Apr 22, 2013

Selada Ayam Bami

Selada Ajam Bami

Now and then I run into unique books. Books that leave an impression and are so much more than just plain cook books. This is one of them.

The book is called Boekoe Bangsa, which means ‘Book of the family‘, and really, it’s the perfect name for it. It’s a book filled with beautiful, heartwarming and inspiring stories from Indonesian, Indonesian-Chinese and Moluccan families. In Dutch, though.

It’s a book about families celebrating food, traditions, culture and the love they feel for each other and the countries they originate from. And to top all that, it’s chockfull of amazing family recipes and beautiful photography.

This Indonesian chicken, vegetable and bami salad is only one of many amazing recipes you’ll find throughout this book. I’ve eaten so many good chicken salads in my life, but none of them comes even close to this one.

If you want to impress family and friend, and I know you do, you really need to make this. It’ll be a hit, trust me.

 

Ingredients:

 

Chicken Salad:

1 pound chicken breasts
12oz/350gr bami noodles
1 slice gula jawa /palm sugar (2oz/50gr)
1 heaping tsp sambal oelek
1 tbsp lime juice
1 tsp fish sauce
1 garlic clove

 

Vegetables:

1 large green bell pepper
4 spring onions
1 large carrot
1 cup bean sprouts

 
Dressing:

3 tbsp peanut oil
3 tbsp sweet chilli sauce
4 tbsp fresh lime juice
1 1/2 tsp fish sauce

 

Directions:

It’s rare for me to buy a cookbook, much less rave about it. But I love this book! (no, they’re not paying me)
Selada Ajam Bami

Gula Jawa, as it’s called in the Netherlands. Palm sugar. Wonderfully sweet, creamy and caramelly.
Selada Ajam Bami

 
We’re going to cook our chicken breasts in a not so traditional way. Your chicken will be out of this world good, mark my words!
 

Break up the palm sugar and put it in a non-stick skillet.
Selada Ajam Bami

Add the crushed garlic and fish sauce to the palm sugar.
Selada Ajam Bami

The sambal oelek. If you don’t have it on hand, or if you can’t buy it, you can use sriracha in stead.
Selada Ajam Bami

Squeeze in the fresh lime juice.
Selada Ajam Bami

Gently heat it until the palm sugar melts.
Selada Ajam Bami

Let the mix simmer for a minute or two to caramelise it.
Selada Ajam Bami

 
We’re gonna cook our chicken breasts in this mix!
 

Add your chicken, lower the heat and cook the chicken for roughly 20 minutes, while flipping now and then.
Selada Ajam Bami

Each time you flip them over, they will get a deeper colour and more intense flavour. Smells crazy good at this point.
Selada Ajam Bami

Keep going until the chicken is cooked through. Core temperature needs to be 75C° (167F°).
Selada Ajam Bami

Transfer them to a plate and let them cool off. These are the best chicken breasts, ever. I mean, look at them!
Selada Ajam Bami

 
This is also my new favourite dressing. It’s fresh, mellow, creamy and mildly sweet. Darn good.
 

Mix the peanut oil with the sweet chilli sauce, lime juice and fish sauce. That’s it.
Selada Ajam Bami

The vegetables! I added some bean sprouts that weren’t part of the original recipe but added a lovely crunch.
Selada Ajam Bami

Wash your vegetables, peel the carrot and turn everything into thin strips.
Selada Ajam Bami

 
I’m sure you can just briefly blanch the vegetables, or maybe stir-fry them, but in the original recipe they steamed them. So did I.
 

I filled my wok (it came with a huge steam basket) with salted water and brought it to a boil.
Selada Ajam Bami

Add the bell pepper and carrot strips.
Selada Ajam Bami

Steam them for about 3 minutes. For me that was perfect, they were bite tender.
Selada Ajam Bami

I added the bean sprouts for the last 30 seconds.
Selada Ajam Bami

 
Let the vegetables cool off.
 

I used the salted water in my wok to cook the bami noodles. Follow the instructions on the package.
Selada Ajam Bami

 

Thinly slice the chicken breasts.
Selada Ajam Bami

 
As soon as everything is fully cooked and sliced, you mix it all in a big bowl, add a few spoonsfull of dressing and serve the rest on the side.
 

I served this amazing salad with a plate full of Shanghai spring rolls. It’s utterly divine!
Selada Ajam Bami

Selada Ayam Bami
Ingredients
    Chicken Salad:

    1 pound chicken breasts
    12oz/350gr bami noodles
    1 slice gula jawa /palm sugar (2oz/50gr)
    1 heaping tsp sambal oelek
    1 tbsp lime juice
    1 tsp fish sauce
    1 garlic clove

    Vegetables:

    1 large green bell pepper
    4 spring onions
    1 large carrot
    1 cup bean sprouts

    Dressing:

    3 tbsp peanut oil
    3 tbsp sweet chill sauce
    4 tbsp fresh lime juice
    1 1/2 tsp fish sauce

Directions
    Break up the palm sugar and put it in a non-stick skillet along with the crushed garlic, sambal oelek, fish sauce and lime juice. Gently heat it until the palm sugar melts then simmer it for 2 minutes to caramelise it. Add your chicken breasts, lower the heat and cook the chicken for roughly 20 minutes, while flipping now and then, until the chicken is cooked through and the core temperature is 75C° (167F°). Transfer them to a plate and let them cool off.

    Mix the peanut oil with the sweet chilli sauce, lime juice and fish sauce and set the dressing aside. Wash your vegetables, peel the carrot and turn everything into thin strips. I’m sure you can just briefly blanch the vegetables, or perhaps stir-fry them, but in the original recipe they were steamed.

    Steam the vegetables in roughly 3 to 4 minutes, until bite tender. Add the bean sprouts for the last 30 seconds. Let the vegetables cool off. Cook the bami noodles in salted water according to the instructions in the package.

    Thinly slice the chicken and mix it with the bami noodles, vegetables and a few tbsp dressing. Serve the rest of the dressing on the side. Even better when served with crunchy Shanghai spring rolls and sweet chilli sauce!

Meal type: Main Course, Lunch, Poultry
Servings: 4
Copyright: © kayotickitchen.com

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    21 Comments »

    1. 1

      I figure this will be nice for lunch! Will the fish sauce make it very fishy? Or is it still tolerable among Dutch colleagues at work? :P

      Yessica on Apr 22, 2013 @ 1:04 pm Reply
      1. I promise you there will not even be a hint of fish flavour to it :)

        Kay on Apr 22, 2013 @ 1:58 pm Reply
        1. Cool! Thanks for the recipe, Kay. 

          Yessica on Apr 22, 2013 @ 2:13 pm Reply
    2. 2

      Never tried before to make a salad out of bahmi noodles. This looks like a keeper. On another note I couldn’t help but notice a spoon. on your pic You eat that salad with a spoon ?

      arrisje on Apr 22, 2013 @ 2:15 pm Reply
      1. No, but this was a serving platter… I usually use a serving spoon to transfer food to a dinner plate :)

        Kay on Apr 22, 2013 @ 2:17 pm Reply
    3. 3

      Looks lovely! As a vegetarian, I will try making it with tempeh :).

      Kate on Apr 22, 2013 @ 2:17 pm Reply
      1. Oh, please do let me know if that works. I’m generally not a really great fan of tempeh, but this might make it much more interesting to eat!

        Kay on Apr 22, 2013 @ 2:25 pm Reply
    4. 4

      Palm sugar is difficult to find where I live, could I subsitute brwon sugar?
       

      Tammi on Apr 22, 2013 @ 5:47 pm Reply
      1. Absolutely! You’ll miss the butterscotch/caramelly flavour palm sugar has, but you can definitely use that instead. 

        Kay on Apr 22, 2013 @ 6:22 pm Reply
    5. 5

      Very cool! Sugar already make things better, brown sugar is the next level, but palm sugar is gonna be amazing. I cant wait to try this recipe. Sometimes you just know something is delicious by only looking at the process.
      Btw where can you find a bamboo packaged palm sugar like that? Which toko in NL did you get? I can only find the one that comes in plastic bag.

      foodlover on Apr 23, 2013 @ 12:23 am Reply
      1. I can buy this in every toko in Gouda and even the Jumbo sells it here.

        Kay on Apr 23, 2013 @ 8:50 am Reply
    6. 6

      Hi, Kay,
      This was a big succes. I made it for my parents and they loved it. This one is a keeper!!

      Tessa on Apr 27, 2013 @ 9:30 pm Reply
    7. 7

      Loved the way you described the recipe step by step with that killer photography skill of yours ! Thanks a bunch for such a lovely post :)

      Nusrat Azim on Apr 28, 2013 @ 6:05 am Reply
    8. 8

      Chicken looks just awesome!

      Indrė on May 3, 2013 @ 8:21 am Reply
    9. 9

       Kay, I love this dish and its a firm favourite!  One question – we have friends coming over for lunch and one only eats fish so a sort of vegetarian!  Would fish work and if so which one? Thanks Deon.

      Deon van Schalkwyk on Jun 24, 2013 @ 11:31 pm Reply
      1. No idea! Haven’t tried it. You’d need a very firm and solid fish to not be completely overruled by all these flavors.

        Kay on Jun 25, 2013 @ 10:21 am Reply
    10. 10

      Is there an English or Indonesian version of Boekoe Bangsa? I am very interested in getting either one. Thanks.

      Cara on Aug 13, 2013 @ 11:40 am Reply
      1. I don’t think there is, no.

        Kay on Aug 13, 2013 @ 11:50 am Reply
    11. 11

      if “bangsa” in used as an indonesian word in the title’s context i think it means nation or ethnic group?
      i’m not going to bother you with any more technicalities ;)…so excited about your recipes, and thanks for posting them! 
      btw, i’m excited that there’s a new “old Chinese-Indonesian” baba/nyonya food or old indonesian food fad that’s starting to become popular in the indonesian dining out scene. I am actually hoping to one day try indonesian food in the netherlands to see if it’s more authentic indonesian food and more like the way things were cooked “back in the day”.

      pam on Sep 7, 2013 @ 10:57 pm Reply
    12. 12

      Literally, the meaning of the word “bangsa” is nation. I don’t know how the author of the book explained the meaning of bangsa, but the Indonesian word for family is “keluarga”. Sorry if i sound very fussy about this. One mistakenly translated word can lead to misunderstanding of the whole meaning particularly in language. By the way, i’ve tried some of your recipes and they came out awesome! Our family favorite is your garlic sauce recipe. And i will definitely try to make this selada ayam bami.

      Imas Ruben on Oct 10, 2013 @ 2:08 am Reply
      1. The author of the book explained it as ‘Book of the family”, but in all honesty, I caught some other really big errors in the books as well. Also recipe wise. It’s a great book filled with stories and photographs, but apparently the recipes have been created by a South African cook totally unfamiliar with Indonesian food, and it shows in quite a few recipes as well!

        Kay on Oct 10, 2013 @ 11:02 am Reply

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