JAKARTA (THE JAKARTA POST/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - Nasi padang (Minang-style rice with various side dishes) is among the most popular local cuisines in Indonesia.
The dish is loved by many. A Norwegian singer, Audun Kvitland Rostad, even created an ode to nasi padang last year.
Despite its popularity, there are many unknown things about the dish. Marco Padang Peranakan restaurant executive chef Marco Lim shares three interesting facts about nasi padang with The Jakarta Post.
Padang's curly red chilli has longer life
Although it is easy to find curly red chillis on Java island, Lim says the ingredient that originates in Padang, West Sumatra, has different characteristics - a brighter colour and low water content. Due to these characteristics, ground Padang curly red chillis can be kept in the fridge for up to six months.
Rendang is a cooking method
In 2011, CNN readers voted rendang the world's most delicious food. However, rendang is not the name of the dish, but a cooking method.
Coconut milk is employed in this technique, which can be used to cook different types of food, including beef, chicken, egg and unripe jackfruit.
Padang food is considerably healthy
Padang food is commonly associated with high cholesterol and unhealthy dishes.
Lim says that Padang dishes, such as gulai tunjang (beef tendon cooked in thick coconut milk), are considerably healthy.
"The beef tendon contains collagen", which is good for the body, says Lim. He added that it is the reheating process that makes Padang food bad for health.