Nasi Kuning Recipe (Indonesian Yellow Fragrant Rice)

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This Nasi Kuning can be translated as Indonesian Style Yellow Fragrant Rice or Festive Yellow Rice. Why is it called festive? because It’s to be served at Indonesian traditional parties, such as housewarming, welcoming guest. This is also good for anniversaries. In my family, we have a tradition to have this nasi kuning to celebrate our birthdays. Nasi kuning is also served for breakfast in some Indonesian’s areas, such as Balikpapan, East Kalimantan, where it is served with Ikan Bumbu Bali (translated as Fish in Balinese Spice). I don’t recommend to use Bashmati rice to make this nasi kuning.

Category: Rice and Pasta
Style: Indonesian


2 cups jasmine rice, washed and drained
2 1/4 cups coconut milk
3/4 cup chicken stock(or vegetable stock for vegetarian)
1 salam (Indonesian bay) leaf
2 lime kaffir leaves
1 pandan/screwpine leaf (or few drops pandan essence)
1 stalk lemon grass, bruised
3/4 – 1 tsp turmeric powder

2 cm galangal, cut in 4 lengthwise slices salt as desired

Combine all ingredients in a rice cooker or heavy stock pot and simmer, covered, until done.

Hints: If you don’t have a rice cooker, cook the rice in a pot at over high heat until the liquid starts to a boil. Turn down the heat and continue to cook gently to avoid scrorching on bottom of the pot. Discard lemongrass, galangal, salam and kaffir lime leaves before serving.

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About the Author

An Indonesian-born who lived in Winnipeg Edmonton, Canada for more than a decade prior to move to Edmonton in 2017. Indonesia Eats is a memoir of her homeland.