Lemang Raya

Lemang is quintessential Malay holiday food, impossible to find throughout the year, impossible to avoid come Hari Raya.  Lemang is glutinous, or sticky, rice cooked in coconut milk inside a length of bamboo and roasted over an open fire.  The work involved in making it is considerable.  First, locate and chop down a giant piece… More Lemang Raya

Good News for Mixed Kids

Malaysia never stops changing. Controversial areas like race, religion, native privilege (bumiputera status), and national language are constantly in a state of flux. Most recently, when I registered the birth of my latest child, I discovered that the birth certificate itself had changed (for the second time), and that now the race of the child… More Good News for Mixed Kids

Kekabu

Among the more dramatic trees in the settled landscapes of Malaysia is the Kekabu or Kapok Tree (Ceiba pentandra), a gargantuan tropical version of the common large-for-Michigan Cottonwood Tree (Populus deltoides) of my youth. A truly massive tree, it grows to easily 100 feet high, with thick strong lateral branches radiating out in whorls at… More Kekabu

Wild Honey

Honey is a blessed food, mentioned in the Quran and praised often by Nabi Muhammad (saws) for its healing properties. Not to mention, it tastes great too! My mother keeps bees on her farm, and the raw honey she produces has such a fantastic flavor. Whenever my family visits, I beg then to bring along… More Wild Honey

Hidden Mosques

The azan can be heard all around Kuching from the suraus in most every neighborhood. Sometimes it takes a bit of work to find where it is coming from. Taking a shortcut through a secluded neighborhood on my way home late from work, I would often hear the azan called loudly nearby, see old uncles… More Hidden Mosques