Nasi Lemak – Rice With Coconut Milk

Cooking this dish made me realise how unhealthy it is. Apart from the fresh cucumber, the rest of the side dishes are all deep fried; the rice is also cooked in the most unhealthy manner – using coconut milk. No wonder this dish is so delicious and popular in Singapore!

Rice ingredients:

  • Rice: 1 cup, washed
  • Water: to cover rice plus 1 inch
  • Coconut milk: 2 tbsp
  • Pandan leaf: 2 blades, washed and bundled
  • Salt: 1/3 tsp
  • Cucumber: 1/3, washed and sliced

Ikan bilis ingredients:

  • Raw peanut with skin: 50g
  • Oil: About 1 cup, enough to cover ikan bilis
  • Dried ikan bilis (anchovies): 100g, head and stomach removed
  • Glory sambal chilli with prawn: 2 heaped tbsp
  • Sugar: 2 tbsp

Kuning fish ingredients:

  • Kuning fish: 2
  • Turmeric powder: 1 tsp
  • Salt: 1 tsp
  • White pepper: 1/2 tsp


  1. Marinate Kuning fish with turmeric, salt and pepper for 1 hr in fridge.
  2. Microwave rice with water, coconut, pandan leaves and salt for 13min on high heat. Set aside.
  3. Dry-fry (roasting without oil) peanuts in wok at medium heat for 8min till fragrant and slightly browned. Set aside.
  4. Heat oil in wok. Deep fry ikan bilis in 2 batches at medium heat till golden brown and crispy.
  5. Remove and drain oil on kitchen towel.
  6. Set aside most of the oil, leaving about 1 tbsp in wok.
  7. Add sambal chilli and sugar. Stir fry and mix both together.
  8. Add in peanuts and ikan bilis. Mix well with chilli.
  9. Fry quickly for 1min and remove from wok.
  10. Return 4 tbsp oil to wok. Shallow fry kuning fish for 2 min on each side till golden brown.
  11. Remove from wok and drain oil on kitchen towel.
  12. Serve rice with cucumber slices, fried ikan bilis, fried kuning fish and a spoonful of sambal chilli.


  • Fry the fish and ikan bilis in advance to save the effort on the day of serving the dish. The ikan bilis can be fried in huge batches and kept for at least a week. The fish can be kept in the fridge and re-fried on the day of consumption.
  • Remove the pandan leaves from the rice at 7min into the microwaving, before the rice becomes too sticky for them to be removed easily.
  • Get a packet of ikan bilis with just the meat to save yourself the effort of removing their heads and stomach. A packet with just the meat would cost about a dollar more though.

Fiery rating:

1-2 person

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