malaysian recipes.
A nasi lemak will not be authentic without the leaves and coconut milk. The other main ingredient of nasi lemak is sambal. Sambal is the soul of the dish; it brings together all the various toppings and complete the iconic dish.
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Side dishes for Nasi Lemak
Assemble the side dishes on top of the rice and served in on top of banana leaf for the best and most authentic nasi lemak. Enjoy!
How Many Calories Per Serving?
This recipe is only 338 calories per serving.
Serve Nasi Lemak with:
For a wholesome dinner, make the following dishes.
Pairs well with:
Nasi Lemak Recipe
Nasi lemak - Malaysian coconut milk rice, served with sambal, fried crispy anchovies, toasted peanuts and cucumber. This is the best and most authentic nasi lemak recipe.
- coconut milk steamed rice
- 2 cups rice
- 3 screwpine leaves, tie them into a knot as shown above
- salt to taste
- 1 can coconut milk (5.6 oz)
- some water
- 1 cup water
- tamarind pulp, size of a small ping pong ball
Sambal Ikan Bilis (Dried Anchovies Sambal)
- 1/2 red onion
- 1 cup ikan bilis, dried anchovies
- 1 clove garlic
- 4 shallots
- 10 dried chillies
- 1 teaspoon belacan, prawn paste
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 2 hard boiled eggs, cut into half
- 3 small fish, sardines or smelt fish
- 1 small cucumber, cut into slices and then quartered
Just like making steamed rice, rinse your rice and drain. Add the coconut milk, a pinch of salt, and some water. Add the pandan leaves into the rice and cook your rice.
Rinse the dried anchovies and drain the water. Fry the anchovies until they turn light brown and put aside.
Pound the prawn paste together with shallots, garlic, and deseeded dried chilies with a mortar and pestle. You can also grind them with a food processor. Slice the red onion into rings. Soak the tamarind pulp in water for 15 minutes. Squeeze the tamarind constantly to extract the flavor into the water. Drain the pulp and save the tamarind juice.
Heat some oil in a pan and fry the spice paste until fragrant. Add in the onion rings. Add in the ikan bilis and stir well. Add tamarind juice, salt, and sugar. Simmer on low heat until the gravy thickens. Set aside.
Clean the small fish, cut them into half and season with salt. Deep fry. Cut the cucumber into slices and then quartered into four small pieces. Dish up the steamed coconut milk rice and pour some sambal ikan bilis on top of the rice. Serve with fried fish, cucumber slices, and hard-boiled eggs.