All the comfort of food in a bowl in a selection of recipes from Bowlful by Norman Musa.

It is always a joy to cook Southeast Asian dishes that are packed with diverse ingredients, rich in herbs and spices and have such exquisite flavours. For someone like me who grew up in that part of the world and is now living abroad cooking these dishes for friends and family, it brings back memories of my childhood, and of the exciting travels I embarked on to discover authentic regional dishes. The region that comprises Malaysia – where I grew up – Thailand, Indonesia, Singapore, Myanmar, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia and the Philippines, is rich with wonderful dishes and, having been there to see the culture and culinary diversity for myself, it has always been my dream to share these experiences in the recipes in this book.

During my travels, I discovered a great number of similarities in the way that people across Southeast Asia enjoy serving their food in bowls. Ceramic bowls are a must for every household – from small ones for noodles and rice, to medium and large bowls in which to serve dishes for everyone to share.

The recipes I have created are based on the daily home-cooked food of the region, plenty of street-food dishes and some I have adapted using local Western produce, plant-based products and beans.