Gone are the days when you have to go all the way to China just to eat halal Chinese food. Nowadays, there are many restaurants in Malaysia that serve Chinese Muslim cuisine. These restaurants are usually owned by local Chinese Muslims or Chinese Muslims from China. While some restaurants retain the authentic Chinese flavour, some would adapt it to the local taste.
The thing about Chinese food is there is such a huge variety and each restaurant would have their own version. From Cantonese food to Sichuan food, you can easily get spoiled for choice.
Here are the top 3 Chinese light food that we think you should try.
Dumplings are a traditional food widely popular in North China. Most of the time, they consist of minced meat and finely-chopped vegetables wrapped into a thin piece of dough skin. The best thing about dumplings is they can be taken boiled, steamed, fried, with, and without soup. Traditionally, dumplings are taken on Chinese New Year’s Eve.
Now don’t let their small size fool you. Dumplings may be small, but they can be extremely addictive. You can easily eat 10 to 20 pieces in one seating and feel absolutely stuffed.
K in particular prefers to eat them boiled, and he loves dumplings served in sour soup 酸汤水饺. Personally, I prefer to have dumplings with clear soup.
Our recommendation: 饺子，煎饺，干饺，水饺
Restaurant: Sunny Garden
2. Steamed Buns
Steamed buns are widely popular as a breakfast item among the Chinese in China. Some buns are stuffed with ground meat and vegetables, while others are filled with sweet bean paste, or custard. Then there are buns that can be taken on its own, and there are varieties that can be taken with soup. The choice of fillings and ways to eat steamed buns are endless really.
In K’s family, they take all sorts of steamed buns. Some buns are taken as light snacks, while the bigger ones are taken as a meal. Eating just one or two buns can keep you full for a few hours or until the next meal.
Our recommendation: 包子，汤包，馒头，生煎包，小笼包
Restaurant: Amber Chinese Muslim Restaurant
3. Dim Sum 点心
Dim sum refers to small portions of food that are served in bamboo baskets or on small plates. Traditionally taken in the morning or at lunch time, there is a wide range of savoury, and sweet dim sum available in dim sum restaurants. Up to 60 varieties in some restaurants! Choose between the steamed, baked, or fried varieties. Dim sum are best taken with tea.
To give you an idea about the serving size, are you familiar with eating sushi? Well, the small portions and plates at dim sum restaurants are sort of like the ones you get at sushi restaurants- the ones that go on the kaiten belt.
K is relatively unfamiliar with the dim sum we have in Malaysia. In fact, he only had it when he came here.
Our recommendation: 蝦餃, 烧卖, 腸粉, 糯米雞, 蘿蔔糕.
Restaurant: Kai Xuan Halal Chinese Restaurant
So that wraps up our list of 3 Chinese light food you should try. In case you haven’t noticed, dumplings and steamed buns are offered as dim sum items in most dim sum restaurants. All you need to do is to go to one to try all 3 items on our list.