As for every curry dish, it is best eaten with bread like side dish, mainly because bread soaks up the gravy and it is undeniable that the gravy is what makes any curry or Rendang outstanding in flavor. There are many types of flour dough made products that can be the choice of a curry person and the options are endless from Roti Canai, Murtabak, plain white bread to rice itself. I have chosen Roti Jala for today's dish as I have never made it before despite having bought the mould 5 years ago and I love the turmeric yellow color which goes well with the brown Rendang. 'Jala' is another Malay word that means Net as in fish net and this particular Roti is named so for its particular appearance that resembles a web of net all mingled together with its holes randomly scattered.
In the whole process of preparing this dish with its accompanying Roti, I would say the Roti was the one that tested my patience and I found the Roti Jala mould difficult to swirl around and some of its funnel holes simply get clogged after a few rounds of the batter filling. I was about to give up after making the third piece when I suddenly remembered I have a better tool to do the job. I used the usual condiment ketchup bottle that they have at the American Diners to complete the next 10 Roti Jala. It was much easier to handle and squirts out even amount of batter everytime. Still, getting one piece to cook nicely with slight burnt color is not an easy thing to do as each piece has to be made and cooked individually and it takes up a long time to make 12 to feed everyone in my household. Of course, I got the rice cooked too as I wasn't ready to spend another 45 minutes to do another round of 12 more Roti Jala!
The results were good and Curry and his father really enjoyed dipping those Roti into the spicy Rendang. Missy E was poking her fingers through all the holes of the Roti and munching away. It will be sometime before she picks up the spicy taste of Rendang though!
Recipe for Lamb Rendang
4 cloves garlic, minced
thumbsize knob of ginger, minced
2 tsp Chinese 5 spice powder
15 to 20 dried red chillis
3 tbsp cumin powder
2 tbsp coriander powder
2 tsp galangal powder
1 tsp tumeric powder
4 to 5 red shallots, minced
1 tbsp shrimp paste
2 tbsp tamarind paste
4 oz unsweetened dessicated coconut
2 -1/2 cups of water
1 can coconut milk
1)Cut lamb leg into chunks and marinate overnight with garlic, ginger and all the cumin,coriander,galangal, tumeric & 5 spice powder.
2)Bake/Toast the dessicated coconut in oven till brown and fragrant (350F). Leave to cool.
3)Heat pot on medium and fry the shallots and dried chillies with oil. Add in the lamb chunks and stir fry for 10 minutes, turning evenly. Add in tamarind paste and shrimp paste an coat evenly. Cook for 5 minutes.
4)Add in water and simmer for 30 to 45 minutes or till meat is tender and sauce is boiled down to 1/3 of water content.
5)Add in coconut milk and simmer for 5 minutes.
6)Add in toasted dessicated coconut by sprinkling to get the dry consistency of your choice.
7)Serve with boiled rice or Roti of your choice.
Serves: 3 to 5
Recipe for Roti Jala
Makes: approximately 12 to 15 Roti Jala (thin)