Bak kut teh

Bak kut teh, which literally means “meat bone tea,” is a tasty soup made with long-simmered pork ribs spiced up with a variety of herbs such as garlic, fennel, cloves, cinnamon, and star anise. Mushrooms and dried tofu are also popular additions. The soup may be garnished with green onions, coriander, or fried shallots.

The secret of bak kut teh’s tastiness is the soy sauce and minced garlic, which added to it during the cooking process. Bak kut teh is best served with noodles or rice. It is a favorite breakfast fare.

Biryani

Brunei’s biryani will make you see rice in a whole new light.

Made with spices such as cumin, pepper, cloves, cinnamon, and loaded with meat, fish, eggs, vegetables, and of course, rice, biryani will surely fill any hungry stomach.

Biryani is made by cooking its thick sauce and rice separately. Once both are ready, the white rice is mixed with the sauce to make this colorful and tasty meal.

Biryani may be served according to the customer’s preference. Vegetarians can choose an all-veggie version. Meat eaters may choose chicken, lamb, or beef to accompany the steaming and aromatic rice.

Nasi Lemak

It’s unlikely that you’ll leave Brunei without getting a taste of nasi lemak, because in Brunei it is sold in several stalls along the streets as well as in a number of restaurants. Nasi lemak is, in fact, one of the most popular dishes in the country.

Nasi lemak is usually composed of a platter of rice surrounded by sliced cucumber, anchovies, roasted peanuts, hard-boiled egg, and chicken or beef with hot spicy sauce.

The best nasi lemak is made by cooking the rice with coconut milk instead of water. Traditionally, nasi lemak is served on banana leaves – but many restaurants just serve it in regular plates nowadays.

Daging Masak Lada Hitam

Bruneian locals would most probably offer daging masak lada hitam to tourists, because this dish is a national specialty.

It looks like a simple stew of beef, potatoes, and beans, but it’s quite delicious. The beef is cooked in spicy sauce until it is very tender. This prolonged cooking makes the sauce quite tasty and rich. Then the potatoes and beans add even more flavor to the sauce while, at the same time, absorbing some the savory goodness of the beef.

Like many Southeast Asian dishes, this flavorful dish goes best with hot fluffy rice. For sure, you will want to grab a second serving.

 Ambuyat

Best served while it’s hot, ambuyat is a unique Bruneian dish made from sago, which is starch from the sago plant.

Ambuyat may not look very attractive or appetizing because it has a plain white gluelike appearance and a starchy bland taste, since it’s made from sago starch.

But once you know the trick to eating it, you’ll probably enjoy more than a mouthful of it.

The secret is in the dip, called cacah, which accompanies the ambuyat. This dip is made from either the mango-like fruit binjai or fermented shrimps called cencalu.

Cacah has a sour taste that goes well with the taste of ambuyat.

To eat ambuyat, you need a two-pronged bamboo stick, which Bruneians call the chandas. You use the stick to take some ambuyat from a bowl, roll it into a sticky starchy morsel, then dip it into the cacah.

Ambuyat and its dip are very often served by the locals to visitors, to accompany other favorite dishes of Brunei.

This article is also available in: Spanish