November 19, 2007

Indonesian Traditional Feast: Gemblong

One of childhood delicacies.

Maybe I have been talking much about my childhood, but isn't it wonderful to have a happy memory of early ages? We won't be back to that certain stage of age, no matter how much we want it. Once long gone, it's gone. But memories remain, kept in the very subconscious mind or perhaps kept in the heart when times were spent with loved ones and was being loved at the same time.

What about food? Well, I guess recipes can be invented, developed, then improved, I don't worry I won't meet that kind of childhood food anymore. Although more people of my generation of culture at this modern technology time tend to like what they find new and luxurious in the name of exploring new flavour, new taste, or new cuisine, still there are people out there who love spending time in the kitchen, trying, experimenting, and perhaps improving traditional foods.

Childhood food has a great bond with traditional values. I have no idea if children in my home-country at present are aware of what their parents ate at their times when they were young. If the parents don't want to re-enter the memories and share them with the kids, then the values might not be acknowledged, on the other hand, the values will be buried, forever. Sadly saying, but true. Kids todays are making friends with Mac Donald and choosing his burgers as their favourite meals rather than being humble talking about their mother's home-cooking.

However, I am still optimistic that there are wise mothers in Indonesia who still keep traditional cooking as well as traditional values and customs in the family who are thinking the same way: Bangsa yang besar adalah bangsa yang menghargai budayanya (to be a great nation is to appreaciate its cultures), with an addition: not only to appreciate, but also to keep.

I am sending this childhood delicacy to you who are coming to mingle with Meeta for her latest Monthly Mingle project. Have a great fun!

Gemblong (Caramel Sticky Rice Cakes)

Gemblong [gem-blong]. Another version of these cakes is made from black rice flour, very much found in Batavia (Jakarta today). Traditional cakes like this one are usually made from fresh ingredients. I used to recall that my grandmother used to have somebody to climb up her coconut trees and get the assorted coconuts for her, either young coconut (Indonesian: degan [de-gan]) or the old ones which contain more cream. She would use a coconut grater, made from a thick steel and she would grate the fresh cut coconuts and then squeeze the fresh coconut cream through a fine sieve, while I was sipping the young coconut juice and watching her. I know, I could only trace this back through my memory, the loveliest tunnel of my childhood years.

Source: Kue-Kue Indonesia. Yasaboga. Gramedia. Jakarta. 2007.

200g sticky rice (glutinous) flour,
100ml thin coconut cream, boiled,
2 Tbs tapioca flour,
2 tsp limestone water (I don't use),
half of fresh coconut, grated (I used 1 ½ cups desiccated coconut, long thread is fine),
1 tsp salt,
oil for frying

Combine the flours, limestone water, coconut, and salt, mix well. Add in the warm coconut milk gradually, mix well until the mixture resembles a dough. Roll into balls, then fry until golden brown. Remove and drain well. When all finished, coat them with the caramel.


This caramel is giving a rather different finished from the usual caramel for pouring onto a Paris-Brest or Pineapple Upside-Down cake, for instance. This caramel is used to coat the fried cakes and mix them well until all the sugar in the caramel becomes cooled which then gives crusted textured coat on the cakes. Because I don't have dark palm sugar, my finished caramel turns out paler than those of using dark ones. I used lighter colour of palm sugar, the only kind of palm sugar I can find in a sort-of-Asian-groceries in Pukekohe.

150g palm sugar,
75g white sugar,
50ml water

Put all ingredients in a saucepan or a frying pan (big enough to put all the fried cakes) on a medium heat until bubbly and thickens. Lower the heat, add in the fried cakes. Mix well to coat the cakes evenly. Remove and cool.

In Bahasa Indonesia

Gemblong Mbledos!

Nyobain bikin gemblong, eh ternyata gampang yah! Anak-anak suka banget sampai aku harus bikin dua kali. Sayang tepung ketannya habis, jadi cukup sekian aja, sampai ketemu lagi sama tepung ketan hehehe... Walaupun keterbatasan bahan yang menyarankan memakai kelapa parut segar, ya aku pake kelapa parut kering aja. Lumayaaaan. Hasilnya enak kok. Waktu digoreng, dalamnya empuk juga dan berasa kelapanya. Cuma memang membekas kelapa parutnya di hasil akhirnya.

Oh ya, apa memang kalo goreng gemblong suka mbledos ya? Kok waktu digoreng sebagian gemblongku mbledos dos! Sampe kaget aku, minyak muncrat ke mana-mana. Apa karena waktu meremas adonannya berupa bulatan-bulatan terlampau padat trus waktu digoreng ada udara yang terperangkap di dalamnya muncrat ke luar karena kepanasan, po piye yo? Temen-temen ada saran?

Panganan ini termasuk gluten-free, makanya bisa aku kasih anak-anak lebih banyak daripada kalau aku bikin kue-kue dari tepung gandum. Yuk, ikutan Monthly Mingle: Traditional Feasts-nya Meeta. Lihat di sini deh aturannya. Sekalian mempromosikan budaya Indonesia dan membukakan mata dunia kalau budaya kuliner kita sangat beragam dan enaaaaaaaaaaak!


Sumber: Kue-Kue Indonesia. Yasaboga. Gramedia. Jakarta. 2007.

200g tepung ketan,
100cc santan cair yang mendidih (aku pake coconut cream sekitar 60cc deh trus dicampur sama air mendidih),
2 sdM tepung sagu,
2 sdt air kapur sirih (ga punya!),
½ btr kelapa parut,
1 sdt garam,
minyak untuk menggoreng

Lapisan Gula:

150g gula merah,
75g gula pasir,
50cc air

Campur tepung ketan, kelapa parut, sagu, garam dan air kapur sirih, remas-remas. Tuangi santan hangat sedikit demi sedikit sambil diuleni sehingga bisa dibentuk. Buat bulatan sebesar telur ayam, sedikit dipipihkan. Goreng dalam minyak yang sedang panasnya sampai berwarna kecokelatan, angkat dan tiriskan.

Lapisan gula: didihkan air, gula merah dan gula pasir sampai larut, kental dan berbuih. Kecilkan api, masukkan glembong goreng sambil diaduk rata hingga gula membalut permukaan gemblong. Angkat dan dinginkan.

Gemblong: masyarakat Betawi lebih suka menggunakan ketan hitam bersalut gula putih.


Andaliman said...

ohh yeahhh... gemblonggg....:)
suka kangen sama aa' yg nawarin teh gembongnya tehh

katiez said...

We can only hope that the children of today will have, at least a few, nice memories of childhood food - that is not McDonald's!

Anonymous said...

Hallo...mungkin ngak gemblongnya meleduk karena minyaknya kepanasan? Soalnya kalo mau nggoreng bola2 wijen selalu pake minyak dingin, kalo kepanasan, yah itu....meleduk!! Semoga membantu..:)

Chris said...

Looks lovely! I love the new look!

Meeta said...

Oh my goodness this does look sticky and heavenly!