Kohu-Kohu or Kokohu IndonesiaEatsChristmas, Maluku and Kohu-Kohu.  Traditional Christmas menu in Maluku won’t be completed without Kohu-Kohu (Maluku salad with coconut dressing and fish) which I’m providing the recipe below.  It is quite distinct compare to the western Christmas menu tradition.  Surely, each nation has its own. 

In Indonesia, Christmas isn’t the biggest celebration as more than 80% of the populations are muslim.  Only certain areas in Indonesia have a higher population of Christianity belief such as North Sumatra, Maluku, North Sulawesi, Papua, and Flores.  

Let’s learn what the Moluccans  have during Christmas celebration!  This meal tradition may have changed for Moluccans who don’t live in Indonesia anymore.

Here are some of the foods that you’ll expect to have for the Indonesian :

  1. Nasi Pulu Unti. Cooked glutinous or sticky rice topped with grated coconut and coconut sugar then wrapped in banana leaves.
  2. Kue Poporcis (Poffertjes). From the name you can guess that this cake was adaptation from Dutch Poffertjes.  These Kue poporcis will be served during Christmas for a breakfast.  Unlike Dutch Poffertjes that is made from all purpose flour, Kue Poporcis is created from Crookneck Pumpkin and flour then sprinkles with sugar just before serving.
  3. Papeda.  Papeda is a cooked sagoo into a porridge.  This sagoo porridge will be served with Ikan Kuah Kuning (Cooked skipjack tuna fish in turmeric gravy)
  4. Tuturuga. It’s a Maluku word for turtle. A very spicy curry based will be enriching of the turtle.
  5. Sambal Colo-colo. Normally this sambal is used to company grilled cakalang (skipjack tuna). It consists shallots, calamansi, chilies, tomato, chilies and lemon basil (kemangi)
  6. Bruder. A cake that is mixed with sageru (a wine that is fermented from arenga palm)
  7. Last but not least, it’s Kohu-Kohu or Kokohu. A similar salad dish to urap-urap or urab with long beans, bean sprouts, green round eggplant, cakalang fufu (smoked skipjack tuna), chilies, grated coconut, shallots and calamansi.
    Frozen Shredded Coconut_IndonesiaEats
    Frozen Shredded Coconut
    Frozen Shredded Scad Round Fish_IndonesiaEats
    Frozen Shredded Scad Round Fish to substitute Cakalang Fufu (Smoked Skipjack Tuna)

    Kohu-Kohu: Maluku Salad with Coconut Dressing and Smoked Fish

    Kohu-Kohu: Maluku Salad with Coconut Dressing and Smoked Fish

    Kohu-kohu is quite distinct to its counterpart in Bali, Java and Sumatra; Jukut Urab, Urab or Urap-urap, and Anyang. As many other Maluku dishes, it will include smoked fish or fresh small anchovies in the salad. However, for those who are a vegetarian or vegan, fish can be omitted.

    Maluku is a province and group of islands in the eastern part of Indonesia. Surely fish and seafood are part of their traditional menu.

    Prep Time 10 minutes
    Cook Time 10 minutes
    Total Time 20 minutes


    • 100 grams (3.53 oz) frozen grated coconut
    • 100 grams (3.53 oz) cakalang fufu (smoked tuna), shredded
    • 50 grams (1.76 oz) Chinese long green beans, roughly sliced
    • 50 grams (1.76 oz) bean sprouts
    • 50 grams (1.76 oz) Thai green round eggplant, cubed
    • 50 grams (1.76 oz) lemon basil (kemangi)
    • 20 grams (0.7 oz) shallots, peeled and finely sliced
    • calamansi, take about 5 tablespoons of juice

    Spices to be ground:

    • 3 red chilies, ground
    • 2 bird’s eye chilies, ground
    • seasalt


    1. Thaw grated coconut overnight in the fridge or use a microwave.
    2. With a mortar and pestle, grind chilies and salt.
    3. Combine thawed grated coconut. Steam them for about 10 minutes.
    4. Mix, smoked fish, vegetables, shallots, grated coconut mixture, and ground chilies.
    5. Drizzle calamansi juice and re-mix them again.
    6. It’s usually served with steamed cassava.


    • To substitute the use of lemon basil (kemangi), I have been using Vietnamese fingermints or Daun Kesum or Rau Ram. As I live in the area where I don't normally find fresh lemon basil at Asian markets unless it's in spring and summer where lemon basil plants and seeds are sold at farmers markets or nurseries.
    • If you can't find smoked tuna, other smoked fish will do. I use both cakalang fufu and smoked round scad fish that is similar to mackerel.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.