Street food guide to Asia

Family dinner in China

Street food is inherent in the topography of Asian cities. Colourful trolleys, steam billowing from pots, woks sticky with fat tempt gourmets from all over the world with exotic flavours and aromas. Asian cuisine has enchanted many a traveller, and this street food miniguide is meant to show you around the tastiest destinations.

Street food in Tokyo

Your first stop on the Asian food trail is in Japan. Tokyo, a city where they rarely eat at home, has lots of street food dishes and locations, but three of them are particularly worth a visit. First, the Ameyoko Market, where you must try takoyaki – golden fried balls of puffy dough stuffed with pieces of octopus. Second, the historic district of Asakusa – a perfect place to try local deserts. Third, Sunamachi Ginza Shopping Street - a noteworthy, albeit still little popular, Japanese street food address.

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Takoyaki - dish japan kitchen

Street food Beijing

The popularity of street food in China is best shown by the fact the Central Kingdom has more than 200 kinds of street food snack alone. Called xiaochi, which means literally "small food", they include, among others, soups with egg or rice noodles, wonton dumplings or tangyuan rice dough balls. Xiaochi include also fermented tofu with intensive smell, which some may find unattractive, as well as tasty dumplings and steamed buns, crunchy jianbing pancakes, stews made from just about any type of meat, and traditional zongzi – cones made from sticky rice, stuffed with (normally) minced meat and wrapped in bamboo leaves. Among Beijing's most popular street food addresses is the Wangfujing Food Market, which is open 24h and offers delicacies and peculiarities from all over China.

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Streed food in Pekin

Street food in Singapore

The original Singaporean cuisine is a mixture of Malayan, Chinese and Indian cuisines. It is not a surprise then that in virtually every corner of this multicultural city-state there are venues that serve delicious and cheap street food, called hawker centres. These bustling eating houses, where most residents of the Lion City have their meals, serve such local delicacies as sweet and sour laksa soup with crab, an omelette with oysters, hokkien prawn mee noodles and Singaporean spring rolls po piah. If you seek street food culinary experiences in Singapore, you must go to Lau Pa Sat, Newton Center or Tiong Bahru. 

Street food in Sri Lanka and India

Indian and Sri Lankan cuisines have a lot in common. Street food stalls in both India and Sri Lanka serve colourful and spicy curry with rice, hot roti pies and vegetable-stuffed samosa dumplings fried in deep fat. If you are going to Delhi and want to fall in love with Indian cuisine, you must visit Chandni Chowk Street Food.

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The kingdom of street food – Bangkok

Thai cuisine is considered one of the tastiest in the world, and Bangkok is considered the world's capital of street food. Aromatic curry soups with coconut milk, pad thai smelling of lime and tamarind, tempura prawns, mango sticky rice that melts in your mouth, and controversial roasted scorpions are just some of the delicacies you can have on the streets of that colourful city. Where to find the best street food in Bangkok? The best pad thai is served in Thip Samai, an venue that is well known among foodies all over the world. Street food experiences can be sought in Wang Lang Market on the shore of the Chao Phraya River, at the Victory Monument, at 38 Sukhumvit Street and in the China Town.

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rice with mango

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