I am not a Manadonese (one of ethnic group of Indonesia inhibits Sulawesi island), but i truly love the taste of this food. No offense, i am the biggest fans of spicy food wherever they are, LOL. Manadonese food is very famous throughout Indonesia. The flavor of choice is very hot and spicy. People in Manado will likely not go for a strike when fuel costs increase, but it is very unlikely for them to stay quiet when chili prices increase.
Woku is an authentic Manado sauce that get named from Daun Woka. Daun woka is a kind of young coconut leaf that is usually used as a warm rice wrapper. In Manado's history of culinary, woku spices is rich Manadonese mixed spices. Actually this woku using seafood as basic ingredients but some people use chicken. There are 2 version of woku, i.e. Woku Belanga (cooked with juicy sauce in belanga or saucepan) or Woku Daun (cooked wrapped in banana/woku leaves).
The fusion between savory fresh sour flavour and fragrant of various herb leaves make this food is completely delicious. And don't blame me if you will be so tempted in this food after you taste it, LOL.
I took the recipe from Bunda Inong's blog. She was my greatest inspiration to write a blog about food and recipe. I admire her so much, although she has been gone several years ago. Now, we can only meet her by her blog, a place where she kept her recipe and story about her past daily activity. This is one of my favourite food at home. I often cook this at home.
Ayam Woku Belanga
(Chicken with Spicy Chilli Woku Sauce)
- 12 chicken pieces
- 1 lime, squeezed to get the juice
- 1 medium-sized tomato, sliced
- 2 lemon grass, bruised
- 2 stalks spring onion, sliced
- 3 kaffir lime leaves
- 2 sprigs of lemon basil leaves (Kemangi leaves)
- salt, sugar, and pepper as desired
- 500 ml water
- 2 tablespoons cooking oil
- 5 shallots
- 100 gr long red chillies
- 50 gr bird's eye red chilli (you can reduce or eliminate this chili if you don't want this food too spicy)
- 2 cm fresh turmeric
- 3 cm fresh ginger
- 5 candlenuts
- Rub chicken with salt and lime juices. Marinate for 30 minutes. Set aside.
- Stir fry the finely ground ingredients in cooking oil. Add lemon grass and stir it until fragrant.
- Add chicken and water. Stir well then add sliced tomato and kaffir lime leaves. In medium heat, let it cooked about 30 minutes or until the chicken pieces tender and the sauce reduce.
- Add salt, sugar, pepper, spring onion and lemon basil leaves. Stir it, and ready to be served.