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Mushroom "Rendang"

By: Briana Salim

This week, bitesize is doing a vegetarian week, cooking up one veggie dish every day! To start off, we wanted to make our own version of Indonesian Rendang. A must-have crowd favorite in any Padang restaurants, Rendang is a spicy stewed beef dish which originated from West Sumatra, but has also gained popularity in Malaysia. We tweaked this dish by replacing what is traditionally chunks of beef with oyster mushrooms and baby potatoes. Since the traditional version is extremely difficult to make, we simply took the dish as an inspiration. With the limited pantry items we have, we cooked up this Rendang inspired dish -- though it is far from what would be considered a perfect Rendang back home, it did not disappoint as a delicious and savory thick curry. If you are looking for a new way to spice up your curry game with mushrooms and potatoes, give this recipe a try and let us know what you think!



  • 4 tbsp coconut oil

  • 400 ml coconut milk (1 can)

  • 400 ml water

  • 1 tbsp tamarind powder

  • 5 kaffir lime leaves

  • 4 stalks of lemongrass - bruised and knotted

  • 5 bay leaves

  • 1 cinnamon stick

  • 2-3 star anise

  • 1 potato (or 8 mini potatoes)

  • 12 oz oyster mushrooms

Spice paste (ground with mortar and pestle or blend with food processor)

  • 250g of shallots (around 15-20 shallots)

  • 10 garlic cloves

  • 100g of red chillies (we couldn’t find any at home so we used a bottled sambal terasi instead!)

  • 10 candlenuts

  • 2 inches ginger

  • 1 tsp turmeric powder

  • 1 tsp coriander seeds

  • 1 tsp cumin powder

  • salt and pepper to taste!

  • 2 inch galangal (we couldn’t find any but this is super recommended if you have some!)


  1. Heat 4 tbsp of coconut oil in a work over med-high heat and fry up the spice paste

  2. Add in 5 kaffir lime leaves, 4 stalks of lemongrass - bruised and knotted, 5 bay leaves, 1 cinnamon stick and 2-3 star anise

  3. Let it fry for about 3-5 minutes

  4. Add the oyster mushrooms and potatoes

  5. Add 400ml of coconut milk, 400ml of water and 1 tbsp of tamarind powder

  6. Keep stirring and bring to a boil

  7. Reduce the heat and keep it at a simmer with the pot uncovered (I left it for about 2 hours, stirring occasionally)

  8. Let it sit until the liquid has reduced and thickened! You should see the oil separate from the sauce.

  9. Serve with warm rice and a squirt of lime.

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