For those living in the USA it is a long weekend! Monday is Martin Luther King’s day so its an excuse to get out our cutting boards and aprons and make this very traditional Indonesian dish for yourself and your family. Just a little background, Indonesia is one of the most populous Muslim Country in the world. Many people don’t think of South East Asia as the hub of Islam and interestingly Indonesia is a heterogeneous society where ethnic groups live harmoniously. The culture although quite diverse embraces difference with lack of political correctness. Ethnicity is embraced and acknowledged and accepted kindly and humorously. And yet there is much respect for the religions and the different ethnic backgrounds. Unlike the USA, differences are called out and embraced humorously. So, today we travel to the island of Java to the province of the Special Region of Java-Jogyakarta. This province is very special as it is the only province that still has a living Sultan! Now what is truly interesting in this region is the use of the special “black sugar” this recipe is slightly modified to substitute the call for “black sugar” here we use Palm Sugar. Need to find Asian Market or Halal Store in your area don’t forget to use our handy dandy halal stuff map!
Now on to our recipe!
Empal Goreng (pronounced: e`mpaal gho`reng)
(Javanese Sweet Fried Beef | Sweet Beef Jerky)
500 gr beef, cut into medium thin (around 1cm thick) large squares
4 red onions (shallots), Crushed (you can also use a food processor)
4 cloves of garlic, Crushed
1 teaspoon ground Coriander
1 teaspoon crushed palm Sugar | gula jawa (found in Asian Markets in the USA)
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon cooking oil
Boil beef cuts until cooked and tender. You may want to use a pressure cooker at level 2 and cook for approximately 10-15 minutes counted from when steam starts. But note to lower the heat at medium low to ensure tenderness.
Take the meat out and set aside the broth
Pound the beef cuts with meat mallot until it is tender and a slightly flattened wide.
Cover meat with plastic wrap to keep moist
In a saucepan, fry the onions and garlic
Add around 150-200 cc of beef broth, stir well. Then add the beef cuts, coriander powder and palm sugar, mix well. Then add salt and sugar and pepper to taste. If the meat is not covered in water, add a little more broth.
Cover and let it simmer on low heat while stirring occasionally allowing the spices to seep in. Simmer until the water has been absorbed by the meat. But be careful not to burn it.
Then deep fry some pieces (as much as you want) it in hot oil just for 1 minute or until brown and slightly crispy.
The rest of the beef can be stored up to 3 days in air tight container.