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What is Nasi Goreng
Nasi Goreng is a popular dish in Indonesia and Malaysia. This is a type of fried rice cooked with a variety of ingredients such as vegetables, meat, seafood and spices, and is usually served garnished with a fried egg, sliced cucumber, tomato and fried scallions. Nasi goreng can be considered as a staple food in street food stalls.
History of Nasi Goreng
Nasi goreng originated in Indonesia. Originally made as a way to use leftover rice from the day before, it consisted of rice, spring onions and soy sauce. Over time, when this dish became very popular, new ingredients were added to create more complex and delicious variations.
Nasi goreng has significant cultural significance in Indonesia, as it is often served on special occasions and events such as weddings and religious ceremonies. It is a popular dish among street vendors and can be found in many hawker centers and food markets across the country.
Nasi goreng is also a popular dish in Malaysia. It is often served with additional spices such as sambal and keropok (crackers). Apart from this, it has become popular in other parts of the world as well.
Ingredients of Nasi Goreng
Usually, Nasi Goreng is made by mixing pre-cooked rice with various ingredients and spices. Below are some of the most common ingredients used in Nasi Goreng.
- Chili pepper
- Kecap Manis (Sweet Soy Sauce)
- Shrimp paste
- Vegetables (such as carrots, peas, and onions)
- Meat (such as chicken, shrimp, or beef)
Due to regional variations, nasi goreng can vary greatly depending on where it is made.
- From the city of Medan in North Sumatra, nasi goreng is often made with smoked beef or chicken.
- In Bali, it is usually made from seafood such as shrimp or squid.
- In Jakarta, the capital of Indonesia, nasi goreng is often served with a fried egg on top.
- In Yogyakarta, it is often served with kerupuk (crackers) and sambal (spicy sauce).
Outside of Indonesia, nasi goreng is also a popular dish in Malaysia, Singapore and other neighboring countries. Here are some regional variations of nasi goreng outside of Indonesia.
- In Malaysia, nasi goreng is often made with belakan (shrimp paste) and served with akar (pickled vegetables).
- In Singapore, it is sometimes made with salted fish and served with sambal belakan (spicy shrimp paste sauce).
Traditional techniques used to prepare and cook Nasi Goreng
Use cold rice
The first step in making traditional nasi goreng is to use cooked rice. Using cold cooked rice here prevents the rice from becoming mushy when fried and ensures that it remains smooth and separate.
Wok or Frying Pan
Nasi Goreng is usually cooked using a wok or frying pan. This allows the ingredients to cook quickly and evenly while keeping the rice crispy and not soggy.
Aromatics and Spices
Traditional Nasi goreng uses a combination of aromatics and spices such as garlic, scallions, ginger and chilies to add flavor and aroma.
Sweet and savory sauces
Traditional nasi goreng is usually topped with sweet and savory sauces such as kecap manis (sweet soy sauce) and sambal (spicy chili paste) for added flavor.
Toppings and Garnishes
A fried egg, sliced cucumber and tomato are added to garnish nasi goreng. Apart from this, crispy fried onions, prawn crackers or chopped onions are also added.
Modern changes in cooking technology
Some modern variations of nasi goreng use sous vide cooking methods to cook rice and other ingredients, resulting in a perfectly cooked and flavorful dish.
Air fryer is another modern way of cooking nasi goreng in today’s world. This method achieves a crispy texture without the need for too much oil.
This method is also a modern method, and in a short time, you can make a dish of nasi gorang quickly and easily with no less taste.
Grilling rice and other ingredients on a barbecue or grill pan gives a unique and delicious version of the classic dish.
Adding unexpected ingredients like cheese or kimchi to the dish is also an innovative way to make nasi goreng.
Traditional and Modern Ways of Serving and Presenting Nasi Goreng
As I said earlier, nasi goreng can be served and presented in a variety of traditional and modern ways, each with its own unique charm and appeal.
Both traditional and modern methods of serving and presenting nasi goreng can often enhance the beauty of the nasi goreng. For example, nasi goreng can be served on a banana leaf, with sliced cucumber and tomato on the side, providing a refreshing contrast to the rich, savory flavors of rice. Alternatively, it can be served in a small clay pot or cone-shaped banana leaf wrapper, with a fried egg on top for added texture and richness.
In some parts of Indonesia, nasi goreng is traditionally served as part of a larger meal such as a rijsttafel (rice table) that includes a variety of dishes. Therefore, nasi goreng is presented on a large platter with other rice dishes, meat, vegetables and sauces, and it is presented and distributed in a colorful and festive way.
As a modern take on presenting nasi goreng, it is served in a tall cylindrical tower of rice decorated with edible flowers and other decorative elements. Or, it can be a series of small, bite-sized portions carefully arranged on a smooth, minimal plate.
In some restaurants, nasi goreng is presented as a fusion dish that combines Indonesian flavors with elements of other cuisines such as Japanese or French. This may include unusual ingredients or techniques, such as using a sous vide method to cook meat wrapped in rice and seaweed.
Variations of Nasi Goreng
Indonesian Nasi Goreng
Indonesian Nasi Goreng is usually made using leftover rice mixed with sweet soy sauce, shrimp paste, scallions, garlic, chilies, and various meats such as chicken, beef, or shrimp. This dish is often garnished with a fried egg, sliced cucumber and tomato.
Malaysian Nasi Goreng
Malaysian Nasi Goreng is similar to Indonesian Nasi Goreng. Malaysian nasi goreng is often made using belakan (fermented shrimp paste), tamarind pulp, and dried shrimp. Gives the dish a sharper and stronger taste. Malaysian nasi goreng is often served with sliced cucumber, tomato and akar (a pickled vegetable salad), and has a very sharp and tangy taste.
Thai Khao Pad
Thai Khao Pad is a variant of Thailand’s popular Nasi Goreng, which is often made with a mixture of fish sauce, oyster sauce and palm sugar. It gives the dish a more delicious and sweet taste. This variety is also often topped with a fried egg and served with lime wedges, sliced cucumber and tomato.
Filipino Sinangag is a variant of the popular Nasi Goreng in the Philippines and is made with garlic fried rice, soy sauce and diced longanisa (Filipino sausage). It also has a more savory and slightly sweet taste. This is often topped with a fried egg and served with sliced tomatoes and vinegar.
Chinese Yangzhou Fried Rice
Chinese Yangzhou Fried Rice is a variant of China’s popular Nasi Goreng, which uses a variety of meats such as shrimp, chicken and ham, scrambled eggs, chickpeas and carrots. This is often seasoned with soy sauce and oyster sauce to give it a more delicious taste.
Nutritional value of Nasi Goreng
The basic ingredient of nasi goreng is rice. It is a good source of carbohydrates which provides energy to the body.
Meat or seafood such as chicken, shrimp or tofu used in nasi gorang can be a great source of protein. Provides protein for muscle maintenance and repair. However, excessive consumption of red meat such as beef or pork can increase the risk of heart disease, so be careful about it. Lean meat or plant-based protein sources are recommended.
Nasi Goreng uses vegetables such as carrots, peas, peppers, and onions to provide essential vitamins and minerals such as vitamin C and fiber.
Nasi goreng can be high in fat as it is prepared with oil and fried eggs. Fat can be reduced by using healthy cooking methods such as steaming or baking and using lean meat or plant-based protein sources, while using small amounts of healthy fats such as olive oil can help provide essential fatty acids to the body.
Nasi goreng can be high in sodium due to the use of soy sauce, shrimp paste and other condiments. Consuming too much sodium increases the risk of high blood pressure and other health problems. To make the dish more balanced, it is recommended to replace it with other spices such as low sodium soy sauce or herbs and spices.
In conclusion, I can say nasi goreng is a balanced meat, easy to customize, a flavourful dish, and a versatile dish.
- 500 grams Basmathi rice
- 350 grams Boneless Chicken
- 3 Eggs
- 4 tbsp Chili paste
- 5 tbsp Soy sauce
- 3 tsp Tomato sauce
- 3½ tsp Sugar
- 10 Garlic cloves
- A piece of ginger
- 50 grams Carrot
- 50 grams Leeks , Cabbage
- 2 Capsicum
- 1 Onion
- 3 Red Chilies
- Coconut oil
- Wash and clean the rice.
- Add rice, water and a pinch of salt to a pot.
- Then cook the rice well.
- Add 2 tsp coconut oil to cooked rice, mix and heat for a while.
Making Soy Sauce Mixture
- Take a bowl and add 3½ soy sauce, sugar, 2 tsp chili paste, juice of 1 tbsp ginger,galic paste, and tomato sauce.
- Mix well until sugar dissolved.
Making Nasi Goreng
- Cut leeks, carrot, cabbage, capsicum, red chilies, and onion.
- Cut chicken to small pieces.
- Grind garlic, ginger and make a paste.
- Add salt, 1½ tbsp soy sauce, juice of 1 tbsp ginger,garlic paste to chicken.
- Mix well it by hand.
- Place it for 15 minutes.
- Take a pan, add oil and heat it.
- Then fry the chicken on low heat.
- Next, take a pan, add oil and heat it.
- Add ginger, garlic paste and fry them until golden color.
- Then add carrot, cabbage, oion, and capsicum.
- Then mix and heat well.
- Add eggs to that mixture.
- Then mix and heat well.
- Then add soy sauce mixture, red chilies, 1 tbsp sugar, 2 tbsp chili paste and chicken to that mixture.
- Then mix and heat well.
- Add cooked rice to this mixture and mix on high heat for 5 minutes.
- Then add leeks and mix well.
- Then this can be served with a frying egg.