Malaysian Salad on new stamps from Pos Malaysia

Malaysian Salad on new stamps from Pos Malaysia

Pos Malaysia issued a set of four stamps featuring traditional Malaysian salads. The stamps illustrate Pegaga, Kacang botor, Petai and Pucuk gajus.

Pegaga (Centella asiatica) grows in tropical swampy areas. The stems are slender, creeping stolons, green to reddish-green in color, connecting plants to each other. It has long-stalked, green, reniform leaves with rounded apices which have smooth texture with palmately netted veins. The leaves are borne on pericladial petioles, around 2 cm.

The rootstock consists of rhizomes, growing vertically down. They are creamish in color and covered with root hairs. In Malay cuisine the leaves of this plant are used for ulam, a type of Malay salad.

Kacang botor (Psophocarpus tetragonolobus) is a tropical legume plant native to New Guinea. It grows abundantly in hot, humid equatorial countries. This bean has been called the "one species supermarket" because practically all of the plant is edible. The beans are used as a vegetable, but the other parts (leaves, flowers, and tuberous roots) are also edible. The flavor of the beans has a similarity to asparagus. The young leaves can be picked and prepared as a leaf vegetable, similar to spinach. The roots can be used as a root vegetable, similar to the potato, and have a nutty flavor; they are also much richer in protein than potatoes.

Petai (Parkia speciosa) is a plant bearing long, flat edible beans with bright green seeds the size and shape of plump almonds which have a rather peculiar smell, similar (but stronger) to the Shiitake mushroom, characterized by some as being similar to natural gas. They are best when combined with other strongly flavored foods such as garlic, chili peppers, dried shrimp or shrimp paste. In Malaysia, petai also commonly served with sambal, or mixed with dried shrimp, chili peppers, red onions, belacan (shrimp paste), soy sauce and prawn.

Pucuk gajus (Anacardium occidentale) are cashew leaf shoots that are used in many traditional Malaysian dishes. Nasi ulam, for instance. Nasi ulam in Malaysia consist of cold cooked rice that is mixed with shredded herbs such as daun kaduk (wild betelnut leaf), pucuk gajus, onions etc.


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