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Petty's Sayur Lodeh

A Javanese vegetable soup that is rustic and earthy. My modern interpretation includes roasted vegetables and the addition of mushrooms, not usually included in the traditional recipe. 

Serves 2 - 4


  • 1 large (600gr) sweet potato

  • 1 aubergine

  • 200gr tiba tempeh, cut into bites size

  • 100gr runner beans, cut into 2cm width

  • 100gr chestnut or button mushrooms, sliced into 4-5 pieces depending on the size of the mushrooms

For the bumbu or paste:


  • 70gr echalion shallots

  • 2 large cloves of garlic

  • 15gr fresh ginger

  • 10gr turmeric or 1 teaspoon dried turmeric

  • 7gr galangal sliced (you may use galangal powder if preferred)


Extra ingredients:


  • 1 stalk lemon grass, crushed and tied into a knot

  • 5 dried lime leaves

  • 250ml coconut cream

  • 100ml water

  • 1 teaspoon coriander powder

  • Small handful of basil



  1. Pre-heat oven to 180oC. Peeled the sweet potatoes and cut into half and cut into fat strips lengthwise

  2. Cut the aubergine into half and cut into fat strips lengthwise, around 4 pieces in one of the half parts.

  3. Place the cut sweet potatoes and aubergine on the baking tray. Season with salt and black pepper and drizzle with 2-3 tablespoons vegetable oil and bake for until soft for around 30 minutes.

  4. To make the paste. Traditionally we need to grind finely with pestle and mortal or but in the small blender for small quantity of ingredients and it will work. For experimental purpose, I am using micro grater which works.   Peeled the shallots and garlic and chopped finely.

  5. Peeled ginger, galangal and turmeric and simply grated with micro grater.

  6. Heat a pan, add the oil and chopped shalotts and garlic, saute for 2-3 minutes and the fine grated ginger, turmeric and galangal and saute for around 4 minutes. Stir all the time.

  7. Add the tempe and mix well and add 200ml coconut cream and 100ml water, Season with salt and black pepper. Bring to the boil and simmer for 5-7 minutes to let the tempe absorb all flavours of infused coconut cream.

  8. Add the mushroom and cook for another 5 minutes and add the sliced runner beans.

  9. Add the rest of the coconut cream to give creamy and thicker texture sauce. Check the final seasoning. Add a touch more salt and black pepper if necessary.

  10. To serve:  for 4:  Divide and place the sweet potatoes and aubergine on 4 different plates, divide the tempe mixture into the 4 plates. Garnish with basil and ready to serve!

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