Nasi Goreng

When my family and I visited Indonesia this summer we quickly were drawn to the countries famous dish Nasi Goreng in particular at the local eatery called Chicken Story which I swear we ate at almost daily. What I love about this dish is that you can use your leftovers to make it. I used leftover white rice and chicken for mine. I added some fresh ginger to my small food processor and grinded it up and I have to say that fresh ginger is a must in this recipe. The toppings of fried onions and cilantro bring this meal together.

4 cups cold basmati rice
2 eggs
6 tablespoons oil + more for onions
1/2 cup frozen peas
1/2 cup cooked, peeled shrimp
1 cup cooked, chicken, chopped
dash red pepper flakes
1 tablespoon shrimp paste
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 tablespoon freshly ground ginger
1 small onion, thinly sliced
soy sauce, to taste
cilantro for garnish

1. In a saute pan on medium heat add half of oil. Add eggs and a few drops of soy sauce, scramble. Add garlic and ginger, saute then add peas. Add rice, remaining oil and shrimp paste, mix well. Reduce heat to low.

2. Meanwhile, in a small pan on medium-high heat add a small amount of oil. Add onion slices and fry until golden.

3. Add shrimp, chicken and red pepper and soy sauce to taste, mix well. Cover and allow to thoroughly warm, about 5 minutes.

4. Place mixture on a serving dish and sprinkle fried onions and cilantro on top.

Yields: 4 servings

Indonesian Tea Punch

When my family and I were in Indonesia they had the most amazing yet simple ice tea that we have tried. The original recipe calls for green tea but if you have black that will work as well, they both taste great and pretty much the same. Fresh oranges, mint and ginger added to the tea is the secret to this year around refreshing ice cold drink.

2 cups boiling water
6 regular sized tea bags
3/4 cup white sugar
6 cups cold water
12 sprigs fresh mint
1/2 inch piece of fresh ginger
1 orange, sliced
1/2 lemon, sliced

1. In a 2-quart saucepan boil 2 cups water and ginger.

2. Meanwhile add cold water in a tea pitcher with mint, orange and lemon slices.

3. Remove pan from heat and place teabags. Allow to steep for 15 minutes. Throw tea bags in trash and add sugar, stir until dissolved.

4. Pour tea mixture into cold water in pitcher and mix well. Refrigerate.

Sour Sally

I have found not only the most cute little spot here in Indonesia but also the tastiest. Its called Sour Sally and has this ultra awesome doll house theme to it. You can find them all over Indonesia at the malls and such. They have plain or berry frozen yogurt and they are sour of course with your choice of fresh fruit. I am just in love with this little place. The character Sally is so nifty and you can buy buy various things like a doll from the shop.

Japanese Steak Bowl

Japanese meals are often served together in one bowl just as this easy dish is. The flavors pair perfectly together pleasing even those picky eaters with its light yet flavorful taste. If you happen to have any Japanese spices by all means use it. I was able to pick some up at a Japanese grocer while in Malaysia and its amazing with almost anything.

1 small white onion
1 yellow bell pepper, seeded
3 tablespoons sunflower oil
1 tablespoon butter
2 sirloin steaks
1/4 cup ketchup
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons water
1/4 cup chopped parsley
3 cups cooked white rice
salt and pepper, to taste

1. Grill steaks until no longer pink. Meanwhile, thinly slice onion and pepper.

2. In a small 9-inch skillet on medium heat add 2 tablespoons of oil. Add onions and peppers, cooking until tender, about 5 minutes. Place onions and peppers and on a plate reserving skillet for later use. When steak is no longer pink cut into thin slices.

3. For the sauce in a small bowl add ketchup, Worcestershire sauce and water, mix well. Add sauce into the 9-inch skillet on medium heat, add steak slices and mix well.

4. Mix butter and parsley into hot rice. Divide the rice into bowls, add steak with sauce on top with onions and peppers.

Yields: 2-3 servings