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Indonesian stir-fried vegetables (Oseng oseng sayuran)

Wok stir-fries are seen all across Asia in many forms. Indonesian cuisine has its fair share of them too.

I wanted to try this recipe because of how the vegetables are treated. they are shaved into thin strands so they resemble noodles. The sauce is light, there is no spice. The vegetables are barely cooked leaving a light crunch and lots of texture. This is the perfect side to a larger meat-filled meal.

I own quite a few cookbooks written by Sri Owen. She is the guru of Asian cooking, Indonesian, Thai and contemporary flavours from Asia. Her recipe for Laksa is phenomenal. Like her other cookbooks, I love this book, the recipes, and the presentation.

For more recipes from this cookbook click here.


2 tablespoons peanut oil or olive oil

1/2 onion, thinly sliced

2-3 garlic cloves, minced

1 teaspoon ground coriander seeds

1 teaspoon chilli powder

1 tablespoon light soy sauce

2 teaspoons tomato purèe

Salt, to taste

1 cup water

1 potato, peeled

2 carrots

1 small zucchini

1/2 red pepper, cut into thin strips

1/2 yellow pepper, cut into thin strips

6 yard-long beans, cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces

Thai basil, to garnish

Shred the potatoes using a mandolin to resemble thin pasta strands. It is best to use a mandolin or vegetable peeler for this so you get even strands. Store the shredded potatoes in water so they do not discolour.

Shred the carrots and zucchini to resemble thin pasta strands like above. Store on a plate.

Heat the oil in a large wok and add the onions and garlic. Fry on low heat for 3-4 minutes till the onions are very soft but have not taken on any colour.

Drain the potatoes in a colander and press down to get rid of any water. Add to the wok and cook on high for 4 minutes till the potatoes are half-cooked.

Add the ground coriander, and chilli powder, and toss well. Add the soy sauce, tomato purèe and salt and mix in well. Cook for 5-7 minutes with the lid on a medium flame till the potatoes are almost fully done and the sauce is thickened.

Add the water and bring to a boil. Add the rest of the vegetables and mix in well. cook for 3-4 minutes till the papers start to get soft. Take off the heat and turn it into a bowl. Garnish with Thai basil and serve immediately.

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