Asian food: Misleading the English

I ate the strangest tasting rice last night. I never knew rice could taste so weird.

I know some of you are going to say, rice is rice, it all tastes the same. (It doesn’t, actually.)

But this ang moh rice I had last night was Really. Weird.




We bought it at the supermarket and cooked it in the rice cooker.

The grains are twice as big as the ones I’m used to. The taste is a bit smoky-bitter, a bit malty, with a funny aftertaste that reminds me of barley.

Maybe we should buy rice from the Asian supermarket next time, or maybe I should bring some from Singapore.

I had to densely populate my rice with crispy pork floss (which I’d brought from Singapore) to mask the funny taste.




So we essentially had pork floss rice for dinner. I also made a garlic omelete and that was not too bad.

In the bigger scheme of things, though, it makes me worry how ang mohs are buying weird-tasting fake Asian food at supermarkets and cooking them and eating them and maybe thinking that Asian food is funny.

There’s this Indian curry meal that Piers really likes, from the supermarket. It’s pre-cooked, so you just heat it up and make your own rice to go with it.


Chicken Tikka Masala


I think I should give that a try one day to check whether he’s been eating AND liking rubbish Asian food.

But I guess he’s okay. I’ve been to the Asian restaurants that he likes and they serve quite good food.

And I’m quite proud of him because his spicy tolerance is about as high as mine!




Anyway, the funny thing about Asian restaurants in England is that they are all confused.

You see signs outside restaurants making such proclamations:

Thai restaurant: We serve the best authentic Thai cuisine!

Chinese restaurant: We serve the best authentic Chinese cuisine!

Vietnamese restaurant: We serve the best authentic Vietnamese cuisine!



You walk into a Thai restaurant and you see on the menu… vegetable tempura.

You walk into a Chinese restaurant and you see… tom yam soup.

You walk into a Vietnamese restaurant and you see… chicken satay with peanut sauce.

It’s all mixed up.


Asian food


You could walk into one restaurant and see four different cuisines on the menu.

Not that it’s a bad thing. Quite nice having a buffet of different Asian cuisines. I just think it’s very misleading.

It’s false advertising and they confuse the ang mohs. Like, for example, many think that plum sauce and hoisin sauce are one and the same.

And what in the world is with Singapore noodles?

You see Singapore noodles in every country in the world EXCEPT Singapore.

How is it we know nothing about what is supposedly our noodles?

The first time I tried Singapore noodles was in Australia. It was disgusting and like nothing I’d ever eaten.

I brought from Singapore some of my favourite instant noodles. I think they’re better. :P


Instant noodles


Oh, sorry, I’m talking about food again.

I mean to stop blogging about food so much but can’t seem to help it because food is such a major part of our lives.

I’ll try and do something else next.

For today, I will sign off with this delicious New York cheesecake because I just ate it and it’s so good.


New York cheesecake


Hmm, I wonder if they eat this cheesecake in New York.

5 thoughts on “Asian food: Misleading the English

  1. Avatar

    LOL. I know what you mean. My wife and I have been in Canberra, Australia for the past 3 years. For the first 2 months there, we were trying out the ‘Asian’ restaurants and thinking how misleading the menus were.

    Finally, we just cooked our own meals and rarely went out. We didn’t have too much of a problem with the rice though. We would always stick to the ones we were familiar with like Jasmine rice. Plus, Coles and Woolies have a lot of Asian food nowadays.

  2. Avatar

    Now I’m paranoid about the authenticity of the Asian foods I eat. You go right on blogging about food, Sheylara, because I want to know more about this. I would appreciate it if you could sample all the different brands of rice for sale and compile a Pass/Fail list for us Westerners. A chart correctly identifying which dishes belong to which country would be invaluable as well. Thanks for bringing up this whole issue.

  3. Avatar

    So true!!
    Worst thing i did was visit Hong Kong!! Ha, no..totally loved the country and the food was awesome!
    Then you come back home to the UK and realise what we call ‘Asian’ just a VERY pale imitation…and you learn to cook your own lol Trouble is, 99% of the populace don’t know any different…


  4. Avatar

    I can confirm that they DO have NY Cheesecake in NY. LOL! And it DOES look like the pic you posted! I’ll bring one back from NY in July … IF it survives … :[

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