Daging Dendeng / Empal ( Sour Sweet fried Beef )

This is the easiest Indonesian traditional tenderloin recipe - at least for me. I don’t know if the whole spices are available in other country.


  • ½ kg tenderloin beef
  • 1 tbsp coriander
  • 1 tbsp tamarind
  • 1.5 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 glove garlic ( if you like garlic, use 2 or 3 gloves )
  • half tsp salt ( or less if you don’t want to make it too salty )
  • water


  • cobek and ulekan (this is Indonesian name for “mortar and pestle”)
  • wok



  1. Boil it with water till it soft and half ripe
  2. slice it, as thin as you can

spices (using mortar):

  1. Grind the coriander first.
  2. Add garlic gloves, grind.
  3. Add tamarind, grind. you don’t have to grind the tamarind’s seeds either.
  4. Add brown sugar, and salt, this grinding order is not absolute. It’s just to make your grinding work easier.
  5. Add a small amount of water ( probably 10 - 30 cc ), just make sure the spices is enough to make whole meat slices soak, but also make sure the spice isn’t too thin - or the only taste you’ll get is salty.
  6. Pour the spice to your sliced meat. Make it whole soaked for each slice’s surfaces. Leave it for 15 minutes ( or a whole night in fridge if you like ).
  7. Fry it with medium heat. usually it’ll took less than 10 mnts, but please do as you like.
  8. DON’T DO the “deep frying” like you used to when you make french fries. You can also eat the fried spices, so don’t use too much oil or it will taste too oily.

What you should know

As usual, don’t stick to my recipe. Use your own measurements for whole ingredients. I don’t know if you can use blender machine instead of mortar. I guess the juice won’t come out well if you use blender.

Re: Daging Dendeng / Empal ( Sour Sweet fried Beef )