One of the reasons why I came to Georgetown in Penang is that I heard that it has got amazing street food. And it’s true! You can eat very well for very little money while sitting on plastic chairs on some street corner.
There are specific times for when certain vendors come out. Some spots only start filling up with these little carts in the evening, some are open for breakfast only, some are open the whole day.
There are also several places that are sort of half indoors. They are in a building but have an open front with several different stalls selling different things. You can get hokkien fried noodles, noodle soups, indian roti and curries, big plates of indian meat and vegetables, strange but yummy ice dishes that I can’t really explain what they are (cendol) and each dish will cost between £1 and £3 or so. And the food is so delicious.
Some plates are quite small so you can have several different things. But my friend took me to a Nasi Kandar (rice with different indian side dishes) place which served such big portions that it looked like I had hardly made a dent in it by the time I was finished.
The way it works is that you decide which table you want to sit at and then order your food from the different food stalls. They will then serve it to your table and you pay when you receive it. There is usually a drinks vendor as well who comes up to your table and takes your order. My default order was fresh watermelon juice. So incredibly good! I also tried nutmeg juice which apparently is a Georgetown speciality. It was good but I decided to stick with watermelon.
At first I wasn’t sure if it was acceptable to share a table with strangers. I personally don’t have a problem with it but I know that this is completely outrageous in London. But it seems perfectly fine in Georgetown and my fellow eaters often struck up a conversation with me which was nice.
Here’s an indoors food court with twenty if not more different food stalls. And on this food cart you choose the skewers, boil them in the water for a bit and then eat them with the sauces. Luckily I had my friend with me who explained the whole concept to me!
This post has made me hungry now. And it made me want to go back to Penang. It’s a wonderful place.
One thought on “Penang street food”
it’s fantastic to read how ordering/eating in penang like a new experience for foreigners! i have never thought it could be something unfamiliar. great article for penang tourists!
im from penang/perak btw :-)