Bruneian food is similar to neighboring countries’ one such as Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia, and was additionally influenced by India, China, Thailand and Japan of which the main course is rice and fish. Since Brunei is the Muslim country, the food is Halal food: avoiding pork and alcohol. Most of the Bruneian food is spicy. The popular food is Ambuyat made of sago eaten by using bamboo fork and dipping into sour fruit sauce. The beverage is fruit juice, tea and coffee.
One important thing about eating in Brunei is that restaurants are prohibited from opening on Friday from 12.00 to 14.00 pm. because it is the day for grand praying: Muslims have to go to mosque. Another one is that, in Brunei, eating while walking in public places is inappropriate because it is a discourtesy: we should eat in the place provided. The other one is that do not drink alcohol in public places: you have to drink only in private accommodation.
Recommended food in Brunei
Beef Rendang is beef curry that is similar to beef Phanaeng of Thailand. The little difference is the ingredient of curry paste. The curry paste of Brunei has candlenut, so it looks more concentrated. It is the food for every meal and is usually served with rice and side dishes such as blanched cassava leaves and blanched water spinach.
Nasi lemak is the food influenced by Malaysia. It is made of rice cooked with coconut milk and pandan leaves. It was eaten with fried chicken or chicken curry and side dishes. The original Lemak is covered with banana leaves and usually served as a breakfast.
Udang Sambal Serai Bersantan is national dish of Brunei that looks like prawn curry with rice. It is usually eaten with boiled egg, cucumber and peanut.
Ambuyat is the famous dish of Brunei and Malaysia. The flour is sticky and sago flour is the main ingredient. Ambuyat’s flour is tasteless and appropriate to eat when it is hot by using 2 bamboo forks for rolling and then dipping it into sour fruit sauce or sauce made of shrimp paste. It is eaten with 2-3 side dishes such as grilled beef covered with banana leaves or fried beef.
Ketupat is rice that is wrapped with coconut leaves in rattan ball shape or square shape. And it can be glutinous rice wrapped with licuala leaves in the shape of triangle. Then, bring it to the boil. It is the gastronomy that shows the delicacy and local wisdom. The Bruneian usually eat it with pork satay or curry.