Tag Archives: ingredients for Malaysian dishes

Asian Cuisine A Great Option For Vegetarian Diets in Australia


tan-fresh-foodMany more Australians are becoming Vegetarian. Roy Morgan Research found that between 2012 and 2016, the number of Australian adults whose diet is all or almost all vegetarian rose to almost 2.1 million people (11.2% of the population) from 1.7 million ( 9.7%. of the population). Sydney leads with 14.4% of its residents adopting a vegetarian (or little meat) diet ahead of Hobart (13.3%) and Melbourne (12.7%). Many report that they have gone vegetarian in order to eat more healthily and maintain a low carb, low fat diet.

The Asian diet is certainly up there in terms of healthy eating and offering good, tasty vegetarian options. Tofu, or beancurd, is a popular ingredient in East Asian and Southeast Asian dishes and is often used in place of meat or seafood. Tofu is low in calories and high in protein and iron and, depending on the coagulants used in manufacturing (e.g. calcium chloride, calcium sulfate, magnesium sulfate), it can have a high calcium or magnesium content as well. Fresh vegetables are also a mainstay in most Asian dishes.

Healthy eating is aligned to healthy drinking habits as well. The traditional Asian approach to drinking with your meal is to limit fluid intake when eating so that digestive enzymes do not become diluted, as these are so important for proper digestion. Green tea or other hot teas are offered before a meal to support enzymatic activity and help aid digestion. It is suggested that a thirty minute period between drinking green tea and eating is the optimum.

You will find good quality green tea, tofu and all the ingredients you will need to make delicious Chinese, Malaysian, Japanese, Indonesian, Thai, Vietnamese or Korean dishes at TANG The Asian Food Emporium at 185 Russell Street, Melbourne CBD.


Multi-Cultural City Melbourne Devours Diverse Cuisines

eating hotpotMelbourne truly is a multi-cultural city and nowhere is this more obvious than in the explosion of diverse cuisines available at eateries in this fair city.  With sizeable populations of people from many different countries you will now see grocery stores specialising in ingredients, snacks and beverages for specific cuisines.  One of the most prolific of these are Asian groceries; apart from residents who have come from our closest neighbours and hanker for ingredients to make the tasty dishes they ate back home, all manner of Melburnians are embracing the delicious tastes of Asia.
Reflecting recent trends in migration to Victoria, the 2011 census shows that those born overseas from North Africa and the Middle East, South-East Asia, North-East Asia and in particular Southern and Central Asia, have increased the most in both absolute numbers and as a proportion of the total. The top ten countries of birth for Victoria in 2011 were: England, India, China, New Zealand, Italy, Vietnam, Greece, Sri Lanka, Malaysia and Philippines.

It is therefore no wonder that Ingredients for Malaysian, Vietnamese, Chinese, and Filipino dishes are sought after. One of the longest established and best stockists of these foods, TANG The Asian Food Emporium, is situated for convenience in the CBD at 185 Russell Street. They also stock well-loved snacks, beverages and lollies sourced from South Asia as well as Chinese traditional medicines and Korean, Japanese and Thai groceries. Catering to busy students and office workers the store is open every day of the year from 10am to 11pm.

Elisa Tang serving a customer

Elisa Tang serving a customer

Elisa Tang runs the retail side of the business and is well known to her customers, whilst her husband Sio is in charge of sourcing and supplying stock.  Their website has a store map and products page, helping customers to find the right ingredients for that special dish.

Malaysian Cuisine, a Melting Pot of Flavours

Nasi Lemak

Nasi Lemak

Malaysian cuisine is a melting pot of flavours, influenced by the arrival of ships to the Malay peninsula from India, Indonesia, Europe, China, and the Middle East over the centuries.  It’s unique flavours are drawn from Thai, Chinese, Indonesian and Indian cuisines.  Known for its flavoursome spiciness it incorporates the fragrant combinations of cumin and coriander with lemongrass, kaffir lime leaves, cardamom, star anise and fenugreek.

Nasi Lemak is considered Malaysia’s national dish, a rice dish steamed with coconut milk and served with dried anchovies, dried shrimp, peanuts, hardboiled eggs, cucumber and sambal.  It can be eaten for any meal, whether it be breakfast, lunch or dinner!  It can be served with a curry or rendang (a slow cooked dry curry dish spiced with ginger, turmeric, kaffir lime and chilli).  Rice, noodles and Indian breads, such as roti, are staples.

The spicy noodle soup laksa is very popular in Australia. There are two types – curry laksa and asam laksa. The curry laksa is a coconut curry soup and asam laksa is a sour fish soup, both have noodles. The laksa comes from the Malaysian-Chinese cooking style of the Peranakans, the Chinese-Malays. Then there’s the satays (spicy peanut sauce dishes), mee goreng, stir fried noodles which takes any form, nasi goreng, stir-fried rice dish with chilis, garlic and kecap manis (sweet soy) served with chicken or shrimps and fried egg. Sambal is served with pretty much every dish, it’s a blend of chilies, shrimp paste belacan and Calamansi lime.

Head over to 185 Russell Street, Melbourne to TANG The Asian Food Emporium to get a taste of Malaysia; there you’ll find all the ingredients for cooking Malaysian cuisine.  They are conveniently open from 10am to 11pm every day.

Authentic Asian Culinary Ingredients Imported To Melbourne by Mr. & Mrs. Tang

Elisa Tang serving a customer

Elisa Tang serving a customer

Mr & Mrs.Tang, the owners of TANG The Asian Food Emporium both came originally from the former Portuguese Chinese colony, Macau. Sio Tang’s family was involved in supplying specialty timbers, rosewood and exotics to the shipwright industry in Macau. The 400 year old port had long been linked to the sea with local families involved in fishing or shipbuilding. There were nearly 10,000 fishermen and more than 30 enormous shipyards dotted across the tiny territory. The Tangs immigrated to Melbourne in 1987 just before the collapse of the ship building industry in Macau in the 1990’s.

The beautiful, handcrafted wooden ships couldn’t compete against the more efficiently manufactured metal boats from mainland China. The waters were also becoming polluted as China’s Zhujian Delta began to develop, adversely affecting Macau’s fishing industry.

Elisa’s family ran a very successful Asian Grocery store in Macau and she had family in Melbourne who ran a wholesale Asian food importing business. Her experience and connections provided them with the basis to set up their own Asian grocery business in Melbourne. The rest, they say, is history as their stores have grown in size providing the Tangs with the space to expand their range and variety of Asian groceries. With the purchase of their present premises and expansion into the next store building they are able to bring you the best selection of Asian groceries and produce in Melbourne. Call in to experience the taste sensations of authentic culinary ingredients from Asian countries such as China, Taiwan, Thailand, Japan, Malaysia, Indonesia and Vietnam at 185 Russell Street, Melbourne.

Chinese Festive Golden Chicken Using Authentic Ingredients

TANG The Asian Food Emporium

TANG The Asian Food Emporium

You might have noticed that as Autumn days are getting shorter with cooler nights you are starting to crave warming food. A dish you are sure to enjoy is Festive Golden Chicken, made with Chinese Five Spice.  This delicious Chinese meal will warm you up and delight your taste buds at the same time!  Quality, authentic ingredients for Chinese cooking can be found at TANG The Asian Food Emporium, a well-stocked store with a fantastic range of Asian groceries. Situated right in the heart of Melbourne at 185 Russell Street this grocer/supermarket is popular with lovers of Chinese food in Melbourne.  You will love the difference authentic ingredients make to this tasty Chinese dish.

8 chicken thighs and wings with skin left on
3 spring onions, shredded
Marinade Ingredients:
4 tbsp groundnut oil or peanut oil
6 garlic cloves, finely chopped
Fresh ginger, finely chopped
4 tbsp Shaohsing Rice Wine
4 tbsp Light Soy Sauce
4 tbsp honey
4 tbsp Chinese Five Spice

Place chicken in a dish, then whisk Marinade ingredients and coat the chicken with the Marinade. Cover chicken and chill in fridge for between 20 minutes up to a day.
Heat oven to 180C. Put marinated chicken in a roasting pan and roast in the oven for 40 minutes. Spoon remaining Marinade left in the dish over the chicken and roast for another 30 minutes, until sticky and golden.
When serving sprinkle with spring onions.

When you visit TANG The Asian Food Emporium you will be inspired to cook scrumptious Chinese, Malaysian, Thai, Vietnamese, Korean and Japanese cuisine when you see and smell the array of  authentic ingredients  directly from country of origin.

Authentic Vietnamese, Chinese, Thai, Korean, Malaysian and Japanese Cooking Ingredients

Ingredients for Japanese Sushi

Ingredients for Japanese Sushi

Vietnamese, Chinese, Thai and Japanese cuisine is very popular in Melbourne Town and there are many restaurants that serve these dishes. Korean and Malaysian cuisines are also delicious and you will also find a number of restaurants specialising in these dishes. With so many cooking shows on TV these days, such as Master Chef and My Kitchen Rules people are becoming more experimental with their own cooking at home. One of the secrets to cooking your own tasty dish with authentic flavours is using the right ingredients. To ensure you have the authentic taste you need to find an Asian supermarket that sells groceries sourced directly from the country where the cuisine is served.


You will be delighted  when you see, taste and smell the array of authentic Asian foods and popular brands from countries such as China, Japan, Vietnam, Taiwan, Thailand, Malaysia and Korea when you visit TANG The Asian Food Emporium. Situated at 185 Russell Street, Melbourne their selection of spices and sauces to flavour your dishes is vast, as is the choice of tinned and frozen foods. You will also find many ready to eat dishes such as tinned milk peanut soup, vegetarian chop suey, Ichibiki brand instant soups and easy to cook noodle dishes to suit students. Sweet and savoury snacks are plentiful and beverages range from tinned coffees to exotic teas, fruit juices, coconut water, iced teas, aloe vera drinks, root beer, grape fanta and cherry coke.


If you have enjoyed yum cha and want to repeat the taste experience at home you will find a fantastic selection of dumplings in the freezer section, anything from prawn, pork and chives to chicken and mushroom and vegetable. So call in from 10am to 11pm any day of the week (open 7 days) and ask the friendly staff for help with any of your Asian cooking needs.


Season Your Asian Dishes For the Authentic Flavours of Asia

TANG stocks a variety of sauces

TANG stocks a variety of sauces

There is nothing like seasoning, condiments, sauces and bases to ensure a delectable, tasty dish. If you’re cooking Asian you’ll find the best assortment of authentic Asian groceries at TANG The Asian Food Emporium in Melbourne.

Try condiments like Tomo Foods pickles –pickled sliced lettuce, fried gluten with peanuts, pickled whole cucumbers and seasoned bamboo shoots. For seasonings there’s the Ajishima rice seasoning range and for Japanese dishes Shimaya bonito flavoured seasoning, Higashimaru ramen soup cooking seasoning and many choices in miso from brands like Miyasaka  Jyozo Co., Hanamaruki, Marukome and Miko plus MikariMiso organic miso. More flavourings from Baiweizhai Chinese mapo tofu paste, Little Sheep hot pot paste, S & B and Housefoods curry mixes mild through to hot, Wei I ground fried tuna floss, Zui Fa Food Co. frying powder for chicken and Belacon shrimp paste. Fragrant spices from Elegant Flower include star anise, Sichuan chilli and Sichuan peppercorn add that extra zing.

Asian style cooking will not be complete without sauces. Whether it’s soy sauce, teriyaki sauce, yuzu juice, deep roasted sesame dressing, veg & fruit sauce, seasoning sauces, goma sauce, fish sauce, oyster sauce, dumpling sauce or mayonnaise you’ll find a great selection at TANG The Asian Food Emporium.  For example, their variety of soy sauces include dark soy sauce, soy sauce paste, thin soy sauce, sweet soy sauce or tamari naturally brewed soy sauce. You’ll also find vegetarian barbeque sauce, satay black bean paste, sesame oil, cooking rice wine and mirin. Open 7 days until 11pm each night at 185 Russell Street, Melbourne.