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Grilled salted fish rice is one of my husband favorite. Every time I made one, he’ll finish it in no time and ask me for the second serving with additional spoon of the salted fish.

This is actually a simple peasant dish, but has been getting popularity lately. So if you go to Jakarta, you can find it a nice looking restaurant. But actually you can do it in your own kitchen because it is pretty easy to cook and the result.. well nothing beats the aroma of coconut-lemongrass rice, and it gets better, it is served with  salty crunchy anchovy bits.DSC00999_final_lomo

So here we go…

Things you need:

  • 1 litre of rice (wash until clean)
  • 1/4 litre of water

For the rice :

  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 3 shallots
  • 125 gr coconut milk
  • 3 pieces of bay leaves
  • 1 stalk of lemongrass (cut it into 5 big pieces)

For the salted fish:

  • 5 pieces of  shallots (cut it into thin slices)
  • 200 gr anchovies
  • 2 stalk of green onion (cut into small pieces)
  • 1 red chilli
  • 1 green chilli
  • 4 thai chilli
  • 4 tbsp of vegetable oil

Banana leaves

Things you need to do:

Cook the rice. Using sauce pan stir fry the shallots until fragrant. Put in the rice into the pan and cook it together with the shallots for a short while to get the flavor, then add in the salt, lemongrass, bay leaves, water, and  coconut milk. Mix it all together until well combine. Lower the heat then cook it till the coconut milk and water is almost dried out.
Take out the rice from the pan and wrap it using a tea towel. Get your steamer pan, put in the steamer ring on and pour in some water , bring it to simmer. Put the wrapped rice on the steamer ring and close the pan. Steam it until the rice is fully cooked. Set aside.

Cook the anchovies. Wash the anchovies, dry it with paper towel. Stir fry the shallot with vegetable oil over a cooking pan till fragrant. Add in the anchovies, green onion and the chillies, mix well. Cook until the anchovies are a bit crispy. Set aside.

Assembling the rice. Get your banana leaves, give it a good wash, then dry it using paper towel. Cut the leaves to smaller rectangle shape. You are going to wrap one serving of the rice in it so don’t cut it too small. Turn on your stove to low heat and take the banana leave and give it a slight burn on both of the side (dont burn it too much). We only want to make the leaves to be more flexible so we can fold it easily. Once done, scoop your rice and put it on top of banana leave, top with a tablespoon of the anchovies and wrap it nicely. You can close the banana leave using tooth picks on both end.

Grill the wrapped rice over low heat until you get a bit of charred marks on the banana leaves. Serve it while hot with some fried shallot garnish.

Note: Best serve it with a sunny side up or Indonesian style fried chicken.

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