This frugal stir-fried rice dish is synonymous with Indonesian food. Eaten traditionally for breakfast (although you can eat it anytime really), the rice is flavoured with shallot, chilli and garlic.
You can add a lot more into the mix though and there are loads of variations of this recipe. Having scanned through cook books and the internet, it really is a dish that is open to interpretation and can be as simple or as elaborate as you like.
You can add meat or fish such as chicken or prawns. Or you can keep things vegetarian with a scattering of cucumber, tomatoes and bean shoots. The one thing that ties it all together is the addition of a lovely fried egg on top. To me, a nasi goreng without a fried egg is a like a night without stars. He says, paraphrasing Buddha and erm, a character from the film Annie.
Today I decided to be different and use a smidgen of shrimp paste, to add a certain je ne sais quoi. ‘And why not?’ I thought. Sure, it’s heady and pungent but a little goes a long way when adding some umami smack to the lips.
The fried egg yolk dribbling down into the savoury, fragrant rice should warm most hearts.
And if that's not enough, the gentle heat from the warm chilli and ginger paired with the fresh chopped coriander is equally as comforting.