Nasi LemakRecipe by
When you cook rice in coconut milk and pandan leaves (and, optionally, lemongrass stalks), the result is nasi lemak. There are "traditional" accompaniments but, today, as a popular street food especially in Malaysia where it is considered a national dish, cooks are getting more creative with the combination of accompaniments to make their version stand out from the rest.
- Rice Cooker
- 2 cups rice see notes after the recipe
- 4 cups coconut milk
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 pandan leaves tied into a knot
- Rinse the rice several times until the water runs clear. Strain well.
- Pour the rinsed rice into the rice cooker.
- Sprinkle in the salt.
- Pour in the coconut milk and stir once.
- Add the pandan leaves and turn on the cooker.
- The nasi lemak is done when the rice has absorbed all the liquid.
There are alternative ways to cook nasi lemak. Some cooks like to soak the rice overnight in coconut milk and then steam the drained rice in a special basket that goes on top of a pan of boiling water. But since I’ve never tried that technique, consider than as something I just mention in passing. I prefer long-grain rice for cooking nasi lemak. Basmati, especially, for its capacity to absorb plenty of liquid without the rains bursting and turning the cooked rice soggy.