Swill Magazine Issue 5 - Out Now

One of my favourite things about Singapore breakfast dishes is that they’re nearly indistinguishable from lunch and dinner dishes.

Rosheen Kaul

Photo 18-2-2017, 1 43 34 am

Nasi lemak

Serves 4


Nasi lemak sambal

60 ml vegetable oil plus an additional 25ml for frying anchovies

15 dried long red chilies, rehydrated in warm water

2 garlic cloves, chopped

6 Asian shallots, peeled

½ red onion, peeled

1 tsp shrimp paste

40g tamarind puree

1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp sugar

100g ikan bilis (dried anchovies)


Coconut rice

2 cups (400g) jasmine rice

1 cup (250ml) water

1 cup (250ml) coconut milk

pinch of salt

1 pandan leaf, knotted, added to the pot while rice is cooking


To assemble

banana leaves

1 boiled egg, halved

cucumber slices

roasted peanuts

extra fried ikan bilis and roasted peanuts to garnish


To make the coconut rice, rinse the rice until the water runs clear, then place in a bowl and add the water and coconut milk. Bring the coconut milk, water, salt and pandan leaf to a simmer then add the rice. Cover and cook 12-14 minutes on medium-low heat. Turn heat off and allow to stand for 5 minutes, then fluff and serve.

To make the sambal, add all of the ingredients, except the anchovies and peanuts, to a food processor and blitz to a fine paste.

Add to a frying pan with an extra 25ml of the oil, add the anchovies and fry for 10–20 seconds. Add the sambal paste and fry, stirring continuously until the sambal turns dark red. Set aside.

Arrange the banana leaves onto two plates. Divide the coconut rice between the two plates, and add some slices of cucumber, roasted peanuts, ikan bilis, an egg half and a generous serving of sambal to each plate. Eat immediately.

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