Kitchen: Soto Ayam

Soto Ayam [2016:EO]

Soto Ayam [2016:EO]

Soto is one of Indonesian version of soup with spiced chicken or beef broth. It is normally served with hard boiled egg, rice, thin vermicelli noodle, fried shallot, chopped celery leaves, lime and sambal. There are many version of Indonesian soto, it depends on the place of origin. The differences normally can be seen through the type of broth, coconut milk broth or clear broth, as well as the type of meat which can be chicken, beef as well as offal.

I believe that there are more than 10 type of Indonesian soto. Those are including Soto Betawi with beef and coconut milk based broth, Soto Lamongan, Soto Kudus, Soto Mie Bogor, Soto Sulung Surabaya and also Soto Banjar. And today, I would like to share the recipe of Soto Ayam Yogya.


  1. 2 stalks of fresh lemon grass – crush
  2. 6 pieces of kefir lime leaves
  3. 3 pieces of bay leaves
  4. 5 pieces of candlenut (kemiri)
  5. 5 pieces of garlic
  6. 6 pieces of shallot
  7. 5 cm of turmeric
  8. 5 cm of  ginger (crush)
  9. 5 cm of galangal (crush)
  10. 1 tsp of  ground black pepper
  11. 1 tsp of coriander seeds
  12. 2 tbs of salt
  13. 1 tbs of sugar
  14. 1 chicken breast with bone
  15. 1 thin vermicelli noodle
  16. 1 cup of chopped celery celery
  17. 1.5 L of water
  18. 3 pieces of hard boiled egg
  19. 2 cup of bean sprout
  20. 2 cup of chopped white cabbage
  21. 1 lime  (slice it)
  22. 2 tomato (slice it)
  23. Chopped chilli

Soto's spices and herbs [2016:EO]

Soto’s spices and herbs [2016:EO]


  1. Place chicken in a saucepan. Add water, lemon grass, kefir lime leave, bay leaves, galangal and coriander seed.  Boil the chicken over medium-high heat. Reduce to medium-low heat. Cover and simmer it for 15 minutes;
  2. Place turmeric, ginger, shallot, garlic and candle nut into food processor and pulse them into thick paste;
  3. Add spiced paste, salt, sugar and ground black pepper into the boiled chicken and continue to boil it for 20 minutes. Remove the chicken and shred it;
  4. Steam the bean sprout and white cabbage;
  5. Soak the vermicelli noodle into hot water for 5 minutes. Drain and pat it dry

How Serve Soto Ayam

  1. Place vermicelli noodle into a bowl. Add shredded chicken, bean sprout, white cabbage and slice tomato;
  2. Add filtered spiced chicken broth into the bowl;
  3. Add sliced hard boiled egg, chopped celery and fried shallot as topping;
  4. Serve it with chopped chili and lime.

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Indonesia: Jamu, Vagina and Libido

A traditional homemade jamu seller in Pasar Pujokusuman, Yogyakarta

A traditional homemade jamu seller in Pasar Pujokusuman, Yogyakarta [2013: E O]

Since I was child, I have been introduced to jamu by my parents.  Nearly every day, my grandmother always bought me a glass of kunir asem (kunyit asam) or beras kencur from Bu Tarmi, a neighbor of mine who made homemade jamu.   Beras kencur is believed to help me to overcome coughing; while kunir asem is believed to cool down the body from fever.

Jamu is a traditional herbal medicine, which is made from parts of plant either from its roots, leaves, fruit and also bark; such as tamarind, turmeric, ginger, papaya leaf, curcuma and also bratawali. Some of jamu tastes sweet but some of them taste very bitter.

As I understand, there are many type of jamu which are specifically made to cure illness such as stiffness, dizziness, fever, high cholesterol, itching, diabetes and hepatitis. While there are also some of jamu are made to improve sexual pleasure either to increase men sex drive such as purwoceng and tongkat ali  and also to tighten the women’s vagina such as galian rapat, rapat wangi or empot ayam.

A traditional homade jamu seller was making a glass of galian rapat, which is believed to tighten vagina

A traditional homade jamu seller was making a glass of galian rapat, which is believed to tighten [2012: E O]

Unfortunately since I moved to Bali then to Jakarta, I could not find any good homemade jamu. Many of those jamu just tastes like a glass of mineral water with a little bit of food coloring. Or perhaps, I just have not found the proper place that sells proper  homemade jamu.

Other than that, despite the fact there are many instant jamu sold in the pharmacy or supermarket, I would not buy it because it does not have the same taste as the homemade jamu. I just want a real homemade jamu. Period!

Therefore whenever I visit Yogyakarta, I often try to go to Pasar Pujokusuman to buy a homemade jamu from an old lady, who has been selling  for many years [unfortunately, I have never asked what her name is] . She always is concocting the remedy as the customer order the jamu so she can make a fresh glass of jamu for the customer.

'I would not make jamu galian rapat for unmarried woman'  said a traditional homemade jamu seller.

‘I would not make jamu galian rapat for unmarried woman’ said a traditional homemade jamu seller [2012: E O]

Every time I visit her stall in Pasar Pujokusuman, I always buy a glass of galian rapat, galian singset and also kunyit sirih. But oddly enough, if a female customer wants to buy a glass of galian rapat, rapat wangi or empot ayam [type of jamu which is believed to tighten the vagina], she always asks the customer whether she is married or not, instead of asking whether she is virgin or not. Weird, isn’t?

I wonder if she would ask a male customer, who wants to buy purwoceng or tongkat ali jamu [type of jamu which is believed to increase male sex drive], the same questions. *sigh*

Well I guess as I am living in a ‘religious’ country, consuming galian rapatrapat wangi or empot ayam is considered to be sinful if you are not married because it is then  letting somebody to do a free sex with a good quality vagina. But who gives a damn about it anyway?! You can always lie about your marital status just for a glass of homemade jamu. No?

So if you have never tried to drink jamu or you wanna tighten your vagina or increase the sex drive,  you better try it. I can tell you that it works well to my body. Other than that, it tastes good and very cheap.

Drinking a glass of fresh homemade 'jamu galian rapat'

Drinking a glass of fresh homemade ‘jamu galian rapat’ [2012: E R]

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