Tonight I made nasi lemak for dinner. For those unfamiliar, it is a Malaysian dish comprising of coconut flavoured rice and some accompaniments.
First, the rice. I used Ayam brand coconut cream. If you're able to get it, the "premium" stuff in the green can is best. It has no additives, no water, nothing but good old "santan". I threw in 4 or 5 pieces of screwpine (pandan) leaves, torn lengthwise and knotted.
When cooked, the rice is nice and fluffy with the fragrance of pandan and coconut. Oh, and don't forget to add a pinch of salt (like I did!). It makes all the difference!
I also made beef rendang using cubes of gravy beef, coconut cream (yes, the Ayam brand premium stuff - it is the only coconut cream I use now), water and Jackie M's
rendang paste. It's the first time I am using her rendang paste. I have used her laksa paste before, which is delicious, and so I had high hopes for the rendang. It turned out very well. I did not follow her instructions, though. I used about 1/2 a tub of paste, 800g of beef, 3/4 of a 270ml can of coconut cream and who knows how much water. I thought using the whole tub of paste for 1kg of meat seemed like overkill. I now have enough for another serve of rendang.. perhaps chicken or lamb rendang?
That's the rendang in the large bowl on the left. In the front is a bowl of fried anchovies (ikan bilis) and roasted peanuts. At the back, on the right, is a bowl of sambal. No, I did not cook it. My mum gave me a pack of sambal when she last visited. Up the back, oiled eggs.the green that you see, is sliced cucumber and halved hard b
I nearly forgot the turmeric fried chicken. I was not sure that Alex would eat the rendang (turns out that he did have some) and so I thought I should cook some chicken that everyone would enjoy. The next time I cook this, I will use chicken thigh fillets and cut them into smaller pieces. The drumsticks were very difficult to fry.
This dish is inspired by my late grandmother (Ah Mah). She used to make turmeric fried chicken all the time, and I think hers is far tastier than mine is. I don't know why I thought of cooking this today. Perhaps it is because the anniversary of her passing is coming up soon. Anyway, the chicken was appreciated by the boys (since they have never eaten my grandmother's turmeric fried chicken), and I'm glad I made it.
So there you go.. a taste of home!