Root Vegetable Nasi Goreng

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Root Vegetable Nasi Goreng

Root vegetable nasi goreng

This a great recipe for using up bits of vegetables left over from other meals. I made this between Christmas and New Year when I had some root vegetables to use but really wanted something different from the more traditional British Christmas flavours that we’d been eating.

The recipe is adapted from Meera Sodha’s recipe for Sprout Nasi Goreng in her fantastic book East. In that recipe Brussels sprouts are star of the show and she uses them ‘two ways’ – they’re incorporated into the dish in the same way as here but also some of them are kept raw and marinated to make a contrasting topping. I’ve keep things much simpler here but it’s still super-tasty.

I have no idea how close the flavours are to a traditional Nasi Goreng but I had to call it something and it’s a nod to the inclusion of kecap manis, a sweet Indonesian soy sauce.

On what vegetables to include, I think it would work with any combination of root vegetables that you can grate and/or leafy vegetables that you can slice thinly.

Root Vegetable Nasi Goreng

Servings 2


  • 175 g Thai Jasmine rice
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil (I use groundnut)
  • 1 red onion
  • 1/2 tsp dried chilli flakes (optional)
  • 3 cloves garlic, crushed or finely chopped
  • 300-400 g vegetables (I used a mixture of carrot, celeriac, Brussels sprouts and white cabbage)
  • 2 tbsp tomato puree
  • 2 tbsp kecap manis
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • 1/2 tbsp toasted sesame oil


  • To prepare the vegetables either peel and grate coarsely (for root vegetables such as carrots, celeriac, turnip, swede) or slice finely (Brussels sprouts, cabbage).
  • Rinse the rice in cold water and then put in a pan with 300ml boiling water. Bring back to the boil, cover with a lid, turn the heat down as low as it will go and leave to simmer gently for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, turn the heat off and leave it to steam with the lid on.
  • While the rice is cooking, finely chop the red onion, heat the oil in a large frying pan and add the onion and chilli flakes. Fry over a medium heat for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Add the crushed garlic and fry for another minute or two.
  • Add the prepared vegetables and fry over a fairly high heat for 8 minutes. Don't stir too often because you want to get a bit of colour on them.
  • Add the tomato puree, kecap manis, soy sauce, white wine vinegar and sesame oil. Stir well and cook over a low to medium heat for a further 5 minutes.
  • Add the cooked rice into the frying pan and mix in with the vegetables, continuing to cook for a couple more minutes.

A note about salt

You might have noticed that I rarely mention salt in my recipes. I just don’t use it a lot. I’m sure a lot of people would think my cooking is ‘under seasoned’ but I have to watch my blood pressure and I’m used to not using much. There are some things, like rice, where I add a bit at the table but I rarely add it into my cooking.