Tempeh rendang

Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves


Appears in

Jackfruit and Blue Ginger

Jackfruit and Blue Ginger

By Sasha Gill

Published 2019

  • About

Rendang is not, strictly speaking, a curry. It does not come swimming in gravy, but is instead quite thick – rich with coconut and sharp from the tamarind. While this is often partnered with Nasi lemak, you can also enjoy it with Compressed rice and Sambal.

Prep time: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes


  • ¼ cup (25 g) desiccated coconut
  • 4 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
  • 3 shallots, roughly chopped
  • 2.5 cm ginger, roughly chopped
  • 1 lemon grass stalk, white part only, roughly chopped
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon grated palm sugar (or brown sugar)
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup (125 ml) coconut milk
  • 2 teaspoons tamarind paste
  • 1 star anise
  • 2 cloves
  • 1 block (200 g) tempeh, sliced


In a non-stick frying pan over medium heat, dry-fry the coconut until it is brown and fragrant. Transfer to a food processor or blender and add the garlic, shallots, ginger, lemongrass, ground spices, sugar, salt, coconut milk, tamarind and ½ cup (125 ml) water. Blitz everything together to make a smooth sauce.

Pour into a saucepan over medium-high heat and add the star anise, cloves and tempeh. Bring to the boil, then lower the heat and simmer gently for 10–15 minutes before serving. For a thicker rendang, continue to simmer and reduce for another 10 minutes.