I should have made my commitment to trying a hundred new recipes this year rather than read a a hundred new books. Reading seems to have fallen by the wayside and cooking experimentations have increased exponentially.
Anyways, I grew up with a parent who was raised in Indonesia so a lot of what I ate growing up was Indonesian. I used to think that cooking Indonesian was a big mystery with my dad standing over some cauldron of spices and my grandmother grinding spices into fine pastes with her mortar and pestle.
It is a bit of a mystery until you familiarize yourself with a few key ingredients like trassi, lemon grass, coriander and turmeric.
I am something of a slapdash cook, prone to substitutions and other flourishes. There are some things I won’t mess with though and that is any of the above ingredients. If the recipe calls for these, use them. The one you have to pay particular attention to is trassi which is very strong and smells like hell but it’s a necessary ingredient.
Now, without further ado, one of my childhood favourites, reprised here for your culinary enjoyment. I served this with Indonesian chili eggs and basmati steamed rice. Continue reading