Sunday, 8 August 2010

What do you think of when you think about countries like Australia? Or America, China, Brazil? Mention Malaysia, and good food is probably the first thing that will come to your mind.

Penang char koay teow- one of my favourite! 

We Malaysians are a pampered lot indeed. Eating is a national hobby. How many times have you went out with a group of people, and the organiser suggests a place far away because 'the food is good'? Our multicultural background definitely benefited us, for we have a huge varieties of food from different cultures. So pampered by food we are that we find it hard to live in places without Malaysian food.

One question that often comes up is 'do you live to eat, or live to eat'. I've always considered myself to be in the 'live to eat' category, for I always like thinking about what food to eat for my meals. After moving to Adelaide, though, I realised that I actually belong somewhere in the middle. I find that while I do miss eating Malaysian food sometimes, I do not go into severe craving where I simply have to have a certain food. I found that I'm not fussy about what I eat, but I do prefer it to be tasty food!

Asam laksa... Yum! I actually had the wonderful chance to have it twice! 

Take for example my first return trip home. People do ask me 'so have you made a list of food you want teat when you go home'? My reply was always 'no'. Even until a week till my homecoming I did not think about food I miss, although few days later I did make a list which I took my time in completing. But the very first thing that I said I want to have when I landed was fish. Seriously, fish. Seafood is so expensive here that I have not bought any since I came here. When eating out, I find that I tend to choose seafood when I can, for I do not have much opportunity to eat them!

Perhaps another reason for my indifferent view about what I eat is due to the cold weather. The cold weather made me so hungry that I simply did not care what food was available. I just want something to fill my stomach. One time last week I even had to satisfy myself with an Uncle Toby's cereal bar while I was cooking. And due to the lack of skill, what I cook doesn't differ much, it's always the same.

But that doesn't make me any less Malaysian. I still enjoy having good food, but it's just that I won't suffer like a drug user without his drugs. I also enjoy reading food blogs, some with recipes and some introducing good places to eat.

Prawn noodles, otherwise known as har mee - Yummy! 

Then there's another Malaysian characteristic- 'Have you eaten?' is also a commonly asked question. I actually did not know that it wasn't a universal thing until I read about it in a book, that only Malaysians go around asking people whether they've eaten.

So what's it for you- eat to live, or live to eat?
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