In the culinary world, street food is an integral part of people's lives in many parts of the world. One region known for its abundance and variety of delicious street food is Southeast Asia.
Southeast Asia is a foodie's paradise, especially for those who love authentic flavors, rich spices, and an endless variety of foods. Each country in the region has its own specialty, reflecting its diverse culture and rich culinary heritage. The streets of every city in Southeast Asia are lined with food vendors offering delicious dishes at affordable prices.
However, Southeast Asia's street food not only appeals to savory food lovers, but also serves up a variety of mouthwatering sweets. In this region, you will find sweet dishes that entice, invite, and reveal the rich flavors of each country. Let's explore the different sweet treats of Southeast Asian street food, as ranked by Taste Atlas.
10. Maruya, Philippines
Maruya is a popular street food in the Philippines. It is a sweet fritter of saba bananas coated in batter and fried until crispy. It is usually served with sugar sprinkled on top. Maruya is often eaten as a snack or dessert and is easily found in street stalls and market stalls in the Philippines. Maruya is best eaten warm and freshly fried for crunchiness.
9. Kluai Thot, Thailand
Kluai Thot, or more commonly known as Thai fried bananas, is one of the most popular street snacks in Thailand. This traditional snack can be found throughout the country. The bananas used in Kluai Thot are usually Burro bananas. The batter used to coat the bananas is usually made from a mixture of rice flour and coconut milk, giving it an enticing crunchy feel with a hint of coconut flavor in every bite.
As a classic Thai snack, Kluai Thot has become a favorite among locals and tourists alike. Its unmistakable deliciousness and enticing texture make it a highly sought-after treat enjoyed by all who visit Thailand.
8. Getuk, Indonesia
Getuk is a traditional Indonesian market snack made from boiled, mashed and sweetened cassava. Getuk has many variations depending on the cassava base used. Some variations of getuk include banana, taro, cheese, yam and palm sugar. In addition, the use of natural dyes gives this dessert an interesting color. Getuk is usually served in cubes or small balls, perfect as a snack or dessert, and is easily found in street stalls and markets in Indonesia. There are so many varieties of getuk that you will never get bored of it.
7. Kue Putu, Indonesia
Kue Putu is a popular traditional Indonesian market food made from a mixture of rice flour, palm sugar and coconut. The cake is green in color with a distinctive aroma of pandan leaves. Kue putu is made by steaming it in a bamboo tube until it takes on a cylindrical shape, which makes it an interesting way to cook. It also has a soft and chewy texture with a sweet, moist flavor, served with grated coconut on top.
6. Khao Lam, Thailand
Khao Lam is a traditional Thai street food made from white or red sweet sticky rice steamed in bamboo tubes. It is made from a mixture of coconut milk, black beans, sugar and salt. Khao Lam has a soft and chewy texture with an addictive sweet taste.
5. Taho, Philippines
Taho is a sweet Philippine street food made of silken tofu, sago pearls and a thick sugar syrup called arnibal. This snack is popular in the Philippines and is sold by vendors using large aluminum buckets. Taho is usually eaten hot for breakfast or as a sweet snack.
You'll definitely enjoy eating it, as the silky tofu gives it a soft texture, the sago pearls add a chewy element, and the sugar syrup gives it a sweet and caramel-like flavor. Taho is often served in small containers, making it easy to carry around as a street snack.
4. Serabi, Indonesia
Serabi is a traditional Indonesian food that is very popular in Java and other parts of the country. Made from a mixture of rice flour, coconut milk and palm sugar, serabi has a distinctive aroma and flavor due to the presence of pandan leaves in the batter.
The manufacturing process involves pouring the dough into small molds and then baking until golden brown. The small size of the molds gives this dessert a unique shape and texture. Serabi is typically served with a sweet syrup made from palm sugar and coconut milk, which adds a sweetness that complements the delicacy.
3. Apam Balik, Malaysia
Apam Balik is a popular street food in Malaysia and is also known as "turnaround pancake" or "peanut pancake". The dish is made from a batter that usually contains flour, eggs, sugar and coconut milk. The batter is then cooked in a wok or pot and filled with a mixture of peanuts, sugar and sweet corn.
There are also many variations of apam balik in which various additional ingredients such as shrimp, spinach leaves, cherry tomatoes, white cheese, avocado, chicken pieces, and bell peppers can be added to the filling. This adds to the variety of flavors and the excitement of eating this dish. The deliciousness of Apam Balik lies in the crisp and crunchy texture on the outside and the soft and chewy texture on the inside.
2. Pisang Goreng, Indonesia
Pisang Goreng is a very popular street food in Indonesia. The dish is made from sliced ripe bananas wrapped in a batter made from wheat flour, eggs, sugar, and water. Some dough variations may also include baking powder, salt, and vanilla extract. The dough-wrapped bananas are then fried in plenty of oil until golden brown.
Who doesn't love the taste of fried bananas that are crisp and crunchy on the outside and soft and distinctly sweet on the inside? Ripe bananas give this dessert a deliciously sweet and fruity flavor. Fried bananas are best served hot, with or without a sweet dipping sauce.
1. Khao Niao Mamuang, Thailand
Khao Niao Mamuang is a traditional Thai street food also known as mango sticky rice. The dish is made with sticky rice, coconut milk, sugar, salt and fresh mangoes. The preparation process involves steaming the sticky rice and then mixing it with coconut milk, sugar and salt to create a soft and sweet batter. The dish is then served with sliced fresh mangoes and drizzled with sweet coconut cream.
Khao Niao Mamuang has a soft and sticky texture with a sweet and delicate flavor. The glutinous rice as the main ingredient gives it a chewy texture, while the coconut milk adds a rich and creamy flavor. Fresh mango slices add a touch of sweetness and freshness to this dessert.