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The MalaysianFood.net GlossaryThis glossary is mainly in Malay i.e. Bahasa Malaysia. However, many food ingredients or terms are better known in local Chinese or Indian dialects. This is because of Malaysia's multi-ethnic population, and its culturally diverse cuisine and cooking styles. Certain ingredients are used exclusively, or more frequently in different ethnic kitchens, while some foods may be forbidden due to religious beliefs. Wherever possible, spelling variations, similar names in English, or in other countries nearby and afar, shall also be included in the glossary.


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Yu Tau [Chinese], Mundirimaram [Tamil]

Cashew Nut.





Kepung Gandum : Wheat Flour.



Yim [Chinese], Uppu [Tamil]


Garam Kasar : Coarse Salt. Similar to Kosher Salt in Europe and USA.



Grind. Most Malaysian cooking start with grinding basic ingredients, or spices. This is done by hand using a stone Mortar & Pestle [Batu Lesung] or a Grindstone [Batu Giling].

Electric food processors and blenders have now eliminated this painstaking chore. However, many Malaysian kitchens still use a stone mortar & pestle for small tasks, such as grinding onions, garlic or some fresh chilies.

Batu Giling : Grindstone



Fry or Sauté.

Ikan Goreng : Fried Fish.
Menggoreng : To fry, To sauté.



Tong [Chinese], Ceeni [Tamil], Lump Sugar

A general term for Sugar.

Gula Batu : Rock Sugar. Ping Tong [Chinese], Kalkandu [Tamil]
Gula Kastor : Castor Sugar. Yeow Tong [Chinese], Chuckerai [Tamil]
Gula Icing : Icing Sugar. Tong Fun [Chinese], Ceeni Mavoo [Tamil]
Gula Melaka : Palm Sugar. Yeh Tong [Chinese], Karupattii [Tamil]
Gula Merah : Brown Sugar. Wong Tong [Chinese], Chuckerai [Tamil]


Gula Melaka

Yee Tong [Chinese], Karupati [Tamil], Gula Jawa [indonesia], Jaggery [India, Sri Lanka], Malaccan Sugar, Coconut Sugar

Palm Sugar. It is the sap that is extracted from the bud of the coconut tree and processed into cylindrical cakes. It has a distinctive flavor and is used in many local desserts in place of sugar. The flavor is often enhanced with Duan Pandan [Screwpine Leaves] in its preparation.



also called Kari [Malay]


Gulai Ikan : Fish Curry
Kari Ayam : Chicken Curry





Roti Gulung : Bread Roll.
Menggulung : To roll, To roll up.


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