Spicy Indonesian food becomes a comfort food for most of us. For the foreigner, spicy Indonesian food is a must-try thing when you have a plan to vist this tropical country. According to Grid, Indonesia has various spicy food because it’s rich in herbs and spices. Thus, it’s easy to make a sambal or other dishes with a spicy flavor. One of the most favorite spicy Indonesian food is Sambal.
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Sambal already becomes a national dish a long time ago. In Serat Centhini (a Javanese literature that contains culture and the Javanese way of life during 18-19 century), sambal is mentioned as a complimentary menu. Sambal is not only contain chillis but also other ingredients like vegetable, fish even meat. Prof. Dr.Murdijato an author of the culinary book stated that 43% of Sambal is located in Java, 20% Sumatera and 8% in Nusa Tenggara and Bali. Last but not least, Maluku, Kalimantan and Sulawesi.
The Indonesian love of spicy food makes sambal becomes creative. Nowadays, we can easily find sambal with different levels of spiciness. You can enjoy it with fried chicken, noodles, or even chips.
Now, we give you 9 spicy Indonesian food recommendations from traditional styles and viral ones.
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1. Various sambal
Sambal is inseperable element of spicy Indonesian food. Generally, sambal comes with two types, matang and mentah. Matang or cooked means all sambal ingredients is cooked either fried or boiled. While mentah or uncooked means all ingredients is still raw. Every island in Indonesia has their own sambal like Dabu-Dabu form Sulawesi, sambal terasi form Java and Colo-colo from Papua
This spicy Indonesian food is from West Java. The main ingredient is boiled kerupuk or crackers with a spicy broth. But you can add “topping” into Seblak like vegetables, egg, chicken feets, meatballs and sausages. Seblak comes in different level of spiciness. Want to dare your self?
3. Bakso mercon
We all familiar with bakso or meatball but when ot comes with mercon, what is mercon? Mercon is dynamite. But, chill. it’s not real dynamite. Why it called “bakso mercon”is because this meatball is filled with chilis inside. Can you imagine,when you slice the meatballs, sambal will come out just like lava from the volcano. This spicy Indonesian food becomes popular across the country. Everywhere you go, you will find Bakso mercon easily.
4. Ayam betutu
Betutu means grilled meat. Ayam betutu is made with a free-range chicken with herbs and spices. This Balinese dish has a traditional way of cooking. First, the free-range chicken is covered with arcea leaf is buried inside the husk. This way of cooking make ayam betutu has a specific taste. But now, you can use the modern kitchen utensils to make this spicy Indonesian food.
5. Dendeng Balado
This spicy Indonesian food comes from West Sumatera which is made from meat covered with balado sauce. Balado comes from “lado”that means spicy. So balado means spicy food. Dendeng it self is a processed meat which cut into slice first, boiled then dried.
6. Various spicy snacks
This kind of snacks that will make you stop eating. In Indonesia, spicy snacks comes with various form like crackers, cassava chips, baso goreng (basreng) and etc. For attracting the customer, those spicy snacks come with different level of spiciness. You can choose the mild one or the hottest one.
7. Various rujak
Rujak or salad is an authentic Indonesian food, made from peanut sauce or petis or spicy soup and mix it with fresh fruits, vegetables or some of them using meat like Rujak Cingur. Like spicy snacks, when you buy rujak you can request how wany chillies you want on your rujak.
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Penyet means smashed in Surabayan way. Penyetan is a street food made from sambal and any kind of side dish from omlete, chicken, duck and any kind of fish. What makes penyetan is unique, aside from it spiciness, penyetan also served with cobek.
9. Indomie with certain level of spiciness
Indomie is now becoming a world’s sensation instant noodle. This simple instant noodle can becomes a spicy Indonesian food when it comes with a different level of sambal. One of the famous Indomie sambal level in Indonesia is Indomie abang adik in Jakarta. The spiciness level is from 10 chilis to 100 chilis. They even call their brand “Indomie Pedas Mampus.
Another famous spicy noodle is Mie Gacoan
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When nature resources meets creativity, spicy Indonesian food not only become a new culinary option but rising an economy.