Negeri Sembilan people are famous for its spicy dishes and love spicy food. Bird’s eye chili, in particular, has been synonymous with their cuisine. In this recipe, you can reduce the amount of chili as you like. As you notice I also used “Daun Puding Hitam”. The leaf of the tree is often used in Negeri Sembilan cooking especially chicken rendang and is known by the locals for its mild laxative property. Daun puding hitam is basically quite tasteless but it has this kind of hearty and calming aroma that make it suitable for Negeri Sembilan cooking.
Serves: 6 / Preparation Time: 25 mins / Cooking Time: 1 hour 50 mins
500 grams chicken
5 bird’s eye chili – you can lessen this if you can’t stand spicy food
5 dried chili – soak, wash, remove the seeds and cut into small pieces
2-inch fresh turmeric – remove the outer layer and cut into small pieces
2-inch galangal – remove the outer layer and cut into small pieces
3 stalks fresh lemongrass
1 large onion – cut into small pieces
3 garlic cloves – cut into small pieces
Water – sufficient enough for blending the ingredients
2 tablespoons vegetable oil for cooking
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 boxes coconut milk / 500 ml fresh coconut milk
1 packet kerisik (this is toasted grated coconut flesh where you can buy a packet from Asian supermarket)
Salt to taste
Daun puding hitam (Black pudding leaves)- optional
Kaffir lime leaves – optional
Tumeric fresh leaves – optional
Blend all ingredients A into a very fine paste. Add a little bit of water to ease the blending process.
Use half of the spice paste to marinate your chicken. Let it rest for half an hour for the chicken to marry together with the delicious aromatic spice.
Take out a wok and pour in cooking oil. Let it heat and then pour another half of the paste. Start sautéing until it turns fragrant.
Then put the marinated chicken into the wok and let it cook for about 3-4 minutes. Stir slowly.
Then pour the fresh coconut milk and bring it to simmer under gentle heat (NEVER cook coconut milk under high heat as it will certainly curdle and the curd is not good at all).
Let the stew cook for an hour. You can also start to season the stew with salt, sugar and put in kerisik this time forward.
If you like, you can also put in kaffir leaves and turmeric leaves that have been sliced thinly. Original Negeri Sembilan rendang does not use these leaves.
When the stew starts to thicken (this rendang should be dry as per the original recipe but I like my rendang to have a little bit of gravy ), throw in daun puding hitam, stir slowly and let it cooks for another 5-6 minutes.
Now your Classic Negeri Sembilan Chicken Rendang is done and ready to be served.
This dish is best served with warm plain rice, nasi lemak or with ketupat/nasi impit (rice dumpling). This is a very hearty and rich dish, so if you are conscious about your waistline, eat it in a small amount, or else forget about your diet and enjoy the delicious food.