Called kanoom-pang-naneuy, these delectable toasted slices of bread are spread with butter icing and sprinkled with black sesame seeds. According to Appon’s Thai Food Recipes, they are a popular street food in Thailand. Sadly, I never noticed them when I was in Thailand — I was too focused on the noodles, the fish, the rice… But that’s okay because these wonderful sweet toasts are easy enough to make at home. … Continue reading »
The problem with the English version of Chinese names of food is how the spelling follows how the Chinese name sounds. Take, for instance, the sweet bun that is often referred to as man tao, the bread used for making cua pao. Back when I made that cua pao over two years ago, the bread I bought was spelled manthao.
Apparently, depending on the country of origin (or manufacturer preferences), they are also sold as manthao, man tou, mantou or manthou. … Continue reading »
When Speedy saw Bobby Chin making Roti John in an episode of Cafe Asia, he promised he’d make Roti John at home. And he did.
A popular hawker food in Malaysia and Singapore, Roti John is a sandwich and omelet in one. Beef, eggs, chopped shallots and chili paste are stirred together and spread on a split French baguette. The bread is cooked in a pan, on both sides, then sliced before serving. It may sound plain but the addition of chili paste — or sambal, as it is called in Singapore and Malaysia — really gives this sandwich omelet an amazing kick.
There are many stories about the origin of this dish as well as its name. According to one theory, the “John” is descriptive of the Western baguette. The second is a story about a roti (bread) man in Malaysia who whipped up the sandwich for a Western man. Since all Western men are often referred to as “John”, that’s how the sandwich purportedly got its name. I like the third story best:
The story goes that the dish was named after a caucasian called John who used to ask the cooks to whip up egg sandwiches for him. Roti is bread in Malay, therefore rendering the name Roti John.
It doesn’t really matter which story tells the true origin of this sandwich omelet. What really matters is that it is delicious and very easy to make. … Continue reading »
I spent my last day in Singapore taking the train from the airport to the Singapore IT Expo (SITEX) and back. There was a “left baggage” service where I dumped my bags for a fee so I could spend the morning hunting for camera lenses at, hopefully, bargain prices.
SITEX was one crowded place and the day was terribly humid. I lasted there for about an hour. By the time I got back to the airport at around 11 a.m., despite the heavy breakfast on the cruise ship, I was starving. I bought a book at from the airport book stall thinking that I could spend the waiting hours reading after I’ve eaten.
Then, I realized it was my last day in Singapore and I still hadn’t tried what most people say is the tiny nation’s national breakfast dish — kaya toast. And I decided that was what I would have.
Kaya toast is toasted (grilled, traditionally) bread filled with kaya and butter. Kaya is a jam or custard, whichever way you want to label it, made from eggs, sugar and coconut milk. The toast is served with soft boiled eggs (with soy paste and pepper on the side) and coffee. Loved it. So much. I wanted to bring kaya toast home with me. With coconut jam so easily available in the Philippines, making kaya toast at home is a cinch because the filling is ready is less than ten minutes. No need to make it from scratch. … Continue reading »