Blood Cockle Satay
What is your favourite saté or satay? This blood cockle saté is one of my favourites which I brought to the potluck party on Saturday along with bitter melon omelette. Blood cockle (kerang darah) is a species of ark clam, has a high economic value as food. This clam is found throughout the Indo-Pacific region from eastern Africa to Australia to Polynesia to Japan.

Blood cockles are very popular in Indonesia. People usually steam, grill/roast, stir fry or boil them into soup. When you go to East Java province, you will find this clam saté/satay at most eatery places that offer lontong kupang (spicy baby clam soup with rice cake), lontong lodeh (vegetables in coconut milk with rice cake), lontong balap (bean sprout soup with rice cake) and lontong mie (noodle soup with rice cake).

All those Eastern Javanese foods that I mentioned above are added with Petis (Seafood Base Paste). Petis has a darker colour, gooey texture, stronger and richer flavour than terasi udang (dried shrimp paste). Yes! The Eastern Javanese indeed loves petis. We even eat our fritters with petis and chili. There are three kinds of petis; udang (shrimp), ikan (fish) and kupang (baby clam). The most common to be sold outside Sidoarjo and Surabaya is petis udang (dark shrimp paste).

You can’t find blood cockle, you can always substitute for other clams or mussel.

Sate Kerang
– Eastern Javanese Blood Cockle Saté/Satay –

400 gram blood cockle without shells
150 mL young coconut water
2 Indonesian bay (salam) leaves
1 kaffir lime leaf, tear
3 tablespoons kecap manis
2 tablespoons cooking oil
bamboo skewers

Spices to be ground:
3 shallots (double up the amount if you use a smaller size)
3 cloves garlic
1 kaffir lime leaf, discard the vein and chop
1-cm long galangal, peeled and minced
1/2 teaspoon toasted ground coriander
red long cayenne pepper*
bird eye chilies*

Sambal Petis (Dark Shrimp Paste Sambal):
2 cloves garlic, roasted/fried
5 bird eyes chilies, roasted/steamed*
1 1/2 tablespoons petis udang (dark shrimp paste)
2 tablespoons kecap manis
2 tablespoons warm water
sugar (optional, I didn’t add this)
key lime (in this recipe, I used calamansi)

1.  In a skillet, heat the oil.  Add salam leaves, kaffir lime leaf and the spice paste.  Stir fry until you smell the aroma.

2.  Add young coconut water, kecap manis and seasalt.  Bring to a boil.

3.  Add blood cockle, keep stirring until the sauce thicken.

4.  Remove from the heat.  Once the blood cockles are at a room temperature, start threading 5-6 pieces of clam into each skewer.

5.  Grill until done.  While you grill them, keep basting the remaining sauce on.Then, transfer them to a basting 2 plate and bast. Regrill them until done.

6.   In Sidoarjo and Surabaya, the saté/satay is served to company lontong kupang (baby clam soup with rice cake) or lontong balap (bean sprouts soup with rice cake) and sambal petis (shrimp paste sambal).

Sambal Petis:
Squeeze key lime to get 1/2 tablespoon juice. Combine all ingredients, stir and mix well. Serve with Sate Kerang.

Cook’s Note:
The amount of long red cayenne pepper and bird eye chilies can be add more or reduce less depend on how strong your palate to handle the heat is.


  1. OMG Pepy, they look so darn sedap!! The spices … oh, can imagine how the aroma when you are cooking & grilling. What did you use to grill them? Oven? BBQ grill?

  2. Pepy, as usual bright colorful photos of scrumptious dish! And you used calamansi! Thanks for the key lime reminder; I should grow a pair as well. Very useful in Southeast Asian cooking.

    Thanks for sharing!

  3. These look really delicious. I have never tried these. The sauce look spicy and delicious….mmm. Love it. Thanks very much for sharing.

  4. I love satay but have never tried to do it myself. It is so convenient to get delicious satay here but now looking at your satay which looks delectable makes me want to try making at home,.

  5. omg!!bila baca bahan bahannya Cm pasti rasa sate ini enak sekali.Minta izin untuk C& P resepinya …thanks for sharing this recipe ya:)

  6. Lovely!!! and what a nice photo! The only problem I've got every time I want to prepare SE Asian food is with kaffir lime leaves – impossible to find over here. I still have 5 left, but they are dry and the taste is not the same :(.

  7. What a beautiful photo! I've never even heard of blood cockles before, but I'd love to try them. I wonder if I could find them in an Asian market here in Seattle?

  8. @CikManggis: Silahkan Kak. Let me know how it tastes.

    @SomethingGood: Is there any Asian markets in your area?

    @Christine: You may find them in the frozen section of Asian markets. But, if you can find it, feel free to substitute with other clams or mussels.

    • I used frozen one and it wasn’t fishy as I recalled. You can always substitute with other shellfish such as mussel and clam if you can handle the fishy smell of the frozen one


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