The Asia’s Kebab – Satay

Satay ©the food photographer/flickr

Satay ©the food photographer/flickr

Originated in Indonesia, a traditional dish that is ever so popular is the ‘Satay‘. It is just like the kebab, but it is an Asian version prepared with thinly strips of beef or chicken, threaded onto bamboo skewers. The Satay is grilled, and served with a peanut based dipping sauce. Now the part about the grilling is special. It is cooked over a live fire, over an open flame. It is not cubes of meat, but instead a long strips of meat threaded in a weaving pattern onto skewers. Very simple concept to make them easy to handle and cook.

Satay Sauces

Most of the satay sauces are very flavorful that range from sweet, to spicy or even just mild. It is a great appetizer as it is very handy being serve up on a skewer. In Indonesia, you can find food stands that serve it up as a quick snack, much like an Indonesian fast food. Since it is so portable and easy to prepare, from pork, chicken, beef, seafood and even vegetables sometimes. The traditional recipe requires long strips of meat cut very thinly. Secondly is the marinade that should match the sauce of the satay to be served. For the Spicy Satay Peanut Sauce, the most suitable marinade is made from rice wine vinegar, soy sauce, cumin, lime juice and crushed dried chilies. Then the remaining of the marinade has to be boiled for five minutes.

Bamboo Skewers

The bamboo skewers has to be first prepared by soaking in the cold water for at least an hour before skewing. There are many advantages of the bamboo skewers as compared to the metal skewers. First of all, it holds the meat better and secondly the overall appearance of the dish is greatly improved. Making the meat is threaded well and not bunch up, spreading out so that it cook evenly. It takes about five minutes for one satay to be ready to be served with morsels.

Ketupat

Ketupat ©Chengu Herul/Flickr

Ketupat ©Chengu Herul/Flickr

Ketupat are rice that is steamed in woven packets of coconut leaves. If it is steamed in banana leaves, it is usually served in lontong. Usually cooked ahead of time and later eaten at room temperature, this is the way Indonsian families enjoy their meals as they do not have a set meal time. The practice is also common in public eating places and restaurants in Indonesia.

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