Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Sofia and Azrul´s Nasi Goreng Kampung




  • 250 grams of long grain rice (cooked the day before, no basmati or jasmine) 
  • Palm oil 
  • a bunch of water spinach  
  • 100 grams of dried anchovies (with or without head, according to preference) 
  • 1 red onion 
  • 4 shallots 
  • 3 eggs 
  • 5 red and 5 green bird´s eye chilis (take less if you like it less spicy)
  • 10 shrimps (not precooked)
  • 150 grams of chicken breast 
  • 2 teaspoons of shrimp paste (in Malay, it’s called belacan)
  • 1 teaspoon of white sugar 
  • 5 garlic cloves 
  • 1 tablespoon of anchovy powder

The Preparation

The rice should be cooked the day before and then left in the refrigerator overnight. The drier the rice, the better your Nasi Goreng Kampung will be. You can choose the traditional preparation with a mortar, like Sofia, but otherwise you can also use an electric grinder. A wok is the best choice for preparation due to the temperatures in the wok and on the sides. The wok has high sides, which is equally important for cooking. You can also use a coated pot, but not a skillet.

First, fry 80 grams of the dried anchovies, and the remaining 20 grams will go into the mortar later. To fry, put a layer of the palm oil about 4 cm high in the wok. When you put a single anchovy in the oil to test it and it starts to bubble, the oil is at the right temperature and you add the rest of the anchovies. After about 2-3 minutes they should be golden brown and starting to smell. Take them out of the oil and let them drain in a sieve. Don’t dump the oil, you’ll need it later.

Now prepare all the ingredients so that you just have to add them to the wok later.

Peel the red onions, the shallots and the garlic cloves and put them in your mortar together with the non-fried anchovies. First crush everything coarsely, then add the chilies. Now crush everything into a mass in which you can no longer recognize the contours of the individual ingredients. Now add the shrimp paste and bind it into your paste. It should be a nice not too fine, uniform mass.

Now wash and peel the prawns and cut the chicken breast into cubes. Cut off the hard stems of the spinach and use the softer parts for your Nasi Goreng. Cut the water spinach only very roughly.

Now heat the oil in your wok again (not too hot, nothing should burn) and add the paste from your mortar to the oil. Keep stirring the paste in your wok. After about 3 minutes, turn down the heat a bit, as now the other ingredients will be added.

Add your chicken, stirring constantly. After about two minutes, add the prawns and continue stirring. After another 5 minutes you should be able to smell a wonderful aroma. Now add a tablespoon of anchovy powder and keep stirring. Now put the contents of your wok on one side and put three eggs on the other side. When the eggs are a little brown, turn them over once. Now add the rice to the wok and mix everything together for 3 minutes. You should make sure that nothing burns and that all ingredients stick to each grain of rice. Sofia sometimes presses with the spatula on the rice so that the remaining moisture is pressed out of the rice and it becomes even drier.

Now add the water spinach and the teaspoon of sugar, stir for a minute and you’re done.

Garnish your finished plate with the fried anchovies and some chillis if needed. In Malaysian roadside kitchens, many also order a fried egg, which is then placed on top of the rice.

Enjoy your meal!

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