Pieces of chicken are marinated in spices and then fried and served with piles of fried aromatic leaves and a side of sambal. Ayam Tangkap Aceh is very popular with the local.
I have a long list of food I’ve wanted to eat when I visit home again. It’s been 5 years since the last time we visited Indonesia. There is list of ingredients that are difficult or impossible to get here that I want to bring back here. I’m hoping we get to visit soon. Fingers crossed! In a meantime, my cravings for Indonesian food continue. They are the reasons this blog exists in the first place.
There are so many different kinds of fried chicken, but this ayam tangkap Aceh, or sometimes call ayam Tsunami (Tsunami chicken) is one of my favorites. Tsunami because of its “messy” appearance. The fried chicken are marinated in spices and then served with piles of fried leaves like Pandan leaves (screwpine leaves), curry leaves, and lemongrass. Some call it ayam sampah (Trash chicken). Well, call it what you want, but I love munching on those crunchy aromatic fried herbs.
Ayam Tangkap Aceh (Indonesian Fried Chicken with Spices and Herbs)
- 2 lbs chicken wings and/or drummets
- Oil for deep frying
- 4 fresh pandan leaves if frozen, thawed
- 1 handful of curry leaves
- 1 stalk lemon grass trim off woody ends and sliced
- 4-5 red chili
- 2 inch galangal
- 1 inch ginger
- 4 cloves garlic
- 1 Tbsp coriander seeds
- 3 shallots
- 3 Kaffir lime leaves cut into thin strips
- 1 tsp turmeric powder
- 1 cup sambal oelek
- 2 Tbsp brown sugar
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 3 Kaffir lime leaves tear the edges to release flavor
Place galangal, ginger, garlic, coriander seeds, shallots, kaffir lime leaves and turmeric powder in a food processor and blend into a paste. Add a little bit of water as necessary to get things going
Place all the ingredients in a small saucepan and cook until the sugar melted and the kaffir lime leaves release its flavor, let it cook on medium heat for about 5 minutes
Deep-frying with oil:
Marinade the chicken in this paste for 30 minutes in the refrigerator. Bring the chicken out from refrigerator 10 minutes before frying. Fry in batches until golden brown.
Remove the chicken from marinade and place in the preheated air fryer at 375 F and air fry for 15 minutes. Halfway through cooking, I brush a bit of oil on the skin and continue air frying
Once you are done with frying the chicken, bring the oil back to hot. If you air fried the chicken, then prepare some oil to fry the leaves. When the oil is hot enough. Add in the chopped pandan leaves, curry leaves, lemongrass, and red chili. Fry until they are crispy, but take care not to burn them. Remove with slotted spoon to an absorbent paper towel and pile these fried herbs and chili on top of the fried chicken and serve with the sambal