Palembang style of spicy Carbonara

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Whenever you go to Palembang, Sumatera island of Indonesia ask the locals about Mi Celor (‘Mi’ = noodle, pronounced like mi in miracle ; ‘Celor’ = dipped into, pronounced like cello + r) . 

One of the oldest joint is belong to Mr. Haji M. Syafei at 26 ilir. that’s where I had for breakfast in Palembang. 

For pasta lover and noodle enthusiast, this is a must try. the broth is very thick from the thickest part of coconut milk, and yet it so damn creamy you would think they use eggs and cheese. It instantly remind me of Carbonara sauce because it so smooth. 

The spices and condiments contains seafood, so becareful if you have food allergy. 

   
   
this is not a fine dining restaurant, but its authentic. the meal is already mildly spicy, but you can add chilli salsa as you please for the daring ones. 

the noodle’s are home made and have the consistency similar to udon. soak up the rest of the broth with Kerupuk (fish crackers) hmmm… a power breakfast indeed. 

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Red is our color

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Today is moslem new year’s day. It kinda remind me of what our family had during the last holiday of Ied Al Adh.

Our family from my husband’s side (The Bucharis) got special groove that always create dynamic interactions and palate sensations on any meet and greet events.

A few weeks ago, moslems around the world celebrate Ied Al Adh holiday. One of the main idea was about being grateful, living modest and share something to the unfortunate ones. That “something” could be “some meat”, on Islam world known as Qurban.

A goat / mutton or A cow or A water buffalo mercifully slaughtered in the name of Allah, and we give away the meat to people in need.

Since my blog is all about food and culture, you must be waiting for all delicious pictures. Okay, here we go.

In the Buchari family, like any large family, we have what we call “the family cook”. She is usually an aunt or a grandma blessed with magical hands. She made the best version of family’s favorite menus, although the other aunts and mothers practically good at it too. She is the best, period.

"Dok Mami" is what we called her, the cook in the family (left) with my mother in law (right)

“Dok Mami” is what we called her, the cook in the family (left) with my mother in law (right)

The Bucharis in holidays; everybody was catching up with the current what a bouts while waiting for the next rounds of eating

The Bucharis in holidays; everybody was catching up with the current what a bouts while waiting for the next rounds of eating

The Bucharis in holiday; talkative and cheery

The Bucharis in holiday; talkative and cheery

There was always somebody lingering near the table where plates of food on display

There were always somebody lingered near the table where plates of food on display

Red is the prominent color in Bucharis dining table; we sure love our chilies in heritage recipes

Red is the prominent color in Bucharis dining table; we sure love our chilies in heritage recipes

"Dendeng (kering) Balado" is the speciality of Dok Mami's. She's the expert making delicate thin and crunchy squares of beef jerky.

“Dendeng (kering) Balado” is the speciality of Dok Mami’s. She’s the expert in making delicate thin and crunchy squares of beef jerky with red chilly sambal. It is our family’s favorite savory dish.

"Balado Ikan Bilis" dried anchovy-like fish in red chili sambal with stinky bean

“Balado Ikan Bilis” dried anchovy-like fish in red chili sambal with stinky bean

Thinly sliced and crispy potato chips seasoned with special mix of sambal

Thinly sliced and crispy potato chips seasoned with special mix of sambal. Salty, spicy and crunchy as side dish with plain white rice

Not that pretty looking beef rendang but equally delicious

Not that pretty looking beef rendang but equally delicious

Delicate strings of cucumber in simple syrups with ice cubes. A soothing dessert after all those spicy dish.

Delicate strings of cucumber in simple syrups with ice cubes. A soothing dessert after all those spicy dish.

Or for the daring ones, a sweetened and fermented purple sticky rice as dessert

Or for the daring ones, a sweetened and fermented purple sticky rice as dessert

Pagi Sore (Kampung Madras, Medan, North Sumatera)

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Tunjang, my favorite dish in different spiciness

Tunjang, my favorite dish in different spiciness

The popular dish in menu, fried chicken: lean-clean-bone crunchy

The popular dish in menu, fried chicken: lean-clean-bone crunchy. They use free range young chicken, skinned, marinated and deep fried.

Sambal merah (red sambal), spicy goodness. Hot, salty and a touch sweet; perfect match to the fried chicken.

Sambal merah (red sambal), spicy goodness. Hot, salty and a touch sweet; perfect match to the fried chicken. My husband and I, usually need almost 10 mini plates of those.

Take a look a little closer to that fried chicken

Take a look a little closer to that fried chicken

This restaurant owned by the same family that run Pagi Sore restaurant at Padang, West Sumatera.

One of their speciality is making that gorgeous lean fried chicken. It looked like barely had any flesh, but the when you bite into it, savory and crunchy and yet still juicy. One piece of chicken is never enough. I had three and hubby got eight of those.

Drop by to Kampung Madras or Kampung Keling, when you at Medan and find Pagi-Sore to have a spicy feast.

Do you need diet friendly but tasty snack? My Spicy Baked Spring Rolls

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Spicy baked spring roll, No dipping sauce needed

Spicy baked spring roll, No dipping sauce needed

Baked spring roll, no extra oil from deep frying

Baked spring roll, no extra oil from deep frying

I was cleaning my refrigerator and found left overs of pickled octopus I brought from Japan months ago and last night baked calamari. A little bit surprised and felt guilty, since I insist on buying the octopus and happy with them as I posted then here.

I have to make something tasty out of it. I can’t let any food wasted without trying to save it or add more values to it. So, I search for inspiration from the rest of my fridge and I felt a light bulb went on in my head.

I rinsed the pickled octopus, to reduce the acidity and pungent smell then chopped it finely. I took my calamari with the rest of baked garlic and ginger then chopped all of them finely too. Now, I got tinny calamari and octopus bits.

I cut half of plain white cabbage from refrigerator and sliced them into thin narrow stripes. I was thinking about adding extra spiciness to compliment the natural acidity and fishiness of both seafood. I had ready to use Sambal Terasi (fish paste based Sambal), that add saltiness besides spiciness.

As my favorite teve chef Jamie Olliver said, taste it! taste it! and taste it!. A couple pinches of sugar, balance everything and the mix was ready to go. I got left over spring roll pastry and then used it to wrap the mix into neat packages. Well, some of them weren’t that neatly wrapped, since I had to put the mix as much as I can into one sheet of pastry, so everything will be ready to bake.

Light brush of last drops of olive oil, continued with margarine to my cookie sheet and the spring rolls. I put them in the oven and left it to do other chores.

When I smell something delicious, that remind me of  grilled fish or grilled calamari, I turn the oven off and let everything still inside the oven. When it’s the time for lunch, I took my spring rolls out and taste them.

To be honest I didn’t think it will taste than great. Fortunately It was delicious. I ate three of them straight away. The pastry become so crunchy without the greasy after taste.

I don’t even need any dipping sauce. It salty, It sour, crunchy and slightly sweet. I love it! It only veggie and protein! Okay some carb too, but It still healthier than deep fry spring rolls.

My lesson from today is:

Baked spring roll with any left over vegetable from the fridge will be my to go food when I crave for crunchy salty snacks.

Guess what? This time I did it! (successful attempt deconstructing rendang flavor, my way)

Mi Kuah Sapi Poyah by Mayang
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If you are regular to norecipejuststory blog, then you must know that I can’t follow recipe to cook (hence the blog’s name).

My style of cooking is to wing it. No measurements, just follow my intuition and my taste buds. Most of the time, I produce average meal that eatable and suitable for daily menu. When holiday or ceremonial day come, I’m getting nervous badly. I know, I don’t have the patience to cook a whole set of feast meal. So, I winged it and this was what I came up with.

Ied day or Lebaran in bahasa in my family and the in laws require special set of menu that become tradition every year.

My mum’s menu for Lebaran day were: Sayur Pepaya Muda Ebi (Shredded unripe papaya in spicy coconut milk soup with dried shrimp), Gulai Ayam (Chicken curry with Sundanese twist), Rendang (her version of Beef Rendang) and Sambal goreng hati – udang – petai  (Shrimp-beef liver- stinky bean stir fry in chili sauce).

While my mother in law’s menu were: Gulai itik lado mudo (Padangnese version of green duck curry: green color came from green chili paste), Tauco Udang (Shrimp and tofu in salty fermented liquid been sauce and chilies), Gulai Pepaya Muda (Julienned unripe papaya in coconut milk and turmeric soup), Rendang kering (her version of Beef Rendang).

You can click on each text to access one version of it recipe. Not our family’s recipe, just to give better description. Oh, some of the recipe in bahasa, so you can use Google translator if needed.

So, whats the common dish between two family? Yes Beef Rendang. Although my mother’s style very different than my mother in law’s, beef rendang still a crowd pleaser. That’s why, I racked my brain out to make something very simple yet with the flavor of rendang.

The final result is, I make something I called Mi Siram Sapi Poyah.

Its basically boiled noodle or any other type of long pasta ( I made mine fresh by the way), with very-very beefy broth (extra shredded beef were added in the broth); tomato, celery and lime salsa, fried tofu and spicy toasted coconut sprinkles (made from freshly shredded coconut). Also a creamy peanut based chili sambal for extra heat.

I know it may look too simple to mimic the complex beef rendang, but somehow it worked. The flavor and fragrant of rendang came from the spicy toasted coconut.

I’m adding rendang wet paste (i winged my mother recipe) and the powdered ones to a freshly shredded coconut, mix them well on a non stick pan without using oil. It takes quite some time until all the coconut absorb the paste and toasted, change color, dried out and became sprinkleable.

English: Rendang, beef cooked in spices and co...

English: Rendang, beef cooked in spices and coconut milk. 日本語: ルンダン(牛肉とスパイスをココナッツミルクで2時間煮込む) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

One of my food critic is my husband. When he said my beefy noodle tasty and remind him with rendang, then he add more noodles to his bowl, I know I succeed this time. Ooh the sweet taste of victory…..

The unique fact is that the broth are so beefy and tasty, anyone who ate one portion keep adding more noodles to  the remains of the broth on the bottom of their bowl.

Deconstructed Rendang and Ketupat: Mi Kuah Sapi Poyah

Deconstructed Rendang and Ketupat: Mi Kuah Sapi Poyah

It tasted very beefy, light and fresh but also spicy and herby similar to rendang.

It so easy to make. I’m making this dish in my holiday menu.

Cooking while sleeping, use the leftovers

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Although my spirit are high welcoming this year’s Ramadhan, me being my self, rolling back to my nature self. Only in two days!

Either I got up too early or too late, I just loosing power to cook something complicated. Besides, I had a huge pile of cold rice leftovers from the last 2 days my husband didn’t eat at home. I have to use that as soon as possible, or I’ll get headache seeing it in my fridge all the time.

Well the fool proof cooking while sleeping, or just feeling really really want to crawl back to my soft and smooth bed with warm fluffy blanket on cold room, are fried rice. My version of spicy and sweet fried rice. It’s a one pot wonder with just about everything I can find at my fridge. Either just eggs and rice, or chicken and anchovies, or bean sprout and eggs and mushroom. Anything is acceptable. So, this was how I did.

Garlic-chilli fried rice: behind the scene

Garlic-chili fried rice: behind the scene

Garlic-chili fried rice: Sahur day two (and three)

Garlic-chili fried rice: Sahur day two (and three)

Mayang style garlic-chili fried rice: Steamy, spicy, extra crunchy.

Another version of my fried rice: extra garlic, extra chili