Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Nasi Dagang / Trader's Rice - (MFF - Terengganu)

This is the 3rd month of Malaysian Food Fest (MFF) and it is the month of Terengganu.

Nasi Dagang is the rice specialty in Terengganu. Since it is a specialty, I'm gonna replicate this as my 1st submission to MFF for Terengganu month.

I never been to Terengganu before. I loooong wanted to go Redang Island, but I don't have the chance yet. Since I never been to Terengganu before, obviously, I never taste the real nasi dagang before. So, I did some read-ups online and then I took up the courage to cook this. The meaning of Dagang in malay means Trading. According to Terengganu Tourism, traders in the olden days pack along the rice while they travel for their trading activities. This is probably why the rice is called trader's rice.

The dish is supposed to do it in a steaming method. But I didn't. I did it using my mighty rice cooker.

Ingredient (Serves 4 adults)
(Reference Source: Nor Zalina's Pondering, Wendyinkk  and Terengganu Tourism with minor changes)
  • 400g Fragrant Rice (Jasmine Rice)
  • 100g Glutinous Rice
  • 5 Shallots, thinly sliced
  • 1 thumb sized Ginger, thinly julienned
  • 1tbsp Fenugreek (aka 葫芦巴 in Chinese, aka halba in Malay)
  • 200ml Coconut Milk
  • 250ml Water
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • ½ tsp Sugar
I did minor changes on the water volume because they used steaming method, which requires soaking rice for 5 hours, and the steaming part sounds tiring to me. So, I did it in a short cut way. I only soak my glutinous rice for 2 hours, soaked my fragrant rice for 30 minutes, and I get it done using my rice cooker, which is much easier. Result is good also.  So, don't worry :)

  1. Wash and soak glutinous rice for 90 mins, then, wash and add in fragrant rice, soak both rice together for another 30mins.
  2. Wash and prepare the ginger and shallot. Rinse fenugreek and set aside.  
  3. Transfer rice into rice cooker, add in 200ml coconut milk and 250ml water and let the rice cooker do the rest of the work.
  4. Once the rice is cooked, transfer the rice into a big bowl, or a salad bowl that is big enough for you to toss the rice. Add in fenugreek, ginger, shallots, salt and sugar. Toss to combine.
  5. Transfer the tossed rice back into the rice cooker, let it stay in there keep warm for another 30mins before serving.
  6. Serve nasi dagang with gulai ikan tongkol (Spicy Curry Tuna) and pickled vegetables.


1. If you feel that your rice is not soft enough (which I don't think so), splash some water in while you toss your rice.

2. Use a spatula and a long chopstick to do the tossing. Do not press the rice during tossing, try not to break the rice granules.

This is one of the well known cuisine in Terengganu. If you've been there before and you never had this before, then, you should try cooking this at home.

As I mentioned, Nasi Dagang usually eaten with Gulai Ikan Tongkol (Spicy curry tuna), and pickled vegetables. They are the the perfect pairing :)

Max and my mother in law love the rice! It's chewy and bouncy due to the existence of glutinous rice. The ginger, shallot and fenugreek gives the usual boring coconut rice a whole new pleasant fragrancy! 

If not for MFF, I don't think I will try recreate this recipe at home. I'm glad that I did it. You should too! :)

I am submitting this to Malaysian Food Fest, Terengganu Month hosted by Lena of Frozen Wings.

This post gets featured in Asian Food Channel (AFC) Facebook


  1. U got power rice cooker ma, jealous lor, LOL.
    The rice is not meant to be soft at all, but firm and chewy.

    1. Yess!!! My rice is not soft. But firm and chewy! I really love it loh! :D

  2. Very nice, Annie! You have cooked this so well. Its delicious, right? There's lots and lots of Terengganu food that is so yummy :)

    1. Phong Hong, indeed. This is the 1st time eat such nice rice cooked with coconut milk. I think I will repeat this again in future :)

  3. hi annie, yeah..seen this in wendy's post earlier and thanks so much for sharing your way of cooking this nasi dagang using rice cooker! Happy to know that you tried and liked it. now going to chk your ikan tongkol!

    1. I'm a gone case Malaysian. I didn't even know Nasi Dagang exist if there's no MFF event. Hahaa.. I really have to thank u guys for organizing MFF. It really makes me learn more :)

  4. Hi Annie,
    Can i know what type of rice cooker you using for this nasi dagang?