Eating in Burma: A Guide To Myanmar Food

With the diverse geography, seasonable conditions, fertile soil, and water resources, Myanmar has the sufficient food supply all year round. It is the good news for the Myanmar people who uniquely develop their own dishes with rice, meat, fish, soup, salad, etc., with the exclusive taste.

Myanmar cuisine

A Historic Look at Myanmar Food

The Myanmar cuisine has the long tradition as old as its culture and arts. Being an agrarian nation and one of the world’s largest rice exporters, Myanmar allows its people to develop their own foods. Besides, due to the influence of some different bordering and colonial cultures, the preparation of food in this golden country has been affected. The influx of Chinese and Indian people also push the Myanmar foods to change little. Nonetheless, most of the Myanmar people still prefer their own foods, making sure that their unique and essential features remains unchanged.

Table Manner When Eating Myanmar Foods

Traditionally, the round and low tables are used; so, the diners will sit on the mat or the floor during the mealtime. In the restaurants and royal houses, the size of the table must be small enough for the diners to reach all of the dishes.

In most situations, Myanmar people use their fingers to eat; but, there is a spoon on a dish for using with the clean left hand. About the soup – the indispensable component of a Burmese meal, it is provided in a single bowl which means all dinners have to share. Only forks and spoons (NOT knife) are allowed to be available at the table. When eating, the elderly and the guests can take the curry first. But it is the host to start the meal by giving a spoon of curry on the guest’s plate with his/her assent. At the dessert time, the snack or fruit is served together with green tea, juice, or drinking water (NOT wine).

So, to recap, the traditional Myanmar meal consists of a plate of rice, dishes of curries, a main bowl of soup, and a dish of the green or boiled vegetables. The rice is served simultaneously (rather than course by course). The folded napkin is for wiping your lips and fingers after the mealtime (not for covering your cloth). So you will have chance to try the Burmese eating way during the Myanmar Culinary Journey !

The Main Dishes in a Typical Myanmar Meal

myanmar fried crabs fish food

The Myanmar main dishes involve the meat (chicken, pork, duck, and mutton) or fish, salad or vegetables, and some types of soup. As usual, the vegetables will be cut and confected with a small amount of oil and dried prawn while the salads are made of the raw or cooked vegetables together with meat, prawn, or fish. Overall, the four major kinds of soup to savor are the sweet broth, sour, hot and spicy, and bean soup.  

Some Popular Desserts in Myanmar

Not to mention the fruits served as desserts in Myanmar, this golden country has the rich collection of the unique desserts. Mohinga (rice noodle served with fish soup) and Laplet (pickled tea leaves served with sesame seeds, roasted peanuts and fried garlic) are the two most popular and tasteful snacks here. Besides, Kyauk Kyaw (the seaweed jelly) is favorably served with the coconut milk layer on the top; it is very delicious. In the same sense, Thagu is the great dessert referring to the tapioca pudding added with coconut to enrich the taste.

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