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Roti Canai Ular and other unique roti canai for the adventurous foodies!


Remember when last month Malaysians went crazy for Roti Canai Ular? For the non-Malaysian readers here, this basically refers to the roti canai that went viral due its highly unusual snake shape.

Why is that highly unusual? First, to the uninitiated, let’s get to know what exactly is this roti canai that Malaysians love so much.

It’s basically a flatbread dish – often served in a circular shape – that bears similarity to India’s paratha. Believed to have been introduced by Indian Muslims that opened up eateries in Malaysia known as ‘mamaks’, it is usually served plain with dhal and chicken or fish curry, or it could be ‘fancied up’ with ingredients of various nature mixed in, such as eggs, kaya (coconut jam), and the ever-famous Planta margarine.

Since it’s a popular food in Malaysia, vendors have been coming up with creative ways to make their roti canai stand out among the many competitors. 

If you’re craving for some unique and attention-grabbing roti canai, make sure to check out the ones listed below!

Roti Canai Ular

Not for the faint of heart (Photo source: Nik Abdullah Nik Omar | Harian Metro)

Slithering into the nation’s foodies’ hearts (and tummy) this year is this extraordinarily shaped roti canai. While there have been many variations of the food before, it more often than not retains its standard flat circular shape. 

Not this one. This rebellious shape is the brainchild of 46-year-old Che Harun Ali, who told Harian Metro he started selling it in the unique shape since last year but it only went viral this year after he moved his stall from Tumpat, Terengganu, to Kampung Kubur Kuda, Kota Bharu, Kelantan. 

Stating that he came up with the snake shape organically while making a roti canai for himself, he now sells it to customers for a price ranging between RM1.50 to RM3. The ‘snakes’ come with five fillings to choose from: Planta and condensed milk, Milo, cheese, kaya and Nestum. 

Roti Mask & Roti KLCC

Roti mask and roti KLCC (Photo source: Restoran Aliff’s Facebook)

India isn’t the only one flaunting a mask-shaped roti canai, Malaysia’s very own Restoran Aliff has it too! One way to stay relevant with foodies is to produce a menu that’s related to current issues. What’s more current that mandatory mask-wearing in public? (Except while stuffing your face with food, of course.) 

Restoran Aliff, located in Kuala Lumpur, also has its own ‘cute’ version of roti ular but what’s been grabbing more attention is its towering chocolate-drizzled KLCC inspired roti tisu (a stretched-thin sweeter version of roti canai). Mirroring real life, the confectionery dubbed Roti KLCC – what else? – isn’t the tallest roti in the house. That honour goes to roti Burj Khalifa

Since this restaurant allows customisation, it can only be expected that more and more bizarre items will be added to the menu as long as the staff keep serving whatever their customers dreamt up.

Roti Canai Pelangi

Colourful, multi-flavoured roti canai is definitely not common (Photo source: Roti Canai Pelangi’s Facebook)

In the Malay language, pelangi means rainbow. So this roti canai’s name is pretty self-explanatory, considering the many shades of colours it comes in. 

Tinted with food colouring, the unique roti canai attracts customers in with its visual aesthetics, priced at only RM1 each. But that’s not all, it doesn’t taste like regular roti canai either. Each colour corresponds to a different flavour, i.e. yellow for durian, green for apple, red for strawberry and blue for yam. 

The photo shown above is from Dimyati Tualo’s stall in Batu 3 Kampung Sungai Yu, Kuala Selangor, who went viral with his colourful concoction in 2018. However, he was not the first to play around with the colourful twist. Back in 2015, Abdullah Ismail, from Pak Lah Roti Canai stall in Kampung Permatang Keriang, also sold multi-coloured ones that come in atypical roti canai flavours like pandan, vanilla, chocolate, strawberry and banana.

Roti Maggi

Can’t pick either? Choose both! (Photo source: Open Rice)

If you’re feeling particularly peckish and can’t decide between ordering roti canai or maggi goreng (fried Maggi noodle), the only solution will be to order both – combined in one order. Behold the Roti Maggi, which, as the name goes, is a combination of the two mamak favourites!

Malaysians have always been a fan of stuffing their roti canai with various fillings. This one takes it up a notch by having the maggi goreng served wrapped inside a roti canai. You can have it as it is or add on yet another mamak favourite: fried chicken.

Roshida Mamak Stall in Seri Kembangan is one of the places that sell this but just try asking for it at any mamak you’re at, most likely they won’t be surprised with the order since this has been around for a couple of years now.

Roti Canai Burrito

Eggs and fried chicken complete this wrap-style roti canai (Photo source: fight4foods’ Instagram | tikahsalleh’s Instagram)

Priced at RM4 each, Roti Canai Burrito is an East-meets-West type of food that Malaysians are sure to enjoy, because it’s a combination of everyone’s favourite roti canai with fried egg and fried chicken. The latter two ingredients are wrapped burrito-style for customers to enjoy. 

The pictures shown here are taken by customers at Gerai 8272 Barakah Corner, Kampung Lapan, Malacca. The dish also goes by the name Roti Canai Merecik Special and its counterpart, Roti Canai Cheese Merecik, is pretty similar except it comes with cheese topping and filling.

The texture of the wrap is described as flaky and pastry-like, though it’s probably not so crispy anymore once drenched in the flavourful curry that accompanies it.

Now if someone finds a way to combine all the roti canai mentioned on this list, that’s sure to be the “viralest” of all things viral this year. (Except the coronavirus, that’s one viral thing 2020 really needs to get rid of).

(Photo source: Daily Makan’s Facebook | Restoran Aliff’s Facebook | Roti Canai Pelangi’s Facebook | Open Rice | ard.donivia’s Instagram)

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