Sunday, 21 January 2007

Nasi Dagang

What is Terengganu without it's Nasi Dagang? Well, a well known state's signature dish evolved thru the times, from the dish that the travelling traders had on their journeys to what it become today.

The Nasi Dagang, is somewhat different from other nasi, as the rice was prepared using a mixture of "beras biasa" and portion of "beras pulut", some say by the ratio of 4:0.5, some say a bit more, some say a bit less... The preparation is meticulous, the beras-mix must be soaked before cooking. The cooking itself is the "kukus" or steam style, not the ordinary boil method as normal for other rice cooking recipe.

Then came the unique process, which called "arong", for which the steamed rice is now liberally mix with the coconut milk, off the stove.

The Nasi Dagang in it's true form must be served with Gulai Ikan Aya, which was cooked together with liberal amount of Lada Jarum and some Belimbing Besi. To enjoy Nasi Dagang, it is consider perfect if the dish is serve on the plate lined with daun pisang. Some say "daun pisang menggala" should be the first choice. Some people say, just daun pisang... The perfect nasi itself, should look shiny, not sticking together like the pulut, laced with thin, long slices of ginger. While scooping Nasi Dagang, one should expect to find brownish Halba inside the whiteness of the Nasi Dagang and some slices of bawang merah a few in between.

If one observe, one will see the "rigeur" of eating Nasi Dagang start with squeezing the Lada Jarum on the rice, pour a bit Kuah Gulai Ikan Aya, and off they go. Take a bite of Ikan Aya and "gulai-ed" Belimbing Besi and one is on cloud nine...

No comments: