I feel a bit sad with the fact that Indonesia is the world’s 4th most populous country with nearly over 13,000 of beautiful islands, yet people know very little about this country, if at all. I think what most people know from Indonesia is Bali. Bali is one of the islands in Indonesia and some people told me before that they thought Bali IS Indonesia. Of course I’m not trying to say that these people are being ignorant. Honestly, I don’t know history of every single country in this planet either. I just wish somehow the Government of Indonesia is actively promoting this beautiful country with its enormous natural resources and potential. But anyway, I’m not here to get into politics either. I’m here to promote food! lol!

So, as probably many of you know that they say Bali is a paradise and I was there once. ONCE ? I know..I know..and that was also on a short business trip two years ago. Bali is really like an island of its own, unlike anywhere else in Indonesia I know. There are so many tourists, I almost thought like I was in a western country. The beach is nice. The spa is nice. The night life is hectic. The food is good too. I had the Balinese Chicken when I was in Bali and I thought it was pretty good. I found the recipe at The Complete Asian Cook book by Charmaine Solomon and so I gave it a try. I like the creaminess and the nuttiness from the coconut milk and the candlenuts or called kemiri in Bahasa Indonesia. The chicken is fried and then cooked in coconut milk and spices. We had it with Nasi Gurih or Fragrant Rice and it was great.

What you will need:
  • 1 onion, roughly chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 tsp chopped fresh ginger
  • 3 fresh red chilies, seeded and roughly chopped
  • 4 candlenuts
  • 1 Tbsp dark soy sauce
  • About 2½ lbs frying chicken, usually boned-in, but you can use boneless if you prefer
  • peanut oil
  • 2 tsp palm sugar or substitute
  • 2 Tbsp lemon juice
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 cup coconut milk or substitute with 1 cup of plain Greek yogurt
  1. Put onion, garlic, ginger, chilies, candlenuts and soy sauce into the blender and blend into a smooth paste
  2. Cut chicken in quarters with cleavers if you use boned-in. Dry well on paper towels
  3. Heat half a cup peanut oil in wok or frying pan and fry the chicken pieces quickly until brown. Remove chicken and drain on absorbent paper. Pour off oil, leaving only 1 Tbsp, and fry the blended mixture for a few minutes, stirring constantly. Add sugar, lemon juice, salt and coconut milk and keep stirring while mixture comes to the boil
  4. Return chicken and simmer uncovered for 35 minutes or longer until chicken is tender and gravy is thick. Serve with plain white rice or nasi gurih and other dishes


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