Spotlight on Asian Street Food Markets
The global connectivity of cities around the world means that you can usually find ethnic street food from around the world just about anywhere. But, nothing compares to the real thing in the real place. Here is an overview of some of the most thriving street food markets on the Asian continent. If you happen to find yourself there, make some time to visit them, and be sure to do so on an empty stomach.
Street Food in Hong Kong
Hong Kong is home to three pulsating street food markets. If you love seafood, the Temple Street market is the place to go for fresh seafood delights. If dessert is your primary preference, you will not want to miss the food market on Fa Yuen Street in the Kowloon region where you can enjoy the best waffles in the country; their specialty is chocolate chip waffles—a true treat. In city center you can find the Graham Street food market, teeming with tourists and locals enjoying the special taste of Cantonese chicken and pineapple buns.
Street Food in Thailand
Thailand already has a reputation for some of the best food in Asia, and its street food markets will not disappoint. Two of them are located in Bangkok and they are sure to satisfy any craving you may have for authentic local tastes. Your nose will direct you to Charoen Krung Road where a busy street food market serves an aromatic stir-fry and freshly steamed dumplings.
One of the oldest street food markets in Thailand is Ratchawat Market where you can indulge in authentic Kobe beef noodles and roast duck. Which ever Bangkok market you choose, keep your eyes open for delicious mango sticky rice and sweet banana-filled crepes.
Garnering recognition even from the United Nations, Phuket has been honored with the title, “City of Gastronomy” due to the amazing mix of cultural cuisines one can find there. Phuket's street food market scene offers an eclectic variety of noodles topped with seafood, chicken or pork strips, banana cakes, sweet fish cakes, and even Phuket’s take on the French macaroon.
Street Food in China
The oldest international highway, so to speak, is the Silk Road, which has been the main route for the trade of goods across Eurasia for centuries. The Kashgar Sunday Bazaar, a Silk Road street food market, is about as rich in tastes as the route itself is rich in history. One of the most popular delicacies is the lamb kababs, which are cooked and served daily by a number of different vendors. The street market also offers a wide variety of fruits, fresh spices and other local goods.
Street Food in Malaysia
Malaysia constantly proves that it has much more than gorgeous beaches to offer. The street food market scene there is one of the best in the region, and the most popular market of all can be found in Penang. The city’s mix of nationalities—Indian, Malay and Chinese, has resulted in a delectable and colorful variety of dishes. The streets of the city are perfectly arranged for street food markets, making it easy to find everything from coffee to mackerel, wanton and spicy noodles. Aside from the unique variety of tastes, this world renowned market is also known for the Nyonya dishes it serves. The Nyonya cuisine is a fusion of the Chinese and Malay kitchens.
Street Food in Taywan
Finally, if you find yourself in Taipei, you will want to check out the Shi Lin Night Market, even if you are not a real foodie. It's a packed bustling center that combines a food court with more than 500 different street food stands with a general market and entertainment area. A great place to enjoy both traditional dishes and local delights like Aiyu jelly and bubble tea. Bon Appétit!