If you’re a foodie, then you know that Southeast Asia is a mecca for deliciousness. Different countries have various options for unique and amazing eats. But with so many countries to choose from, which ones should you add to your travel list? Here are five of the best Southeast Asian countries for cuisine.
You can’t talk about Southeast Asian cuisine without mentioning Thailand. Thai food is world-renowned for its skillful use of spices and herbs to create complex yet perfectly balanced flavors.
The history of Thailand’s cuisine comes from a blend of various cultures, including Chinese and Indian. This is what makes Thai food so unique and special. As a result, there are endless options to choose from regarding Thai cuisine. Here are some of the most popular dishes you should try in Thailand.
This is the most famous dish in Thailand, for a good reason. It perfectly harmonizes sweet, sour, salty, and spicy flavors. The noodles are stir-fried with eggs, tofu, vegetables, and a tamarind-based sauce.
This Northern Thai dish is a coconut curry noodle soup usually served with chicken or beef. The soup is made with egg noodles and topped with crispy fried noodles, cilantro, lime, and pickled onions.
Tom Yum Goong
This is a hot and sour shrimp soup that’s bursting with flavor. It has lemongrass, kaffir lime leaves, galangal, fish sauce, lime juice, and chili peppers.
Vietnamese cuisine is all about freshness and simplicity. Dishes are often made with only a few ingredients but pack a big flavor punch thanks to vivid herbs and spices.
The history of Vietnamese cooking is a mix of indigenous, Chinese, and French influences. The French brought their culinary traditions to Vietnam during the colonial era. This led to the development of dishes like pho and banh mi.
Vietnamese cuisine is known for its use of fresh herbs and spices. Dishes are often light and healthy, making them perfect for warm weather. Some of the most famous Vietnamese dishes include:
This is Vietnam’s most famous dish. It’s a beef noodle soup spiced with cinnamon, star anise, cloves, and cardamom.
This sandwich comprises baguette bread, pork pate, pickled vegetables, fresh cilantro, and Sriracha sauce.
These rice paper rolls are filled with shrimp, pork, chicken, rice noodles, and herbs. They’re served with a dipping sauce made from fish sauce, lime juice, sugar, and chili peppers.
Malaysia is a melting pot of cultures, and its cuisine reflects that diversity. The history of Malaysian cuisine comes from a mix of Malay, Chinese, Indian, and Thai influences.
One of the unique aspects of Malaysian cuisine is the use of spices. As a result, dishes are often spicy and fragrant, focusing on freshness. Here are some of the most popular Malaysian dishes:
This is Malaysia’s unofficial national dish. It’s simple but tasty. It’s rice cooked in coconut milk and served with anchovies, peanuts, egg, cucumber, and chili paste.
These meat skewers (usually chicken or beef) are marinated in spices and served with peanut sauce.
This is a dry curry made with beef that’s slowly cooked in a mixture of spices until it’s incredibly tender.
Filipino cuisine is unique and flavorful, mixing Spanish, Chinese, and American influences. The Philippines was a Spanish colony for over 300 years, so it’s no surprise that dishes like adobo and Lechon have Spanish roots.
Filipino cuisine is often hearty and filling, focusing on meat and seafood. Rice is also a staple in many Filipino dishes. Here are some of the most popular Philippine dishes:
This dish is made with chicken or pork marinated in soy sauce, garlic, vinegar, and black peppercorns. It’s then cooked until the meat is incredibly tender.
This is a roasted suckling pig that’s served as an accompaniment to rice. It’s often served at special occasions and celebrations.
This is a stew made with pork blood, vinegar, and spices. This is often found in bakeshops in the Philippines because it’s usually served with other baked delicacies such as puto (rice cakes) and pandesal. Therefore, these bakeries often cook these dishes side-by-side.
Singaporean cuisine is a fusion of Chinese, Malaysian, and Indian influences. As a result, you’ll find various foods in Singapore—from savory Hainanese chicken rice to sweet desserts like cendol (shaved ice with greens). And with so many different hawker stalls serving up delicious dishes at incredibly affordable prices, eating in Singapore is truly a unique experience not to be missed!
These are just a few reasons why Southeast Asia is one of the best regions in the world for food lovers. So what are you waiting for? Start planning your trip today and sample some delicious cuisine on offer! Bon appétit!