Kuala Lumpur and Penang: “As Many New Foods as Possible” Posted on February 1st, 2020 by

Dispatch from Tyler Del Main ’22, music education major

When the Malaysia and Singapore tour was first announced, I immediately began to look into all of the new foods I would be able to try. Before our travel began, I spent time watching video after video of foods I had never heard of, much less tasted. I told myself that I needed to try as many new foods as possible. After being in Malaysia for six days, I feel that I have only scratched the surface of the incredible cuisine the country has to offer.

Tyler Del Main ’22

The moment I woke up in Kuala Lumpur, I immediately started scoping out the food. We were greeted with what I can confidently say was the greatest breakfast I have ever had in my life. The freshly made roti seemed to melt in my mouth, the curry brought new spices that made my mind think of nothing but having more, and the fruit juices washed over my tongue bringing sweetness to a savory meal. The depth of flavor was incomparable to that of the Western food my tastebuds are accustomed to. I was convinced that I had to be dreaming—how could I have been missing out on this incredible food all my life?

After our time spent in Kuala Lumpur, we traveled to what is considered the food capital of the world, Penang. Everywhere I turned I was greeted by brightly lit food stalls filled with food that has been perfected over generations. There was no end to the variety of dishes that are uniquely special to the cook serving them. I’ve found foods to set my mouth on fire, and sweet and refreshing fruit juice to quench the thirst from a day out in the heat and humidity.

The diversity in Malaysia was not only reflected in its people, but also in its food. From squid to cendol (a dessert consisting of green jellies, red beans, shaved ice, and coconut milk) I have had incredible opportunities to try it all. I cannot wait to see what else Malaysia has in store for us all.



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