Beef Rendang - Rendang Daging
Rendang is one of well known dishes from Indonesia. It is originated from Minang or West Sumatra. Many Indonesians who live abroad don't have any patience to cook it. It takes hours to get the perfect rendang in taste and appearance.
The authentic rendang is enriched by turmeric leaves and asam kandis not turmeric root and tamarind. However, tamarind is common to be applied for substituting asam kandis in Java island.
To get the closest taste, I have planted my own turmeric roots in pots for yielding the leaves. Beside giving very nice flavour, turmeric leaf has benefits to be added in rendang:
1. Give coconut milk base foods a longer shelf life
2. Help neutralizing saturated fat contents due to the combination of coconut milk and beef
Asam kandis (Garcinia xanthochymus) is very popular to be used in Sumatran dishes. Since I don't have any access to get it. I substituted for kokkam or kokum or gorakha (Garcinia indica) which is popular in Western India food. For some people who familiar with South India food such as Kerala, kodampuli (Garcinia gummi-gutta) can be used as substitution. Asam kandis, kokum/kokam, kodampuli Kokum or kokam are belong to the same family of Garcinia or mangoosteen family, so they can be used interchangeably. Kokkam and asam kandis have the same colour, black. The difference, asam kandis is smaller than kokkam.
For me, it's very easy to get kokkam since Winnipeg has a large community of Indian. I usually buy a pacakge of kokkam from the Indian/Carribean grocers.
Seeing Indian (especially South Indian) ingredients in Sumatran dishes are not unusual. You may or may not know that Sumatra dishes especially Aceh, North Sumatra and West Sumatra have very heavy influence from South Indian cuisines.
Since Indonesian and American/Canadian cuts of beef are different, I'll use both terms. The picture of American cut can be seen at wikipedia while I'll put the Indonesian cut picture below the recipe.
Remember: I have twisted the recipe to where I live now, due to lacking fresh ingredient resources and efficiency work. Originally, this recipe uses fresh coconut milk that is yielded from grated coconut flesh, mix with coconut water and squeeze them to get a special taste of coconut milk. Also, it is added by grated coconut and toasted until really dry, then pureed or ground until smooth and oily
I found a great substitute for those, a combination of pure creamed coconut, pure canned young coconut water and coconut milk in UHT packages.