Do you need a guide to Asian cuisines?
We love to eat and would jump to the opportunity to try something new. With the global health situation restricting travel, we all settle for the same foods nowadays. This makes us yearn for something exciting for our taste buds.
While home deliveries and take-outs will allow you to taste any food anytime you want, it’s a far cry from the real thing. With travel restrictions relaxing, though, we can plan our next trip to try out cuisines again!
If you’re looking for different flavor profiles, Asian culture will always deliver. If you have a specific flavor profile in mind, check what’s below. We’ve prepared a list of the different cuisines in Asia for you to choose from!
If you like spicy food combined with your favorite meat, then curry is what you’re looking for. While there are many countries that have curries in their cuisine, India is where most people believe the dish to originate from.
This is because the country has many native spices and meats to help cement its place on top. What’s crazy is that each region provides different qualities of the same ingredient.
Traveling the country assures you that the taste of curry is not the same. In the south part of the country, you will find cuisines infused with coconut to give it a milkier and mild flavor.
In the northern part of the country, you have a spicier blend thanks to the varieties of chilis they have. You can also expect their dishes to be meatier as the southern regions have a more vegetarian palate because of their religious beliefs.
South Korean Cuisine
Do you prefer eating more vegetables as a side dish? If so, then South Korea has the perfect cuisine for you!
Their vegetable dishes always have a blend of their country’s bean paste mixture. This elevates the taste while giving it a unique and savory taste. They also put a strong emphasis on steamed vegetables like with Sigmunchi Namul.
You may have also heard of their famous kimchi, which is a fermented vegetable side dish served with most meals. These all go well with their main courses. Speaking of, don’t forget that the country has some amazing meat dishes, too.
Korean barbecue, popularly known as samgyeopsal, are thin slices of meat grilled over a charcoal flame. These are often eaten with only salt and sesame oil. While simple, it has a smooth flavor that you won’t get enough of.
The country is also famous for its take on fried chicken. Korean fried chicken is somehow crispier, juicier, and tastier. It’s something for you to look forward to when you visit.
They also have a strong affinity for sweet and savory dishes. While it may put people off to put sugar on a corndog, it’s something worth trying and loving. Try their different street foods during your trip to see what we’re talking about.
When it comes to Malaysian cuisine, Nasi Lemak is never out of the list. It’s made from coconut rice, anchovies, peanuts, egg, a piece of chicken, and the sambal. Known as the national dish of the country, it’s a must-try when you visit.
Sambal is an addicting spicy concoction that defines most Malaysian dishes. The spicy flavor of the sambal compliments the combination of the meal, making it famous.
The food in Malaysia is a diversity of influence from neighboring countries. For example, beef rendang is a popular dish that’s like Indian and Indonesian food.
Sambal udang is another example. This is a popular prawn dish that has Chinese inspirations based on how they use chilis. With a twist of tamarind juice, this dish is a staple of the Peranakan people in Malaysia.
Sri Lankan Cuisine
When people read about Sri Lankan cuisine online, they often think that it’s much similar to Indian cuisine. While it’s true, it’s only because they have similar local ingredients to work with. How they incorporate them into the dishes allows the country to have an entirely different flavor profile.
Sri Lankan cuisine is much more diverse with its dishes. Some curries may have milder tastes and spice levels. Some of their dishes, though, like dhal have a more pronounced spice flavor.
They also lean towards the sweeter side of things. Caramelized onions are a staple in many dishes and snacks in Sri Lanka. They also use other ingredients to complement or empower a certain flavor in their dishes.
China is all about spicy, sweet, and savory flavors. They’re the birthplace of ketchup, formerly known as “catsup”. They also incorporate vinegar and soy sauce heavily in their cuisine.
Don’t think that all these will result in sour dishes, though. Their cuisine balances flavors out with other ingredients. Their expertise produces amazing dishes like Kung Pao chicken.
China is also the birthplace of Sichuan cuisine. This is a unique cuisine that heavily uses Szechuan peppercorns. These are much stronger than regular peppercorns and often leave a unique sensation in the mouth.
Instead of being all spicy, these have an interesting numbing flavor to them. It’s a great option to consider if you want a unique take on spiciness.
Chinese culture also has a love for dumplings and rolls. It’s the country of origin of pork xiao long bao, one of the most popular Asian food nearby.
Japanese cuisine is well known for its pleasing dishes. You’ll find that everything that you try in Japan will be satisfying. This is because they have a strong emphasis on homecooked-style dishes.
Everything from their version of curry to ramen will leave you fulfilled. This is because of the “umami” factor that the Japanese bring to their dishes.
Japanese cuisine also focuses on freshness. This is evident how much the country loves sushi. It emphasizes the freshness of the fish and their ingenuity in making something simple yet so delicious.
If you’re in the mood for something sweet, there are different pastry and candy shops across the country. Some of them are even famous for lasting as long as 100 years or more in the business. This is a great way to taste century-old recipes passed through the generations.
Know Your Asian Cuisines Today
Asian cuisines will always be on a different league of their own. With so many cuisines to choose from, which one should you go for first? Use the guide above and know which country to visit first!
Do you want to learn more about food and travel? Check out more of our guides to learn all you can!