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My Favorite Finger Licking Foods

Updated on October 14, 2019
SueM11 profile image

Sue is a mother and grandmother living in sunny Malaysia. Like many Malaysians, she is passionate about food.

Platter of fish slices and french fries
Platter of fish slices and french fries | Source

Finger Food

Finger food tastes great when eaten with your fingers. These bite sized morsels range from sushi, fried chicken, popiah,etc.

It is not just those bite sized snacks party finger food but also foods like roti canai and crabs. Well, let me share with your some of my favorite finger licking foods. Maybe you enjoy them the same way as me.


Fried Chicken

Colonel Sanders and Kentucky Fried Chicken were really on to something when they coined the phrase "finger licking good".

I often start out eating fried chicken with my fork and knife but somewhere along the way the fork and knife was discarded and I ended up tucking in with my fingers.There is something about holding a chicken drumstick in your hand and biting the meat off.



Definitely a finger food

Ask anyone who enjoys pizza and you will find that most consider this a finger food(straight from the box if it is a delivery pizza.) Whether it is home made pizza or from your favorite pizza place it is convenient and saves a lot of washing up as well.

Maybe that is why it is such a popular order for many folks working late at the office! Each pizza slice is such a convenient size too.

Order from your favorite pizza restaurant!

Yummy, Yummy Crabs

Best Singapore Food Guide
Best Singapore Food Guide

Crabs may not be in the party finger food category but crab cooked in whatever style has definitely to be eaten with fingers. Their hard shell alone makes it impractical to eat with cutlery though my son tried once to prove to us that it was possible. He had such a hard time trying to manouvre his fork to get the crab meat out. It was enough to make me happily eat with my fingers, even though my hands were a mess by the time the meal was over.

Anyway that is why they provide the finger bowls.

In many Chinese restaurants which serve crabs and other seafood, they have small hand towels together with finger bowls for you to clean your hands after eating. So clearly it is quite acceptable to eat with your fingers.

Crab Cracker And Fork - Helps you crack open that hardy shell first!

The difficulty with eating crabs and lobsters is cracking open the hard shell so you can dig in with your fingers.

i love the crab forks as they are really great for getting the crab meat out of those tight spaces!

Roti Canai


Roti Canai

Another favorite is the Roti Canai. It is a flat bread, fluffy on the inside but crispy and flaky on the outside. It is cooked on a flat iron skillet with a lot of oil.

A popular Malaysian breakfast, I first tear the roti canai into smaller pieces and then dip it into a lentil curry. There are many variations of this favorite breakfast, the most popular being adding beaten egg as the roti is being cooked.

Spring Rolls

I love spring rolls dipped in chili sauce. I am sure that you are meant to hold the spring roll in your hand and take bites off it. You won't find the filling dropping off on to the plate either! Works well with both the fresh and fried versions.

Mini spring rolls
Mini spring rolls

Banana Leaf Rice

Banana leaf rice as the name suggests is Indian rice served on a piece of banana leaf instead of a plate.

The rice is served with an assortment of curry sauces, dhals and vegetables. The best way to eat this Indian feast is with your hands or rather your fingers. This is a skill which improves with frequent use.

Banana leaf rice
Banana leaf rice | Source

Some Finger Eating Tips

Is there any etiquette when it comes to eating with your fingers? After all eating with your hands is going back to basics when cutlery had yet to make an appearance.

Well, in some cultures eating with your fingers require some simple "rules". Then there is the matter of dirty fingers especially when you are going to an important appointment or date.

Always wash your hands before eating - This is especially important when eating with your fingers!

After your delicious meal, of course you want a good soap to wash off the smell from your fingers!

Finger Bowls

Finger bowls are great for guests to clean their fingers after a sumptious finger licking meal.

The Chinese fill the finger bowls with weak tea and a few lime slices. The combination is believed to 'cut the grease' on your dirty fingers.

You can also fill the finger bowls with some luke warm water and a few lemon slices as an alternative.

Art Of Eating With Hands

Just the fingers only!

It is fascinating the way different cultures use different eating utensils. In the West, fork and knives are the norm while the Chinese, Koreans and Japanese have their chopsticks.The Indians and also the Malays don't use any cutlery at all but eat with their bare hands. There is an art to how to use your hands to eat your meal efficiently though it would seem a very easy thing to do.

Dining Etiquette

The Malays eat with their right hands while the left is used for personal ablutions. At the table the left hand may be used to pass dishes, using the serving spoons and for drinking. Before eating they will clean their fingers in the finger bowl. They use the tips of their fingers with curries rarely staining above the first knuckle while rice should not cling to the fingers. Rice is taken in the right hand and compressed to a small ball and then pushed into the mouth with the thumb.

Sometimes I would use my hands when I am having an Indian meal served on a banana leaf. It is so easy to eat the meat and fish especially when there are bones! The down side of it is that it may need several washings before I can get rid of the curry smell from my fingers.

A word of warning - Don't eat with your hands if you are going to have an important appointment or date (Unless your date has also been eating with their fingers, lol )

© 2010 Sue Mah


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