One of the popular traditional cuisine from West Sumatera is a dish with the name of ‘rendang’ in Minangkabau region. It is a special dish the processing meat using various spices where this dish is originally from Minangkabau.
Rendang is also known to be a durable food that can last for weeks, suitable for use in winter, the more delicious it will be. So that it is used as food aid for victims of natural disasters because it is long-lasting and has nutritional content. It is because rendang uses lots of natural spices. It is one of the secret for rendang to survive from one until four weeks and even longer.
Furthermore, since it contains lots of spices, it has an unique taste whom many people is actually like it. This special dish has spread across the neighboring countries such several Southeast Asian country for an example Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei Darussalam and Philippines. Not to mention another neighboring country such as Australia.
So, rendang is officially recognised as one of Indonesia’s national dishes. In 2011, rendang itself was named as the dish which ranked first on CNN International’s list of the World’s 50 Most Delicious Foods (50 Most Delicious Foods). And in 2018, rendang was officially designated as one of Indonesia’s five national dishes. Moreover, six types of rendang preparations have also been designated as intangible cultural heritage asset by the Indonesian Ministry of Eduction and Culture.
Basically, rendang is often described as a rich dish of meat. But the most common meat for making rendang is beef. The process for making rendang is by slow cooking it by braising in a coconut milk seasoned with a herb and spice mixture, until the liquids evaporate and the meat turns dark brown and tender, becoming caramelized and infused with rich flavours.
The process of cooking rendang at low temperature for a long time, uses coconut milk and various Indonesian spices which are slightly spicy so that it adds to its distinctiveness and delicacy. The cooking process is so long that it produces soft rendang meat and spices that seep into the meat.
Although rendang is a traditional Minangkabau dish, cooking techniques as well as the choice and use of rendang spices vary by region. There is rendang that is cooked in a shorter time and the coconut milk hasn’t dried up called kalio, which is light golden brown in color.
Where to find ?
In its home area, Minangkabau region, in West Sumatera, rendang is served at various traditional ceremonies and special events. As it also informed in Wikipedia, at first, as the signature dish of Minangkabau culture, rendang is traditionally served at ceremonial occasions to honour guests during festive events, such as wedding feasts and Lebaran or Hari Raya (Indonesian popular words for both Eid al-Fitr and Eid al-Adha). Rendang is also traditionally served among the Malay community in Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei and also the Maranao in the Philippines.
In these days, rendang can be found in Padang restaurants around the world. This cuisine is popular in Indonesia and other Southeast Asian countries, such as Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei, the Philippines and Thailand.