Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Nasi Uduk Komplit (Coconut Rice with all the Fixins)

I have two very special moms...but busy moms! So we celebrated Mother's Day one week late this year. I decided to make a traditional Indonesian meal called Nasi Uduk, which means mixed rice. The rice is cooked in coconut milk and served with a variety of side dishes. For this meal, I made ayam goreng kuning (yellow fried chicken), tahu goreng (fried tofu), perkedel (potato fritters), rendang daging (beef rendang), teri kacang (spicy anchovies and peanuts), and telor dadar (omelet). Since this was a special occasion, I created a "tumpeng" - a decorated platter where the rice is molded (typically into a cone shape) and the side dishes are arranged around it. My sweet friend, Anne, who's like a sister to me, helped with the set-up and decoration and we had a blast!

Here are the lovely moms with the tumpeng - they were quite happy! :)

Nasi Uduk

6 C. uncooked jasmine rice
6 C. coconut milk
2 t. salt
3 stalks lemongrass
4 bay leaves
1 t. ground coriander

Cooking instruction:

1. Combine all ingredients inside the rice cooker. Stir a little then cook in the rice cooker until done. Once done, open the rice cooker and mix the rice.

Ayam Goreng Kuning & Tahu Goreng (Yellow Fried Chicken & Fried Tofu)

2 cornish game hen (cut into quarters)
1 pkg. firm tofu (cut into triangles)
6 shallots
3 cloves garlic
4 candle nuts
1 inch fresh ginger root
1 T. turmeric powder
1/2 T. ground cumin
1/2 T. ground coriander

Salt and Pepper, to taste
4-5 C. water
Oil for frying

Cooking instruction:

1. Place the chicken pieces inside a large stock pot.

2. Blend all seasonings in a food processor then pour into the pot to coat all the chicken pieces.

3. Pour enough water to cover the top of the chicken. Bring to a boil then continue to simmer
until the chicken are cooked all the way through. Carefully remove chicken pieces. Drop the tofu in the leftover chicken marinade and boil for 10 minutes. Remove and set aside.

4. Heat oil in a large frying pan. Deep fry chicken pieces and tofu until golden brown.

Perkedel (potato fritters)
8-10 small red potatoes (cut into cubes)
1 can corned beef
3 T. fried shallots
2 cloves garlic (minced)
1 t. ground nutmeg
1/4 C. chopped celery leaves
Salt and pepper, to taste
1 egg yolk
1 egg white

Oil for frying

Cooking instruction:

1. Fry the potato cubes until light brown. Drain on paper towel then transfer into a large bowl and mash.

2. Add corned beef, egg yolk, garlic, shallots, nutmeg, salt, and pepper and mix well.

3. Take a spoonful of potatoes, roll into a ball, then press to flatten them. Continue until all potatoes are used up.

4. Heat oil in a frying pan. Place the egg white in a small bowl. Roll each potato fritter in the egg white then fry a couple of minutes on each side or until golden brown.

Short-Cut Dishes

I was pressed for time so I took a short cut on a couple of dishes by using ready-made seasonings. I'm blessed to have a good friend who owns an Indonesian online grocery, IndoKiosk. You can find all kinds of Indonesian cooking spices, snacks, and desserts. Just place your order online and she'll ship all the items to you (within U.S. only). Although nothing can beat making a dish from scratch, I find that the taste come pretty close. I used Bumbu Munik brand to make the Teri Kacang and Beef Rendang.

Teri Kacang (Spicy Anchovies and Peanuts)
1 pkg. teri kacang seasoning (Bumbu Munik brand)
1 pkg. raw peanuts
1 pkg. anchovies
1/2 can shoestring potatoes (I used Pik-Nik brand)

Cooking instruction:

1. Heat oil and fry peanuts and anchovies. Drain on paper towel.

2. Spread shoestring potatoes, peanuts, and anchovies in a 9 x 13 baking dish.

3. I first tried to follow the instruction on the seasoning package but it didn't quite work
because the paste was too thick. So I removed the seasoning from the package, place it in a small bowl, added about 2 T. water, and heated it in the microwave for 1 minute. Mix well then pour onto the peanut, anchovies, and potatoes. Use a large spoon to mix well and make sure they're evenly coated.

Beef Rendang
2 lbs. beef shank (cut into large chunks)
1 pkg. beef rendang seasoning (Bumbu Munik brand)
Water, as needed

Cooking instruction:

1. Place beef chunks and beef rendang seasoning into a stock pot and cover with water.

2. Bring to a boil then simmer until water is reduced to a thick sauce. If beef is not tender, add more water and repeat the process. Since I used beef shank, it took about 3 hours to tenderize the meat. Do not add more salt even if you have to add more water since the water will eventually evaporate but the salt will remain.

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