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Cultural Concubine Blog

Neither here nor there…

After living in the UK for a while I started to really miss Indonesian  cooking.

This is pretty strange, as I have never really been hooked on is while living in the NL. As a student I had practiced making Boemboe (spice mixture). I guess I had always taken the presence of a Toko for granted.  (A Toko is an Indonesian shop/deli)

Sateh

In the Hague, where most of the original Indonesian immigrants live there is the annual Pasar Malam Fair (since the 50th anniversary it has been renamed the Tong Tong Fair). I am afraid I will have to miss it this year, all the shiny fabrics, sweet coconut drinks and spicy scented food tent. The most typical food to eat are the eternal Sateh sticks, with sticky soy or spicy peanut sauce. be sure to add some fried onion flakes and Seroendeng for maximum impact!

Off course there are the wonderful Indian curries here in the UK, but somehow the hot and slightly sweet dishes of Indonesia remind me of home. To prevent getting homesick, there is one ingredient that I always have in my kitchen stash: SAMBAL

This Sunshine of a condiment comes in many varieties.

Sambal Manis is my favourite.
It is sweeter and milder than the others and the best possible combination between hot, spicy and sweet…
It goes well with every kind of meat or rice dish and it is great to use to fry up left over rice… Just add some sweet and sour cucumber salad, seroendeng (see above) and a fried egg, and you’re ready to go…

Oily and hot...

I wonder if I can find anything similar on the East Coast…
I could make my own or follow my the example of my Aunt in Ireland, who only allows Dutch guests to cross the threshold if they hand over a large jar of Sambal first…
(I would always get her the super hot home-made variety ofrom Nam Kee Toko in the red light district in Amsterdam, this paste can only be shipped in glass as it would melt away any plastic containers…)

Hope the Americans like it hot?

I guess they do…

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