Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Good food for tropical weather…

A good tropical storm was the setting for last night’s Indonesian cuisine class. The steamy weather was perfect for our spicy and tasty meal.

First up was the warung style meal of NASI CAMPUR; a mound of rice surrounded by a little of all the dishes SAMBAL TERONG ( Baked Eggplant with spicy sauce) , TEMPEH GORENG (marinated and fried tempeh), GADO GADO ( vegetables with satay sauce), PUMPKIN, CORN & SPINACH SAYUR (a light soup with loads of fresh herbs) and KANGKUNG CAH TAOCO (stir fried ong choy with black soy beans).

We also had a very refreshing RUJAK salad. And to finish my personal favourite dessert BUBUR KETAN HITAM (black rice pudding with coconut and mango).

If nothing else you should give the black rice pudding recipe a go. It’s not difficult to make and low in sugar. Glutinous black rice is available in many small Asian grocers and even in some supermarkets now.

This photo is from http://imgoingtocatchmalariaanddie.blogspot.com/2011_07_01_archive.html just cause I couldn’t stop laughing about the blog name!


Steamed rice surrounded by a little bit of what’s on hand!

Serves: 4

Preparation: 40 minutes

Cooking Time: 40 minutes


knife, chopping board, saucepan, wok, measuring cup, metal spoon, small bowl for rubbish, mortar and pestle, food processor


4 cups Steamed rice

Corn and pumpkin sayur

Spinach & Pumpkin Sayur (Spinach “soup”)

3 cups Vegetable stock

5 cm Galangal, sliced and bruised

1 cup Corn kernels

1 bunch English Spinach, washed and trimmed leaves

200 grams Pumpkin, diced and blanched

1 small red chilli, chopped

2 garlic cloves, chopped

4 green shallots

Salt and pepper

Palm sugar to taste, optional


1. Make spice paste first by blending the chili, garlic and shallots, add ½ cup stock and blend again.

2. Bring the rest of the stock to the boil, add galangal, pumpkin and spice mix, simmer for a few minutes.

3. Add the corn and then the spinach leaves, cook briefly, taste and adjust seasoning before serving.

tempeh goreng

Tempeh Goreng (Fried Fermented Soybeans)

3 Garlic cloves

½ teaspoon Coriander, ground

1 tablespoon Water

250 grams Tempeh, cut into 1cm slices, scored with a fork

Oil for deep frying

Salt to taste

1. Pound coriander, salt and garlic together, mix with the water.

2. Rub this marinade over the tempeh slices and leave them to dry min. 20 mins.

3. Deep fry slices till brown, drain and reserve.

sambal terong

Sambal Terong (Eggplant with mild chili sauce)

2 Japanese eggplant (long thin ones) cut lengthways and into thirds

1 tablespoon Oil

¼ cup Sambal Balado or Sambal Oelek

¼ cup Kecap Manis


1. Place eggplants on a baking tray and brush lightly with oil.

2. Bake at 180C till slightly softened

3. Top with sambal paste and return to oven till warmed through.

4. Serve with a drizzle of kecap manis.

gado gado

Gado Gado: Vegetables and hardboiled egg with Satay sauce

Satay Sauce

2 tablespoons Vegetable oil

1 Eschallot, finely diced

2 Garlic cloves, crushed

1 tablespoons Grated ginger

¼ teaspoon Sambal Oelek

1 cup Crunchy peanut butter
1 tablespoon Kecap Manis

1 Lime, juiced

¼ cup Coconut milk

¼ cup Water


1. Gently fry onion, garlic, ginger and chilli in oil.

2. Add in the rest of the ingredients and heat till thick and bubbling.

3. Adjust flavourings to suit ie. Sugar, chilli, lime juice, salt.


1 cup Green beans, halved and blanched

1 cup Chinese cabbage, thinly sliced

4 Small potatoes, cooked skin on and sliced

1 cup Bean sprouts, rinsed

4 Eggs, hard boiled, peeled and quartered


Cucumber, sliced

Crackers, prawn or taro

Fried eschallots

Image from http://immiyannas.blogspot.com/2008/11/kangkung-cah-tauco.html cause there was none left to photograph…


Stir fried water spinach with preserved soy beans

Serves: 4 as part of a meal

Preparation: 10 minutes

Cooking Time: 10 minutes


knife, chopping board, saucepan, wok, measuring cup, metal spoon, small bowl for rubbish,



1 bunch water spinach ( also known as kangkung or onchoy)

2 cloves garlic

2 small red chillies

1 tablespoon preserved salty soy beans

3 tablespoons vegetable Oil for frying


1. Wash kang kung very well and cut into 15 cm lengths

2. Heat oil and fry garlic gently for 1-2 minutes till fragrant

3. Add chili and stir fry for another minute

3. Add soy beans and stir fry briefly

4. Add kangkung and toss till they are cooked evenly

To serve Nasi Campur:

Arrange a cup of rice in centre of each plate and surround with a little of the spinach soup, fried tempeh, gado gado, chilli eggplant and kangkung. Garnish with cucumber slices, crackers and a sprinkle of fried onion.



Crispy fruit salad served with a tangy sweet and sour dressing.

Serves: 6

Preparation: 20 minutes

Resting Time: 30 minutes


knife, chopping board, mortar and pestle, measuring cup, small bowl for rubbish, bowl


2 Chillies, chopped

¼ teaspoon Salt

3 tablespoon Palm sugar, grated

2 tablespoon Tamarind water

3 cups Crunchy fruit

(Eg. watermelon, starfruit, pineapple, nashi pear, papaya, mango, lychees etc..)


1. Grind chillies and salt to a fine paste in a mortar and pestle

2. Add sugar and water and mix till sugar is dissolved

3. Peel and slice fruit into evenly sized pieces

3. Toss the dressing though the fruit and stand before serving

Bubur with mango


A lovely South East Asian dessert.

Serves: 6

Preparation: Soak rice overnight

Cooking Time: 20/30 minutes, depends on the rice.


knife, chopping board, wok, measuring cup, 2 large spoons or spatulas for tossing noodles, small bowl for rubbish, vegetable peeler.


300gms black glutinous rice, washed and soaked overnight

7 cups water

150 grams Dark palm sugar, broken up

2 Drops pandan essence (or pandan leaf if available)

Pinch of salt

2 cups Thick coconut milk

Toasted shredded coconut for garnish

Optional: Serve with sliced mango cheeks or bananas and palm sugar syrup


1. Drain rice and bring to the boil in a pot with 6 cups of water.

2. Simmer gently, stirring occasionally until the rice is soft.

3. Add the sugar, pandan essence and extra cup water, stir until sugar dissolves.

4. Take off the stove and chill in a bowl or individual ramekins. (May also be eaten warm or hot)

1. In another pot simmer the coconut milk and pinch of salt till thickened. Cool.

6. Serve a few of spoonfuls of rice pudding topped with the coconut milk, palm sugar syrup and garnish with the toasted coconut.

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