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How to Make Nasi Lemak – Authentic Nasi Lemak (Recipe Guide)

How to Make Nasi Lemak - Authentic Nasi Lemak (Recipe Guide)

We will write a guide on how to make Nasi Lemak one of the most popular breakfasts in Malaysia.

Nasi Lemak is a beloved Malaysian dish, often considered the national dish of Malaysia. It’s a fragrant rice dish cooked in coconut milk and pandan leaves, typically served with sambal, fried crispy anchovies, toasted peanuts, boiled eggs, and cucumber slices.

Here’s a guide to making authentic Nasi Lemak.


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How to Make Nasi Lemak

Nasi Lemak Recipe Ingredients

How to Make Nasi Lemak - Authentic Nasi Lemak (Recipe Guide)

For the Coconut Rice:

2 cups jasmine rice
1 1/2 cups coconut milk
1 1/2 cups water
3 pandan leaves, knotted
1 teaspoon salt
For the Sambal:

2 tablespoons oil
1 large onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 inch ginger, minced
10 dried chilies, soaked in hot water and blended into a paste
1 teaspoon belacan (shrimp paste)
1/2 cup tamarind juice (soak tamarind pulp in warm water and strain)
2 tablespoons sugar
For the Sides:

4 hard-boiled eggs, halved
1 cup ikan bilis (dried anchovies), cleaned
1/2 cup peanuts
1 cucumber, sliced
Oil for frying

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Step By Step How to Make Nasi Lemak

Making the Coconut Rice

Rinse the jasmine rice under cold water until the water runs clear. In a rice cooker, combine the rice, coconut milk, water, pandan leaves, and salt. Cook until the rice is done. If using a pot, bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook covered for 15-20 minutes or until the rice is tender and the liquid is absorbed.

How to Make Nasi Lemak - Authentic Nasi Lemak (Recipe Guide)

Making the Sambal

Blend the soaked dried chilies into a paste. Prepare the tamarind juice and finely chop the onions, garlic, and ginger. Heat oil in a pan over medium heat. Sauté the onions, garlic, and ginger until fragrant and soft. Add the chili paste and belacan to the pan. Cook for 5-7 minutes, stirring frequently, until the oil separates from the paste.

Stir in the tamarind juice and sugar. Simmer for another 10 minutes until the sambal thickens. Add salt to taste.

Preparing the Sides

Heat oil in a pan and fry the ikan bilis until golden brown and crispy. Remove and drain on paper towels. In the same pan, toast the peanuts until golden brown. Remove and set aside. Hard boil the eggs, peel, and cut them in half.

How to Make Nasi Lemak - Authentic Nasi Lemak (Recipe Guide)

Assembling Nasi Lemak

Place a serving of coconut rice on a plate. Arrange the sambal, fried ikan bilis, toasted peanuts, boiled eggs, and cucumber slices around the rice. Garnish with additional sambal on top of the rice if desired.

Tips To Make Nasi Lemak

How to Make Nasi Lemak - Authentic Nasi Lemak (Recipe Guide)

Nasi Lemak is all about balancing flavors. Adjust the sweetness, saltiness, and spiciness of the sambal to your preference. These are essential for the fragrant aroma in the rice. If you can’t find fresh pandan leaves, pandan extract can be used as a substitute.

Ensure the ikan bilis is crispy by frying it over medium heat until golden brown.

How Many Calories Have Nasi Lemak

Coconut Rice: 300-350 calories per cup
Sambal: 100-150 calories per serving
Fried Ikan Bilis and Peanuts: 200-250 calories per serving
Boiled Egg: 70-80 calories each
Cucumber: 10-20 calories

Total: Approximately 680-850 calories per serving

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