Universe is such a wondrous thing. I remember on such a May day when the whole of Jakarta was shrouded in heat and the entire of Jakarta conspired against me, I rushed through the empty lobby of my office building hunting down for a cup of coffee. As soon as I stepped into the coffee shop, warm familiar smiles of barista greeted me. Found out that this place not as empty as the lobby. There is my Far East prince standing in line, waiting for his coffee. He drinks Americano without sugar, while I go for my usual hot caramel macchiato. He wore a sleek black shirt with khaki trouser…not royal robe, and no sword in his hands…only a cell phone. That’s how we met. One day he picked me up at the office. He comes with his Toyota Agya. At first, I was a bit surprised why he chooses this car over another luxurious car. One year has passed since the first time we met. Yesterday we met and he told me that he have to go, move to a new place. I knew one day this would happen but not too soon, it feels like we just met a couple days ago. There still many stories I want to share with him. Without I realised the tears falling down on my cheeks, did I cried because I’m sad that he will leave me or I just felt melancholy and in a habit of crying a lot. Instead of being honest when he asked me why I cried, I just told him that I felt sad because he has not taught me to cook his mum’s special butter chicken. He just laughs and told me that he will send me the recipe as soon as possible. He kissed my forehead and wave goodbye. My prince has gone to a never-never land, not with white elephant nor horse…he went with his Toyota Agya. I force myself to smile and say Latcho Drom* Real life isn’t glamorous, my story doesn’t end up happily ever after like a cinderella story. He comes, he goes and it seems natural. We are free human, we belong to this earth, to this temporal world. We do not belong to each other and we are too young to settle. I just need to settle my mind and back to my old rhythm. Make love affair with food instead man it is my nature.
Indian Fried Noodles
The first time I made this noodles when I had a leftover butter chicken in my fridge. I whipped it up with egg noodles, vegetables and adding more spices and a little bit kecap manis for taste and colour. You can add any combination of vegetables that suit you best and use honey or white sugar if you can’t find kecap manis.
- 250 gr boneless and skinless chicken thighs or breast
- 1/3 cup greek yoghurt
- 2 teaspoon coriander seeds
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
- 1/2 teaspoon black and white pepper seeds
- 1 teaspoon Kashmiri or red chilli powder
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
- 400 gr fresh egg noodles
- 1 carrot, cut into thin strips
- 100 gr string beans
- 100 gr Chinese cabbage
- 1 medium onion, thinly sliced into a strip
- 1 garlic, minced
- 2-inch ginger, minced
- 2 red chillies, thinly sliced
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1-2 tomatoes, chopped
- 1 tablespoon kecap manis
- Dry roast all the seeds in a pan until it releases the aroma. Grind the roasted seeds into a fine powder using mortar and pestle, mix the ground spices with the turmeric and chilli powder.
- Cut chicken into strips, marinate it with half of spices powder,lemon juice, yoghurt and salt for 20 minutes until 1 hour.
- Meanwhile, prepare all the other ingredients. Mince the onion, garlic, and ginger, set aside. Thinly sliced the carrot, clean up and cut the string beans, clean up and slice the white cabbage.
- Heat up a large size non-stick frying pan. Add the marinated chicken and cook it until lightly brown on both side. Remove chicken from the pan, set aside.
- Add about 1 tablespoon canola oil in a pan over high heat. Add onion, and fry for 1 min or until fragrant, add minced garlic and ginger, spices powder, and stir-fry until fragrant. Add tomato paste and stir to combine, add vegetables, and noodles. Stir-fry for about 1-2 minutes.