Sep 24, 2014

Indonesian Glazed Meatballs

Kay's Indonesian Meatballs

I so wanted to call these ‘keigoeie ballen’ (that’s Dutch to you, I know), or perhaps even ‘awesome sauce’. Bottomline: these are the real deal. So crazy good that the guys continue to fight over who gets the last meatball. Silly men. Me, of course.

Here’s how it started: a couple of weeks ago I ran into Lonny Gerungan’s Kecap sauce during grocery shopping, and on a whim I decided to buy a bottle—I generally have a hard & fast rule not to buy prefab stuff, but this was Lonny, man!

I found his meatball recipe online in which he used mashed potatoes instead of breadcrumbs. Suffice to say this peaked my interest. Wow, holy cow. Hands down the best structure, ever. I’ve been religiously making meatballs using mashed potatoes ever since.

But back to the here and now: this is Kayotic Kitchen. I can’t get away with: ‘Oh, just buy a bottle of sauce, toss it in after the meatballs are done and call it a day!’. I envisioned an angry mob gathering in front of my house carrying pitchforks and torches and that was enough to send me straight back into the kitchen.

Tried several versions, but it wasn’t until I tasted this one that I could barely contain myself and yelled “Nailed it!”. For the meatballs I used the spice mix from my Dutch meatballs & gravy recipe, sans the mustard.

These meatballs are fluffy and tasty and the sauce covering them is nothing short of heavenly.

 

Ingredients:

 

Meatballs:

21oz/600gr ground meat (I used half pork/half beef)
5.2oz/150gr mashed potatoes (preferably salt-free)
1 or 2 tsp sambal badjak (or another sambal)
2 tbsp sweet soy sauce
1 large egg
1/2 tsp white pepper
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tbsp ground nutmeg (or a really good pinch freshly grated)
1 tsp ground coriander
 

Kecap Sauce:

1 small onion
1 red chili pepper
2 garlic cloves
1” ginger, grated
1 tsp ground coriander
1/4 tsp trassi bakar
2 tbsp gula djawa
4 tbsp sweet soy sauce (kecap)
1 cup beef broth
1 tbsp corn starch mixed with 2 tbsp water
2 tbsp peanut oil
salt & pepper

 

Directions:

Finely mince the onion and chili pepper. Remove the seeds or leave them in for more zing. Grate the ginger and mince the garlic.
Kay's Indonesian Meatballs

 
We start by making the bumbu (wet spice mix). I use my tjobek for this but you can also use your immersion blender or food processor.
 

Add the trassi bakar and ground coriander to the chopped ingredients. Trassi is quite important here for it will give the dish its characteristic Indonesian flavour. I strongly suggest you do not omit it, as offensive as it may smell uncooked.
Kay's Indonesian Meatballs

Mash until it’s a puree and the flavours are blended nicely.
Kay's Indonesian Meatballs

Get your beef broth ready. I prefer to use liquid gula djawa in sauces these days. Use about 1 oz/25 to 30gr if you use a solid piece of palm sugar.
Kay's Indonesian Meatballs

Heat the oil (this should be a neutral flavoured oil), and sauté the bumbu over low to medium heat for 4 to 5 minutes while stirring often.
Kay's Indonesian Meatballs

Pour in the 2 tbsp gula djawa.
Kay's Indonesian Meatballs

And the 4 tbsp kecap. I use ABC kecap, it’s sickening sweet and sticky but it works.
Kay's Indonesian Meatballs

It’ll be a dark brown gooey and sugary substance. Let it simmer for 30 to 60 seconds.
Kay's Indonesian Meatballs

Pour in the beef broth.
Kay's Indonesian Meatballs

Bring it to a boil, temper the heat and let it gently simmer for 5 minutes.
Kay's Indonesian Meatballs

Bit by bit you pour in the cornstarch mixed with water. Let the sauce cook for 1 more minute then turn off the heat. Season the sauce with salt & pepper to taste and set it aside.
Kay's Indonesian Meatballs

Laugh all you want but I use my standmixer to mix my ground beef. Works like a charm and keeps my hands clean for my camera.
Kay's Indonesian Meatballs

 
Done laughing yet?
 

Then it dawned on me that I didn’t take photos of adding the salt, pepper and nutmeg. Imagine them there, okay? Anyway, add those and top them off with the mashed taters, sambal and ground coriander.
Kay's Indonesian Meatballs

Pour in the 2 tbsp kecap. Indonesian dishes are often quite sweet. Probably why my son loves it so much.
Kay's Indonesian Meatballs

Knead the mix well. See, my hands are still clean… what about yours?
Kay's Indonesian Meatballs

I used my size 12 ice scoop (love that one for meatballs) and got 8 meatballs out of it.
Kay's Indonesian Meatballs

 
You can cook them on the stove top in some oil or butter, but I decided to bake them in the oven on top of a grilling rack. I gave them 25 minutes at 200Cº (400Fº). If you make larger meatballs they’ll obviously need more cooking time.
 

As soon as the meatballs are done you transfer the sauce to a bigger pan, heat it and just drop those balls in there.
Kay's Indonesian Meatballs

Drop ’em all! Getting hungry all over again seeing this.
Kay's Indonesian Meatballs

Oh, how I love those darn meatballs.
Kay's Indonesian Meatballs

Roll them around in the sauce. Shake them. Make ‘em do flip-flops for all I care, just make sure they’re all covered in sauce. Simmer them for a minute or 3.
Kay's Indonesian Meatballs

Who’s laughing now, huh?
Kay's Indonesian Meatballs

Best served with steamed rice, stir-fried paksoi and acar ketimun.
Kay's Indonesian Meatballs

Indonesian Glazed Meatballs
Ingredients
    Meatballs:

    21oz/600gr ground meat (I used half pork/half beef)
    5.2oz/150gr mashed potatoes (preferably salt-free)
    1 or 2 tsp sambal badjak (or another sambal)
    2 tbsp sweet soy sauce
    1 large egg
    1/2 tsp white pepper
    1 1/2 tsp salt
    1/2 tbsp ground nutmeg (or a really good pinch freshly grated)
    1 tsp ground coriander
     
    Kecap Sauce:

    1 small onion
    1 red chili pepper
    2 garlic cloves
    1” ginger, grated
    1 tsp ground coriander
    1/4 tsp trassi bakar
    2 tbsp gula djawa
    4 tbsp sweet soy sauce (kecap)
    1 cup beef broth
    1 tbsp corn starch mixed with 2 tbsp water
    2 tbsp peanut oil
    salt & pepper

Directions
    We start by making the bumbu. I use my tjobek for this but you can also use your immersion blender or food processor. Finely mince the onion and chili pepper. Remove the seeds or leave them in for more zing. Grate the ginger and mince the garlic. Add the trassi bakar and ground coriander to the chopped ingredients. Trassi is quite important here for it will give the dish its characteristic Indonesian flavour. I strongly suggest you do not omit it, as offensive as it may smell uncooked. Mash until it’s a puree and the flavours are blended nicely.

    Get your beef broth ready. I prefer to use liquid gula djawa these days. Use about 1 oz/25 to 30gr if you use a solid piece of palm sugar. Heat the oil (this should be a neutral flavoured oil), and sauté the bumbu over low to medium heat for 4 to 5 minutes white stirring often. Pour in the gula djawa and kecap and let it simmer for 30 to 60 seconds before adding the beef broth. Bring it to a boil, temper the heat and let it gently simmer for 5 minutes. Thicken the sauxe with cornstarch and season with salt & pepper to taste.

    Combine all ingredients listed under Meatballs and knead well. I used my size 12 ice scoop and got 8 meatballs out of it. You can cook them on the stove top in some oil or butter but I decided to bake them in the oven on top of a grilling rack. I gave them 25 minutes at 200Cº (400Fº). soon as the meatballs are done you transfer the sauce to a bigger pan, heat it and just drop those balls in there. Let it simmer for a few minutes.

    Serve with steamed rice, stor-fried paksoi and acar ketimun.

Meal type: Indonesian, Main Course, Meat
Servings: 4
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