Touring Asia: Great Thrifty Food Around Asia

Thrifty Food Around Asia

‘The belly rules the mind’ is a Spanish proverb that is somewhat true, don’t you think? People in different continents, different regions like certain types of food. You can easily distinguish what region or part of the globe is being mentioned by the quality and taste of what they serve you. Here in Asia, we offer a wide variety of food; from fine dining Chinese style dinner to street finger food, you can surely enjoy the cheap, affordable, but dumbfounding bites we offer.

Haemul Pajeon photo by James via Flickr
Haemul Pajeon photo by James via Flickr

We can easily discard the category of street food in Seoul, Korea, because street food is illegal in that city. But many markets in their town offers a wide variety of inexpensive Korean food. One example is the Haemul Pajeon, which is a savory pancake that consists of seafood, namely shrimps, oysters, squids, and clams; it is often used as a side dish by people.

Gamja-dog photo by www.abc-korea.com
Gamja-dog photo by www.abc-korea.com

Ever heard of a corn dog surrounded by French Fries? Some Korean vendors came up with a brilliant idea where they combined hot dogs on a stick with french fries, and they call it Gamja-dog. It’ll surely be a treat when you try those Korean snacks from rice cakes, savory pancakes, and hot dogs dipped in french fries.

Singapore Laksa photo by InterContinental Hong Kong via Flickr
Singapore Laksa photo by InterContinental Hong Kong via Flickr

We then travel to Singapore, which is now considered Asia’s food capital. Being the food capital, Singapore was housed by many street foods but then later turned to food courts because of the traffic.. and because street food became illegal.

Chili Crab by Roberto Verzo via Flickr
Chili Crab by Roberto Verzo via Flickr

The Chili Crab is considered one of the best inexpensive dishes you can find in the country. It is also so popular that at one point, it became Singapore’s national dish. The Barbecue Stingray Sambal, a dish with Malaysian roots, consists of a stingray coated in sambal, a Singaporean sauce, a fish paste, and grilled.

Hokkien Mee by Yun Huang Yong via Flickr
Hokkien Mee by Yun Huang Yong via Flickr

The spicy taste envelopes until the end of your tongue while the aroma forcefully pushes inside you. Another dish with Malaysian roots is the Hokkien mee. However, the Singaporean version of this dish greatly differs from the Malaysian because The Hokkien mee of Singapore is served dry with egg and rice noodles and prawn and sambal paste. The original Maly version is served with noodles.

Pad Thai shop in Bangkok by David McKelvey via Flickr
Pad Thai shop in Bangkok by David McKelvey via Flickr

And last but not least, the Philippines! From tusok-tusok to Silogs, the Philippines offer a wide variety of cheap and affordable food that will make you come back for more! In Manila, the Philippines, street food is not illegal. That is why almost in every block corner, you can find the infamous barbecue. Kwek-Kwek is probably one of the most famous street food in the country.

Kwek-Kwek by Brian Dys Sahagun via Flickr CC
Kwek-Kwek by Brian Dys Sahagun via Flickr CC

The Kwek-Kwek is easily recognizable due to its orange color with quail eggs on the inside. The Balut is an egg of a duck… Yes, you heard it right, an egg of a duck. The embryos of the baby duck develop for about a month before they are cooked then sold. When you crack open the egg., the balut is considered by many a ‘night snack’ because balut vendors roam and sell balut in the early evening and sometimes at night.

Balut by riNux via Flickr CC
Balut by riNux via Flickr CC

Asia can be a tricky, confusing, and crowded place; their food might seem weird and new at first, but once you try it, I can assure you that you will come back for more. Aside from these 3 cities in Asia, many cities still find a good bite. And alongside a good drink as well. Remember, a key to a happy life is a happy stomach!

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