Tag Archives: Kecap Manis

Nasi Goreng (Indonesian Fried Rice)

Nasi GorengNasi goreng literally translates to “fried rice.” It’s another common dish in Indonesia, and believe it or not, they like it so much, they eat it for breakfast there! This dish is easy to make, but plan ahead, as you must use leftover rice (or cooked rice that’s been refrigerated for 4 hours).

1 medium boneless, skinless chicken breast
1/4 tsp turmeric
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup water
4 cups (give or take) steamed jasmine rice — use cold leftover rice, or rice that’s been in the fridge for a few hours
2 Tbsp canola oil
3 eggs, beaten in a small bowl
1 medium onion, diced
1 large garlic clove, minced
1 leek (white part only), finely chopped
4 tsp sambal ulek
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp Laos powder (or 1 1/2 tsp peeled, minced, fresh galangal)
1/2 lb shrimp (prawns), shelled and deveined
3 Tbsp kecap manis

Trim the chicken breast, and poach in turmeric water. To do this, combine the water, salt and turmeric in a small pan. Bring to a boil. Add the chicken breast (water should come up to half way on the chicken; must not be fully submerged). Cover and reduce heat to low. Simmer gently for 8 minutes. Flip breast over, then simmer, covered, for an additional 8 minutes. Remove from heat and dice (rather finely). Set aside.

Heat a small frying pan that has been coated with cooking spray on low heat. Cover and cook until Fried Eggthe eggs are set (like an omelette, but don’t flip or turn). Remove from pan and cut into small cubes.

Heat oil in a large wok or frying pan over medium-high heat. Add the onions, garlic, leek and sambal ulek. Stir fry until the onions are soft, about 2 minutes. Add the coriander, cumin and Laos powder, and stir for another minute. Season with a bit of salt. Add the chicken and shrimp, and fry until the shrimp are no longer pink, about 2 minutes. Add the rice, egg cubes and kecap manis. Turn the heat up to high, and stir fry for another 5 minutes, until all ingredients are well mixed. Serve hot.

Serves 4.


Opor Ayam (Indonesian Chicken Curry)

Opor AyamI love this recipe. It has all the Indonesian flavors I love (especially trassi and kecap manis — please see the glossary). Opor Ayam is a chicken stew that is common in Indonesia. It is rich and aromatic, and some would consider it a curry. It’s simple, and it’s a dish that I do on weeknights.


1.5 – 2 lbs boneless chicken breasts, cut into 2-inch pieces
2 tbsp canola oil
1 large onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp terasi
3 oz chicken stock
1 14oz can reduced fat coconut milk
1 tbsp gula jawa (or brown sugar — see glossary)
2 tbsp kecap manis
3 tsp sambal ulek
2 kaffir lime leaves, very thinly shredded

Spice Mixture

4 kemiri nuts
1 tsp coriander
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp Laos powder (see glossary)
1/2 tsp turmeric
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp white pepper


Combine coconut milk, chicken stock, lime leaves, gula jawa, kecap manis and set aside.

Combine spices for spice mixture and set aside.

Combine the onions, garlic, sambal ulek and chicken and set aside.

Heat oil on medium-high in a heavy sauce pan or wok. Add the chicken mixture, and saute for 5 minutes, until chicken is no longer pink.Cooking Opor Ayam

Add the spice mixture, cook for 2 minutes, then add the terasi and cook for another minute.

Add the broth mixture, bring to a boil, cover and simmer for 30 minutes. Remove the lid and simmer for another 45 minutes, until the liquid is reduced to about half (or a little more, as Indonesian sauces are fairly dry). Serve with steamed jasmine rice.

Serves 4.

Indonesian Tofu and Shrimp Curry

Indonesian_shrimp_and_tofu_curry_2013-04-16Love this dish. It’s a little more time-consuming, but it’s worth it!

1 block (16 ounces) firm tofu
2 Tbsp canola oil
2 cloves garlic, finely grated
1 small onion, diced
4 tsp sambal ulek or 3 red chili peppers, cored, seeded, and finely chopped
2 tsp turmeric
½ tsp Laos powder
½ tsp terasi
5 kemiri nuts (candlenuts) grated
2 cups light coconut milk
1/2 red bell pepper, sliced in julienne strips
2 Tbsp tamarind water
2 1/4 tsp salt
2 tsp gula jawa
5 salam leaves
2 stalks lemongrass, halved and lightly smashed with the flat part of a knife (optional)
1 Tbsp kecap manis
1 pb large shrimp, peeled, deveined
2 eggs, hard-cooked

On a cutting board, halve the tofu horizontally; cut each half into 12 pieces to make 24 total.

In a large skillet or wok over medium heat, heat 1 tbsp of the oil. Fry the tofu pieces for about 10 minutes, gently tossing them to nicely brown them on all sides. With a slotted spoon, transfer the tofu to a bowl. Set aside.

In a small bowl combine the garlic, onion, chili paste or chilies, turmeric, and nuts. Work the mixture with a spoon to form a paste.

Heat the remaining 1 Tbsp oil over medium heat. Add the spice paste. Cook, stirring, for 3 minutes or until it releases its aroma. Add the coconut milk, red bell pepper, tamarind water, salt, sugar, bay leaves, and lemongrass, if using. Simmer, stirring, for 5 minutes.

Add the shrimp and cook for 1 minute more.

Return the tofu to the pan with the whole eggs. Cook, stirring gently, for 2 minutes or until the shrimp is cooked through.

Remove the eggs from the sauce. Halve them and set them on top of the dish. Serve with steamed jasmine rice.

Serves 4.