I have recently been searching for recipes that use up lemons as I seem to…
Ayam Areh is an Indonesian Chicken recipe of chicken in coconut milk with Indonesian spices. It looks bland but tastes amazing.
I am always fascinated by food from different countries. Travel brings so many experiences, the second you step off a plane you are hit with the sounds, sights and smells belonging to a different culture.
When you visit restaurants the menu lists unfamiliar dishes, often in a foreign language. What you order can be a nice surprise or sometimes a shock. Each experience adds a new chapter to your travel tales and often you find a dish that you want to recreate when you get home.
Now you can discover the tastes of the world in your own kitchen. Kitchen Trotter is a world cuisines subscription box and it is now available in the UK. I was delighted to receive this months box which was Indonesian themed. I decided to recreate one of the recipes in the booklet that came with the box, Ayam Areh.
The Kitchen Trotter box is a cooking kit which allows you to cook recipes from a different country every month. Each box includes four or five recipes that serve four to six people as well as six to seven ingredients that allow you to recreate the recipes. These ingredients can be hard to find. The cost of the subscription varies depending how long your order for. One month is £29.99, 6 months is £174 and a year is £336.
The Indonesian Kitchen Trotter box contained a range of exotic ingredients, none of which I had heard of. These were:
- Gado Gado mix – a peanut based mix
- Kecap Manis – A sweet soy sauce
- Terasi – a fermented prawn paste
- Combava leaves – combava is a citrus fruit similar to a lemon.
- Lemon grass powder
- Pandan aroma – this is the essence from a pandan plant
- Kemiri nuts – these look like a hazelnut but taste different. They are used ground in cooking as they are hard to digest eaten raw
The box also came with an hour glass to help time three minutes of cooking time. There is also a recipe book which gives some information about the country as well as the recipes.
The Ayam Areh is a chicken dish that made use of the combava leaves, terasi and Kemiri nuts from the Kitchen Trotter box. The other ingredients I provided myself and they were all things I had in my kitchen, apart from a tin of coconut milk. The dish was really easy to make, after making a paste with onions, garlic and the terasi in my food processor, the ingredients were just cooked in one pan. I served the dish with some fried rice. Although the dish does look rather brown in colour, it does taste lovely. It has a slightly sweet taste with a background hint of nuttiness and onion which works really well with the chicken. I was pleased with my first attempt at an Indonesian dish.
Ayam Areh: Indonesian Chicken Recipe
Ayam Areh (recipe courtesy of Kitchen Trotter)
4 Combava leaves (aka kaffir lime leaves)
1 tbsp shrimp paste (Terasi – Ams Koe Poe)
5 Kemiri nuts (Epices et Delices & Kitchen Trotter)
1tbsp lemongrass powder (Terre Exotique & Kitchen Trotter)
2-3 chicken breasts
2 bay leaves
2tbsp vegetable oil
2tbsp brown sugar
400ml coconut milk
3 cloves of garlic
1tbsp fresh coriander, finely chopped
1 cube chicken stock
salt & pepper
rice to serve
In a mixer mix the onions, garlic, kemiri nuts and shrimp paste. When a semiliquid paste is obtained, keep aside.
Bring 20ml of water to boil in a saucepan, add the stock cube, stir well and set aside.
Dice the chicken and brown on all sides in a deep frying pan with oil. Cook for about 5 minutes. Pour in the paste and stir for a couple of minutes.
(bring out your chemical warfare gas mask, sorry, couldn’t resist)
Add the coconut milk, the stock and stir well. Add the brown sugar, bay leaves and combava leaves (slightly crush them in your fingers to release the flavour), the lemongrass powder, coriander and stir well.
Season with salt and pepper.
Simmer on low for about 45 minutes, until the sauce thickens. Stir regularly.
Serve with rice.
Galina from Chez Maximka has also been trying the Kitchen Trotter box and made the Gado Gado salad recipe, one which I am going to try next. Cheryl from Madhouse Family Reviews got inventive and used up some of her kitchen cupboard ingredients to make Coconut Prawn Laksa which looks lovely. The Kitchen Trotter box would make a lovely gift for someone who loves cooking.
I was sent the box in return for an honest review, my opinions are my own and I was not obliged to say anything nice.