Do you love to crunch your teeth into fresh vegetables like red and yellow peppers and cucumbers? Here is a recipe you’ll want to pull out the cutting board for — Pepper Salad with Sesame Seeds.
It is included in my book, Recipe and Craft Guide to Indonesia (Mitchell Lane Publishing 2010).
My daughter, Amanda, teaches high school English in a Christian school in Indonesia. She loves living there! This is her 3rd year and she plans to return next year. She recommended this dish and many of the other nine recipes in the book.
Pepper Salad with Sesame Seeds (Timor Achar in the Indonesian language)
Preparation time: 30 minutes
¼ c. apple cider vinegar
1 t. sugar
2 T. sesame seeds
¼ lb. snow peas
1 red onion
1 green bell pepper
1 red bell pepper
Small jar with cover
2 large spoons
1. Put vinegar and sugar in jar. Cover and shake to blend; refrigerate.
2. Heat sesame seeds in skillet over medium heat, tossing until browned about 3 minutes. Set aside.
3. Core and seed peppers. Cut peas lengthwise into thin strips.
4. Finely slice peppers, onion, peas, and onion. Cut tomato into 6 wedges. Put vegetables into salad bowl. Add dressing. Toss to blend with large spoon.
5. Sprinkle with sesame seeds. Serve chilled with rice and other dishes.
Tidbit of cultural information: Most of Indonesia’s 200 million people get up at sunrise, the coolest part of the day. For breakfast they may eat leftovers from the day before – shallots, bowls of rice and soy, or tofu.
In the morning cooks in each home usually prepare a load of plain rice and 3 or 4 dishes for the family to eat during the day. These are left on the table for whenever someone is hungry. The cook is then free for the rest of the day. Food is not reheated; it is eaten at room temperature. Indonesian cooking methods help to keep the food edible.
Since meat is scarce in Indonesia and little of it is eaten, meals revolve around fresh fruits and vegetables and huge bowls of cooked dry white rice. Enjoy!