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Limes of several types are used in Indonesia. Round yellow-skinned limes (jeruk nipis) are slightly larger than a golf ball. The small, dark green calamansi limes (jeruk limau) are used for their fragrant juice and rind. Other types of limes may also be used.

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Krupuk are dried crackers made from bits of shrimp, fish, vegetables and nuts mixed with various types of flour to make a very popular snack in Indonesia. They must be thoroughly dried in the sun or in an oven set on very low before deep-frying in very hot oil for a few seconds, when they […]

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Jicama (bangkuang) is a crunchy and juicy white tuber that is peeled and eaten raw, sliced and served with rock salt or dressing as a refreshing snack. Look for it in the produce section of supermarkets.

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Garlic Chives

Garlic chives (kucai), sometimes referred to as Chinese chives, have flattened leaves and resemble thin spring onions. They have a strong garlicky flavor and are often added to noodle or stir-fried vegetable dishes during the final stages of cooking. Substitute spring onions, although their flavor is more mild.

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Dried Shrimp

Dried shrimp (ebi) are a popular Asian ingredient used in sauces and sambals. They are tiny, orangecolored sun-dried saltwater prawns. They keep for several months and should be soaked in water for 5 minutes to soften slightly before use. Look for dried shrimp that are pink and plump and avoid any grayish ones. Better quality […]

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Curry Powder

Curry powder is a commercial spice blend that generally includes cumin seeds, coriander seeds, turmeric, ginger, cinnamon and cloves. Different combinations vary in color and flavor and are used for different types of curries—meat, fish or chicken. Use an all-purpose blend if a specific curry powder is not available. Store in an airtight container in […]

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Coriander seeds

Coriander seeds (ketumbar) are one of the most commonly used spices in Indonesia. The small, round seeds have a mild citrus fragrance. They are used whole, or ground into a powder.

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Cinnamon is lighter in color, thinner, and more expensive than cassia bark, which is often sold as cinnamon. Cassia bark has a stronger flavor than cinnamon, but makes an acceptable substitute. Do not use ground cinnamon as a substitute where cinnamon sticks are called for.

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Chayote (choko) is an oval, pale green squash with a small white seed. When boiled, the seed is not only edible, but also very delicious. Sold in well-stocked supermarkets and Latino stores. Substitute zucchini.

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Carambola (belimbing wuluh) is a pale green acidic fruit about 2–3 in (5–8 cm) long. It grows in clusters and is related to the larger starfruit. Carambola is used whole or sliced to add a sour tang to soups, fish dishes and sambals. Substitute tamarind juice or sour grapefruit.

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