Nine Emperor Gods Festival

In Arts & Culture, Chinese, Dessert, Hawker, Malaysian, Nyonya on September 29, 2011 at 2:48 pm

The Nine Emperor Gods Festival (Chinese: 九皇爺; pinyin: Jiǔhuángyé; Pe̍h-ōe-jī: Káu-ông-iâ; Cantonese: Kow Wong Yeh) is a nine-day Taoist celebration beginning on the eve of 9th lunar month of the Chinese calendar, which is observed primarily in Southeast Asian countries like Myanmar, Singapore, Malaysia, and Thailand, and also the Riau Islands.Wikipedia

Here in Penang, the entire island is dotted with makeshift vegetarian stalls with a yellow awning or cloth signifying they serve “pure vegetarian” food adhering to the Taoist rules – no garlic, onion, milk and for some, certain green vegetables. “Clean” utensils are also used during this time. A Herbivore in Penang visited one of the longest makeshift vegetarian stalls here in the island located on Madras Lane.

Food pictures:

1. Curry Chicken Pizza

2. Hawaiian Chicken Pizza

3. Plate lunch with assorted dishes

4. Acar Fish (Nyonya Dish)

5. Perut Ikan (Nyonya Dish)

6. Rojak

7. Coconut Tarts and assorted desserts


Address: Corner of Madras Lane and Burma Road

Hours: Early am till late pm.

  1. Nobody alerted me that Penang also celebrate this Nine Emperor Festival with Vegetarian Food Treats. I thought it is celebrated in a big way in Phuket.

    Perhaps I will mark in my calendar to visit Penang around this period.

    • There’s always next year. It’s always celebrated in quite a big way and so much to eat that we won’t be able to cover all the stalls. We just picked one of the largest ones. Some stalls only operate once a year. The perut ikan was one of the nicest treats!
      PS: Madras Lane is within walking distance to the Tune Hotel you mentioned.

  2. Just FYI… the vegetarian restaurant in Paya Terubong named Hua Yan already no longer in operation. Reason for closing down is due to no business requirement. Too bad!! They are one of the best vegetarian restaurant that I ever know.
    In fact, if they open their restaurant in FTZ area, am sure they will have biz to sustain the biz.

    • OH NO!!!!:(
      We love this place that you recommended…esp the marmite mushroom! So sad!!:((((
      Yea, that area has a higher population. Plus their location is quite “hidden”.
      Thanks for letting us know.

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