Lontong, a mixed vegetable curry dish, is my all-time favourite Malay food. The bright orangy gravy may look spicy, but it is actually very mild, slightly sweet and has a lovely coconut milk aroma. This is also a complete one dish meal, as lontong is usually served with compressed rice, which is yummy to eat with the flavourful lontong gravy. For a healthier version, you can either put lesser coconut milk or replaced partial/all the coconut milk with evaporated milk.
Nowadays, it is very convenient to buy instant lontong curry paste from supermarkets or wet market. Just need to add water/coconut milk with mixed vegetables and bring to boil. But today, I attempted this dish from scratch. Surprisingly, it is not that difficult to prepare lontong from scratch. The whole preparation and cooking process did not take very long either, given the fact that I hardly cook Malay food!
|All the lovely spices, colour and aroma|
(Adapted from "My Kitchen Snippets")- yields about 8 to 9 servings as a one-dish meal
First, we need to prepare the lontong paste:
40g dried prawns (soaked, reserved water to add into gravy)*
8 to 10 shallots*
5 dried chillies (soaked in hot water, removed seeds)
3 to 4 red chillies (removed seeds)
2 stalks lemon grass (cut into smaller pieces for easy blending)
1 piece ginger
1 small piece turmeric root
4 cloves garlic
4 candlenut, Buah Keras
[* or add more for a naturally sweeter and thicker lontong broth]
Gather the vegetables:
A small round cabbage, cut into big chunks
1 carrot, sliced
Half a turnip, bang kwang (cut into thick strips)
10 to 12 long beans, cut into 2 inches long
6 pieces bean curd puffs, cut into smaller pieces
3 medium-sized firm beancurd, cut into quarter, fried till golden
Other ingredients that you need:
1 packet of compressed rice, sliced and steamed
4 to 5 hard-boiled eggs, cut into half each
500ml thick coconut milk + 500ml water (or less coconut milk for a thinner gravy)
2 tsp stock granules, optional
Salt and sugar to taste
1) Blend the ingredients together to form a thick paste.
2) Fry the paste in a wok with 3 to 4 tbsp oil, over medium to low heat, till fragrant.
3) Pour in water (about 1500ml), stir and transfer to a deep pot. Bring the content to boil and add in all the vegetables (except long beans). Cook till the vegetables have softened and add in the green beans (so that the green beans will not be overcooked). Add stock granules, salt and sugar and bring to boil again.
4) Stir in the coconut milk mixture, simmer and bring to gentle boil. Turn off heat and let the pot of lontong sit for an least 30 minutes before serving (to allow the flavours to combine nicely).
I am submitting this post to Malaysian Food Fest - Kuala Lumpur Selangor Month, hosted by Shannon of Just As Delish.