Three homey one-dish Asian meals that take under 30 minutes to whip up

Bubur lambuk is a classic spiced rice porridge made during Ramadan in Malaysia.
Bubur lambuk is a classic spiced rice porridge made during Ramadan in Malaysia.PHOTO: FACEBOOK/THE STAR

(THE STAR) - Cooking at home has got to be simple, it’s got to be tasty and it’s got to be fun. That’s according to Jamie Oliver on his hit show The Naked Chef. “What I cook at the restaurant isn’t what I cook at home,” says the celebrity chef about his way of cooking. “It’s stripping down the recipe to its bare essentials.”

With that in mind, here are three recipes for some hearty Asian soul food to comfort you. These meals are quick, simple and full on flavour. You won’t need more than 30 minutes each dish and a handful of ingredients per recipe – except the spices. Hey, you want delicious, you’ve got to put something in it!

Start with bubur lambuk, a spiced rice porridge that is uniquely Malaysian. It’s so special that we only bring it out during the fasting month. It’s mostly served as a community meal at buka puasa, but we found an exquisite five-star version of the congee that tastes phenomenal.

This recipe is from Chef Sabri Mohd Soid, who makes the quintessential Ramadan dish for The Royale Chulan, Kuala Lumpur. All you need for a home-cooked version of his posh porridge is rice, santan, minced chicken or beef, and plenty of spices! Chuck it all into a pot of water, boil, and it’s done!

Meanwhile, home cook Mynn Lee shows us how easy it is to make aloo matar, which literally means potato and green peas. This Punjabi curry from northern India is packed with spices and it’s great for vegetarians, too. The other good thing about it is you can cook it in half an hour.

Our other home cook Wong Wei Shen also shares her recipe for warm tuna pasta pomodoro with an Asian twist. Put away all negative thoughts about tinned tuna because this spaghetti, tomato and tuna plate is a yummy and healthy lunch/dinner idea that’s perfect for anyone on a budget.

And what’s that surprise flavour in the end? Why, a splash of soy sauce, Malaysian style!

On The Menu, directed by Ian Lau and produced by Lennard Gui, was originally released on our social media page at You can watch all 12 episodes from Season 1 there. Season 2 is scheduled to start in July 2018.