Tourism Malaysia



Ask any Malaysian how chicken or beef rending taste like? Be prepared for a lip-smacking ‘delicious’ answer because this popular dish has become a staple meat dish to accompany our nasi lemak meals or warm, steamed rice, anytime of the day.

This curried and stewed meat dish is said to have originated from Padang, West Sumatra. Commonly served at ceremonial and festive occasions, the dish has been ‘absorbed’ into other areas in S.E.Asia, with slight variations. Traditionally rendang is made with beef and cooked with coconut milk, galangal, lemongrass, kaffir lime leaves and other spices like tamarind or turmeric leaf. The dish is braised for hours until almost all the liquid is gone, allowing the meat to absorb the spicy condiments. The cooking process changes from boiling to frying as the liquid evaporates. Beef rending normally takes about 2-4 hrs to cook while the equally popular chicken rendang needs only 1-2 hors to be cooked. The longer the cooking process, the better the dish will taste as the meat not only absorbs the spices but becomes tender as well. The locals believe that rending tastes best on the 2nd or 3rd day after it is cooked. In fact a well-cooked rending dish can be stored up to days under room temperature or even weeks in the refrigerator.

Rendang is often served with rice, ketupat (compressed rice cake) and lemang (glutinous rice barbecued in bamboo tubes). Today, modern food connoiseurs, are savouring rending chicken or beef with crusty, country bread which makes a tasty proposition with the dish.

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