Miss Universe Malaysia Is Causing a Stir With Nasi Lemak Rice Dish Dress

Don’t hate on this tasty look!

A Miss Universe contestant’s national-food-inspired dress is causing a divided reaction on the internet. 

It was recently revealed that Malaysia’s Miss Universe 2017 contestant, Samantha Katie James, will be wearing a dress depicting the country’s national dish, nasi lemak.

The BBC described the dish as “basically coconut milk-infused rice accompanied by various ingredients — the standard ones are a fried egg, cucumber slices, tiny fried anchovies, peanuts, and a hefty dollop of sambal, or spice paste.” 

The elaborate dress took over 400 hours to make and has some Miss Universe Pageant viewers shaken to the core.


“Nasi Lemak is huge. Okay. Samantha You betta work it GURL. Deliver the NASI LEMAK REALNESS,” commented Zuan Arifin Ham on Facebook.

“She’s freaking gorgeous wearing nasi lemak omg,” Twitter user @sakinahramziyah reacted.

James’ dress was designed by local designer Brian Khoo and features large fabric banana leaves to symbolize the banana leaves the dish is wrapped in, a crystal encrusted white body-con dress to symbolize the coconut rice, a fabric egg, fabric cucumbers, and fabric anchovies as well as red crystals for the spicy sambal.

However some Malaysians are saying that the designer got the dress all wrong and have their own ideas about how their national food should be portrayed in dress form.


Regardless of what the internet thinks of Miss Malaysia’s dress and its portrayal of the fragrant and spicy dish, also known as “fatty rice,” Malaysia remains one of the 15 best countries for spicy food lovers.