I came from the eastern part of Indonesia where our cuisine is sour, hot, and spicy . I had to be friended with the kind of sweet flavor when I moved to Jakarta. As the capital city of Indonesia, Jakarta is a vibrant melting pot of all the customs in Indonesia, especially the food.
One of the sweet flavors I fall in love with is Bacem . Bacem is a local food in Java island. It’s very sweet as its main ingredient is palm sugar. The most well known type of bacem flavor we can find here in Tempe or Tahu ( tofu ) bacem.
So I decided to combine the two things I love, chicken and bacem flavor to be my lunch.
Here is the recipe.
4 medium chicken thighs
3 Tbsp palm sugar
1 Tbsp. dark sweet soy sauce (optional )
500 ml water
1 cm galangal, smashed
1 tsp. crushed coriander
6 clove shallot
4 clove garlic
2 fresh bay leaves
Pinch of salt
4 pieces of crushed red chili ( optional )
Pound the garlic and shallot in a mortar or blend in a food processor until fine.
Pour the water in a pan, add the chicken and all the ingredients except for the bay leaves.
Add the bay leaves half way of the cooking. Cook the chicken for about 20 minutes until the chicken is tender and you’ll have a light caramelized chicken.
Put in a plate and serve immediately. It is nice to have it with cooked rice or mashed potato or baked potato.
*Note. You may exclude the dark sweet soy sauce and just add another tablespoon of palm sugar to get a rich sweet flavor.
As for the red chili, I could not help for my taste of spicy in the bacem.