Ok, so I've been awful about my food posts, as I'm awful about posting in general (sorry, grad school does that), but as a reward for sticking it out with me, I'm going to post THE BEST Indonesian recipe EVER. Well, ok, that's a bit of a lie, so here are my three favorite recipes (i.e. THE BEST RECIPES EVER).
3. Nasi Goreng (Indonesian Fried Rice) (this makes 2 servings)
- 3 handfuls of rice (really, two handfuls and a little extra)
- canola or vegetable oil
- 10 grape tomatoes
- 2 eggs
- a little less than half a yellow onion (roughly 1/2 cup, chopped?)
- crushed red pepper flakes (or chili peppers if you have them)
- any meat product you may want to include (chicken works, shrimp works, beef is ok)
- soy sauce
- Set the rice cooking (I shouldn't have to explain this).
- Beat the eggs in a bowl. Add salt. In a medium-sized skillet/pan (a wok is even better), pour some oil and fry the eggs into a flat sort of omelet (or egg-pancake). Remove the eggs and place on a cutting board.
- Now wait until the rice is done. You can do your chopping now: chop onion and any meat you want. Roll up the egg pancake thing and slice it, creating long strips of egg about 1/4 to 1/2 inch wide.
- Once the rice is done, remove it form the heat (even the hot burner - you don't want your rice sticking to the pot).
- In the pan, pour some more oil and add garlic (however much you want - I usually go with what looks to be about 1 tablespoon of the dried minced stuff). Also add some salt and about 4-5 shakes of crushed red pepper flakes. For chilies, add as many as you think sufficient (sorry, I don't really work with chilies).
- Saute all that until it starts to sizzle (you should be working on a medium heat). Add the onion and stir until it smells really good. Add any other vegetables or meat products you feel like and continue to saute/stir fry everything. Then add the egg and a decent amount of soy sauce and fry for a few more seconds.
- Add the rice and stir everything together, mixing it well. The rice is supposed to turn a uniform brown, and if it hasn't, add more soy sauce. Add the tomatoes and fry for a few more seconds.
- If you want to add some Indonesian flair, add some sambal to the mix. Sambal is a chili sauce that is ubiquitous in Indonesia, and adds spice and color to everything.
2. Gado-Gado (meaning "mixed together")
I'm sure most of you didn't think I had a meal I enjoyed more than nasi goreng, but I actually do. Here it is: Gado Gado
- rice (same as above, about 3 medium handfuls feeds 2 people)
- bean sprouts
- 2 eggs
- peanut sauce (Indonesian style, not Thai style)
- vegetable or canola oil
- soy sauce
- Cook the rice and hard-boil the two eggs.
- Chop up cabbage into thin strips, the eggs into slices, and the tofu and tempeh into medium cubes (about 1/2 inch thick).
- Put some oil and soy sauce in a pan, then saute the tofu and tempeh until golden brown.
- Serve everything by putting rice in a small bowl and then turning it upside-down on a plate - it should retain the bowl shape and looks cool (it's also really fun). Put egg, bean sprouts, cabbage, and the tempeh/tofu mixture on various sides of the rice, then pour peanut sauce over it.
- That's it. Really.
1. Tempeh Penyet
And now my favorite Indonesian meal, which is a hard status to achieve: Tempeh Penyet. It's also the simplest of the meals.
- 3 tablespoons sambal (you can find it in most grocery stores)
- tempeh (cut into triangles, because that's the way the place I loved did it)
- Set rice cooking.
- Take some plastic wrap, put some sambal on it, place the tempeh on the sambal, put more sambal on the tempeh, and fold more plastic wrap over that. Press or pound the tempeh to work the sambal into it.
- Once done, take the tempeh out of the plastic wrap, put oil in a pan, and fry the tempeh until golden-brown and crispy.
- Serve with the rice!