Indonesia and Soto Ayam


I have never been to Indonesia but it is somewhere that I would like to go. Indonesia is made up of thousands of islands and the place that I want to go to is Sulawesi and in particular North Sulawesi. There is a Wildlife Sanctuary there called Tasiskoki Wildlife where they do wonderful work rescuing and rehabilitating wildlife and educating the public. This is just some of the work they do and it is my wish to go there as a volunteer at some stage in the future.

As an animal lover and an Irish woman when it comes to local food I think going vegetarian during my stay might be the best option. In Indonesia meat can come from just about any animal. In some ways you could argue that this is a good thing as this cuts down on the more Western style of factory farming and the problems that go with it and of course nothing goes to waste.

I believe that Soto ayam is usually served as a breakfast but there is so much in it that it is perfectly good enough as a main meal for me. I just love the flavours and aromas from this dish. There is meant to be a boiled egg served as part of the dish but while I did remember to cook it I forgot to add it to the actual dish. As it happened I didn’t need it anyway as this dish is so filling I had more than enough food without it.


Chicken (I used fillets but chicken pieces are probably better)

1.5 litres of water

1 lemongrass stem

2 keffir lime leaves

4 cloves of garlic

2 shallots + extra for garnishing

1 desertspoon of minced ginger

1 teaspoon cumin

1 teaspoon coriander

1/2 teaspoon black peppercorns

1/2 teaspoon turmeric

2 pieces galangal

Rice or rice noodles (I used Basmati rice)

1 can of beansprouts (or fresh if you have it)

Hard boiled egg to garnish


Place the chicken, lemongrass, lime leaves, half the garlic (sliced), and the galangal in a pot with the water. Bring to the boil and simmer until chicken is cooked and tender. Remove from heat, strain the liquid off, remove the chicken and tear into pieces. Meanwhile crush the other half of the garlic, shallots and the spices with a pestle and mortar until it forms a paste. You may need to add some oil. Heat a small amount of oil in a pan and add the paste. Heat for about 3 minutes then add the strained liquid from the chicken. (I cheated a little and also added a stock cube but if using chicken pieces there should be plenty of flavour from the skin and bones). Cook your rice or rice noodles according to directions on pack and fry your extra shallots. Place cooked rice/noodles in bowl and top with beansprouts chicken, hard boiled egg and fried shallots then spoon over with the liquid and enjoy. Alternatively you can add the beansprouts to the liquid for a few minutes before serving just to be sure that they are heated through.

Join me next time for Polish night.



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I have always been fascinated by other countries and their cultures and have wanted to travel. Ten years ago at the age of 42 I got my first passport and my travel adventures began. Over the next few years I travelled both for holiday and to live abroad. Now I am in the position that for now at least I have to put my travel experiences on hold. However I still have a huge desire to learn and experience as much as I can about other countries and their cultures. Until I can tavel again I will feed this desire by learning as much as I can through research and communicating with people from other countries so that when the time is right I will be well prepared for the adventures to come.

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