Citizens, this Burmese fritter has all the makings of an instant classic here in the West: it’s deep-fried, has a beer batter, it’s got tons of onion in it, it’s spicy and it has a killer sour dipping sauce.
Owing to the geographic location of Myanmar (the new name of Burma), Burmese cuisine has been influenced by Chinese cuisine, Indian cuisine and Thai cuisine.
Traditionally, Burmese eat their meals from dishes on a low table, while sitting on a bamboo mat. Dishes are served simultaneously.
A typical meal includes steamed rice as the main dish and accompanying dishes called hin, including a curried freshwater fish or dried/salted fish dish, a curried meat or poultry dish instead, a light soup called hin gyo (ဟင်းချို), called chinyay hin (ချဉ်ရည်ဟင်း) if sour, and fresh or boiled vegetables to go with a salty dish, almost invariably a curried sauce of pickled fish (ngapi yayjo) in Lower Burma.
Fritters such as gourd or onions in batter as well as fish or dried tofu crackers are extra – and it is in fact the humble fritter we focus on today.
Truly, Kyethunkyaw (as it’s known in Burmese) is a dish worthy of your repertoire – once you’ve assembled all the ingredients together, this is a quick and simple dish that is going to be a real hit at your next dinner!
My recipe is based closely on one by the formidable Australian chef Luke Nguyen, though I have adjusted his ingredient proportions a bit, removed the tomato wedges he included and added in some regular onion as well as Spring Onions.
Battle on – The Generalissimo