Sweet & Tangy Chicken Curry (Malbi Ayam) ala Dentist Chef

sweet tangy chicken curry recipe

Sweet and Tangy Chicken Curry

Malbi is a sweet curry stew that consist a rich spice with a sweet and slighly tangy after taste.  Malbi is a herrtitage recipe from Palembang, South Sumatra Province in Indonesia. Malbi is similiar to Smoor (Dutch) or Semur (Indonesian) that usually made of beef. Slightly different with my Semur Daging Sapi (Indonesian Braised Beef Shank in Sweet Soy Sauce), Malbi contains  coconut milk and much more richer spice, while Semur is more peppery. Despite the common taste of malbi, i like it even more with rather peppery and tangy  aftertaste. The sweet taste comes from kecap manis or sweet soy sauce and palm sugar while the tangy or polite sour after taste comes from asam gelulur or dried sliced Garcinia atroviridis. You can replace the asam gelugur with tamarind paste or lime juice.

sweet chicken curry recipe

Sweet Chicken Curry in Thick and Rich Coconut Milk & Spices

Malbi ayam or chicken sweet and tangy curry cooking technique is similiar to Kalio (Brown Rendang or Stewed Beef in Spicy Brown Coconut Curry). The chicken is stewed or slow cooked with a constant gently stirring to prevent the spices burned out. Gently heat is needed to make the coconut milk got caramelized and formed a thick and oily broth. Just like other typical Indonesian dish, this sweet chicken curry is usually serve with a lot of deep fried sliced shallot and chopped spring onion.

resep malbi ayam kari ayam manis

Malbi Ayam Khas Palembang

I like to make sweet chicken curry with ayam kampung or malay chicken.  I like to cut the kampung chicken into  a bite size to reduce the cooking time.  Since the kampung chicken is leaner and rather though, you need about 1- 1.5 hours to make it tender and needed more if you cut it into regular size. If you using the regular chicken, it takes nothing more than 40 minutes.

sweet chicken curry indonesian chicken stew recipe

Sweet and Tangy Chicken Curry fron Indonesia


Sweet and tangy Chicken Recipe:

  • 1 kampung chicken (about 1 kg), cut into 20 section (bite size)
  • 2 daun salam (Indonesian bay leaves)
  • 2 sereh (lemongrass), bruised
  • 2 tbsp kecap manis (sweet soy sauce)
  • 2 tbsp gula merah (palm sugar)
  • 300 ml santan kelapa kental (thick coconut milk)
  • 2 slice asam gelugur *optional*
  • 1 tbsp kelapa sangrai (toasted and grounded coconut pulp) *optional*
  •  3 cm cinnamon stick
  • 1 star anise
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 2 cup  water
  • salt to taste

Sweet Chicken Curry Spice Paste Recipe:

  • 12 bawang merah (shallots)
  • 8 bawang putih (garlic)
  • 3 cabe merah (chillies) *optional*
  • 1 tbsp lada (white peppercorn)
  • 3 cm ginger
  • a pinch of fennel seed
  • a pinch of caraway seed


  • deep fried shallot
  •  chopped spring onion
  • cilantro leaves or flat leaves parsley


How to make sweet chicken curry :

  • Heat op oil in a heavy bottom sauce pan, saute the spice paste until fragrant
  • Add the bay leaves, cinnamon stick, star anise and coconut milk, continue to saute another 5 minutes
  • Add the chicken and the rest of ingredients, bring to boil
  • Simmer and continue stirring until the chicken is tender
  • Serve with garnish and steaming hot rice

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Resep Acar (Indonesian Sweet & Sour Dressing Salad) ala Dentist Chef

Resep acar (Indonesian Sweet & Sour Dressing Salad)

This is one of the authetic indonesian salad. Acar or Indonesian Sweet & Sour Dressing Salad used to served as an accompanion dish in any occations. Even a plate of simple nasi goreng or fried rice serve within acar. The sweet and sour dressing usually toss with the vegetables and let it sit for hours in the fridge. The remain dressing with the liquid from the vegetables can be use as and dressing too.

Timun / Japanese Cucumber (Kyuri), jullienne
Lobak/ Daikon, julienne
Kol putih/ Cabbage, jullienne
Kol Merah/ Red Cabbage, julienne
Wortel/ Carrot, jullienne
Bawang Bombay Merah,/Red Onion, jullienne
(Bean Sprout, Baby Corn, Young Mango, chilli padi)*Optional

Sweet and Sour Dresssing:
1 tsf cuka apel/ apple vinegar
3 tsf gula/ sugar
1 tsf garam/ salt
2 tsf lemon juice
2 tsf minyak biji anggur/ grapeseed oil

# In a big glass bowl, combine the veggies
# drizzle with the dressing
# keep it on the fridge for at least 6 hours
# drain out, serve it immidiately

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