173 Spiced mutton big pieces dish

173-gekruide-lapjes-schapevlees-afThe combination of herbs in this classic Indonesian mutton recipe: coriander (ketoembar), cumin (djinten) and turmeric/curcuma (kunjit) make me all excited. I love mutton, but I go for lamb for this dish. It’s just easier to get and more tender to eat.

This spiced of mutton dish (or lamb in my case) is ready in 45 minutes and it is enough for 2 people.

Spiced pieces of mutton from Beb Vuyk Groot Indonesisch Kookboek, page 169.


1/2 kg mutton
1/6 block santen (coconut cream)
3 cups of water
2 tablespoons of oil


3 cloves of chopped garlic
1 teaspoon of coriander (ketoembar)
1/2 teaspoon cumin (djinten)
1/2 teaspoon turmeric (kunjit/curcuma)
piece of tamarind the size of a walnut (asem)

Make a little bit of sauce with the tamarind (asem), salt and a spoonful of cold water and rub it all over the meat. Allow the mutton to marinate for at least an hour. Rub garlic, coriander, cumin and turmeric together to a paste. Fry it in the oil. Dissolve the santen (coconut cream) in the water and cook the meat in this soup together with the fried spices.

173-gekruide-lapjes-schapevlees-kruidenCumin has such a distinct flavor that you can not use it anywhere. But it works very well with goat, sheep and lamb. The cumin determines the flavor of the whole dish. The kunjit or turmeric gives a beautiful bronze color to your dish.

American food-friends who visits this page a lot, explain to me that it is hard to get the right herbs and spices in the States. I searched online and came up with this Amazon-list of basic Indonesian spices. On the right side of this page you can find more, like sambals and kecap. Hopefully this helps to make all those lovely flagrant dishes yourself.

173-gekruide-lapjes-schapevlees-asemMarinate your meat with the asem (tamarind) and let marinate for at least an hour. The meat gets tender this way.173-gekruide-lapjes-schapevleesI cut the meat in big pieces like in Beb’s recipe. Even though I went for tender lamb, the pieces were sometimes a little tough when you bite into them. Not extreme, and hardly noticeable, but it can be better. I would recommend to cut the meat into small cubes of just 2 by 2 centimeter. It will be more tender and easy to eat ;-).173-gekruide-lapjes-schapevlees-tjobekI rub the herbs thoroughly in the tjobek. The flavors come out lovely and the meat will suck it all up.173-gekruide-lapjes-schapevlees-bumbuIn a way you make a broth out of coconut cream and the spices. In this soup you braise your meat. Lamb takes about 25 minutes. Regularly check how far it is. It should not be too dry. After 25 minutes, slowly simmering, I let the dish rest for 10 minutes (of the heat of course). The meat gets a chance this way to get even more tender.

Delicious to combine this lamb dish with Sajoer Toemis with snow peas. This combination is well appreciated by my guests. 😉

Beb Vuyk, best known for her Groot Indonesisch Kookboek (Great Indonesian Cook Book), was much more than a great cook. She belongs to the most important Dutch-Indonesian (Indo) writers and journalists of her time. Check this out.

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