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Would love to hear Malaysian/Indonesian Recipes (Here's mine for Rendang)

  • k

I've been on a Malaysian cooking jag recently, and would love to hear people's family/go-to/incredible Malay/Indonesian/Peranakan recipies. Below is the version of Rendang I originally learned from a cooking show and then adapted from some lessons a hawker taught me while I was living in Singapore:

Beef Rendang:

6 long dried red chillies, torn (seeds removed if you like less spicy)
5-6 cloves garlic, chopped
1 cup red onions, chopped
1 inch knob galangal, peeled and sliced
1 inch knob ginger, peeled and sliced
1 lemongrass stalk, finely chopped
¼ cup vegetable oil
¾ cup turmeric leaf (rolled and finely chopped) (If unavailable, leave out)
6 kafir lime leaves (rolled and sliced)
1 piece cassia bark, broken
2.5 pounds top round or chuck, cut into 1 inch cubes
1 cup coconut milk
4 tbsp yellow curry powder (any tumeric-heavy powder will work)
½ cup water
1 cup dried/desiccated coconut, dry toasted over low heat & ground
Salt to taste
1- 2 tbsp thick dark/caramel soy sauce

Soak chillies in hot water for 30 minutes to an hour. Place softened chillies, garlic, onion, garlic, galangal, ginger and lemongrass into a food processor or blender and blend to a paste (add as much of the soaking water as necessary to create the right texture)

Heat a heavy pot over medium high heat. Add oil and then fry the paste adding the turmeric, lime leaves and cassia bark after about a minute of cooking the paste. Cook for around five minutes until the kitchen is aromatic and all the ingredients seem to have homogenized a bit.

Add beef, coconut milk and curry powder and stir to combine. Add water and the desiccated coconut. Stir and simmer for 1–1½ hours, or until meat is tender (if the mixture looks too dry, add additional water). When meat is at desired tenderness, season with soy sauce and salt to taste (though I sometimes like to add the dark soy earlier, with the water and coconut).

Serve with coconut rice or plain steamed rice.

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  1. RENDANG PADANG (Island of Sumatra, Indonesia)

    Minor difference: 1. More chili for more spicy rendang 2. Use turmeric only instead of curry power. 3. Add freshly ground coriander accordingly. 4. 2-3 cups coconut milk to produce thick oily sauce. 5. Use the cheapest and toughest meat cut available. 6. No soya sauce. 7. Add tamarind water at the end of cooking. 8. Cook slow heat until oils from the coconut milk shows and sauce thickens to almost brown.

    Back in Sumatra, we use buffalo meat and cook it down until it dries and the color of the dish changes to dark brown-black. This can be kept outside the refrigerator for days... but, better refrigerate. But you can also finish cooking when it starts to thicken and the color it light brown. We call this stage of cooked dish: Kalio (not rendang). To kalio, you can also add either fingerling potatoes or fresh kidney beans.

    Serve with jasmine rice, plain and with green veggies and cucumber-pinapple salad.

    5 Replies
    1. re: roro808

      "rendang" is descriptive of a *style* or *stage* of cooking a dish?

      1. re: alkapal

        Rendang, is merely stew/braised method of cooking in Southeast Asia: Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore. It consists of variety of spices and coconut milk; cook in very low heat (stove top) until it really thickens (kalio) or dry (rendang). The dry version is very popular to take out to picnics because it does not require refrigeration. The taste is very intense; one can only eat one or two pieces of the meat. You can make rendang with buffalo meat, mutton, or chicken. Once you try it, you'll get hooked!

        1. re: roro808

          thank you. i am anxious to try this recipe.

          by the way, sri lankan curries are on the drier side, too (compared with most indian curries, in my experience). i have posted a recipe here on chow for black meat curry that is quite good -- from the ceylon cookery book my mother-in-law gave me as a wedding gift.

          here is the recipe ---> http://www.chow.com/recipes/14154-sri...

          isn't pork badun an indonesian dish? here it is listed as sri lankan, but i thought a cookbook i originally made it from showed it from indonesia. in any event, it is a very tasty dish. http://curryandcomfort.blogspot.com/2...

          1. re: alkapal

            Pork badun is Sri Lankan recipe. Pork is not very popular in Indonesian cuisine, due to the majority of muslim population, although there are some popular ones. Some pork dishes are: babi kecap, babi panggang, babi rica-rica and some derived from Chinese recipes.

          2. re: roro808

            I've has Indonesian dry rendang several times. It's delicious.

      2. You have me recalling a wonderful dish of steamed veggies and hard boiled eggs served with a spicy peanut sauce. Was it called gado gado? I'd love to have an authentic recipe for this.

        1. Adding to the request list - urap? It was a vegetable dish with coconut that I had I'm Indonesia. I've found a few recipes online that I've cobbled together but none matches the original.

          Also, I have invented a dish with petai beans (from a jar unfortunately) with green beans and fried tempeh in a attempt to recreate a dish I had in either Malaysia or Indonesia once. If anyone can help with a proper recipe it would be appreciated.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Frizzle

            Re.: urap -- did you include the "secret"ingredient, kencur? That's what gives it the distinct taste. You can order this spice onlline - some good Asian grocery stores also carry it.

          2. Pineapple cucumber kerabu - A simple Peranakan relish -
            freshly cut pineapple mixed with sliced cucumber, thinly slice shallots, salt, sugar, lime juice, thinly sliced Fresno chili or Thai chili and belachan.

            3 Replies
            1. re: nasilemak

              Cool! I assume the belachan should be toasted first or is this one of the rare preparations when it's used "raw?"

              1. re: keith

                You are correct. Toast a small slice, then pound it. A little goes a long way in this condiment. As you incorporate the ingredients, taste and adjust to your liking.

                1. re: keith

                  Blacan usually toasted so as to derive the flavor But it can also be used raw if you cook it in some stews, such as daging asam manis (sweet sour beef) recipe.

              2. love this thread. anyone have a good recipe for chicken curry dish with potatoes? the kind you get in singapore that is slightly thickened and not at all sweet like the thai curries? i've had this also with lamb.

                6 Replies
                    1. re: nasilemak

                      Thanks much for sharing, nasilemak. The chicken curry in the picture looks great, but I laughed out loud when I saw the American/white bread also in the picture; how could anything that looks so good be served with something that looks so bad?

                      1. re: Joebob

                        A lot of coffee shops/hawker stalls in Malaysia serve chicken curry with white bread or toast. It's usually a thicker cut bread, but I assume this blogger didn't have the thick cut version.

                        1. re: boogiebaby

                          Most of the time it's for after school or afternoon snack. Usually they make it as rendang ayam sandwich! Sort of chicken pull sandwich. Yum, yum!

                          1. re: roro808

                            I've had chicken curry with French bread slices at the Kopitiams in Singapore, and also chicken curry with thick slices of toast at Old Town Coffee in KL. I've never seen an ayam rendang sandwich in a shop before, but I do use leftover rendang and chicken curry to make toasted sandwiches at home. :)

                            to keep on topic: my favorite beef recipe is from rasamalaysia's website. I use beef stew meat and let it sit overnight in the fridge before we eat it with rice, fried peanuts, sambal egg and stir fried spinach or kangkong. Yum!

                    1. my recipe for beef rendang (though I've also made it with non traditional pork butt):

                      make a flavoring paste by grinding a whole cracked nutmeg and 5 whole cloves in a spice grinder, then transfer to a food processor and grind about 5 oz shallots, 3 garlic cloves, 5 to 20 fresh long red chiles, 2 inches of chopped fresh tumeric, 2 inches chopped fresh ginger, 2 inches chopped fresh galangal, 5 smashed macadamia nuts (substitute for candlenuts). Mix 2 pounds boneless beef chuck or round, cut into 2 inch slices with the flavoring paste in a large skillet. add 2.5 cups coconut milk, 3 thick stalks fresh lemongrass tied into a knot, 4 in cinnamon stick, 7 whole fresh kaffir lime leaves, 5 whole daun salam leaves if available, and 1 tsp salt.

                      bring to gentle boil and then reduce heat to medium low and simmer uncovered for a long time, stirring to keep coconut milk from burning. It reduces over time and becomes dark dark brown, and you keep sitrring and similar until all the liquid reduces and the meat fries in the fat until the color of dark cofee beans. Can take 2 - 3 hours or more. serve at slightly warm room temp.

                      1. This offering is from wearybashful (via me):
                        wearybashful Feb 10, 2008 09:46 AM

                        Oh my gosh, you must try this. Gary Rosen, a chef in Bali gave me this recipe. It calls for a cup of sambal olek, but even when I reduce it to half a cup it's HOT. I added a bit of brown sugar to counteract the heat. I also didn't follow all the steps: I heated ground spices, made a paste in the blender, and then stewed the beef in the paste. I couldn't figure out the need to marinate when I was braising the beef in the paste 2 or more hours. He didn't say what to do with the lemongrass. I blended in the tender parts, and let the tough parts cook with the stew along with curry leaves, pulling them out later.

                        Beef Rendang Indonesian beef stew cooked in coconut milk
                        1.5 kg beef, cut into large cubes
                        12 shallots, chopped (or 2 onions)
                        5 cloves of garlic, chopped
                        4 pieces of galangal sliced
                        1 inch of fresh ginger, grated
                        (half) cup of Sambal Ulek (Indonesian chili sauce. Can be found in most Asian grocers)
                        4 stems of lemongrass
                        1 tsp turmeric
                        1 tsp coriander
                        1 tsp cumin seeds
                        5 curry leaves (optional)
                        3 cups of coconut milk
                        1 tsp of tamarind, in 4 tablespoons of warm water
                        2 Tbsp of soy Sauce
                        salt to taste
                        Process the shallots, garlic, galangal, ginger, sambal ulek and turmeric to a
                        smooth paste. Dry fry the coriander and cumin until they give off a good
                        aroma, then grind them finely and add to the paste. Spoon it all over the
                        cubed meat in a bowl and mix it well. Add the curry leaves and marinate for
                        30 minutes.
                        Pour the coconut milk and tamarind liquid into a wok and add the spiced
                        meat and soy sauce and stir until the liquid boils, then reduce the heat and
                        simmer gently, uncovered, for 11/2 hours, until the meat is tender and the
                        liquid is very much reduced.
                        Serve with steamed rice and a salad of sliced onions, tomato, lime and coriander

                        1. Salmon di Jendela - Salmon with Indonesian pesto in rice paper


                          Looks stunning, so good for you, and the flavours are absolutely amazing!

                          Note: the first time i made it, no problems - but the second time I made it, the rice paper split. I might have steamed them for too long. Rice paper is so delicate, I find it tricky to work with.

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: ursy_ten


                            Terima kasih banyak untuk resepi-nya... It all sounds sooo very wonderful... A lots of information for people who don't know much about Indonesia food....

                            1. re: roro808

                              You're very welcome roro808.

                              Indonesian food is wonderful - well worth exploring!