If you’re in the south-eastern end of the world and you like your food, Penang, Malaysia is the place to be. I’ve never looked forward to every single meal and even managed to find meals in between meals that I didn’t know existed. Our French friend who introduced us to his ‘afternoon lunch’ idea would be proud… though it wasn’t the milk and cookies he would plump for.
Curry is the order of the day in Penang in our books, though there are plenty of other styles of food to tickle your tastebuds. We found a great little place just around the corner from our hotel offering just about every form of curry you could possibly wish for called Jaya. The best breakfast options we found were Tosai (rice based pancake with a variety of sauces) or Roti Canai (a sort of tearable flatbread you dunk in a pot of dahl). Sounds a little strange to us westerners but believe me, the best way to start your day is no longer shreddies, and for less than £1 each including a drink who’s to complain?
There are hundreds of street food stalls with baked delights and tasty morsels to grab for lunch on the move or find yourself at any of the restaurants in and around town for some cheap and delicious local food. Try Laksa (spicy noodle soup) or Char Kuoy Teow (a chinese fried noodle dish) for starters.
In the evenings restaurants light up the streets, and drag you in by your nose. It’s hard to resist the first place you get to but take your time, there’s loads on offer. There’s a kind of food court offering dishes from all corners of the globe that’s worth a visit called The Red Garden, it’s tasty but expect to be hounded by the Heineken sellers. Our favourite spot was an Indian restaurant called Woodlands. Now, as a shockingly greedy carnivore I wasn’t too taken with the idea of a vegetarian curry…boy was I wrong. It is amazing. We went back three times and I couldn’t give you a recommendation (it’s all first class) bar one: The samosas are to die for.
I doubt we even scratched the surface of the foods to try in Penang, so the only advice we could give is to munch as much as you can get your grubby mitts on.