In Indonesia (In east Java to be specific), “Jangan” mean anything that come from vegetable, it can be soup, stew or anything you can named, to be enjoyed with steam rice and also some protein, it can be tempeh and tofu if you want to enjoy very humble meal (in fact that is my favourite, like my father can not enjoyed some meal without tofu and tempeh, so both protein are my family standard staple).

While this name are quite specific, which honestly I don’t know where it come from. This soup are made with very simple basic seasoning, only garlic, shallot and candlenut, that is the standard. If you want some elaborate flavour you can put chilli (like my mom usually did), sweet basil and specific herb called “Temu Kunci” in Indonesian that means key, in english it called “Fingerroot”, which I am not sure you can have it, even in Indonesia people are not commonly used this root herb. But I have frozen small amount of them, enough to cure my homesick and my mom hug.

I am not expecting my kids are going to liking this dishes, since it is not their normal flavour palate, but my son really enjoy a full bowl of it. I add some edamame to get some texture and it is so nice.

Let’s come with me into my childhood home.


Serve 2 small portion


  • 100 Gram frozen spinach
  • 1/2 cup frozen skinless edamame
  • 1 big French shallot
  • 2 garlic
  • 2 candlenut or you can replace it with cashew for same amount
  • 1 red chilli seed out
  • 2 slice of galangal
  • 1 bayleaf
  • 1 root fingerroot — optional
  • 100ml thick coconut milk
  • 400ml water
  • Sea salt, pepper and sugar to taste
  • Slice spring onion –optional


  1. In the blender, put the shallot, “fingerroot”, garlic, candlenut and chilli, add a lil bit water and blend them until turn into paste.
  2. In medium pot and medium heat, put inside the water, the herb paste, bay leaf and galangal, boiling them slowly. When it boiling, give a season with sea salt, pepper and sugar to balance, then put inside the coconut milk.
  3. When the broth are start shimmering put inside the spinach, edamame and slice spring onion (if you have it), continue to cooked until it boiled for seconds, don’t forget to give it a taste and corrected accordingly. Then take out from the heat. Don’t cooked this too long.
  4. Ready to serve, I serve mine with steam rice and fried onion.

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