Latest Stories


Chicken ‘satay’ with sweet soya sauce


When Ferdinand Magellan set out on his voyage in search of the fabled Spice Islands, he should perhaps have landed in Indonesia. For in this archipelago of 17,508 islands, spices and herbs grow abundantly.

Cloves, ginger, nutmeg, cardamom, chilies, coriander, lemongrass and other exotic plants thrive in the islands’ warm tropical climate. No wonder Indonesian food is endowed with such vibrant flavors. Bland is a word that certainly doesn’t exist in their culinary dictionary.

So what dishes do they make out of these spices? Sambal goreng udang, for one, aka fried prawns with chilies and coconut. There’s also daging rendang, beef braised to tenderness in a rich stew of spices and coconut cream; sup buntut (Javanese oxtail soup); ikan pesmol (fish in turmeric sauce); and the more familiar gado gado (salad vegetables in peanut sauce dressing), among others.

At Café Jeepney in Hotel InterContinental, Indonesian cuisine in all its diversity is currently being served as part of the lunch and dinner buffets. Preparing the dishes are chefs Mamo Suparmo and Hinggil Duli of InterContinental Jakarta.

Both chefs highly recommend the food of their country not only for its lush, mystifying flavors, but also because they believe all these spices are good for the health.

Here’s a recipe for Indonesian skewered chicken in a sweet soya sauce. Unlike the usual satay, this doesn’t come with a peanut sauce. Rather the chicken has a sweet-chili flavor, so typical of the dishes in the land of spices that had eluded the voyagers of old. If Magellan were alive today, he would have liked this dish.

The Indonesian Food Festival is ongoing at Hotel InterContinental until Nov. 25. For reservations, call 7937000.


Chicken Satay with Sweet Soya Sauce

  • 1 k chicken breasts and thighs
  • ½ c butter, melted
  • 1 c sweet soy sauce
  • ½ c chopped shallots
  • 2 tbsp chopped red bird’s eye chilies (siling labuyo)

Remove the meat from the bones and cut the meat into bite-size cubes (discard the bones or reserve them for making broth). Combine butter, soy sauce, shallots and chilies. Marinate chicken meat in the mixture for two to three hours.

When ready to cook, brush a griller with oil to prevent the meat from sticking. Preheat the griller to medium heat. Thread the chicken into skewers and grill the chicken on both sides until fully cooked (around 5-6 minutes on each side). Serve warm with rice.




If desired, reserve the marinade. Add about ¼ cup water if it has become too thick. Heat the mixture to boiling. Let boil for one to two minutes. Serve as sauce for the chicken.

For more tips, recipes and stories, visit www.normachikiamco.com or www.facebook.com/normachikiamco; follow on Twitter @NormaChikiamco.


Cook’s tips


Be careful when slicing the chilies as they could burn the skin. Definitely do not touch your face and your eyes or they will sting. Wash hands and dry them well after handling the chilies.

For less heat, use fewer chilies.

Soya sauce is equivalent to soy sauce. Sweet soy sauce is thicker and, as its name implies, is sweet, rather than salty. It’s available in the condiments section of large supermarkets.

A substitute for shallots is red onions.

If you don’t have a griller, you can also cook the chicken in a nonstick pan. Brush the pan lightly with oil or spray it with nonstick cooking spray before heating.

Follow Us

Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter

Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: Chicken Satay , Food , Lifestyle

  • epenaper

    We should stop referring to siling labuyos as bird’s eye chilies. The bird’s eye chilies are often confused with the similar-looking siling labuyo. “Labuyo” is a cultivar of the capsicum frutascens, while bird’s eye chili is a cultivar of capsicum annuum. Are we aware that it is now recognized as “siling labuyo,” and has no english term except for its translation “wild chili?”

Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
  1. Are your favorite malls open this Holy Week break?
  2. Levine designs womenswear with help from fiancee
  3. ‘Labahita a la bacalao’
  4. This is not just a farm
  5. Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Nobel laureate, dies at 87
  6. Clams and garlic, softshell crab risotto–not your usual seafood fare for Holy Week
  7. Why is the lifestyle set now afraid to wear jewelry–before Kim Henares?
  8. Moist, extra-tender blueberry muffins
  9. How Vitamin B can be a remedy for ‘manhid’ and neuropathy
  10. Ford Mustang turns 50 atop Empire State Building
  1. Dominique–Gretchen and Tonyboy Cojuangco’s daughter–now an endorser
  2. Why is the lifestyle set now afraid to wear jewelry–before Kim Henares?
  3. Are your favorite malls open this Holy Week break?
  4. Sarah Geronimo and Matteo Giudicelli sing ‘All of Me’–and we all swoon
  5. How Vitamin B can be a remedy for ‘manhid’ and neuropathy
  6. Marcos grandson to wed beautiful Rocha scion
  7. Ever heard of HydroBob?
  8. 90 percent of Filipino households don’t practice proper toilet hygiene, sanitation
  9. Are your favorite malls open this Holy Week?
  10. Boots Anson-Roa to wed in Eddie Baddeo
  1. Mary Jean Lastimosa is new Miss Universe Philippines
  2. Did Angara ruin Pia Wurtzbach’s chances at Bb. Pilipinas?
  3. Dominique–Gretchen and Tonyboy Cojuangco’s daughter–now an endorser
  4. Manila in shock over model Helena Belmonte’s death
  5. Vinegar test helpful vs cervical cancer
  6. From Jeannie to mom of suicide victim
  7. San Vicente beaches hidden but not for long
  8. Borgy and Georgina are back; others are off–again
  9. Sen. Angara: I thought Pia Wurtzbach gave a good answer
  10. Why is the lifestyle set now afraid to wear jewelry–before Kim Henares?


  • Prosecutor says mate in SKorean ferry steering waters for 1st time
  • Malaysia asks world to pray for missing plane clue
  • 13th body pulled from snow in Everest avalanche
  • Pope sends condolences for S.Korea ferry victims
  • Drone kills 15 ‘Qaeda,’ 3 civilians in Yemen – security
  • Sports

  • MLB pitcher donates $100,000 for Sewol ferry victims
  • Hamilton takes pole at Chinese Grand Prix
  • Duke’s Rodney Hood joining Jabari Parker in NBA draft
  • Phelps entered in 3 events at comeback meet
  • Boston prepares for huge wave of marathon visitors
  • Lifestyle

  • Levine designs womenswear with help from fiancee
  • Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Nobel laureate, dies at 87
  • Ford Mustang turns 50 atop Empire State Building
  • Pro visual artists, lensmen to judge Pagcor’s photo contest
  • ‘Labahita a la bacalao’
  • Entertainment

  • Myx TV premieres Asian American ‘docu-series’
  • A nutty finale for ‘Scandal,’ TV’s craziest show
  • EXO postpones release of mini album ‘Overdose’
  • ‘X-men’ filmmaker slams ‘fabricated’ sex attack claims
  • Singer Chris Brown’s bodyguard on trial in DC
  • Business

  • Fiat-Chrysler to produce iconic Jeep in China from 2015
  • US commerce secretary spells out economic facet of ‘pivot to Asia’
  • Italy sells luxury state cars on eBay
  • Asian shares mostly up in quiet trade
  • Dollar up in Asia on US jobs data, Ukraine deal
  • Technology

  • Nasa’s moon-orbiting robot crashes down
  • Netizens pay respects to Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  • Nokia recalls 30,000 chargers for Lumia 2520 tablet
  • Facebook rolls out ‘nearby friends’ feature
  • Netizens seethe over Aquino’s ‘sacrifice’ message
  • Opinion

  • Editorial cartoon, April 17, 2014
  • A humbler Church
  • Deepest darkness
  • ‘Agnihotra’ for Earth’s health
  • It’s the Holy Week, time to think of others
  • Global Nation

  • 5 Filipinos with MERS in UAE reported in stable condition
  • PH boosts MERS monitoring after UAE nurse scare
  • Canadians back PH plea to take back waste
  • We treasure our Sierra Madre
  • OFW from UAE tests negative for MERS-Cov–health chief