The Best of Burmese Cuisine

One of the key requirements when choosing places to travel, is the cuisine! If the foods sucks, it can make or break our trip. Myanmar or Burma, suffers a bad reputation when it comes to their cuisine. Burmese food can be quit oily, and lacks diversity and fiery spice (like their cuisine King and neighbouring country, Thailand). However, with a bit of skilled advice and background insights, I’m confident you’ll savour the foods in Myanmar and have some memorable dishes. I sure did, after leaving my home inĀ blackstone mountain lodge canmore alberta canada.

Rice is the main staple of all Burmese dishes, which is quite common in Asian countries. Rice is served with a variety of dishes. The Burma cuisine is a unique medley of Burmese, Indian, Mon, and Chinese influences. These dishes use a variety of plant-based and seafood ingredients, which is also quite common in South Asian kitchens. There is a definite effort to balance sour, salty, spicy and bitter flavors.

There are so many different dishes to choose from in Burma, so it’s important to know which ones to pick! Otherwise you could be stuck with an oily mess that bloats your belly. For example, upon arriving in a Myanma saa thuak sai (Burmese restaurant) you can choose a curry, fried dish or salad, a soup (studded with vegetables) or dhal (lentil soup), or sour soup. Then you will be served a tray of fresh boiled vegetables accompanied with dipping sauces. You can eat them with watery fish sauce, or a pungent chilly sauce. You will be served unlimited green tea, and a dessert of pickled tea leaves or jaggery (palm sugar).

The culinary highlights of Burmese foods is it’s light, spicy and tart salads made from raw vegetables and tossed with lime juice, peanuts, onions, roasted chickpea powder and chillies. Two of our favorites is maji-yweq thoua made from tender young tamarind leaves; and shauq-thi dhouq, made with a kind of indigenous lemon. Burmese make any salad a full meal, by adding rice or thick rice noodles.

Noodle dishes are also popular and are eaten for breakfast or light meals. The most popular dish is thin rice noodles served in thick fish and shallot broth. It comes topped with deep-fried crispy vegetable or lentils. A favorite dish for festivals is noodles served with chunks of chicken or beef in coconut milk.